The 1st of July is Canada Day, and to celebrate, we went out on a friend’s boat for a couple of hours around Halifax harbour and around the Eastern Passage. La Serpiente got to drive.
Well, kind of. When the auto-pilot is engaged, the wheel on the boat does nothing, so La Serpiente (and her accomplices) could gleefully spin the wheel back and forth, and the boat wouldn’t change direction or try to plunge us into the drink.
This was one of the things I learned. The other thing was that most of what you think are life jackets are probably only PFDs (Personal Flotation Devices) whereas a life jacket is bulkier, but superior at keeping people alive because it doesn’t require you to be conscious in order to keep your head out of water. You just have to be wearing it.
When we got back to the wharf, there were crowds of Canadians, pretty much all dressed in red, walking about, getting their faces painted to look like animals, and toting little Canadian flags. I’m not sure if those three activities define Canadians. La Serpiente found this as a great new opportunity to run around gibbering, which was nice, and then we took her home and put her to bed.
This afternoon my brother and sister-in-law and their daughter came round, and he shut his thumb in the door of his car. It began to turn a bad colour and swell up, until one of our friends persuaded him to have a hole drilled in the nail. This provoked a few agonising expressions on his face, but after the spurt of blood from his thumb, the throbbing and the swelling dissipated. So the other thing I learned today is that what sound like insane medical procedures may well be quite sensible. Although if anyone recommends a hammer to me as a cure for headaches, I’ll look upon them quite sceptically. (I have been given some distilled water to blast up my nose to help my blocked sinuses – let’s see how that turns out…)
I was also reminded that hotdogs are the perfect size for children to choke on, but I already knew that. You want spider dogs for small children. Although give La Serpiente a spider dog and it’s an apparatus of fear to terrify her cousin with, so make of that what you will.
So that’s Canada Day for you. And thus to bed.