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Reason to love Canada No. 123: Reader Peter Taylor holds a book and a beer beside his campfire at Monck Provincial Park in British Columbia. (Peter Taylor)
Reason to love Canada No. 123: Reader Peter Taylor holds a book and a beer beside his campfire at Monck Provincial Park in British Columbia. (Peter Taylor)

147 reasons to love Canada Add to ...

I have always believed that everything I ever dreamed was available to me in Canada. On Top Of The World represented all if my boyhood dreams. I made – made – my parents hang it above my Dad’s La-Z-Boy recliner. My dad drove a beer truck for 49 years, and the La-Z-Boy sat across from our black-and-white television with rabbit ears on top in our 800 square-foot castle at 2570 East 5th Ave.

Then On Top Of The World hung above the fireplace of our house when I married the girl I met in grade 4 (I was 20).

And today On Top Of The World hangs on our warehouse wall watching over a contemporary art collection, just waiting to go into one of my children’s homes, reminding me every day that I am still a Canadian boy that knows where my home is, here in Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA.

Bob Rennie, Vancouver’s “condo king,” is owner of Rennie Marketing Systems and an avid art collector who maintains his own art museum.

48. We’re always game for a new normal “These days I love Canada because it’s possible to put on a production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream on the main stage of the Stratford Festival that celebrates same-sex marriage rights and thousands of students, seniors and Stratford Festival regulars come and celebrate with us every day.

The fact that this is our new normal fills me with hope. I see Canadians as being remarkable in our ability to change and adapt. Even though we seem to be inundated by stories of how polarized we are around important issues, my first-hand experience is one of an open-minded citizenry willing to consider other points of view.

As a theatre artist, this makes this country a great place to be. Theatre after all, thrives on challenging its audiences with multiple points of view.” – Chris Abraham, artistic director of Crow’s Theatre

49. Bilingualism “I love that my kids speak both French and English even though I don’t (yet).” – Filmmaker Michael Dowse

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In June 2013, Jean-Pierre Blais found himself in Whitehorse with some time on his hands after a regulatory hearing wrapped up. The chairman of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission set out on a solo road trip that took him north. After enjoying a grizzly-bear cub sighting and vistas of mirrored lakes as he drove through Kluane National Park, he stopped for a bite to eat at a diner in Haines Junction, a tiny village where the Alaska and Haines highways meet. Mr. Blais, who is fully bilingual but grew up speaking French at home, shared the story that follows about the time a Mountie, a prospector and a CRTC chairman walked into a diner in the Yukon.

“I was having a soup and a grilled cheese sandwich when an RCMP officer walked in and started speaking French to the restaurant owner and so all three of us started speaking French together. Then an old prospector walked in and they started speaking French to him too. The prospector had immigrated to the area maybe 20 or 30 years ago, the restaurant owner had just bought the restaurant a year ago, the RCMP officer had maybe spent a decade there and I was just visiting. We were all speaking French and different roads had brought us there and it was the 24th of June. It struck me that as much as I like the industry and the agriculture that sit on the shores of the St. Lawrence, the Gatineau and the Outaouais, I don’t want to settle just for that.”

50. Our health care “I am so grateful to be a physician in Canada, where no one has to go into bankruptcy to pay for treatments that I recommend.” – Dr. Brian Goldman, host of White Coat, Black Art

– “Being Canadian saved my ma’s life.

Ma’s kidneys started failing in the 1990s. By the end of the millennium, she was on the list for a kidney transplant. In 2002, she got the call. There was a “perfect match kidney” being saved for her. She was admitted to St Michael’s Hospital in Toronto where the transplant was performed. One week later she was discharged from the hospital, just before her 52nd birthday, with a fully functioning new kidney.

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