Originally from Paris, Baptiste is ‘A Frenchman in Toronto’. He just started working with us as an intern as part of an exchange program with his university. As city explorers ourselves, we were curious as to how a newcomer to Toronto discovers all our fair metropolis has to offer. So, we’ve taxed Baptiste with the gruelling chore of writing a weekly column about how he manages. Stay tuned…
I am a 24-year-old man from Paris. I’m dynamic, rigorous and very patient, and I like to discover new things and play sports.
Currently, I’m studying International Business Management at Euromed-Management in Marseille (south of France). I have chosen this university for its Bachelor Program, and the exchanges abroad that were offered. I have a crucial need to meet people and speak English, so I figured that traveling was the best opportunity for me. That is why I started to go abroad in exchange programs.
My first exchange happened to be at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo. Spending a year over there was overwhelming and the people I met made me realize I want to spend a few years in this country. My second exchange was at the University of Akron in Ohio… a distinctive way of living and diverse people, to say the least. I always enjoy discovering new worlds.
So far, Canada is perhaps one of my favourite countries and I will always have high esteem for Canadians. The way they make you feel is impressively nice, and you can be sure that you will always have a good time with them wherever you are…
So… here I am, at the View the Vibe office in Toronto, ready to write about my foreign experience.
I will always remember my first day in Toronto. Coming to a new city is always a big step in your life, especially when you are by yourself and need to find a place to stay. I remember taking a morning flight so I could arrive by noon and have time to find a place to sleep for the night.
After a few hours on the plane (which seems like an eternity when you are in it!), I finally landed at Pearson International Airport. Having had to go through the custom border a few times in my life, I knew they were going to ask me a lot of questions, usually with all the same BS, like having to describe your life, persuading them you aren’t here to cause havoc, and agreeing that as soon as your Tourist Visa expires you’ll go back to your country.
Anyways, I finally went through with no issues.
In my life, I try to go step by step. The next one was to look for a way to go downtown where I’d be able to find a hotel for the night. The good thing is I never feel nervous to ask my way around to a Canadian; people here are eager to help you.
It took me about 25 minutes to arrive in downtown, and as I was approaching this new city, I started getting excited. I see it now! All the buildings people talk about… The CN Tower which is that much more impressive than what I thought!
But, where do I get off the bus? That was obviously a good question. I remember stopping randomly at the second stop downtown (no idea where it was), but, hey! I am here now…