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Un an après mon installation au Canada, j'avais trouvé un travail très facilement j'avais un peu gardé mes habitudes à la française on va dire.
A year after I moved to Canada, I had found a job very easily where I had kept my French habits, let's say.
Je m'approchais tout le temps vers mes collègues pour leur faire la bise et c'est je trouvais qu'il y avait quand même un blocage envers les gens.
I used to walk up to my colleagues all the time to kiss them on the cheek and that's where I found that something wasn't quite right with people.
Ils se retrouvaient en fait à me repousser en me disant "Mais qu'est-ce qui lui arrive à vouloir me faire la bise ?"
They would actually find themselves pushing me away saying, "What the hell is wrong with her wanting to kiss me?"
En France, j'avais l'habitude de faire la bise à mes collègues.
In France, I used to kiss my colleagues on the cheek.
J'avais l'habitude, en fait, de faire des accolades, des embrassades, souhaiter joyeux anniversaire par exemple.
I used to give hugs and wish people happy birthday for example/
Au Canada, les relations en fait entre collègues ne sont pas aussi rapprochées.
In Canada, relationships between colleagues are not that close.
Et ça, ça m'avait valu un petit passage au bureau des ressources humaines parce que j'étais un peu trop tactile.
And that got me a visit to the human resources office because I was a little too touchy-feely.
- Ce qui m'a vraiment surpris, c'est cette histoire de tatouages.
- What really surprised me was this tattoo thing.
J'ai rencontré un monsieur dans un autobus.
I met a man in a bus.
Son nez était percé, sa bouche était percée, tout était percé. Des piercings !
Hi nose was pierced, his mouth was pierced, everything was pierced. Piercings!
Il avait donc des tatouages un peu partout.
He had piercings more or less everywhere.
Et à ma grande surprise, il est venu s'asseoir juste à côté de moi.
And to my surprise, he came and sat right next to me.
Je me dis "Attends, dans quel monde je suis donc ?"
I was like "Wait, in what world am I ?"
Chez moi, en Côte d'Ivoire, quand tu vois quelqu'un, n'est-ce pas, qui a des piercings, qui a des tatouages sur lui, on le compare tout de suite à un délinquant, à un drogué, une prostituée, quelqu'un qui a une mauvaise vie.
At home, in Ivory Coast, when you see someone who has piercings, who has tattoos on him, you immediately compare him to a delinquent, a drug addict, a prostitute, a sinner.
Mais ici, je vois que vraiment, beaucoup de personnes sont vraiment tatouées et puis bon, ça ne dit rien.
But here, I see that really, a lot of people are tattooed and then well, it doesn't mean anything.
- Ici, le fait que je sois une maman monoparentale avec un enfant de bientôt neuf ans et pouvoir gérer la famille et l'aspect professionnel et pouvoir subvenir aux besoins de mon fils...
- Here, the fact that I am a single mother with a 9-year-old child and being able to handle family and work and being able to provide for my son...
Ça ici c'est vu comme une personne forte qui est capable de gérer les choses.
This here is seen as being a strong, able person.
Donc comme une superwoman en fait.
As a superwoman, actually.
Par contre, dans mon pays ça, ça voudrait dire que j'ai pas pu garder mon mariage.
On the contrary, in my country, that would mean that I was not able to keep my marriage.
J'ai échoué quelque part dans ma vie.
That I have failed somewhere in my life.
Ici, j'ai pas cette pression de la société et c'est très bien vu ici.
Here, I do not have this pressure from society and it is very well perceived here.
- Je me rappelle encore lorsqu'on allait dans les clubs.
- I still remember when we went to clubs.
Et puis on voit une femme avec la robe de mariée et on pose la question "Mais pourquoi cette femme se promène avec ses amis partout ?"
We saw a woman with a wedding dress and we asked the question, "But why is this woman walking with her friends everywhere?"
Et on me dit "Mais non parce qu'elle va se marier donc c'est une façon de dire adieu au célibat."
And they told me, "Well, because she's going to get married so it's a way of saying goodbye to celibacy."
Et le jeune garçon aussi, de son côté aussi, ses amis l'emmènent partout.
And the young man too, on his side, his friends are taking him everywhere.
Mais je regarde ça, par exemple au Congo ou en Afrique d'une manière générale, le jeune homme et la jeune femme sont surveillés.
But I look at that, for example in Congo or in Africa in general, the young man and the young woman are kept under close watch.
On fait attention qu'ils ne soient pas tout seuls.
We make sure that they are not left alone.
Pour éviter que quelque chose arrive avant le mariage.
To prevent something from happening before the wedding.
Donc on essaye de les protéger le plus possible, d' le côté beaucoup plus sérieux.
We try to protect them as much as possible, so it looks much more austere.
C'est pas dans les bars qu'on va trouver la protection spirituelle des deux mariés.
It is not in bars that you will find spiritual protection for the newlyweds.
- Par rapport à la culture canadienne, il y a certaines choses qui me surprennent.
- Regarding Canadian culture, there are some things that surprise me.
Le regard.
The look.
Chez nous, l'éducation parentale et même à l'école, on ne doit pas trop fixer les gens dans les yeux, surtout les personnes supérieures.
With our parents or even at school, we are told that we should not do eye contact, especially with more senior people.
Et c'est un signe de non-respect.
That's a lack of respect.
Mais ici, c'est un signe de sincérité et de crédibilité.
But here, it is a sign of sincerity and credibility.
J'ai eu cette expérience lorsque je me suis rendu à l'audience auprès du commissaire de l'immigration.
I had this experience when I went to the hearing with the Immigration Commissioner.
Il fallait regarder quand on parle, regarder dans les yeux.
I had to look at him when speaking, to look at him in the eyes.
Les yeux sont les miroirs de l'âme.
The eyes are the mirrors of the soul.
C'est un aspect psychologique.
It's a psychological aspect.
Si on ne fixe pas droit dans les yeux la personne à qui l'on parle c'est que un, on la méprise ou deux, on n'est pas certain de ce qu'on dit.
If you do not look straight in the eyes of the person you are talking to, it either means that, one, you despise them or two, you are not sure about what you are saying.
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French-speaking immigrants to Canada recount culture shock anecdotes

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Source: Plus TFO, Youtube, 3 Mar 2020

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