Lots of weekends ago my alarm went off and the CBC woke me up with the smooth calm voice of Stuart McLean and the The Vinyl Cafe. They were broadcasting from a theater in Winnipeg, Manitoba. It was the usual Vinyl Cafe material, stories and music. Stories about Winnipeg and live music from The Weakerthans — They played “I Hate Winnipeg”.
It was beautiful.
Listening to this, I was filled with an enormous sense of Canadian Pride and felt like I was experiencing something true and pure. It was nice. But unexpected. My Mother was born in Winnipeg. My Grandfather built a home for his family from trees hewn by his hand and made into workable lumber.
I thought I was going die in Winnipeg once while camping (oddly, not far from where the old family homestead still remains). That same trip I also lost my bank card.
What I lost in a bank card, I made up for in Barbeque Sauce Talk . . . as the fellow working the PC Financial Kiosk was also the inventor, marketing department, and chief salesperson of his own Barbeque Sauce Company. He wrote some other recipes on blank bank statements. I tried one once. It did not disappoint. Winnipeg isn’t all bad.
It is hard to describe Canada. Even more so to describe what it is you really love about Canada. (without using words like Healthcare and Poutine) Try it.
I love it, and I am satisfied leaving it at that.
This morning, Tom Allen on CBC Radio 2 was interviewing a young fellow from St. John’s . . . about . . . St. John’s. I have not been there. But I know I already love it and would be excited to move there — based solely on the words I heard this morning. To be honest, I don’t recall if they were speaking about St. John or St. John’s, but either one would do as far as I am concerned. Bill can talk to me all he wants about living in Nashville but I know I won’t have the same warm and good internal reaction (Although I do not doubt Nashville is a nice place in its own right).
Someone once asked me who my favorite Canadian was. Without hesitation I answered: John Candy, Terry Fox and Bill Mason. I added Douglas Coupland and Bobby Orr just in case I needed alternates. You see. The question was “Who is your favorite Canadian”. One person. I immediately thought I should choose three, a forward line just in case these people were needed for a hockey game.