Calgary is situated in the foothills of the Blue Canadian Rockies, where the snow-capped mountains often look as though they are painted on the sky for an awesome picture to view when you have your morning coffee. The weather is moderate. Although there is a saying in Calgary ‘If you don’t like the weather – wait 10 minutes and it will change.’
Calgary is Canada’s newest city and in my opinion, by far the cleanest city. With the head-offices for oil companies galore, it has the largest population of Americans outside the USA in the world. Most people share optimism and a desire to work and thrive.
Calgary is situated on the clear, clean waters of the Bow River – which runs out of the glacier fed waters of Lake Louise. It was originally a popular gathering point for the Blackfoot natives. The Bow River was a place where the tree branches were material for bow and arrows. With a chinook that can blow through often, the temperatures could warm and the snow go away at any time, including the winters.
A fort was established in 1875 by the North-West Mounted Police and the original founder – Sam Livingstone – was already settled in the area; The fort was called Calgary which is Gaelic for ‘swift waters’.
The settlers of the area were mainly ranchers and often those ‘second-sons’ of aristocrats. The Canadian Pacific Railroad ran through Calgary and created a settlement of what is known as ‘China Town’ now as well as a landmark hotel made of sandstone – The Palliser, which is still in downtown Calgary.
Calgary was a small settlement until oil was discovered in the Turner Valley, Black Diamond area and in the early 1900′s the city started thriving. There has been no looking back. Calgary is a bustling, thriving city where it always seemed to me – about every 10 years, old dirty buildings/areas are torn down and new, clean buildings replace them. Some people don’t appreciate that – but to me Calgarians definitely understand the difference between old junk and real heritage landmarks. There are old buildings that are maintained of course.
It is a transient city and may be a reason people are so friendly. My two sons were born in Calgary but that seems to be a rarity. Most people seem to come to Calgary to work. My romance story One Dance with a Stranger takes place in Calgary. My romance story Alberta Wild Rose takes place in Calgary’s fascinating surrounding area (the Lost Lemon Mine) and the story I am working on now Seraphim will mainly take place in Calgary.
The book – Calgary, Spirit of the West by Hugh A. Dempsey is a great book on the history of Calgary.
Here are a few websites with information on visiting Calgary.