No I personally don’t hate Winnipeg, but Winnipeggers do. A teacher at Red River said in my grammar class “the only people who dis Winnipeg, are Winnipeggers.” He also added “the only people who are allowed to bash Manitoba’s capital, are Winnipeggers.“ No, not the kind who attend school in the city on weekdays, and return to their small towns on weekends. Not the ones who were born here and moved away either. I mean legitimate Winnipeggers, the ones who have lived here for ten plus years. A Winnipegger’s most prideful moment is hating on their city. However, the moment an outsider comes in and shares a snarky remark about The Bombers losing, the hot weather, the cold weather, the lack of things to do–prepare yourself for a brawl.
I just moved to Winnipeg although, I grew up in Manitoba. For the past four years I have been living in Fredericton. No, Fredericton is not the capital of Nova Scotia. It is not part of Newfoundland. And it is not found on the Pacific Ocean–these are common statements made by my fellow Manitobans. Fredericton, NEW BRUNSWICK is situated on Canada’s East Coast. That’s East, not West.
Both Winnipeg and Fredericton have similar qualities such as-they’re both in Canada-that’s about it. The two cities are significantly different. Fredericton is cluttered with Irving gas stations. Winnipeg is cluttered with Starbucks. Fredericton has an unlimited supply of local beer. Winnipeg has an unlimited supply of Slurpees. Fredericton is the miniature Ottawa capital. Winnipeg is a cultural capital-that’s right, we’re no longer the murder capital. Fredericton loves Lord Beaverbrook. Winnipeg loves Louis Riel. In Fredericton, everyone is related to everyone. In Winnipeg, everyone goes to the same Starbucks. Fredericton loves their Varsity Reds. Winnipeg-praises their Jets.
I go to school in downtown Winnipeg-Jets logos EVERYWHERE. It’s glamorous down there. It’s in the Exchange District with fancy restaurants, cafes, and really tall buildings. It’s filled with stylish twenty-year-olds who shop on Osborne and Corydon. Instead of being surrounded by hippy professors in Freddy New Brunswick, my school is surrounded by police cars. During class, I can’t decide whether to feel safe or in a volume of danger. And everyday when I take the bus to school, I see people on sidewalks without food, proper clothing or a home that is not a grocery cart. Poverty, it’s on the buses, it’s by my school, it’s- everywhere. This is Winnipeg, not all of it of course. But it’s a sad reality that I did not see much of in Fredericton. Luckily, the Peg has heroic people such as, local bus drivers who are reshaping it for the better.
Both of my parents are New Brunswickers. However, I was born and raised in Manitoba. I’ve noticed that both provinces are at polar ends of the country-relatively speaking. Clearly, they do not understand one another. No you can’t see your dog runaway for five days-maybe two, but that’s pushing it. No, we are not fish snobs, and we do not have lobsters as pets. When I told Manitobans that I was moving to New Brunswick they said with a look of disgust “why would you want to go there?” When I told New Brunswickers I was moving to Manitoba, they said with dismay “Why in the world would you do that?”
Guys, both places are great. Next time you visit Winnipeg, don’t just drive through. You can’t go wrong with eating hot dogs at a Bomber game. And next time you book a flight, go East not West. Swim in the ocean with your clothes on or take home a pet lobster- kidding. Freddy and the Peg are radically different, but it’s the people who make both places feel like home. You’re not bad Winnipeg, and no- I’m not saying that to avoid a fistfight.