Day 7 of 30 Days of Indie Travel Project, from BootsnAll
Prompt #7: CELEBRATE
“Joining in a local festival, holiday or special event is a great way to learn more about a local culture. Share the story of a celebration that meant something to you on your travels.”
Oh, Canada! or, Patriotic BBQ
Jodie and I walked in as honeymooning Americans. We left as Honorary Canadians.
On June 1, 2010, Canadians raised wee flags and tattooed themselves in honor of Canada Day, Canada’s celebration of nationhood and independence. And way out in the middle of nowhere, on a wee island between Vancouver Island and the British Columbia mainland, Jodie and I joined about 900 people in a day of activities, music, and lots and lots of barbecued lamb.
The southernmost of the Southern Gulf Islands, little Saturna Island practically kisses the U.S.-Canada border. Usually home to 300 people, on Canada Day the population swells to nearly 1,000. People come in by boat, ferry and plane to partake in the Saturna Lamb Barbeque, which has been celebrated on the island since 1950.
Kids tossed for coconut prizes, tried to send dunk-tank volunteers into the drink and sack-raced across the footy pitch where we all celebrated. Up a slope, the beer garden filled and glasses emptied. Jodie and I waved our wee maple leaf flags, clapped to music, and laughed and laughed and laughed with all the jubilation around us.
We got to know some people who were staying at the same B&B that was our home for the next few days. Later, the lamb was ready for digging in, and oh my goodness, it was amazing. Nearly 30 lambs gave their lives for their country that day on Saturna, and I salute their tender, smoky delicious meat.
Later on at the B&B, we relaxed with a cuppa our our fellow housemates. Conversation and laughter flowed. Jodie and I had gotten to share a national celebration with a country where we felt honored to be guests.
Oh, Canada—thanks for welcoming us, and for a while, making us feel like we were some of your own.
More like this: Urban Fantasy and Travel Stories from Rucksack Press »
What is the 30 days of indie travel?
Every day in November, the BootsnAll Travel Network is inviting bloggers from around the world to a daily blogging effort designed to reflect on how our travel experiences over the last year (or whenever) have shaped us and our view of the world. Bloggers can follow the prompts as strictly or loosely as we like, interpreting them in various ways and responding via text, photos or video posted on our own blogs. More information: Join the 30 Days of Indie Travel Project »