Sunday, August 21, 2011

A Trip to Ottawa

This should be the start of many more blog posts. This has been a busy summer and the end is finally in site. Attached to the end is another long adventure that will surely fill these blog pages with more stories.

This summer I have worked full time at a day camp, and enjoyed most of my time there. The kids were cute (for the most part) and the staff I worked with were pretty awesome too. My weekends have been pretty busy as well, between a bachelor party, weddings, baseball tournaments and baseball games.

As you may or may not know, I leave for Kuwait on August 29th, 8 short days from now! This week, in addition to packing, I want to catch up on some summer blog posts before I am bombarded with Kuwait stories and stories from Ottawa and Niagara get left behind.

The reason for the trip to Ottawa was to ensure I had a work visa when I moved to Kuwait. I needed to get documents signed by the foreign affairs office as well as give them to the consulate myself. The trip wasn't particularly exciting but I did get the chance to see some government buildings and monuments.

One such statue was Terry Fox, one of the greatest Canadians to ever live. I am unsure how known his story is to the rest of the world, but to Canadians it is well known. Back before I was alive in the early 80s as a young man he had cancer and decided to run from the East Coast to the West Coast on a prostetic limb, all the while collecting funds for cancer research. Sadly he did not finish his run being forced to stop near Thunder Bay Ontario because cancer had spread to his lungs. His run ended after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres, but his legacy lives on.

Every year as a child I remember participating in the Terry Fox run. It has not only become a national run but an international run as well. The Terry Fox run is the largest one day cancer research fundraiser in the world. Over $500 million has been raised in his name. Seeing this statue gave me goosebumbps and rereading his accomplishments ( found on wikepedia) have brought tears to my eyes.

 I arrived too late the first day in Ottawa to work on my visa so had dinner and a rare early night in the hotel, vowing to awake early and get my visa stuff done. I decided to walk where I needed to go, to save money and to enjoy the setting of the Rideau Canal. I walked along the path beside it, desiring the winter time where skating down the canal is such a famous thing to do. It eventually brought me to 'Old Ottawa' where all the embassys, government buikdings seemed to be. I saw a sign called 'Confederation Boulavard' which is exactly what I walked down. On that road I found Notre Dame cathedral along with the Kuwait embassy that I was looking for.

Everything at the embassy has been taken care of and now I await the plane ride alone! 8 days.