Thursday, February 21, 2008

On Atlantic Canada...

All in all, I was very fortunate to have spent 25 years of my life in Nova Scotia. I moved out there from Lasalle, a suburb of Montreal, in March of 1976, right after finishing my basic training course at CFB St.Jean, QC. I moved as a political refugee from the Province of Quebec, shortly pursuant to the passing of Bill 101. I wanted my children to grow up in a democracy and I wanted above all, to serve my country. That was the whole line of reasoning behind joining the military. I remembered from my school years the precedents in our world history, where languages were outlawed and government officials showed up at your door, telling you what language you were to have your children educated in, or your signs posted in... I believe it was Germany and the year was 1937-ish.

Although my heart will forever reside somewhere along the shores of South-West Nova, living in Nova Scotia allowed me the opportunity to tour New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and of course, The Rock as well. For you mainlanders who might be reading this, for those of you who have never known the gift of having your early morning coffee by a seashore, your nostrils filled with the smell of sea and salt, as you watch a Cape Islander slowly make it's way out of the harbour... it is impossible to put into suitable prose the comfort, the satisfaction that such moments can bring to one's soul. Nova Scotia is one of those rare spots on the earth, where a total stranger can gaze at the ocean and sense that he belongs. Perhaps it's true what they say. That we all come from the sea and cannot help but feel at home whenever we are in it's presence.

You can have your big cities. Or as the "Song for the Myra" goes: "I'll trade you ten of your cities, for Marion Bridge and the pleasures it brings...". I have visited most of those international, cosmopolitan cities that the young and trendy would kill to see, or be seen in. They leave me cold and indifferent. Many people claim that they love the energy that a large city brings. I don't believe this. I think rather that many people need the noise, the din, the distractions of the city, to drown out what is going on inside them. It keeps them from having to confront and actually deal with themselves.

Give me the peace and solace that a stretch of shoreline or an oceanside bluff can provide. Let my thoughts drift and wheel with the gulls and the waves. I have no qualms about enjoying my own company. I am at peace with myself. I need no distractions, no trappings or frills, to enjoy this world around me. Whether in l'Acadie, down in the Annapolis Valley, in Lunenburg or Mahone Bay, near la Baie des Chaleurs or standing at the very tip of Cape Spear on The Rock, wherever the sea meets the sky, that is where I will always long to be.

1 comment:

Gabby said...

Wah!!!!!!!!!!! I want to go home! Sniff...

Grew up on the Baie des Chaleurs and often went down to the water's edge to have my coffee or just to dream.

More recently it was reading on the shore in Eastern Passage while hubby was posted to Shearwater.

Nothing here compares.