Our home is a 2 story detatched house and garden in a 45-year old suburb of Ottawa. It is well-maintained, clean and comfortable. The main level has a kitchen, dining room (with french, patio doors leading to our deck and garden) and a living room (with gas fireplace). Upstairs there are 3 bedrooms, bathroom and a computer room/office. The basement contains a den/television room, a full-size pull-down Murphy bed, a half-bath, plus laundry, furnace and work room areas.
Our decorating style is traditional, with a few pieces of antique furniture. The deck/garden area is fenced, nicely landscaped and used for barbequing, relaxing or a game of croquet.
Our neighbourhood, Riverside Park, is a 45-year old suburb in Ottawa South. It is a mixed community of young families and retired people. Houses here are modest, but comfortable. Most are owned, but there are some rentals. There is a local park with childrens' wading pool and baseball diamonds just 5 minutes from our house. The immediate neighbourhood contains 350 homes in a self-contained 'block' with entrances/exits on only one side of the 'block'. The perimeter of the block is a nice walk of 1.2 km (about 20 minutes).
Riverside Park is a 15 minute walk/ 5 minute bike ride from the Rideau River. Here you will find Mooney's Bay, a public beach. Once at the river, you will also find the start of kilometres of walking and bicycle paths which parallel the water and will take you through the heart of Ottawa and well into the surrounding Greenbelt if you choose.
It is possible to walk to grocery, drug, hardware stores. There is a big-box shopping plaza nearby. Public transportation is available to take you farther afield or into the downtown. Ottawa, as the Nation's Capital, has many attractions - institutional (e.g. Parliament Hill), cultural (e.g. outdoor music festivals), recreational (e.g. biking, hiking), natural (e.g. Gatineau Park) or historic (e.g. East Block, Byward Markket).
My wife and I are retired secondary-school teachers. Our children are no longer at home. In fact, the primary reason we are looking for an exchange to Vancouver B.C. is to attend our son's wedding in Vancouver on July 05/08.
I try to keep busy in my retirement. I have managed a garden centre for the last 5 years during the spring (April-July) planting season. I have an interest in plants and gardens. I have taken up oil painting and have had the chance to work in Nunavut for short periods of time, helping Inuit people update their skills resumes in the hope of finding jobs. My wife remains busy keeping connected to a host of family members and friends as well as being actively involved in our church, Riverside United.
We also have a cat, Marco - a 12-year old fawn tabby. Marco is an affectionate family
pet and may be (up for discussion) included as part of the exchange if you would be willing to feed him and open and close the door for him.