The streets are silent and empty today, in Ottawa. Is this how the capital celebrates Canada Day, by escaping it? No, it just depends on where you go, and today we go to Parliament Hill and the Park next to it.
Here are the food stands, photo opportunities, freebies you don’t necessarily want or need but still accept. The Hare Krishna sing, the people are dressed in red and white, and Trudeau (yes, I spotted him!) tried to wave at all of them.
Still, even with thousands of people in such small space, the festivities are impressively contained, with a low volume, with little littering. Coming from Queen’s Days, I felt like I was experiencing an early morning or the day after, not noon – smack in the middle of the party day. Maybe Canadians are just too considerate to make a loud mess of things.
I got my Beavertail to make sure I was part of the party (well, that is going to be an one time thing), and got EH and a maple leaf sponged on me. With a freebie (President’s Choice antlers) on my head, I did my rounds. To discover that besides things being cleaner and less loud, it’s still a national day off, which some people take as an excuse for dressing up. I wasn’t filled with Canadian pride, nor put off by it.
Tonight are concerts and fireworks, assuming it won’t be canceled because of the rain falling now. We wouldn’t want to make coming to the festivities a bother, after all. And a crowd full of umbrellas is an explosion of “Sorrys” waiting to happen.