Friday, April 10, 2009

and a tradition commences

In Canada, different holidays are celebrated, and holidays are celebrated differently than in the States. For example, there's "Family Day" in Alberta in February. It's a day when schools are out and businesses and governmental offices are closed so that families can have a snow day together. Also, Thanksgiving is celebrated in October (which makes sense if one considers when the harvest occurs way up north, but it's still weird for us ex-pats). There's Boxing Day (December 26) Canada Day (July 1), Victoria Day (in May), and Good Friday is an actual governmental holiday. (Canada has so many governmental holidays, it hasn't even bothered to name them all. For example, the holiday in August is simply Civic Holiday. Seriously.)

Craig and I have started our own traditions for celebrating Canadian holidays that aren't necessarily holidays in the States: we get tires and root beer. And we walk. A lot.

Back in October, on Canadian Thanksgiving, we needed to have all new tires put on the car in order to pass Albertan inspections. We drove our car to Canadian Tire, and intended to take the bus back home. We hadn't anticipated the buses being on a holiday schedule, so we ended up walking and walking to find a bus stop where we could actually catch a bus. As hunger came on us, we headed to the nearby A&W.

Last night, we came out of the church to find one of our tires flat. We had run over a screw. Our spare also had a hole in it. So we took our tire home (by taxi). Today we dropped the tire off at Canadian Tire for repair (it was still under warranty), walked home, walked back when it was ready, and took a cab back to the church. After changing the tire, we noticed the A&W across the street. Sensing a tradition in the making, we went for a root beer.

Driving away from A&W, our fixed tire securely on our rear wheel, root beer in our cup holders, I noticed Craig folding the receipt from Canadian Tire, tucking in the screw that had flattened the new tire.

I giggled and asked, "Father, why is it that on all other holidays, we visit family and celebrate with food and festivities, but on this holiday we get tires and drink root beer?"

Craig laughed. "Well, son, we get tires because..."

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