Monday Morning Musings

Posted on July 2, 2018 under Monday Morning Musings with 4 comments

Quintessentially Canadian


We live in the best country in the world.

Making this statement did not require an extensive government funded survey. I have felt this to be the case for a long time. I have traveled the country from coast to coast on many occasions so I have a pretty good feel for its vastness and its people. I have quaffed a few ale at the bar at the Empress Hotel in Victoria and have been “screeched in” in St.John’s Newfoundland. I have traveled by car, plane, boat and bus and even hitchhiked the highways and byways in my youth.

On Saturday, I performed at a Canada day singsong at the RK MacDonald Nursing home. I tried to play as many Canadian songs as possible. I opted not to sing Gord Lightfoot’s Canadian Railroad Trilogy or Stan’s Barrett’s Privateers. I only had so much time and if I had sung all the lyrics to these, I would have used up half of the time. At the end, we of course heartily and proudly sang our national anthem.

When I polled the audience of folks mostly in their 80s and 90s about the greatest country in the world, it was unanimous that Canada was number 1 in their hearts. They heartily applauded, none more so than a Dutch couple who have a pride in Canada that is unparalleled. Our new Syrian friends are starting to feel this way too.

It is easy to list the reasons why I feel Canada is the best place to live and raise a family. We are a pretty easy going lot and enjoy wide open spaces and freedom of speech. We are blessed with plenty of natural resources and an abundance of water. Many countries around the world are drying up in front of our eyes. We work hard but generally are not obsessed with accumulating wealth. We accept newcomers and exhibit tolerance to those who are different from us, most of the time. Our air is clean and we feel safe. While we don’t all share the same politics, we are respectful of democracy and when governments change hands, it is done without bloodshed. We are charitable to those who are in need.

But Canada is far from perfect. Just check your news feed and read about the MMIWG inquiry. ( Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls). Our treatment of First Nations people has been less than stellar. Just speak to a family who has experienced heartache with residential schools. We’re trying to do better, especially locally where several exciting initiatives are unfolding on our doorstep in Pat’tnkek.

We love our sports teams, a singsong around a campfire and a feed of lobsters. Our farmer’s markets are places to buy locally produced goods and a chance to get caught up with our neighbours. It is the favored spot for a politician to appear on the eve of an election! Everyone goes to the farmer’s market.

Did I mention strawberries? One of my favourite pastimes is to take my granddaughters to one of the local u-picks. They generally eat more than they pick but who’s counting.

We enjoy the simple pleasures of life like a cup of good tea.

We love to tell stories.

We stop and say hello to strangers and smile. Possibly our best tourism strategy.

And we’re obsessed with the weather, always a great conversation starter.

We mustn’t take Canada for granted and think that it will always be this way. We need to be mindful of what is going on around us. We need to demonstrate tolerance.

Oh, Canada.


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