Mapping Life in Fort McMurray

Diverse Relations of People, Oil, and Place (2007-2009)



Professional in Oil Industry, Resident for Several Years, Immigrant from Sub-Saharan Africa, 30s

I got a call while I was back home in [Africa] and they were interested in me coming to Fort McMurray. I’m like, where’s Fort McMurray? ‘Oh don’t worry we’ll take you around. You’ll get to know the place.’ So I came over to Fort McMurray.  So, they have this welcoming team – they have someone drive me around all of Fort McMurray and I’m like, okay.  For me, I’m not much of a big city fan.  And I am hired. . .We asked for five years plan and five years coincidentally coincides with my MBA program. My wife finishes her MBA program next year. I finish mine 2010. By then we should be ready. We should be fully Canadianized. By next year, we qualify for our Canadian citizenship.”

“My map is pretty simple. What I like about Fort McMurray is you can get everywhere in Fort McMurray in 15 minutes except work…The only places that I can think of is church, Mac Island because the kids play hockey. Half of my life is on Mac Island. Keyano – I’m doing my MBA and our daughter has a dance class there. And that’s it. Fort McMurray. Ya, work, church, Mac Island, work, home, church, Mac Island, work, home. Once in a while, once in a while we escape, right? So let me escape. Once in a while we fly for a holiday so let me draw an airplane. How about I draw an airplane?”


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