Are you puzzled that a photograph of a Sea Cadet anchors an essay which, by nature of its release date, is customarily dedicated to the prospect of the holiday season? I chose the image because the young lady represents untapped potential. Youth, curiosity and enthusiasm leave her open to new ideas, while her training provides the discipline and stamina necessary to implement them.
This Christmas, while we take time to look back and be thankful for family, friendship and fellowship, we also look forward, consider change, espouse possibilities and embrace purpose. “My dream is for people around the world to look up and to see Canada like a little jewel sitting at the top of the continent.” Nearly 65 years after Tommy Douglas said these words, we are realizing the maturity, means and methods to make that vision come true.
I’m rarely sanguine about anything – definitely a glass half-empty guy – but it is truly uplifting to see individuals, groups and communities give generously of their time, savings and vigour to causes that resonate among us. This selflessness brings joy and comfort to strangers, making the spirit of Christmas, which now and then flickers and quivers precariously, glow with strength.
• • •
From Beverly in Habitant, Nova Scotia to Len in Nanaimo, British Columbia, thanks to everyone who sent in comments, criticisms and suggestions, and ordered photographs in 2015.
See you in 2016!
The Parting Shot:
While migrating to warmer climes, snow geese rest on the Saint Lawrence River in the late afternoon of December 5.
Near South Lancaster, ON