It’s A Small World – Ontario, Canada

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It's a small world after all; it's a small world after all is one of my favorite songs, just for the shear annoyance value that I can impart onto people with only a few words of the most instantly recognizable tune in the world. Until I went overseas, I never understood how true that was.

It was not a dark and stormy night, but rather a freezing cold, snowy day. That in itself was something to give us pause. As Aussies who live in Queensland, the odds of us seeing snow at home are about as likely as our Prime Minister spontaneously combusting.

We were sitting in a mini bus that was driving down the wrong side of the road somewhere in Canada. It was early, took us sometime to realize that the swirling storm that had gathered around the vehicle wasn't full of water, but snow. (Spare a minute for the people living in the Southern Hemisphere who only have vague references to what snow is, before giving out a resounding, "so"?).

We had just arrived at the Canadian side of Niagara Falls. We quickly disembarked and flung ourselves into the snow, headfirst in my companion's case as he tripped over his own feet stepping out of the bus. Laughing hysterically at him as he quickly learned snow is cold and wet, he got back up and decided to impart his new knowledge onto me, flinging a snowball at my face.

Snowball is not a good word for the half formed clump of powder that didn’t even reach my ankles. Taking that pitiful attempt as war, we launched into a frenzied snowball fight – easier said than done. Those television shows don't work with freshly fallen snow. Laughing, we turned to leave when a snowball whizzed past my ear. I of course, swiftly retaliated and managed to hit the wall two meters beside my attacker – a signal for some teenagers to start a fast paced war that our side quickly won. We were all terrible; not once did either side hit the other.

Antagonizing them probably wasn't a good idea. We were two; they were five. But I was relatively confident they weren't going to hit their mark.

"Where are you from?"

"Melbourne, you?"

Stop. We were on the other side of the world; we had run into five of our countrymen. That wasn't the first time either. I met an Australian teenager in an underground McDonalds in London, and a mother and daughter from the Gold Coast on a tour of the Eiffel Tower. Seems strange that we run into our countrymen more outside of our country than in it.

It's a small, small world.

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