Tag Archives: Canada

I am Canadian

Well, yes I am. I was going to write about how proud I am to be a Canadian and to live in Canada. I see these travel shows about the exotic places in the world and I thought about what we have here. We are surrounded by three oceans, we have mountains and valleys and lots and lots of water. More than 50% of the world’s fresh water lakes are within our borders. That’s awesome! We have the highest tides in the world. And the best poutine.

I could probably go on and wax philosophical about the inventions Canadians are credited for: light bulbs and zippers, pablum and insulin. And the people that the world loves: Jim Carey, Mike Myers, Donald Sutherland . . .the list is quite extensive. And then, in true Canadian fashion it hit me. I was bragging.

My mother raised me to be a good girl. Mostly. I think Canadians should brag, a little. But we should also be aware of our failings. We’re not perfect. We have a history that we are not always proud of. We mistreated our native peoples. In many ways we still do. But we are trying to change. Our beautiful oceans are not as clean as they should be. We need to take responsibility for them. We are trying.

Our flora and fauna, that is in some cases found only here, don’t always get the recognition and protection they need to continue. Perhaps it’s because we don’t want the rest of the world to know we’re not perfect or because we are ashamed. We don’t need to be ashamed, we just need to fix what is broken and to protect what is not. But isn’t that the same the entire world over?

Canada truly is a beautiful country. And we are a good people, mostly. We seem to spend a lot of time apologizing for a few of us.

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“The True North strong and free!”

Yesterday my country, Canada, celebrated a birthday: 150 years!

Happy Birthday Canada!

I am proud to be a Canadian. I live in a breathtakingly beautiful country from sea to sea to sea. We have forests and prairies, beaches and lakes, meadows and mountains. When I look up to the sky at night I can see the stars shining brightly. (of course I have to be outside the cities when looking up!) We are a people of explorers, deep thinkers and we are kind. No one makes better fun of us then we do ourselves. We love to laugh. We love to share and we love our country.

We have a reputation for being polite. Wow! If I’m going to be known for something, good manners is right up there at the top. I thank you for that. We have a reputation for honesty and compassion. We may not be known globally for our scientists but I would hazard a guess most of you have used something invented by a Canadian. Turn on any lightbulbs lately? We don’t brag much. We don’t have to. Most Canadians don’t know what we have contributed to the world. But that’s okay. What is most important is that we did contribute. The world is a better place because Canada is here and I think Canada is better off being friends with the rest of the world. We make a good friend.

It’s not our way to blow our own horn but yesterday we stood up and shouted our pride. We are not perfect. We’ve screwed up as a country and individually. Who hasn’t? Hopefully we will correct our mistakes and learn from them. I like to think we will. We are still a young country, still learning. But I think that is an important trait: a willingness to learn.

150 years. In the greater scheme of things we are probably no more than a baby. There’re places in the world, many of them, that have homes older than we’ve been a country. We have some catching up to do.

May my country grow old with wisdom and may her people learn to appreciate her. I do.

 

 

Our National Anthem (chorus)

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!
From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

 

 

 

Canada (a little taste of us . . .)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Canada  is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres (3.85 million square miles), making it the world’s second-largest country by total area and the fourth-largest country by land area. Canada’s border with the United States is the world’s longest binational land border. The majority of the country has a cold or severely cold winter climate, but southerly areas are warm in summer.

Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land territory being dominated by forest and tundra and the Rocky Mountains. It is highly urbanized with 82 per cent of the 35.15 million people concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. One third of the population lives in the three largest metropolitan areas: TorontoMontreal and Vancouver. Its capital is Ottawa, and other major urban areas include CalgaryEdmontonQuebec CityWinnipeg and Hamilton.

Canada is one of the world’s most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Its advanced economy is the eleventh largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks. Canada’s long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture.

Canada is a developed country and has the tenth highest nominal per capita income globally as well as the ninth highest ranking in the Human Development Index. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, and education.

