A Climate Emergency

 

We are about a week away from a federal election in Canada. I think I have to weigh in on this issue. The Canadian Parliament has declared that we are in a climate emergency. I don’t think that is a hysterical reaction. I think that aligns with most of the science. And it is the scientists we should be listening to at a time like this. Since this issue is so important I think we in Canada should vote primarily based on who will best deal with this crisis.

Yet it is clear that our Canadian government, led by the Liberals who mainly supported that resolution that Parliament made, is not treating it like a climate emergency. They are doing better than the Conservative opposition, but that is not saying much. It is a climate emergency, but the Canadian government has just invested $4.5 billion dollars to purchase the rights to the Trans-Mountain pipeline planned to transport bitumen from the Alberta Tar Sands to the Pacific. To do that they have to cross numerous First Nations reserves. And  many (but not all) of  the Indigenous people on those reserves  do not want that pipeline on their land. Neither the government of B.C., nor the people of B.C.  are very receptive either. Spending so much money to invest in a pipeline that will last for decades, when we should be getting off fossil fuels, does not sound like the Liberals are treating the problem like an emergency. I know Canadians, and not just oil companies, earn a lot of money from the oil and gas industry. But we spend a lot to support (subsidize) it too. Are we being wise? I think not.

As I said, the Conservatives are even weaker. They have promised that within weeks of taking office they will rip up the Carbon Tax, even though almost all economists acknowledge that a tax on carbon is the only measure that makes economic sense.  Alternative proposals from the Conservatives seem weak at best. They have some good ideas, but on balance, they are clearly not treating this as an emergency either. The Member of Parliament who represents the riding in which I live, had a supporter deliver a pamphlet to our door which highlighted cancelling the carbon tax at the top of his list of promises. He lost my vote right there, but I know in my riding there is not a chance that he will not be re-elected. But I won’t vote for him.

The New Democratic Party policy, as far as I can see, follows the Liberal policy quite closely in this respect, but they don’t support buying the pipeline. But this is an improvement.

The Greens have the most interesting idea. They will impose a carbon tax, like the Liberals, and will increase it regularly like the Liberals, but they will not stop at $50 a tonne. Most economists agree with them that $50 is likely to be insufficient. The Greens promise to keep raising the tax until it works and we start to reduce oil and gas consumption enough to reach our targets. Another words, they will raise the tax until it hurts and we do what needs to be done. Unfortunately it is now so late that anything less is wholly inadequate. We have had more than 30 years to deal with the problem and now we are paying for that procrastination.  Partly we have been procrastinating so long because powerful interests have been spending a lot of money to persuade us that this was in our interests. Why this happened is an interesting story in its own right, but I will deal with that later. Because the election is approaching so fast I think I have to concentrate on that right now.

Next I shall report on some famous people who came to the city in the Climate First Tour.

 

 

 

Coping with Abundance

 

As anyone who has ever been there knows, the western part of North America is a very special place. It was also special to the original inhabitants.  This summer we drove through a small part of it. In 2001 we visited the more northerly part of British Columbia. Both are beautiful and interesting.

The shoreline that extends from Alaska in the north to northern California is actually slowly sinking into the ocean and this has created thousands of islands, channels, and fiords. It is warmed by the Japanese current that flows southward from Alaska, making the climate much more temperate than its location would suggest. This also helps to assure plentiful rainfall. And rainfall brings abundance.

One way that this area was special to Indigenous people was the abundance of food that could be obtained and the mild climate that made living relatively easy. This allowed for more permanent sites than were often found on the plains or elsewhere. That was how they coped with abundance.

Through millennia a distinctive Northwest Coast culture has developed and much of that has a direct relationship in which the Indigenous People there grew and flourished.

I was surprised to learn that the archaeological evidence suggests that the earliest people who lived there were very similar to the people in the interior. A hunting tradition developed at least 10,000 years ago. Many Indigenous People say they have been there for longer than that. They enjoyed elk, deer, antelope, beavers, rabbits, and rodents as prey. Gradually they learned to hunt river mussels and most importantly salmon.

Ass David Hurst Thomas explained,

“Northwest Coast people considered salmon to be a race of eternal beings who lived in underwater houses during the winter.  In the spring they took on their fish form and swam up the rivers in huge numbers, bestowing themselves upon humans for food. The first salmon caught each year was placed on an altar, facing upstream, and prayers were said. After each villager sampled the roasted flesh, the intact skeleton was returned to the river, and it swam back to the underwater world of the salmon people. One day, this skeleton would return as a whole fish.”

