The Fourth of July is a day filled with fireworks, friends, and fun. It is a time of celebration and patriotism. It is also an excuse to blow off work and party. For many, it is the greatest day of the year.
Many of you may not be aware, but only a few short days before we celebrate our own independence, the crazy Canucks to our North are doing the same. Thatâ€™s right, Canada Day! On July 1st, Canada celebrates the anniversary of the Inauguration of the Dominion of Canada. It is a bit different from the Fourth because the celebration varies throughout the different provinces of Canada.
I caught up with Josh Bibby of Vernon, British Columbia, and Henrik Lampert of Manchester-By-The-Sea, Massachusetts, to compare and contrast Canada Day with Independence Day.
Josh Bibby and Henrik Lampert at the 2008 NAO
This past Canada Day, I wore jeans on the glacier and a wife beater along with a Team Canada track jacket. Other people were wearing jeans and flannel. There are parades and songs to sing, usually with bagpipes, but I’m not sure why. We drink whiskey and beer and usually are polite and not too obnoxious, although, I cannot speak for everyone.
Ontario is the province that takes it the most seriously and Quebec takes it the least seriously. I am not too sure about the Prairie Provinces but I am guessing there is nothing to do there since itâ€™s flat, so they probably party very hard. Mounties are out on their horses and people have their faces painted. I don’t think we are as loud as Americans on average but we are proud to be Canadian.
It is a day of joy and easy to make friends. People usually travel to bigger cities or resorts to party. Also, many activities are held in provincial parks.
Lampert in Bibby cruising the town
This past 4th of July was perhaps the greatest day of all time. I flew back to my hometown, Manchester-By-The-Sea, MA for the occasion. I headed out early in the morning with some friends, my brother Thomas, and none other than the stunningly-hot writer of this column to catch the annual parade. A never-ending lineup of fire trucks (lights flashing and sirens roaring), civil war re-enactments and hot chicks in leggings throwing flags into the air, were some of the highlights.
My brother was equipped with speakers (conveniently clipped to his t-shirt) that belted our National Anthem out to the ears of all those who we encountered; the tune rang throughout the entire day. It was especially humorous to see the faces of the shoppers when we entered the local grocery to pick up some big steaks for grilling (how American of us).
After a lovely BBQ at our house, we headed out for 9 holes of golf and a swim in the pool at the local country club.
The afternoon activities were followed up by another BBQ (two BBQâ€™s in one day = very American) and ultimately we headed out in our boat to watch fireworks from the water. I felt that the booming nature of the fireworks were a metaphor for the greatness of the USA.
Be it the incredible parade, the red-white and blue adornments of the townspeople, the incredibly large flag that hung in front of our town hall, or the fantastic display of pyrotechnics, I was overcome with a sense of national pride.
This July 4th, I thought to myself; Iâ€™m proud to be an American.
I think itâ€™s safe to say citizens nationwide were also riding in fancy boats, swimming and golfing at exquisite country clubs, stuffing their faces with big juicy steaks, admiring hot chicks in leggings waving their batons, and the likeâ€¦ and I thereby know that all Americans, in all likelihood, experienced similar epiphanies. There really is no denying, we are the greatest country in the history of the world.