Welcome to Calgary! The biggest city in Alberta (and we won't let Edmonton forget it.) With our population ever-growing, Calgary can get pretty overwhelming. Especially when you're coming from a different province. But don't worry, as a 15th year Calgarian, I am here to prepare you for your transition into a full-out Calgary resident. Hope you brought your cowboy hat! If you don't own a cowboy hat, well, that takes us to number one on the list of 49 things that will definitely happen to you after moving to Calgary (in no particular order).
You will own a cowboy hat.
I'm not necessarily saying that you will buy a cowboy hat, but you sure as hell will obtain one at some point. You probably won't even know where it came from. It might've come with the house.
You will absolutely love Stampede.
Horses, parades, pancakes and performances!?! What's not to love? Yeehaw!
You will absolutely hate Stampede.
This could easily go both ways. If you're like me and have no interest in the cowboy culture, those 10 days in July will be, quite frankly, a living hell.
On Stampede days, we wear short shorts and cowboy boots.
Pretty self-explanatory. This is the uniform of women aged 12 to 30 attending Stampede.
You will realize that no one here is actually from Calgary.
Most Calgarians aren't actually from Calgary. Probably 20% of Calgarians were actually born in Calgary (don't quote me on that). However, we will still call ourselves Calgarians, proudly.
Our summer color is "Pylon Orange"
Snow is present for about 8 or 9 months out of the year, so the City of Calgary takes any chance it can to make you late for everything in the summer. Detours, detours, detours. Do we really need another bridge, though?
You'll be underdressed for the weather.
You: I'll just throw on a light coat. It's July, what's the worst that could happen?
Calgary: *rains* *hails* *snows* *blizzards*
You'll be overdressed for the weather.
You: *remembers the time you were underdressed and decides to put on 20 layers of clothing*
You will learn that you will never win with Calgary weather.
"If you don't like the weather, wait 5 minutes."
Your idea of a "weekend getaway" will be a weekend in Banff.
Ah, the rockies.
Your idea of a "road trip" will be the 3-hour drive to Edmonton.
Getting out of Calgary is always the hardest part.
You will be constantly making trips out to Edmonton for concerts.
Dear Kanye, Drake & BEYONCE, Calgary's here too.
As much time as you'll spend in Edmonton, you'll always swear that Calgary's better.
Y'all may have Drake, but at least we have pothole-free roads.
You'll already know every concert is at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
Do we really have any other concert venues?
You'll have typical "Calgarian" photos.
Photos on the peace bridge, at the Calgary Tower, with the giant head downtown, on the couch in the ladies room at Commonwealth to name a few.
You'll measure distance in time and not kilometres.
It's just 10 minutes away.
You'll always refer to AB-2 and AB-2A as "Deerfoot" and "Macleod"
Anyone who doesn't is an outsider. You can't sit with us.
You'll know the overwhelmingness of going to Chinook on a weekend.
Humans. Humans everywhere.
You'll know the overwhelmingness of going to Cross Iron on a weekend.
Why. Are. There. So. Many. Humans.
You'll own at least one pair of UGGS (or UGGS-like boots)
Every Calgarian woman has a pair. Every. Single. One.
And all your winter outfits will contain those UGGS.
Don't forget your leggings. Add some leg warmers to the mix if you're feeling fancy.
You will have tasted just about everything deep-fried.
From deep-fried Oreos to deep-fried fruit.
You'll realize that Forest Lawn is Calgary's Compton.
Did the bars on the windows of every shop give it away?
And you'll know a kid in the south that boasts about the fact that they're from Forest Lawn.
Straight Outta Forest Lawn.
If you live in the south, you probably won't go to/know your way around the north. And vice versa.
I'm sorry, what's a Marlborough?
You'll know Marlborough is the most ghetto mall in the city.
But you'll still go there anyway because everything is cheap as hell.
You will tell if someone is from here by the way they pronounce "Calgary."
"Cal-gare-ee" is wrong. It's Cal-gree. The second "A" is silent.
You'll go broke due to our ridiculous downtown public parking rates.
The City of Calgary is literally punishing you for having a vehicle.
The thought of driving on Deerfoot during rush hour raises your risk of heart failure.
*Drake voice* Noooo, don't do it. Please don't do it.
You'll always have hatred for Edmonton because their gas prices are like, 2 and a half cents cheaper.
This is discrimination!
Everyone works in the Riggs.
You'll have a wild night at Cowboys, Commonwealth, Marquee or Jimmy's that you won't quite be able to remember.
Alcohol. So. Much. Alcohol.
You will spend countless nights after the club in the drive-thru of McDonalds.
And you'll complain about why they are/aren't serving breakfast every time.
You'll never let the world forget that we produced Teagan & Sara.
And "Feel It In My Bones" was your jam in 2010.
You will get banished from the city if you say one bad thing about the Calgary Flames.
For real. These Hockey fans will square up.
Everybody you know played/plays hockey.
Some places have dance moms. Calgary has hockey dads.
You will have gone on a party bus.
And probably went bar/club hopping.
Living in the south will be torture for you if you're a black girl.
I. NEED. HAIR. PRODUCTS.
You will know that May-long is camping time.
Even though it always rains that weekend. Let the "may-longyyy" posts commence.
You'll wonder why the #%@! we spent 470K on that giant blue ring.
And you'll never forget when Nenshi called it "awful."
You'll be forever jealous of Edmonton because they have Uber.
Our taxi drivers don't like it too much when we refer to them as "Uber drivers."
You'll see people randomly riding horses on the roads.
Excuse me, sir, can I see your license & registration?
You will become mildly familiar with the smell of cow sh!t.
I love Alberta beef.
You will hardly be phased by 6 feet of snow.
Could be worse. Could be 7.
You'll waste a lot of gas warming your car in the winter.
But it's worth it because driving in a cold car is a special kind of hell.
You will be late to work/school for the first week of winter.
You will underestimate your time and have to spend 20 minutes shovelling your car out of your driveway. And forget to start your car/need to start your car for the ice to melt off your windshield for at least 15 minutes. There will be ten thousand and four accidents (which means hella traffic) and you will be at least 30 minutes to an hour behind. And you will mourn the loss of your warmth for about an hour. Anticipate coming into work 2 hours late at the very least.
You'll go out of your way to avoid gas stations that don't have gas pump clips in the winter.
The ultimate betrayal.
You'll constantly complain about how expensive living is here.
Why must I pay upwards of a grand for a shoebox?
You will love and cherish Nenshi. Always.
This is actually a written law you must abide by in The City of Calgary.