Last week I shared with you our Saint Jean Baptiste or Fête Nationale in Québec and gave you a little history lesson. And how for some Anglos, this is just a day off from work and for most Francos, it holds pride on being French.
In Quebec, for many, Canada Day is just a day off. Like Victoria Day (only Quebecers celebrate Journée des Patriotes – Patriots Day) because in this province things are disinct… sorry, I digress!
Now, I am what our Prime Minister Trudeau (father, not son) was hoping the people of his country would all be. Perfectly bilingual in both English and French. No matter what your province of birth is, you can be bilingual. However, that did not happen quite as he had hoped. About the only thing bilingual in the country is packaging. And I can go on and on about the laws and stuff but then I’ll just get myself worked up and that is not the point of this here post. What I am is, a Canadian, who happens to live in Quebec; not the other way around. And like most Canadians, except for the staunchest Separatists, would be celebrating, if I weren’t working – coz I’m in the hospitality biz and there ain’t no holidays for that there group.
Peeps like to call it Canada’s birthday but that is over-simplifying things 😉 I found this on the internets and it perfectly sums things up:
“On July 1, 1867, the nation was officially born when the Constitution Act joined three provinces into one country: Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Canada province, which then split into Ontario and Quebec. However, Canada was not completely independent of England until 1982. The holiday called Dominion Day was officially established in 1879, but it wasn’t observed by many Canadians, who considered themselves to be British citizens. Dominion Day started to catch on when the 50th anniversary of the confederation rolled around in 1917. In 1946, a bill was put forth to rename Dominion Day, but arguments in the House of Commons over what to call the holiday stalled the bill.
The 100th anniversary of the nation’s official creation in 1967 saw the growth of the spirit of Canadian patriotism, and Dominion Day celebrations really began to take off. Although quite a few Canadians already called the holiday Canada Day (Fête du Canada), the new name wasn’t formally adopted until October of 1982.”
—Source: Mental Floss
Well how do you like them apples? I couldn’t have said it any better!
And in Quebec, July 1st is officially Moving Day… Crazy as that sounds, today will be Mover’s nightmare with trucks all over the place as people move from one apartment to another. Not a law but a tradition. Weird, but true. How did this happen, you ask? I always thought it was because schools end their year on June 23rd, latest, so it is easier for parents to not screw up the kids’ school year. And it is for that reason but there is more.
It began as a humanitarian meaure by the Quebec government forbidding landlords from evicting their tenant farmers in the middle of winter. Sweet of them, no? Apparently in the 18th century French law dictated that all legal documents begin on May 1 so that became the official unofficial start time for leases, going from May 1 to April 30.
In 1973, the Quebec government figured it would be even better to move this day to July 1st for the original reason I stated (to coincide with the end of the school year), plus we can still get crappy weather in the beginning of May, and, by moving it to an official holiday, people would not miss a day of work. Of course, that excludes the movers, doesn’t it?
Today’s history lesson is over 😉 I wish all of my Canadian readers a
And leave you with this little amusing and oh-so-silly video
And just so you know, I have never, EVER, used the word chesterfield for a sofa… and a few of the other expressions 😉