Friday, July 1, 2011

My Canada

Canada Flag Cake (see recipe here)
July 1st in Canada is a day for most Canadians to celebrate the birth of our country.  If you are lucky enough to have the day off, it's a time of street parties, barbeques, festivals, music, swimming or boating, and usually a few bottles of beer if you like that sort of thing.  Beer and Fireworks, not really a good combination actually!

Here is Ian & Sylvia Tyson singing Un Canadien Errant.  This French Canadian song was written from the point of view of a french canadian farmer living in exile in the United States because of the 1837 Rebellion.  He watches a river which flows to his homeland and imagines it greeting his friends back home.  This song is so sad and heartfelt that even before I knew the meaning of the  words, it could bring me to tears.

I picked this version of the song for one reason because Ian and Sylvia are icons of Canadian music (and I do like their sound very much), and for another because I think it is great that musical artists whose roots are from the Prairies can relate to a song from Quebec.  It shows how much this song means to all Canadians --especially those who may be away from home.

Unfortunately July 1st doesn't evoke a happy celebration in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.  This day is an official day of mourning for the sad losses of the Newfoundland Regiment during the First World War.  At that time, Newfoundland had not yet joined the Dominion of Canada and was still a colony of Great Britain. One of the bloodiest battles of The Somme was the Battle of Beaumont Hammel, which was fought on July 1st, 1916.  The Newfoundland Regiment was all but wiped out. "Of the 780 men who went forward only about 110 survived unscathed, of whom only sixty eight were available for roll call the following day." (Veteran Affairs Canada)

Newfoundland and Labrador joined the Dominion of Canada on March 31st, 1949.

Luckily Newfoundlanders are the best partyers in all of Canada.  So we can forgive them if they need to take a day off now and then! ;)  Seriously I love Newfoundlanders!  I am proud to say that I have even kissed the cod so I have been made an honourary Newfoundlander.

Canada Is / Roger Whittaker
My friend Teena reminded me of this song.  I do love Roger Whittaker and this video shows quite a lot of Canadian scenery.  My husband and I and our children have travelled to every province in the country (all except for the Territories).

One of my favourite things to do in the summer is to visit a music festival. I have been to the Winnipeg Folk Festival twice and enjoyed it very much.  But now that there are some festivals a bit closer to home, I enjoy the smaller crowds in my own neck of the woods.

Murray McLauchlan with The McGarrigle Sisters singing Wade Hemsworth's The Shining Birch Tree at the Winnipeg Folk Festival (1992).  Can you get more Canadian than that?

A Molson Canadian beer commercial that plays with almost every Canadian stereotype there is!

Just in case you forgot (like it or not) that Canada is still a Constitutional Monarchy....
Here are the young Royals who are visiting Canada right now!
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are greeted by Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird upon their arrival in Ottawa on Thursday, June 30, 2011. (Frank Gunn / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
John Baird is Foreign Affairs Minister? Seriously? (Sorry, no political ranting today...but really!?)  Even William seems surprised!

And in the "If wishes could come true" department.... here is my favourite actor dressed as a Mountie for Canada Day.  (Thanks to my graphically talented "friend who shall not be named"!)

Hot damn! He looks good in red. :)

Happy Canada Day, eh?


Anonymous said...

To Phylly and all Canadians, Bonne fête du Canada / Happy Canada Day! We live in a pretty wonderful country, don't we?!

And yup, he does look good in red! :D

Anonymous said...

HAPPY CANADA DAY - Phylly and all fellow Canadians!

Anonymous said...

I hope you all had a wonderful day! and will have a great weekend. :)

Phylly3 said...

@calexora, fitzg and rafrenzy -- Thanks for reading and for your comments! I am back from a long weekend at the cottage (without access to a computer) so I am waaayy behind on everything in the Armitageworld! Wow! There is so much to read right now! Everyone is going crazy over the new articles and pictures. Just imagine how crazy it will be when his movies are released!

Anonymous said...

Wow, he looks FANTASTIC as a mountie. Don't know why I am surprised. Happy belated Canada Day!

Phylly3 said...

@servetus-- Thanks for visiting! :)

tedgirl said...

RA really does look good as a "Mountie" in red! One of my favorite singer is a Canadian, Anne Murray. Wondering if she's from Newfoundland? And love Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen.

There are a lot of Aussie diggers too that died in the Somme & Gallipoli in Turkey but I couldn't provide the statistics off hand.

Phylly3 said...

@tedgirl-- Glad you like RA as a mountie! ;) I love Anne Murray too. She is from Nova Scotia. Leonard Cohen is very talented and Hallelujah is probably one of his best works! Did you know there is a Strike Back fan vid set to that song? It's performed by Alison Crowe and created by Bccmee:

tedgirl said...

Thank you for the link. It's a beautiful song for the vid. Hearing the first note alone sends shiver into my spine. At peace when I hear this song (whoever's version)!