After a day of sun and water and laughter, our family went down to a park in London, Ontario last night to watch a fantastic fireworks display in celebration of  Canada Day. As we stood to sing our national anthem, I felt a sense of pride swell in my heart, and maybe I sang our anthem a little more loudly than everyone else around me.  Then, with the thunderous pop of each firework as it exploded into a blaze of spectacular colour in the sky, I felt a sense of calm wash over me.  (I’m sure that had more to do with my happiness in being a part of something I believe in than it did with inhalation of the marijuana smoke wafting over to us from some teens a short distance away).

I believe in Canada. By no means is it a perfect country, but I believe in the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms, which I see as a statement of what Canada aims to do, even if it doesn’t always succeed.  It is a statement on respecting the dignity, freedom, and equality of each person.

I’m thankful for living in a country where even the lowest quality of life is better than lots of other places in the world, including more than a few developed countries.  I’m grateful for crystal lakes, grand expanses of untouched wilderness, and diversity of people and cultures.

Yesterday was Canada’s birthday and today (and yesterday), I’m thankful for living in Canada.