I arrived in Whitehorse, from Toronto, about a month ago, to visit sisters that have already made homes for themselves here.

I come to the conclusion that it’s the fierce cold and depressing winters that most likely keep many of my fellow-Torontians at bay, but I do not know that for sure. Whatever their reasons, I’m guilty of being glad that the Yukon differs from Toronto culture.

I didn’t experience very much of a culture shock when I first arrived; it wasn’t all that different (after all, this is still Canada).

I welcomed the quiet: for once, there were no deafening sirens rushing by every 10 minutes; no rowdy teenagers yelling at each other: it became nonexistent and it didn’t surprise me; I expected it all along and dreamed about it before my arrival.

What I really focused on when I first delved into Whitehorse living, and what I presume is the magnet that drives the tourist industry, is the enriching scenes of mountains and winding rivers and wildlife.

Once I managed to tear my attention away from the beauty of it all, I became acquainted with the lively arts community with its numerous craftspeople and musicians included on this terrain.

With that, there is the underground mini civilization catering to those who consider themselves non-conformists, who are important and I would almost say iconic to the image of Whitehorse. I want to say something about a particular place in Whitehorse, but I realize that the essence of Whitehorse is not about a single place; it is about a collection of places that make up the community that makes it so great.

Ever since I set foot on this territory, it’s almost as if something has come over me: I’ve loosened up and allowed myself to give in to my vices a little more, and I have been easier on myself for making mistakes.

There is room for error in this province, so maybe that is why so many people in Toronto are so uptight: they just have no time for errors and no time to learn from them; no time to explore their psyche and to find their core wants and yearnings that give them direction and purpose – and, most importantly, a sound connection to the earth.

In summary, I’m grateful and open to the Whitehorse way of life.