Happy Canada Day!
This is the 5th Canada Day in my life that I’ve celebrated outside of our glorious country, but that doesn’t mean I’m feeling the national pride any less. I’m actually celebrating in one of the nations that helped give birth to Canada (France), so I feel slightly closer to home than I would in say, Zimbabwe.
Here’s something you need to know about me: I’m terribly patriotic. I wrote an initial post entitled True Patriot Love about the love and pride I feel for my country when I celebrated Canada Day in Italy a couple years ago. And while we all know that Italy holds a special place in my heart, let there be no doubt that this heart of mine is, and will always be, shaped like a maple leaf.
There are a million reasons to be proud to be Canadian, but I’d like to list a few things that come to mind when we talk about what makes me proud to be Canadian when I’m out in the world:
1. Our reputation. The simple fact that we are Canadian makes us friends wherever we go. Our Canadian passports open more doors for us than, I’d say, almost any other passport in the world.
2. Imitation. Someone terribly smart once said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. So thank you to all those wannabe Canadians who slap a red maple leaf on their backpacks and luggage and try to pass themselves off as one of us in the world. We know how great our country is, and we’re glad you recognize it too.
3. Our worldview. I know I’m talking generally here, but Canadians are some of the most open-minded people of the Western world, and in my opinion, it’s a wonderful thing. We’re not too closed in on ourselves, not too judgemental, not too egoistic, and sometimes we’re overly apologetic.
And although I’ve found that a lot of people I meet abroad don’t really have a clear picture of what it means to be Canadian, and not of other “similar” nationalities, it doesn’t matter. Because when I say I’m Canadian or Canadese or Canadienne, without fail, a smile spreads across their lips. And mine too.
This post is dedicated to my Grandpa, a world-traveller-extraordinaire, who, even before it was in vogue, taught me to wear a maple leaf wherever I travel, and to always be proud of my country. Thanks, Gramps.