Born in Chisinau, Moldova |
Like many immigrants, Corina says her parents wanted to live “The Canadian dream”. They had heard that Canada was a place where “Dogs walk around with round bread around their tails” (A saying she says gets a little lost in translation). After moving to Canada at the age of five, Corina spent time with her family in Montreal, then went to St. Catharines, and finally moved to Toronto after visiting the city and falling in love with it. Corina comments that her upbringing, despite being raised in Canada, was “very Moldovan”. Her parents made sure that at home they preserved their own language, food and the culture. Growing up in North York she was also exposed to a variety of music, food and culture, experiences that were “instrumental to where [she is] right now”. While studying at Seneca College she met her fiancée who is from The Bahamas and her own family has become very multicultural. Her sister and cousin also married partners who were born in other countries and her favourite person in the world is her nephew. She says if it wasn’t for Toronto she wouldn’t be able to have all of these important people in her life.
Toronto as Home
According to Corina, Moldovan men are known for their winemaking skills and her grandfather even had his own vineyard. Moldovans make some of the best wine in the world, and it is often made right in their garages. She emphasizes how her father is particularly good at this - maybe “the best” – and here in Canada he continues to make wine. Her father makes all types, from red Shiraz to white Riesling. He experiments by adding his “special ingredients” and this is what makes his wine so unique and delicious. He has even won some awards. The wine is not sold but it is served to family and friends at dinners and other special occasions. Often a bottle is offered as a gift to families and friends when they visit. Seeing the garage full of barrels, grapes and canisters is a sight that gives Corina comfort, and she says it is “very amazing to watch the process”.
Connection with the Past
The necklace is a Christian Orthodox cross from Moldova that is very symbolic for Corina, as well as for many Moldovans. This particular one that she is wearing is one that her mother bought in Chisinau, the city where she was born. She says “It represents [her] city, religion, family and culture.” Its distinct and exquisite design, as well as the tone of gold, is what distinguish it from any other cross necklace.