Home » Uncategorized » Oh, Canada!

Oh, Canada!

13 September 2004

I know that every West Coast Liberal probably has romantic notions of Canada, but in coming here I’ve been having a quiet exchange of love with this city, Calgary. There is a certain functional beauty that I recognized the moment I came off the plane into the airport – the decor is sparse and functional, clean and plain without pretense or elegance. The concrete and plain wood construction of much of the city is reminiscent of Europe or South America, with a few flourishes here and there, but nothing over the top. There is a serious lack of advertisements, and a feeling of down-home comfort. The retaining walls along the roads are simple, made with concrete and brick, beige and white in color, with just the slightest suggestion of ornamentation in the form of small 60’s style squares set into some of the concrete panels. The hotel that I’m staying in is similar in it’s brick and concrete construction, simple without being shabby, and the slight smell of antiseptic cleaning supplies in the hall.
Mind you, it is midnight and I have just landed, and I’m lacking proper sleep and sustenance, but even in this state, I am feeling something here that feels more honest than back in the states. It’s as if I’m used to my country’s need to dress up in ball gowns and make-up, anxious to hide its age and wickedness, afraid I might just see her for who she’s become and leave her. In contrast, I feel as if this girl has come dressed in her work clothes, ready to start the day with an honest smile and ready to be loved for whom she is. I feel this girl’s efficiency, and a declination to waste money on the unnecessary and the unimportant, her desire to spend her time and efforts on the things that matter most.
I’ll see how each day brings me more information of Calgary, but for this evening, I’m suitably affected.

Be Sociable, Share!