Just a thought... It's just about celebrating being the damn greatest country on the planet. And, I'm so grateful. My prized possession is my Canadian passport. [Jann Arden]
Ah, her U key is back, you're thinking! Actually, I'm writing this on the ferry, using Rob's laptop. My U problem needs a bigger fix, apparently.
I was so lucky to truly savour the beauty of Canada's natural glory for a few hours Wednesday as we made the crossing from Vancouver Island over to mainland BC. Hey, BC Ferries – how did you know?
I guess it's better than the ticket on the way home yesterday...
For the first time, Rob and I went as foot passengers, leaving the car behind with friends (a fun-loving couple who enjoyed the MINI convertible). Once we'd gotten to the Vancouver area's Tsawwassen Ferry terminal, job #1 was finding our bus into town. We were able to buy our transit passes aboard the ferry.
We bought one-day passes, took the bus to our hotel, then a train to a mall for the Apple Store visit and ultimately to Rogers Arena to see Jeff Lynne's Electric Light Orchestra. (More on that next week, including a moment with Dhani Harrison that brought Rob to tears.)
So, part of our car-free getaway included getting familiar with the Vancouver transit system. It was, in a word, FANTASTIC, especially the SkyTrain. Now, there will be plenty of residents of this glorious west coast city – past or present - who will disagree and I bow to their familiarity. But for Rob and me, it couldn't have been easier to navigate or more convenient for what we needed.
Arriving home after a partly rainy day in Vancouver and a gentle crossing back to “our” island home, we were struck with gratitude once again for the healing that this part of the country has given us. Interestingly, the famous Homewood Health Centre of Guelph has opened a sister property about one kilometre from our home. I'm sure we share the same views and peaceful surroundings as Ravensview. If tranquil surroundings can help soothe a soul and aid in transition and healing, then surely its patients will be helped by the location.
As we consider what it means to be Canadian and to live in this vast, bountiful country of ours, I'm struck by the sickness that overcomes me when I read the comments and posts in our own land that are so filled with anger, hatred and intolerance. Whether it's bigotry, a strong political bent or the seeping stench of Trumpism and “Make Canada Great Again” nationalism coming across the border and dropping in through our devices, I worry for the future of our beautiful, peaceful home and native land.
We are far from perfect, but without a willingness to stop calling each other (or our leaders/candidates) names, without a commitment to listen instead of shouting, without a desire to educate ourselves about the facts instead of simply holding opinions, we're destined to spiral into the cesspool of disharmony that has befallen so many other countries, including, of course, our closest neighbour.
Yesterday as I awoke in Vancouver, I cried quiet tears of joy thanks to journal visitor Jodi K. who sent me a link to Jann Arden's list of Canada Day essentials. My book is there, along with this lovely illustration:
Here's what she said, in case you can't open the link above.
I cannot thank her enough, not only for her immense heart, but for her kindness and support through so much. What a gift she is to this country of ours! I could write a blog about Jann; in fact, I already have. And thank you.
May you find whatever your soul needs to help you to have a peaceful heart. Our Canada Day weekend will be quiet and contemplative, except for Monday, when Rob and I have volunteered to help run some of the outdoor activities for Rotary Club of Sidney. Let the games begin! And Happy Canada Day. How truly lucky we are! I'll see you here Tuesday.
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