Monday, October 11, 2010

It's Thanksgiving Day in Canada

Today is being celebrated in the US as Columbus Day because it provides a three day weekend. If it weren't for the worker's penchant for meaningless three day weekends, tomorrow would be the celebrated day as that is when Columbus and his crew first sighted the New World. Nevermind that others had been here before Columbus, Chris gets the credit because he did a much better marketing job and folks back home were ready for a new world.

However the day is celebrated in the US, to our northern neighbors in Canada it is Thanksgiving Day. As it is here, Thanksgiving Day is the one day a year set aside for remembering the blessings of inheritance. The editors of the Edmonton Sun had a few words well worth reading.
Even on Thanksgiving Day, it is easy to find innumerable things to complain about if only focusing on the small picture.

The big picture, however, should be the key focal point on a day such as today, but it is too often barely considered or, worse, taken for granted.

Instead, it's the small things in life that too often block the view and the viewpoint.

As the late U.S. beat generation poet Charles Bukowski so aptly put it in this classic rant, "It's not the large things that send a man to the madhouse ...

"But a shoelace that snaps with no time left."

Ain't it the truth?

The big picture, however, is where the focus should be as family and friends gather to celebrate the blessings of which Thanksgiving Day is designed to remind us.

If we actually give pause to ponder them.

First, we live in a great country, and whether by birth or by choice, the overwhelming majority of us would not trade Canada for any other country in the world.

No law, no Berlin-like wall, and no dictatorial government exist to inhibit our freedoms or the freedom of our press.

We can come and go as we please.

We live in a democracy.

We also live along the world's longest undefended border because we have the best neighbour anyone could ask for -- strong and powerful yet, since making its retreat from a skirmish known as the War of 1812, non-threatening to our overall sovereignty as well as arm's-length protectors of backs.

We can love or hate their politics, or the context of their conflicts, but we cannot say the Americans are bad neighbours.

We are blessed by what sustains life, the cleanest air on the planet and, while we make up only .05% of the world's population, we hold ownership over 20% of its fresh water.

And then there's our total resource bounty.

Ownership of it means a future not beholding to foreign entities, or susceptible to their threats or intimidations in order to heat our homes, for example, or steel our girders to embrace tomorrow's challenges.

That, too, is something to be thankful for.

And envied.
The citizens of the two nations, Canada and America, jab and jibe, bust chops and balls, insult and joke their is not a pair of nations that have been better neighbors without a fence than Canada and America. Canada was there flying cover over America on 9/11 and was first to respond to the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina without invitation and even before our own first reponders could get permission to go to work.

On this, the Canadian Thanksgiving Day, I would like to say Thank You, Canada. Thank you.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.