Underwood feels 'half-Canadian'

DARRYL STERDAN - QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:51 AM ET

American country-pop idol Carrie Underwood is becoming more Canadian all the time.

"I feel like I'm half-Canadian now," the 27-year-old singer says, chuckling.

"Over the past year and a half, I've spent more time in Canada than I ever have before.

"I'm getting used to the weather. That one's new on me -- all the snow in Canada. But I'm learning how to drive in the snow. I feel much more confident now when I go back home and it snows and people freak out on the road and don't know what to do. I'm like, 'I got this.' "

No, Underwood isn't just coming up here to polish her skills behind the wheel. She's got a more personal connection to our home and native land -- she is engaged to Ottawa Senators centre and alternate captain Mike Fisher, who met her backstage at a concert in 2008.

So far, she feels right at home, she says.

"The people are really cool. One of the first times I really got out and about in Canada, I went shopping all by myself, and nobody said a word to me. Nobody followed me to the bathroom or anything like that.

I was actually thinking, 'Nobody knows me in Canada. I must not be very big here.' But then I was at the checkout and the woman said, 'We're all really excited you're here.' I was like, 'Oh, cool! They were just being polite.'

"Everybody's been really cool to me like that. I go grocery shopping a lot. I'm by myself, hanging out in Canada, and everybody just says, 'Hey, good to see you.' "

Now we're seeing even more of Underwood, as her arena-sized Play On Tour has already kicked off and is hop-scotching across the country over the spring and summer. Along with that, she's up for a handful of Academy of Country Music Awards, and is about to make her big-screen debut. All that doesn't even include her winning at the Grammy Awards, singing at the Super Bowl and yukking it up on a recent episode of How I Met Your Mother.

Between tour rehearsals in Pennsylvania, Underwood found some time to fill us in on her tour, and play coy about her upcoming nuptials:

What are we going to see on this tour?

Well, I don't want to give away too much. But it's big. Usually, I see drawings and stuff like that, and when I see the stage, I'm like, 'Oh, I expected it to be bigger.' But this one totally went the other way. The stage is huge! Everybody's moving; there's lots of moving parts. We've got a lot of tricks up our sleeve. Nobody's going to be bored at the show at all. Even if somebody is dragged there -- some poor guy whose girlfriend has dragged him to a Carrie Underwood concert -- I think he'll have fun.

I'm pretty sure there are a lot of guys coming to your shows under their own steam.

Well, this is just in case.

You sang the U.S. national anthem at the Super Bowl, you took part in the Michael Jackson tribute at the Grammys, you're doing movies and TV, you're going on tour. I get tired just looking at your schedule.

February was a crazy month; I'm not going to lie. I don't even know what I did or what order stuff happened in. I don't know if i even had a day off in February. And if I did have a day off, it was spent on a plane. By comparison, the tour schedule isn't that bad. We don't start anything until after noon (laughs).

Which of all those recent events meant the most to you?

As far as something making an impact, I think the movie Soul Surfer. All the other things are wonderful -- I got to sing at the Super Bowl! But as far as long-term impact, Soul Surfer is going to be an incredible movie. It's the true story of Bethany Hamilton, a professional surfer who was attacked by a shark and lost her arm when she was 16, I think. She was a rising star and her dream could have been over, but so many people pushed her to be more than her limitations. I play her youth leader. It's a small part but very important. And it's a great thing to be part of that story.

Is acting something you always wanted to do?

It's not something I dreamed about doing, no. The opportunity just came up. I get scripts in all the time, but they were never worth completely rearranging my schedule for. But this was just something I had to make work. Mostly, though, I just take things as they come. I'm not looking to become anything more than I am. I love singing; music is my first love. And it always will be.

Have you set a wedding date?

We kind of have a date, but it's not one we're sharing.

Have you decided where it's going to be? Since we're so cool about not bothering you, maybe you should get married up here.

We have decided that, yes. And maybe we will get married in Canada (laughs).


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