Equal Partners
by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners

By Roland Ezri

"Women are the backbone of all societies. They do a substantial part of the work, and play a major role in raising the future generation yet they are largely powerless. The decisions that count are made by men and foisted upon women."

Writings by Roland Ezri

The Second Exodus – Canada – CCCX. Montreal (2 of 9)

In the spring of 1964, Robert traveled to Montreal to survey our future country.  Why was that necessary?  Did we have any doubt in our mind?  Not at all; the die was cast at this point, and it would have taken extraordinary circumstances to change our minds.  A few minor factors played a role here.

Robert was working for El Al at the time and was able to obtain a substantial discount on his flight.  He was going to stay by Adrienne and Victor in Montreal; thus he had free accommodations.   Any information he could glean would give us a head start.  Above all, it would give us (my parents and I, Robert, to the best of my knowledge, had no qualms about our venture) a measure of reassurance that we were doing the right thing

So what did Robert report to us when he came back to Israel?

Apartments were plentiful, and rents were reasonable.  Virtually everybody had telephone service, a television, and a car.  Food was abundant, very cheap, and varied; for example, the cheese section of a large supermarket could have as many as 100 varieties of cheese.  There were restaurants everywhere and the meals were sensibly priced; for instance, a steak dinner could be had for less than $3.00.  Clothing from the very elegant to the casual existed and the cost was moderate; for instance, the outlay for a decent suit could be as low as $50.00.  There were large department stores which had everything; from clothing, to china to furniture, to toys, and on and on.  Some of them had as many as 6 floors crammed with merchandise.

Public transportation was very good, cheap, and reliable.  There was talk of building a subway system for Expo ’67 (to celebrate the passage of 100 years since confederation).  Taxis when needed were quite affordable.

In the area of work, it looked like Robert would have no trouble finding a decent job in his profession.  As for me, I would have to make concessions at the beginning, and accept any reasonable job offer.  Whatever the case, Canada was indeed the land of opportunity, and if we applied ourselves, the sky was the limit.

On the negative side, the harshness of the Canadian winters has not been exaggerated.  Indeed, even though Robert has arrived in April, there was still snow on the ground.  The other side of the coin was that homes, stores, and even buses were heated.  Heating systems were efficient, unlike the heating we encountered in Europe.

What was the advice of our relatives?  They encouraged us to come, and were willing to extend any help we needed.  Indeed, they had done just that even before we had obtained our immigration visa.

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