Sunday, 15 January 2012

On a Sunny Sunday in cold Ottawa.

As this is a quiet Sunday morning at -30 C in Ottawa under a bright blue Sun filled winter sky, I sit here with puppies quietly listening to Angela Hewitt playing the English Suite by J.S. Bach.  In fact winter officially arrived in Ottawa on Thursday 12 January 2012 in a snowstorm which created meter high snow banks on the streets everywhere, making street parking impossible for a few months to come and walking difficult and hazardous.  I wonder what was my ancestor thinking when in June of 1662 he boarded a war ship in Brittany for Quebec City in far away Canada. Knowing that life expectancy upon arrival in this French territoire outre-mer was at best one year. If disease or the elements did not get you the Aboriginals living in the dark primevil forest would. I would rather live in a more southern temperate clime.
Near our home while walking the puppies this morning at 8 am.
The Rideau Canal finally ready for skaters, the longest skating way in the world, I forget how many kilometers it is but it is very long indeed.
cleaning the snow off the canal for skaters to enjoy a good exercise.
 quiet streets and a brave few walkers along the canal.

This morning in the New York Times, Lee Siegel has a very good opinion piece on Mitt Romney and race.
Describing Mitt Romney as the whitest white presidential candidate anyone can hope for to replace that black fellow in the White House. It seems that Americans are incapable of accepting a black president, the old race card comes again to haunt the political agenda. Sad for a country which loves to present itself as forward thinking, modern and a defender of freedom and human rights. What is it they say about Freedom, '' the price of freedom is eternal vigilance''. The Americans or at least the Republicans are unable to free themselves of their old prejudices, they inherited the narrow minded and mean views of people like George Wallace of Alabama, nothing has really changed since the 1960.

Lee Siegel says and I quote; Of course, I’m not talking about a strict count of melanin density. I’m referring to the countless subtle and not-so-subtle ways he telegraphs to a certain type of voter that he is the cultural alternative to America’s first black president. It is a whiteness grounded in a retro vision of the country, one of white picket fences and stay-at-home moms and fathers unashamed of working hard for corporate America.

In this way, Mr. Romney’s Mormonism may end up being a critical advantage. Evangelicals might wring their hands over the prospect of a Mormon president, but there is no stronger bastion of pre-civil-rights-America whiteness than the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Yes, since 1978 the church has allowed blacks to become priests. But Mormonism is still imagined by its adherents as a religion founded by whites, for whites, rooted in a millenarian vision of an America destined to fulfill a white God’s plans for earth. 

He goes on with: ''as became immediately apparent in 2009, millions of Americans were unwilling to accept the basic democratic premise that Mr. Obama legally and morally deserved to sit in the White House — and that was before they confronted his “socialist” and “un-American” policy agenda.

Mitt Romney knows this. He knows that he offers to these people the white solution to the problem of a black president. I am sure that Mr. Romney is not a racist. But I am also sure that, for the many Americans who find the thought of a black president unbearable, he is an ideal candidate. For these sudden outsiders, Mitt Romney is the conventional man with the outsider faith — an apocalyptic pragmatist — who will wrest the country back from the unconventional man with the intolerable outsider color.''
Terribly sad but so true of the USA. It seems that some ghosts of the past are unshakeable.
In Canada this week the law on same-sex marriage was firmly enshrined by the Federal Government by a simple declaration by the Minister of Justice, for anyone who thought that it could be changed by the current administration or some exception was about to be made in Divorce Court. The law was passed in 2005, giving full marital rights, recognition and protection to same-sex couples. Thousands of foreigners have come to Canada to marry because it was not possible in their own country. A great coup for Canada and the Government. 
It is a beautiful day but too cold despite the fact that the Canal is open to skating, I can stand the cold and even the puppies don't want to go outside for too long. So we will enjoy the view from inside.

Nora in the Sunshine
Nicky dozing in the morning sun


  1. Ouch!
    I am 'freezing' here at 55 fahrenheit, that I had to get out a blanket.
    I don't I would survive any more in cold weather. So much for my dream to 'retire to Canada".

  2. I wouldn't mind spending a lazy morning like Nora does.