I was never more patriotic than when I left Canada to work and travel abroad for three years in my mid-20s. Being away from home soil, connected to strangers in another country by flags and shirts of red and white, is a powerful experience. I’ve celebrated Canada Day with ex-pats both in Covent Garden (a section of central London, UK) outside the famous Maple Leaf pub and at the Canadian consulate in Seoul, South Korea. And I was reminded each time how lucky I am to be Canadian.
I don’t remember much about Canada Day as a kid other than fireworks. Admittedly, I’m a bit more over-the-top than my parents; I always buy everyone in the family matching shirts to show off our Canadian pride, and we normally head to a local park or arrange neighbourhood fireworks. This year, we did both, though we did cut the park short because it was so hot that all the kids wanted to do was go home and jump in the swimming pool!