Major villages were often located at the shoreline on beaches that were convenient for landing large canoes. They also had some smaller encampments. In the north the houses were square. In the south, such as near Whistler, the houses were long and narrow and occupied by several families. As Hurst Thomas said, “Large wooden houses like these have been constructed here for more than three thousand years, suggesting the development of an extended family organization.”

The more I learn about Indigenous people, the more I realize they were amazing.

Appropriation

 

Recently someone very dear to me and the grand mother of 2 of my grandchildren, and she is not Christiane, made a very kind remark about me. She is my son’s mother-in-law Shirley Grindey. Shirley is proudly Indigenous and one of the most amazing women I have ever met. Some day I will blog about those important women—my mother, my mother-in-law, and this is hard to admit—my wife Christiane. But that is for another day. Today I want to reply to Shirley.

Shirley is indigenous and said she enjoyed my stories about indigenous people, which pleased me very much, but then she said I knew more about native people than she did. That is nowhere close to the truth and it has forced me to reply at length.

I have learned a little bit about Indigenous people by reading books, but I know I have much more to learn. I am trying to learn more. I have also learned a lot by observing Shirley.  She is an amazing woman. She is filled with abounding love. She has lived the truth; I have just learned a tiny amount and hope to learn more. Watching her relate to her family (including 2 of my grand children) is an inspiration to me. I could never hope to measure up.

Today Shirley woke me up. I have wanted for quite some time to express a fear that Indigenous people would think I was appropriating their culture. I am not sure what it means, but I don’t think it is a good thing. I think “appropriation” means to take something without permission. I do not want to take anything without consent. I want to learn from Indigenous people and want to acknowledge the obvious—that they know a lot more about the subject than I do.

For a few years now I have been reading about Indigenous people and have learned just a little bit from the numerous books I have read. But I want to speak my mind on the subject—with respect. I want to share what I think I have learned and would welcome any criticisms. That way I can learn more.

I think this is very important because many people I know and love don’t understand our ( by that I mean white people) relationship to Indigenous people. Many of them mean well, but are held back by misconceptions. Some of them unconsciously repeat hurtful memes. It is all too easy to wrap ourselves in the protection of layers of privilege, misunderstanding, and bias.  I myself did it for years and hope I can stamp that out in myself. We all need to learn. Recently our Prime Minster, Justin Trudeau had to admit that he was influenced by bias and privilege when he wore black face as a young man. We all have to learn to understand our own biases. That certainly includes me. People like Shirley have helped explode those biases. And she did that without preaching to me. She did that by example.

Only by learning can we begin the vital process of reconciliation. Chris and I have signed up for a 3-session course on reconciliation at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights that starts next week. We want to learn more. I will blog later about what I have learned.

So I hope no one thinks that I am appropriating Indigenous cultures by sharing what I have learned. The purpose of blogging is to share what I have meager knowledge I have gained, and to learn more from others who know much more than I do.

Sometimes the Law is not an Ass—it is much worse than that

Recently Manitoba has been the location of an incident that I should catch international attention for its idiocy.  If it hasn’t  happened yet, I suspect it will. The international media just hasn’t caught on to how stupid we can be.

The incident happened at our esteemed Law Courts in Winnipeg. A Winnipeg lawyer represented an  indigenous person from Ontario who had been arrested and placed in the Winnipeg Remand Centre as a result of breaching a court order that he abstain from alcohol. He had to pay a $20 cash deposit on his bail, which had been granted by the court, in order to get released from the Remand Centre.  He had agreed to the $20 payment thinking that was how much money he had. Unfortunately, the mantas 5¢ short. Since he was from Ontario and had only intermittent access to a phone, he cold not call anyone for help and spent the weekend in jail because he was unable to pay the full amount. No one would let him even though he only owed 5¢.

On Monday morning his lawyer discovered what had happened and returned to court to pay the outstanding amount. In fact, a sympathetic, and reasonable Magistrate, gave his defence lawyer a nickel to pay the outstanding amount. The lawyer got a receipt for the $20. The lawyer thought that this was the end of it. The entire cash required had been paid. Unfortunately, the lawyer did not understand the astounding ignorance of the law.

The following morning the defence lawyer learned that there had been a mistake. It turned out that his client had been 35¢ short. Much more than 5¢! So the hapless client had to stay in jail for the entire night because he could not pay the extra 30¢. So the client was transferred to Milner Ridge Correctional Facility, about 100 km away, because the space in the Remand Centre was needed for incoming prisoners. The defence lawyer had asked that his client remain until the bail was paid., but his request went unheeded—perhaps because the client was indigenous. Its  funny (not) how such incidents happen to them, rather than fine white people. As well the client had no one in the city that he could call for a tiny bit of cash to rectify the mistake.

