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Canada Day in Gore Bay

July 1

Canada Day apparently means something different that July 4.

The Canadians, at least here in Gore Bay, donned their red Canada Day shirts – yes they all appear to have red tee shirts with Canada or maple leafs on them as if issued by their cult leader. Most we saw were wearing their shirts from 2017 when Canada turned 150.

The parade in Gore Bay was the shortest yet best parade ever. A police car followed by a dozen kids riding decked-out bicycles, followed by an ambulance and fire truck. It was over in less than 5 minutes but everyone applauded as the kids rode down the street.

It was great not to see politicians or militaria in the parade. No one was setting off fireworks or getting drunk on public. Most people seemed to use the day for quiet contemplation. Even the Legion Hall which had a live band and barbecue truck set up in the street were respectfully quiet. The band was really goods and yet not so loud that people couldn’t talk over them if they wanted.

We decided to eat at Codmother’s Pizza which is a wonderful fish and chips place that also has pizzas. The lightly battered cod was as good as any I have ever had and came with a couple of pounds of hand-cut fries.

Gore Bay is nestled on the western end of Gore Bay on the western end of Manitoulin Island and surrounded by either large hills or small mountains.

We took the trail to the eastern side of the bay and climbed to an overlook that is several hundred feet about the bay. Beautiful view but with temperatures in the high 80s and walking on crushed gravel for a couple of miles Duncan decided that he had had enough and just laid down. I ended up carrying him for more than a mile back to the part of the trail that was a board walk.

The fireworks over the bay were to say the least, spectacular by any standards. The town of less than a thousand full-time residents put on a 20-minute display that rivaled almost any I have witness before.

We watched the fireworks from the boat which we moved into the marina as the winds had picked up to 20-25 Kts. At some point during the display, we started to hear singing and realized that all around the bay, those watching were signing “Oh Canada”. It was really moving. At several points during the fireworks there was a pause and applause seemed to surround us.

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