 

A few Canadian inventions:

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

 

Canola

Pablum

Canadarm

Snowmobile

Ice hockey

Table hockey

Goalie mask

Insulin

Electron microscope

Plexiglas

Alkaline battery

Electric wheelchair

Am radio

Walkie-talkies

Telephone

Lightbulbs

Zipper

 

 

I wonder what we’ll think of next?

 

100 Miles

Feb 22 2014 027

 

Reading another’s blog about his childhood made me nostalgic for my own. Here is another glimpse back to those halcyon days.

My parents and I once took a month long vacation took while we were living in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.  I was probably 9 or 10. We packed the car and started out okay until we hit a particular section of highway that is 100 miles long with nothing but trees the entire way. It was a two lane highway so some passing of vehicles was required.  It was also popular with trailers which of course drive slower then most cars.  We had successfully passed several of these vehicles when we encountered a problem just as we came alongside one of these trailers. No acceleration. Fortunately my father had just enough power to finish passing and pull over on to the shoulder. A kind soul passing by stopped and between him and my father they determined that the accelerator cable had broken.  This stranger promised to stop at the next town and send back a tow truck.   We made ourselves comfortable.  Soon another stranger going in the opposite direction stopped to say that there was no tow truck so he would stop at the previous town and try to send one back from there. Eventually the same news came back: no tow truck available. Never one to admit defeat my father was able to rig up a solution.  A trusty coat hanger attached to the accelerator was threaded under the hood of the car to the driver’s side window became a makeshift solution.  My father wrapped socks around the coat hanger and pulled on it to accelerate.  Sounds good, with a few caveats.  It was hilly terrain so the car had to go at least 100 mph downhill to get up the next hell.  My mother sat close to my father so she could jam the gear shift into neutral if necessary.  It was a very long run to the next town I must say. When we did finally make it, the local mechanic was amazed by the ingenuity but didn’t have a replacement cable.  He did however rig the coat hanger through the floor board so it was much easier the next day.  It was replaced later.

Weather related…

We all know that a beautiful summer day makes us feel good.  We all know that a miserable rainy day can make us feel, well, miserable.  In my part of the country we have just come through a very bad week in terms of weather.  It was hot, hazy and humid!  In fact Wednesday was the hottest day with the humidex at 46°C/114.9°F!  For those of you who don’t live in a country where you regularly count the humidex it is simply a means by which they calculate how hot the humid air actually feels.  And I felt bloody hot!

I have also noticed, over the years, that people’s demeanor is strongly related to what is happening in our weather.  I suffer from migraines when the air pressure changes significantly.  When it is very cold I find people become short tempered and easily offended.  The same is usually true when it is humid and sticky outside.  No woman can feel attractive when she is sweating.  At least not the women I know.  Men however really don’t care.  Of course I’m generalizing!  There are more than 7 billion people in this world I have no idea how even a fraction of them feel.  But I know how I feel.

We have no control over the weather.  We think we can predict it, but even then it’s not 100% perfect.  And I don’t think we even have 70% control over our own reactions to the weather.  We like to think that as Homo sapiens we are in control of our lives and our surroundings.  The truth is significantly different!  We are creatures that are hostages to our emotions.  Men especially don’t like to admit that, but women know the truth.  The weather can wreck havoc with our judgment.  One grumpy person can ruin the day for any number of people.  And they might be grumpy simply because the weather is too hot or too cold or too windy or too calm.  We still haven’t learned how to control our emotions and our reactions to others’ emotions.

I once worked a midnight shift at a Police Department.  I was a civilian manning the computers.  On this particular Friday the 13th there was a full moon.  It was the busiest midnight I had ever worked as well as the craziest!  Now there are those who say people are not affected by the weather or something as silly as the position of the moon.  After working that Friday the 13th I beg to differ!  I’m quite sure the statistics will prove that when it’s hot, hazy and humid burglaries are down and domestic assaults are up.  It all has to do with the weather.

I am not a scientist and I do not have concrete statistics to back up my beliefs, (I was too lazy to do the research) but I’ll bet there are reports out there that will confirm what I believe.  So the next time it’s hot, hazy and humid don’t annoy your neighbor.  And have a nice day!

May June 2013 064Goslings near the lake one hot afternoon