Open Jaw’s Canada Day Series: Canuck Via Love - Patrice Geske

Open Jaw

Patrice Geske

Not many would swap the sunny Californian lifestyle for life in the great white north. We speak to Patrice Geske, Marketing Manager for the Globus family of brands, about her decision to come here.

Where were you born? In Glendale, California – just about 20 minutes NE of Los Angeles. I now live in Oakville.

When did you come to Canada? In March 1994.

Why Canada? That' where my future husband (Michael Geske) was living – in Toronto. We were both working for Royal Cruise Lines at the time.

Were you apprehensive about coming here? Not about the move. I'd come to visit him many times. But being the salesman he is, he had been very selective about what times of year he brought me here. Only after he proposed and I accepted did I come here in winter, about 2 months before I made the final move. We went skiing to Blue Mountain and I'd never been so cold in my entire life!

What were your 1 st impressions? For me, coming from the concrete jungle of L.A., I was amazed at how clean, even pristine, Toronto was. And only 1/2 hour outside the city you'd be in farm land – I thought it was just beautiful. But flat! ( laughs) Typical American, I didn't know my geography and I figured you could ski no matter where you lived in Canada.

Are you tempted to go back? I've been a Canadian citizen since 2000 and can't see myself moving back. I felt if I'm going to live here I may as well have the right to vote – and now I get to vote for both a President and a Prime Minister! I might as well go all the way!

What was your 1 st job here? I transferred with Royal Cruise Lines but Michael and I decided after a while if we were going to stay married it would be better if I got another job. Ironically I ended up working with Disney and travelling a lot to Los Angeles and Orlando – after I'd gotten into the travel industry in order to see the world!

What do you appreciate most about being Canadian? Travelling through most countries and people liking you! Canadians don't have a stigma attached to them, people really like them. I always travel with my Canadian passport.

If you could live anywhere in Canada, where would it be? It would have to be Vancouver.

What do you think would make Canada an even better place? If we had the climate of California! Can you work on that? ( laughs)

How do you traditionally spend Canada Day? Usually with friends in our neighbourhood, having a back yard barbecue.

What do you think you'd be doing if you had remained in the States? I'd be outdoors a lot more often! But career wise, probably doing something similar as I grew up in the travel industry.





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