A cursory glance at my blog posts over the last few months may lead one to believe that I don’t like Canada anymore. Maybe it was this post, or maybe it was that one. The truth is, I’ve been so busy being angry at the federal government for their various scandals, shortcomings, and transgressions that I kind of forgot the reason that I care so much about what happens to this country in the first place.
The reason is because Canada is awesome. I know there are problems, and I know there is so much work to be done to build a country that is fair, safe, productive, environmentally sound, and culturally rich. With the multiple shortcomings of federal, provincial, municipal, and corporate leadership in this country, it’s sometimes hard for me to look past the bullshit and be optimistic about the land I call home. Basically, I couldn’t see the forest for the few a-holes who’d dumped their stinky garbage bags in it. That doesn’t mean the forest isn’t lovely.
Case in point: my Canada Day long weekend. TC and I spent two days on Salt Spring Island with good family and good friends. We walked along the rocky seashore. We saw eagles and blood orange sunsets. I met Raffi in the Saturday market, and he gave me a sticker (for those of you not familiar with the musician who brought us “Baby Beluga”, he was pretty much a rock star to me when I was six). We went kayaking and sat in deck chairs drinking summer-y beer. In line for the ferry home, a stranger overhead us whining about the arduous transit journey from the Tsawassen terminal into Vancouver, and offered us a ride (which we accepted–thank you Derek!). Back in Vancouver, I tried pho for the first time and read Can Lit on Wreck Beach. In the evening, we sat in a beautiful park and watched the light fade behind the mountains until the Canada Day fireworks started. Drunk people serenaded us with their renditions of our national anthem, and I couldn’t have been more proud.
I know my posts about Canadian issues can be a bit depressing, a bit pessimistic even. But I am happy that I live in Canada and am a Canadian. I am happy that I can travel the country freely and safely. I am happy that my fellow citizens still do favours for total strangers. I am happy that our famous folk aren’t too big-headed to give their fans stickers (thanks Raffi!). I am happy that I am totally free to bitch about my government all day long, whenever I want, without having to worry for my job or security. I am happy to have had access to education and healthcare. I couldn’t be more happy to be surrounded by gob-smacking natural beauty almost everywhere I go.
I suppose what I am trying to say with my quick and dirty belated Canada Day post is that despite my whinging, despite my worries, despite my indignation at this, that, and the other, I am happy to be making a life in Canada with my TC. This place is a good place. And I’ve got my fingers crossed for a beautiful summer.