Monday 12 October is Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving was first celebrated in Canada in 1578, by Arctic explorer Martin Frobisher. Forty years later, the Pilgrims arrived in the United States and the Americans adopted the holiday as well (although they celebrate it in November). We canvassed and researched to find some wacky Thanksgiving traditions. A couple of our favourites:
1. After our first round of eating all the ladies leave and go shopping for comfy PJs and silly socks or slippers and come back and change into those before eating round two.
2. We name and dance with our turkey when we clean it prior to stuffing it and cooking it. My parents did it when I was a kid and now I do it with my kids. Only my kids think I'm nuts.
We hope you have many things to be thankful for this year.
'Tis the season for pumpkins. The world has chocolatebeer, maple beer, bacon maple beer, pizza beer andpeanut butter & coffee beer. So, why not pumpkinbeer? Pumpkin beer is said to trace its roots to English settlers in North America, looking for something - anything - they could ferment into alcohol. These days, it is more of a nod to autumn flavours. Most taste like a combination of pumpkin and pie spice.
Own a restaurant for $150!
Toronto restaurateur, Ruthie Cummings, is looking to sell her eatery, Das Gasthaus, in order for her to look after her aging parents. Instead of a traditional sale, however, she is raffling off tickets for $150 (AUD$160). She is going to accept a maximum of 4000 entries and the draw will be held on 1 December. Click here for more information.
The Gold Coast's Henry the polar bear is on his way to the Cochrane Polar Bear Habitat in Cochrane, ON where he will be a part of the International Polar Bear conservation and breeding program. The facility is the only one of its kind in the world that focuses solely on polar bears. Given that he was born and raised at Sea World on the Gold Coast, we're thinking that a northern Ontario winter will come as a bit of a shock (even for a polar bear!). Click here for more on this story.
According to information leaked to the press, Canada's Foreign Affairs ministry is warning staff about the danger of leaking information to the press.
That's really all you need to know about this story. We don't even need to add our own humour, but you can read more about this news here.
Canada's best beards
Whilst Canada may not have won any matches at the Rugby World Cup - despite some valiant attempts! - they have topped the beard board. The New Zealand Herald published " The Best Beards of Rugby World Cup", declaring Team Canada the winner of the "Rugby World Cup of Beards".
Canada's Arthur McDonald and Japan's Takaaki Kajita have won the Nobel physics prize. McDonald won for his discoveries about the behaviour of a mysterious solar particle, teased from an experiment buried two kilometres below Sudbury. You can read more about his work and his SNOLABhere. Congratulations, Arthur!
Nova Scotian JP Cormier was concerned about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and how it affects war veterans. So, he wrote a song about it. With the past week being Mental Health Week, we thought it would be an opportune time to share this beautiful song and video. Thank you, Carol, for sending it in.
Canuck of the Month
This month, for the first time, we feature a four-legged Canuck! Max is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever ("Toller" for short).
Where are you from?
My breed comes from Little River, Nova Scotia but I was actually born at Coffs Harbour NSW. "Tolling" means "luring" and hunters will throw a stick near the water for me to play with; my fox-like tail waves around and attracts curious ducks to within gunshot range. I'm subsequently sent to retrieve any downed birds. There aren't too many ducks where I live in Sydney (and people get a bit edgy if you walk down the street with a shotgun here) so I make do with any old stick or toy these days. I'm about the size of a Border Collie (18-20kg) and love to swim in the harbour, go on walks with my owner and spend weekends away on farms - life's pretty good. I do have some relatives in Victoria and in Western Australia who are pretty serious hunters.
What do you like the most about Canada?
I dream about snow! I've never been to Canada but my owners are hoping to visit soon - maybe they'll bring me back a little brother or sister in a test tube!
What do you enjoy most about Australia?
I just love Australia - where else could you swim all year round and eat 'roo for dinner? Actually, I eat a lot of fruits and vegetables also - my favourites are mango, pawpaw, blueberries, pumpkin and carrot. I also love salmon leftovers.
What's your favourite team?
I'm a Wallabies fan. Grrrrrr.
Interesting "Timbit" about yourself:
Apart from my special hunting skills, I'm a little unusual in that I have webbed feet to help me swim. I also appear to be genetically indisposed to eating duck - but I really love chicken (go figure!). I make an excellent family pet and am an exceptionally fast learner - I excel at agility trials and will do just about anything for a squeaky toy. We are pretty rare in Australia (only about 700 of us) and not even many Canadians know of us.