I always find that January 1st lacks the real sense of renewal that a new year requires. It might be the Canadian winter or the fact that Christmas can be an exhausting time, but January never feels like the start of it all. A few years ago I started to feel as if my new year started on July 1st. Canada Day marked a time of things coming to a close, change and new adventures. The fact that it was the start of summer didn’t hurt either.
I don’t have a set celebration for July 1st new year, although being outdoors is a must, having a bonfire inevitably happens and a lot of conversation about “last year” and the “new year” takes place. This Canada Day long weekend followed the same pattern, I spent Saturday evening on a patio and the rest of the weekend with Klara. I will admit, it didn’t feel like July 1st new year until I did and since it was Canada’s 150th, we did do a few typical Canadian things.
We had a bonfire.
We build a fire, technically Klara and I just watched, next to the water and sat around it for a few hours talking about our hopes for the new year. There is something about a bonfire that makes you grateful for the moment you have and connects you with those around you.
We visited the Inflatable Rubber Duck at Cherry Beach.
It was interesting because it was ridiculous. A giant inflatable duck as part of a Canada 150 celebration is ridiculous. The fact that so many people came to see it was ridiculous, yet it was the logical thing to do on the weekend. It was free, it was outdoors and a thing you could do as you took a walk around the Harbour Front.
It reminded me a lot of similar free events our parents would take us to when we first moved to Canada. My parents didn’t have that much money as new Immigrants, yet they loved doing things and had two kids. So, free events and celebrations were a thing we did in the summers and going to see an Inflatable Rubber Duck would have been something we would have done
We took a sunset drive through Port Credit.
We didn’t have a plan that evening, as former suburban teenagers we just wanted to go for a drive. As we passed through Port Credit we noticed the coming sunset and stopped to take photos. I haven’t taken sunset photo’s since Thailand and didn’t think I would be as awed by one at home. I was wrong, it was a beautiful sunset with spectacular colours. We took the long way back and I remember feeling so happy for enjoying such a simple thing so much. A drive with my sister, watching a beautiful sunset and taking photos.
Reflecting on everything that has happened in the last year, I feel grateful for all of the positive things that happened. Some of them came out of painful moments, others taught me humbleness and patience, but I’ve also had opportunities that made my life richer. I reunited with family I hadn’t seen in years, I got out of box of comfort and travelled to places I had always wanted to see and I know that is only the start, this year will bring more amazing things and I can’t wait.
Happy July 1st new year all!