Canada Day 2013

Happy 146th birthday, Canada!  You’re looking mighty fine for a lady of your vintage.

It’s funny how old habits stick with us in such a stubborn way.  I’m not averse to change, and don’t deliberately cling to the old just to be awkward, but Canada Day still sounds strange to me, having always called it Dominion Day in my formative years.  The name changed in 1982, following passage of  The Canada Act, so it’s not like I haven’t had lots of time to adjust to the newer name.  Perhaps Dominion Day seems more significant because actual celebrations were attached to it.  It coincided with the week of the annual summer fair in my little home town, and sometimes there would be a big family get together at some point in the long weekend.  By 1982 I was employed full-time as a nurse, and all public holidays ceased to have much significance.   After I had to abandon my career,  I never had the energy for big public celebrations, so Canada Day has always come and gone pretty quietly.

Hot dogs have become something of a once a year on Canada Day ritual, and of course they were on the menu today.  Do we know how to push the boat out, or what?!   I had sort of assumed that they’d now be off the list forever and ever, even for just Canada Day, but the hunters and gatherers managed to find some last shopping trip that actually met all of our dietary restrictions.  Huzzah!  Chicken, low fat, low sodium for the recovering cardiac patient,  and gluten-free for the mother/daughter CFS duo.  What special snowflakes we are!  But yes, they did still taste like hot dogs, thanks for asking. 🙂    To add to the immense excitement of the day, The Mister and I did some celebratory weeding of vegetables and flowers, before the soaring temperatures forced us back inside.  I will happily kiss the feet of the inventor of the first central air conditioning unit!  Richard used to love heat, but a weakened heart and 30 C.  aren’t the best of pals.  Heat and I have never been friends, but especially not since the onset of CFS.  As the heat and humidity soar, so do pain and fatigue levels, the head pounds more than usual, and every system in the body gets more than a little cranky.  But it could be worse!  It could always be worse!  Exclamations are good for what ails you, in case you didn’t know!  Really!

Now that the sun has gone down, it’s time to venture out, wander around with the hose, and commune with the local mosquito population for a bit.  I haven’t done the Dance of a Thousand Slaps yet this year, and feel deprived.  Says she sarcastically.  But seriously, I love the watering bit as the sound of the spray from the hose is so relaxing.  You will come to realize that I’m very easily entertained.

Speaking of being entertained, I’ll leave you with a fine piece of Canadian culture.  Most Canadians of a certain age have a  fondness for the old National Film Board vignettes, and this one is a particular favourite of many.  The vocalists are Kate and Anna McGarrigle, a popular Canadian folk duo.  Kate was the mother of Rufus and Martha Wainright, for those who might be interested.    Enjoy!

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