I've been in Canada five years. It's amazing how many things I've assimilated and take for granted.
I can read scatterings of French now, since so much of it is posted everywhere. I convert the Celsius scale into Farenheit, and kilometres into miles. But I do it automatically, and it doesn't trip me up.
I know what a serviette and a chesterfield are, call the lunch meal 'dinner' , and have given up completely on understanding their political system.
I also have the blessing of socialized medicine. Yes, there are some things really, really wrong with it and the waiting lists for some things are horrendous BUT at any time I can go to my doctor or any emergency room and have really good health care. We do have secondary insurance (through B's work) and that covers things like dental and co-pay on medicines, but even if I was stone broke, this wouldn't hamper me getting help.
I've started to forget how it was before I moved here. Which is why things like this make me so angry.
A friend of mine in one of the southern states went to her emergency room with crazily-high blood pressure and crippling back pain. Her blood pressure was so high she was immediately taken in. Everyone was concerned and caring, until they found out that my friend doesn't have health insurance. At that point they told her they thought she had a ruptured disk, but that they couldn't do an MRI or any tests on it because she didn't have health insurance. There was no question of payments or any billing procedure, no sliding scale or referral to a free clinic, nothing.
They sent her home with a couple of pain-relievers and told her to take ibuprophen and put a bag of frozen peas on it.
A bag of frozen peas.
I love my homeland. But Canada's health system (as creaky and overburdened as it is) is worlds better than a bag of frozen vegetables and an aspirin.