This was written by our amazing daughter-in-law, Jesika, on her blog, and I wanted to share it…what a great perspective!

what i like about being on vancouver island is that i find people a wee bit more relaxed than in calgary. maybe its because over 50% of them are retired or because every time i’m here i’m on vacation therefor i feel relaxed, regardless, as i stood in line i could envision the same line in calgary…people “tsk”ing and looking dissapprovingly back and forth between their watches and the little paper number they were handed. “time is money and i’m wasting my time” would be the thought in most heads. most likely they would just hand a big wad of cash to someone at the front of the line in exchange for their spot. but not here. here in victoria people gathered from all over the island to have a good old time of fellowship and community as we slowly crept up the sidewalk for the next five hours. by 2:00pm i had heard tales of people’s previous adventures and at least ten more of upcomming adventures…nigeria for vibrant colored cloth to be used in a designers spring clothing line, a couple vegas trips one by a 22 year old with her girlfriends, the other by a 42 year old with her girlfriends. a pleasant grandmotherly type visiting family in england, a father who drove his daughter down from nanaimo as she is going to mexico this summer to visit her sister. the list goes on. and between exchanging stories and attempting to study i was also able to leave for a little shopping, a few cups of coffee and a good visit in the book store across the street as others held my place in line.

it was a great time of fellowship and community and reminded me of waiting outside our broken down bus in indonesia or hanging out waiting for a train to arrive in india, always accompanied by locals interested in your being. interested in eachothers being. there’s no “wasted time” when you travel. “wasted time” doesn’t even exist in many other cultures and yet that seems to be what spurs us north americans on. “efficiency, multi-tasking and getting the most for our money”. now i must admit that i am as guilty as any other when it comes to these things, but it was nice for a change to step out of that and just enjoy what life had handed me…a day in a line-up with a group of jovial strangers. so as we drove away after five hours of standing in that line i tried to think, “oh i should have come later as the line was shorter and i probably would’ve only had to wait three hours instead of five”, but i couldn’t. as much as i tried to force those “efficient” thoughts into my head, i had no regrets of my day in that line-up. i had shared many conversations, experienced many adventures through other’s tales, and i had relaxed for a day with nothing else i could do but stand in line and enjoy the rare moment of true community that comes when a bunch of people are thrown together and can do nothing about it.

so thank you passport canada, because with out the new regulations my day would’ve been filled with research and studying and i may have learned a few extra facts about soil ecosystems or the genetic make-up of the cheetah, but ultimately i would not have learned as much as i did that tuesday.