I lived in Canada for over five years when I was a student at the University of Calgary. As a non-Canadian I have to say that I never appreciated coffee as I do these days. Coming from the Middle East tea was our “thing” at home. The worst and closest thing to coffee was instant coffee which I gladly proclaim is no more stocked in my kitchen. Thanks to Timmies I started to appreciate coffee and became the addict that I am now. Coffee and the many other amazing items on their menu were out of this world. Made fresh, tasted exactly the same every time, affordable, and most importantly served with a smile… the Canadian way.
The Timmies next to our university was open 24/7 and boy oh boy I used to spend endless hours there studying and hanging out with friends I made over the years in Calgary. My dad paid me a visit once and the first thing I did upon his arrival was take him to Timmies. It was love from the first double double for him too. Even after moving back to the UAE I had friends send me tins of Tim Horton’s coffee when any visited.
I had my first authentic double double this past Saturday in Dubai (seven years after leaving Canada). I smiled reminiscing the few years I lived there as I sipped through my coffee and munched on my Timbits.
I am a Canadian expat living in Abu Dhabi. Knowing that Tim Hortons, or "Timmies" as we call it, is now in UAE is quite possibly the best news I've heard all year! Tim Hortons is a solid part of any Canadian's life - it's just as much a symbol of Canada as the maple leaf, and having it in UAE really helps with my homesickness. Above is a picture I took as soon as I landed in Toronto Pearson Airport this September, where I was later greeted by my brother with a big hug and a warm cup of Timmies coffee. Can't wait for the opening of the one in Abu Dhabi's Mushrif Mall!
I will never forget it. Last summer we had a small earthquake in Mississauga. My sister just happened to be at Tim Horton's minutes after it happened when an elderly man came in. He said his Condo started shaking like crazy and pictures were falling off the wall. He added "I was so scared I didn't know what to do so I came here". LOL - people in LA run to hide. People in Canada go to Tim Horton's!
I have to admit, I prefer Starbucks and Costa when it comes to my morning cup of coffee. But I am convinced that most Canadians don't actually go to Tim Hortons for the coffee anyway. They go for the familiarity, the comfort and a sense of 'home'. Tim Hortons, after all, is a Canadian institution, and one that cannot truly be understood unless you have spent any great length of time in our humble northern nation. Timbit. Double-double. Everything bagel. They are all a welcome part of the Canadian lexicon - a rite of passage, so to speak, that each Canadian must learn before earning the right to refer to him or herself as an official citizen. Having spent 4 years working for the Tim Horton Children's Foundation (an organisation dedicated to sending financially underprivileged children to summer camp each year), I have had the opportunity to develop an even deeper appreciation for the brand. Over four years, I worked directly with over one thousand children who, thanks to Tim Hortons, participated in a ten day summer camping experience that may never have otherwise been possible. So at the end of the day, whether I prefer a grande low fat latte or not, I would be remiss to overlook the importance of this famous Canadian brand. Welcome to the neighbourhood, Tim Hortons. It's good to have you back.
My family has lived in Canada for the past four years and and I would visit them every two to three months. My entire family is fond of Tim Hortons and it is really a part of their culture. Double-double is my wife’s favorite and my children are in love with their hot chocolate, especially my daughter. Whenever I go Canada, this is my most visited place with family and meeting place with my friends. We all love Tim Hortons and now whenever my family will visit Dubai, they will never miss Canada.
Tahir Muhammad Rao
My daughter and I have been living in Dubai for over four years now but when we lived in Canada, I would drive her to school and most mornings we would stop at Tim Hortons and order the same thing every time. We went home for the first time after 2 years and the first thing we both did when we landed in Toronto was head directly to Tim Hortons and ordered a large Ice cap and I a large double double and 2, 12 grain bagels, toasted with butter and garlic and herb cream cheese, the very same order as when I drove her to school. Really a small thing but it was such a strong reminder of 'home' and lovely quality time spent together.
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