Iwas tidying up the newspapers strewn beside our favourite armchair when I noticed it. A weekly tabloid had printed a Canadian flag the full size of their centrefold section. Readers were encouraged to stick the paper flag in a window visible to the street, and if lucky, they might win a prize.
A prize for patriotism? I already felt fortunate to be living in a country like Canada, with its vast resources, natural beauty and diverse cultures. Scrap the idea of acting greedy. I already have more than I need. And besides, I don’t believe in “luck.” Providence? Yes! I believe it is providential that we were born into a country like Canada.
But what do I do with the flag? Stick it in the recycling bin? Shred it? Crumple it up and toss it in the wastebasket? None of these seemed the respectful way to handle a Canadian flag, even a paper one. So I folded it up neatly and tucked it in among my quilting patterns. Some day I hope to make a patriotic quilt showing all the Canadian provincial crests, and that flag would be just the right-size pattern for the medallion centre.
Like a lot of other dreams, that quilt may never materialize, but as someone has said, “We may never reach the stars either, but we can still chart our course by them.” And so whether we are thinking of making a quilt or contributing to the future of our country, the goal is to aim high.
Happy Canada Day! – Alma Barkman writes from Winnipeg