Open letter to the people of Saskatchewan
This is an open letter to the people of Saskatchewan and anyone who has followed the rise of this beautiful, formerly forgotten Canadian province.
Although my business is based in Florida as I happen to hold a U.S. social security number which helped me incorporate it, I now live and work in my home country of Venezuela. The Venezuelan petroleum industry has produced over the whole span of the twentieth century a number of very qualified oil engineers and technicians, many of them are now looking for employment opportunities in Saskatchewan and Alberta. Several qualified Venezuelan petroleum experts actually turn to me in order that I recommend to them suitable people they may contact in the prairie provinces. Alberta in particular has recently benefitted from many Venezuelan immigrants who have lent their know-how to the benefit of the Alberta oil boom, and it seems that Saskatchewan is now becoming the hot spot to work in Canada. So you should not be surprised if, in the near future, you and your Saskatchewan kindred start noticing further international interest on what happens there, instead of the previous emphasis on the now unemployment-ridden Ontario and Québec.
When I studied the International Baccalaureate at the Armand Hammer United World College of the American West in New Mexico, I became a very good friend of Sask-born Ian Chisholm (now Senior Partner at the Roy Group in Sydney, British Columbia). We had a contest on naming Canadian provinces and their capitals, and I happened to win that contest! In return, my English was really bad at the time so I had to endure a few misleading jokes because of it, but that is the way great friendships are born.
Saskatchewan and Canada's experience with the first nations is also a topic of interest for me as here in Venezuela we must also deal with issues of integration to mainstream culture against the loss of traditional values and ways of life from our native population.
I am under the impression that people in Saskatchewan are wary of this sudden international interest in their province. I sympathize with you in your strive for keeping your province free of mega urban atrocities, so my request to the people of Saskatchewan is that you manage to find a way to keep your provincial assets while welcoming a few good input that may selectively come from the outside world.
I do look forward to exchange more impressions with Saskatchewans during these times of social changes and challenges.
Rubén Rivero Capriles
Caracas, November 17, 2009