When the client reached Milner Ridge the lawyer thought he would be released. Unfortunately, Milner Ridge had no facility to electronically access the client’s cash deposit which had been paid in Winnipeg. It was paid but he still could not get out of jail! After all his bail had been paid, so he thought. When the lawyer learned of this he returned to the courthouse and paid the client’s cash deposit himself. The client was returned to Winnipeg and was  released from jail a full week after he had been taken into custody. He stayed in jail for a week because the authorities thought he had not paid the outstanding 35¢ that actually had been paid.

While he was in jail he missed taking his prescription medication, which he needed because of a prior condition related to his addiction to OcyContin and his heart was alternately racing or slowing down. He was in serious jeopardy.

The Winnipeg Free Press reported, “According to Statistics Canada figures for 2016-2017 the average cost to house a prisoner in a provincial institution was $213 a day.” So taxpayers paid more than $1,400 to house this indigenous prisoner  even though he had paid all of his bail after being 35¢ short initially.

The Crown later stayed the charges. This means that the client was an innocent man! Innocent until proven guilty remember.

Charles Dickens said that the law was an ass.  Sometimes, Charles Dickens should have said it was much worse than that.

Blackfeet: Spirit of the Plains

 

On our recent trip back from B.C., as we drove through the prairies,  we drove through the territory of the Blackfeet First Nation. The iniskim or “buffalo stone” played an important role in the spiritual life of Plains People. They use stones that often contained fossils with a spiral shell for thousands of years. According to legend, a woman was trying to find food for her family and band during a time of famine when an iniskim talked to her about to use prayers and ceremonies to find buffalo and bring them to the people to hunt. As a result Blackfoot children wore iniskim necklaces, warriors wore them woven into their hair, and shamans carried them in bundles. Often the dead were buried with them to provide sustenance after death.

Another important spiritual instrument was the medicine wheel. I have seen at least one in Saskatchewan. For millennia they have been a part of Indigenous spiritual life among people of the plains. These stone structures were usually centred on a pile of rocks (cairn) often on a prominent hill. Spokes of the wheel radiated outwards.

A famous one was built at Majorville about 5,000 years ago. 40 tonnes of rock were used and it was used when Europeans first made contact with the Indigenous People on the plains.  At the centre of that wheel was soil 9 metres in diameter and 1.6 metres high. It was surrounded by an oval ring of stones about 29 metres by 26 metres. It contained 26 to 28 spokes.

The main spiritual ceremony of Plains people was the Sun Dance. I found it interesting that it was usually led by a woman. Unlike most Christian religions women were allowed to be leaders on the Plains. Who thinks the Europeans were the civilized ones? A woman usually decides when the dance was to be held. Often it was held in order to allow a woman who had a male relative or husband in danger. She vowed publicly that if this person were spared she would sponsor a Sun Dance.

The Sun Dance was later outlawed by Canadians who did not appreciate any competition from native spirituality for the religion they wanted to impose instead. That of course was Christianity.

Peter Nabokov in his book Native American Testimony: A Chronicle of Indian-White Relations from Prophecy to the Present 1492-1992, reported an anonymous Blackfoot response:

 

“We know that there is nothing injurious to our people in the Sun-dance…It has been our custom, during many years, to assemble once every summer for this festival…We fast and pray, that we may be able to lead good lives and to act more kindly to each other.

I do not understand why the white men desire to put an end to our religious ceremonials. What harm can they do to our people? If they deprive us of our religion, we will have nothing left, for we know of no other that can take its place.”

 

The abolition was finally removed from the Indian Act in 1951 when I was 3 years old.  It took Canada that long to become civilized!

No Nature

 

 

Dandelion: friend or foe?

On the last day of our trip, listening to CBC radio I heard about a scandal in Regina. Apparently they have a local bylaw there that if the “lawn” on your yard is more than 15 cm high it must be cut down. What a draconian rule! If you don’t do it the weed inspector will come down and do it for you and send you the bill.  No wild flowers permitted in Regina.

It reminds me of the war that most of us who reside in towns have waged on dandelions.  Such beautiful little yellow flowers. Some say the problem with dandelions is that they take over. They invade the lawn. That is true. Nature hates  monoculture. If we didn’t insist on creating monocultures on our property,  dandelions would have no place to invade. People forget that in nature there are seldom vast fields of yellow dandelions. Dandelions enter where nature has been destroyed. People in towns don’t want nature. So they get dandelions and want to use various horrid chemicals  to defeat them.

