Wed, Jun 29, 2022
It is July 1—Canada Day! The warm morning breeze and pleasant sunshine herald a beautiful day ahead. I am incredibly lucky to live in Ottawa, a city of approximately one million people that is also the nation’s capital. Ottawa’s remarkable history can be seen in its many museums and heritage buildings. Did you know that Ottawa’s inhabitants are called Ottawans? I have lived in this wonderful city for ten years and learned that just now. I must admit that I don’t read a lot about hockey or I would have known that fact already. Other than not knowing anything about hockey, which is a symbol of Canadian culture, I feel naturally and authentically Canadian.
My family and I like to attend all sorts of activities to celebrate Canada Day, including open air concerts, speeches by the Governor General and Prime Minister and the various festivals and barbecues organized just about everywhere in Ottawa. Walking along the Rideau Canal and watching the fireworks that light up the city are also a must. This year, after two years of social distancing, the Canada Day festivities are back in person from 9 am until 10:30 pm at LeBreton Flats Park for all Canadians to enjoy.
Canada’s capital is a city that includes and welcomes all groups, and that’s why we feel so at home here. What truly unites the people of Ottawa is the feeling of being free to choose, free to believe (or not to believe) and free to be different without feeling uncomfortable or judged. I also feel this freedom when I’m at the Ottawa Public Library, as its collection reflects the diversity of its customers and community. Speaking of diversity, I invite you to visit the library’s cooking section. I’m always fascinated by the wide array of recipes found within its cookbooks. Just like Ottawa’s restaurants on July 1, they offer a taste of the many cultures that add to the city’s charm. I also recommend perusing the large selection of Canadian authors—their literary diversity is a reminder of Canada’s cultural richness.
I can attest to how united Canadians are by their interest in their country’s history and by their love of its nature, something made clear by how popular these two subjects are within the OPL collection. All of this makes me proud to be Ottawan and proud to be Canadian!
I’m about to enjoy a delicious maple beaver tail at the ByWard Market, so I’ll leave you here. Happy Canada Day!