They came by the tens of hundreds, filling the parking lots, walking up Woolwich Street, streaming into Riverside Park for the much anticipated Canada Day Fireworks. This crowd was a sampling of the Canadian mosaic: a country made up of people from around the world, from different ethnic and religious backgrounds, of varied sexual orientations, the disabled and not-so-disabled, living together in the best country in the world!
The fireworks last all of 10 minutes but the joy is in the gathering at the park: setting up picnic blankets and chairs, young children darting in and out of the crowd, young people stealing kisses and touches in the dusk, parents and grandparents enjoying the sight of their kids. There are the concession stands (the usual Canadian selections as well as an Ethiopean food stand), and the small collection of rides and amusement arcades.
It is the middle of a gorgeous long weekend and the problems and issues of our world may be set aside, at least for a few moments.
Riverside Park, Guelph. July 1st.