Not looking too bad for 150

Happy birthday to you,

Happy birthday to you,

Happy birthday, dear Canada.

Happy birthday to you.

Place doesn’t look too bad for 150 years. Oh sure, there’s a few areas that could use a bit of a facelift, but doesn’t that happen to everyone who makes it through a century and a half?

It may be a good time, especially on Saturday as you’re walking a kilometre and a half from your parking spot to the celebrations at Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park, to spend some time thinking about Canada.

And, for a change, don’t think about what’s wrong with the country.

Think about what’s right with it, and think about what Canada means to you.

I think of Canada as a land that few people really know. There are probably places in the Arctic that might see one or two people a year, and yet they may be the most beautiful spots in the whole area.

Even just around Prince George, I’ve heard you could fish a different lake in the region every day for a year, and never visit the same lake twice. (Whether you’ll catch anything is another story.)

I think of Canada not as a country best known linguistically for “eh”, but for “Sorry.” I doubt there’s another country in the world where, when one person accidentally steps on another person’s foot, they both apologize – and mean it.

There are so many things to love about this great country, and so few things to dislike. There have been some great songs written about Canada by Canadians, but one I love is actually by a Kenyan who has spent a fair bit of time in our country, Roger Whittaker.

The song is called simply Canada Is, and here’s part of the chorus.

We have a voice that is calling

Telling all free men we’re willing

To show them how to live in peace

For that’s what Canada is.

Happy birthday, Canada, and many more to come.