The Countdown


The last few weeks before our departure everything seemed to be going in fast forward mode. The most important thing was to finish with renovations in our house, meet possible tenants and find the one person who would take good care of our home for the year to come. There was so much going on with the house, that we often had to remind ourselves we were soon leaving for a year and that too needed to be prepared for.

Final paperwork, shopping and packing had to be done, as well as last things we still wanted to do in Estonia before leaving. So we barbecued, rode our bicycles in sweet Estonian early spring and Rainer went swimming in Tamula lake amidst slowly melting ice – something he had been determined to do for a long time. And then it was time to start our journey to Canada. Whether we were ready or not, the tickets were bought and they had March 21st printed on them.


Packing chaos. What to take and what to leave when you only have a 1,5 backpacks to carry all you might need during a year.


The day of our departure was remarkably special: us flying across the ocean and in addition to that important detail, it was the last day of winter, we had a 75% eclipse and supermoon occurring all at the same time.



On the ship to Helsinki we added last details to our new homes – the bags. The big bags were 15 & 18 kg, plus we had two small ones and a laptop. All we thought we’ll need for a year.

We flew with Islandic Air on Helsinki-Reykjavik-Edmonton. Choosing Islandic Air seemed a bit risky at first, but we read some good reviews online. The overall impression and price tag made us take the “risk”, which was well worth it. When we arrived at the border we were a bit anxious, mostly due to watching too many episodes of “The Border Control”. It’s a show about the things happening at the Canadian border and how a lot of people get sent back.

And no kidding, while waiting in line we witnessed an episode evolving right in front of our eyes. There was a French guy who said he was here for 6 months on a travelling visa for some volunteering work, but when he was asked about his funds, he only had 4000 euros with him. He was questioned a lot, his phone was checked and baggage inspected. Everything like in a live show! It was a bit easier for us. An Officer named RAI (can you believe it!) was quite happy with all of our papers and didn’t really bother us with anything.


We left from Estonia while it was already spring and arrived in Canada, to be part of its sly winter.  A week prior to departure it was +14 C in Edmonton, but our arrival brought some snow to the early spring. We were happy to have brought our winter jackets with us.


We travelled back in time and season and were finally in Canada!


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