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CBC readers share joys and pains of immigration

CBC readers share joys and pains of immigration

by Fabiola Carletti Posted: December 14, 2012 9:06 AM Last Updated: December 14, 2012 11:58 AM

Categories: CanadaCommunity

  • On Monday, CBC News launched the Who Gets In series, a collection of reports on television, radio and online that take a closer look at Canada’s changing immigration system.

We knew that many of those tuning in to the series would have an array of personal experiences, which may or may not have been reflected in our coverage.

Indeed, following our call out for immigration stories, we heard from people who were long settled, newly arrived and still waiting. They flooded our inbox with stories of gratitude and joy, but also of anguish and anger.

The following entries, which have been edited for length and style, are only a fraction of the compelling submissions we received.

We extend our sincerest thanks to everyone who took the time to write.

Click on a face to read that person’s story.


Jixiang Hu
Borden, Ont.

 Jixiang enjoys the wonders of Algonquin Park, Ont. . (Submitted by Jixiang Hu)My story began 14 years ago when my parents and I landed in Vancouver Airport in Richmond, B.C. I was 13 years old.

For us, the devil was in the details!

The very first challenge we faced, was that one of our suitcases had gone missing. Of the three of us, I had the biggest English vocabulary — but trying to get our luggage to be sent to a home address that had yet to be established, and providing a phone number that hadn’t been connected, proved futile.

We had no idea how the bus transfer worked. In China at the time, we paid a fare on each bus. If we needed to take another one, we paid the fare again. We followed the same practice in Canada for the first few days, but it became really expensive — especially when all three of us would go out together.

It wasn’t until a bus driver saw us holding the transfer and refused to let us pay again that we figured out how the transfer worked.

We also didn’t know how to make the bus stop! In China, the bus stops at every single stop since there are always people getting on or off. However, this was not the case in Vancouver. We didn’t know what the cable hanging near the bus windows was for. I had mistakenly believed that it was only to be pulled in an emergency.

Again, for the first few days, we often missed our stops and had to walk backwards.

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