Some town folks even think golf courses are nature at her finest! Those wide fairways where golf superintendents apply vats of carcinogenic substances to kill the weeds are what they think is nature. They actually consider that nature. Just goes to show how far they are removed from nature, they have forgotten what nature is like. The only difference between a wild flower and a weed is a public relations firm.

On the way home from British Columbia I saw another example of our war on nature. This was actually a big example. Just after we crossed the Alberta/B.C. border we lost nature.  After we left Banff National Park we saw no nature until we arrived in Steinbach other than rain clouds. That was about 1,000 km.! Not one single animal other than an occasional cow. I don’t think cows were native to North America. The prairies that we took the better part of 2 days to travel through used to be grasslands.  Less than 1% of the tall grass prairie remains. Less than 30% of the remaining grasslands are gone too. Actually, to me it looks like more than that has disappeared. We saw none other than in occasional sloughs or river banks. The grasslands seemed to have vanished.

The first European explorers were stunned when they encountered what they saw as an ocean of grass. They had never seen anything like it. After all, the grasslands of Europe were all but gone before they arrived. Most of that grassland is gone.

We have destroyed so much of nature in the holy names of progress.

I have also been told that the wildlife in North America, before contact with Europeans,  was even more abundant than Africa. To me having been to Africa and having seen their depleted wildlife that makes ours pale into insignificance , I find that hard to believe. It is an awful desecration.

For two days,  we saw virtually none. That is a pity. As the Red Rose Tea commercial used to say, “a dreadful pity.”

I even like dandelions when they have gone to seed. I think there is a beauty in old age.

A Predator of Beauty

 

Near the Albereta/B.C. border the weather turned troubling.  No matter what Willie Nelso might say, from her on we encountered nothing but gray skies for the rest of the way. Some light was added to the morning drive by one of my favorite CBC radio shows, The Sunday Edition. Michael Enright had a guest whom I had heard before when he talked about his parrot. Today he talked about himself. The guest was Brian Brett. He is very eccentric. He has called himself as being “slightly sideways.” He is a maverick. I like mavericks.

Brett was born with a very rare genetic condition  Kallmann Syndrome that left him biologically androgynous. He was unable to produce male hormones. As a result a doctor said that he would not live past the age of 40. Well that is a bad thing to say to a guy like Brett who has a startling ability to survive.

Being in his 70’s he has lived much longer than that, but now faces new challenges.  Again he has ignored predictions of his imminent demise.   Rebels do that. More recently he has been diagnosed with a serious heart condition and cancer, and his liver seems to have disappeared, but once again he has refused to go quietly into that dark night. Instead he moved to Vancouver, where he had better access to specialized care. Until then he was a self-styled “rural renegade,” but after that he became an urban renegade.

Brett missed the the natural beauty of Saltspring. Who wouldn’t? As he said,  “I always had so much beauty surrounding me there for 25 years. So it’s a little tougher in the city.”

As he told Michael Enright, “I decided that if I was going to die … then I would like to be surrounded by beauty.” That is in my view a perfectly laudable goal, though his means of achieving it were at best dubious. He became what he called a “predator of beauty,” or a “predator of flowers”.

In Vancouver he made an interesting decision.  As he said, “I decided that if I was going to die, if this guy was really right this time, then I would like to be surrounded by beauty. I had taken to buying orchids so that I had a couple of orchids on each side of my bed so that when I shut my eyes at night the last thing I will see will be a beautiful orchid. But then I got really carried away. That’s when I got into trouble.”

Brett got himself a pair of pruning shears and ventured out at night. “I’d take a walk in the day. I would go out and sort of check everything out and memorize where I wanted to go and then I could I would go out at dusk, because it has to be light to be able to see what you’re doing. I only went after stuff that overhang the fences. I called it ‘vigilante pruning‘ … I would go out and clean up the trees and I would take my wages in flowers.”

Brett was not satisfied with seeing the flowers, he wanted to have them. Even though they did not belong to him. Sometimes he asked for permission. Not always. He figured he was doing a service to the neighbourhood. “Before I knew it I was pruning the neighbourhood,” he said of his illicit gardening.

Brett, ever the creative writer, wrote an essay about how many shades of blue there are. When I was a child discovering the world it was all so bright and amazing. I get obsessions, and one of the obsessions was trying to count how many blues I could remember. I got myself up to two hundred and eighty seven before I scrawled it on the back of my dresser in my bedroom so that I would remember it forever. You know, this is the kind of thing you think when you’re in Grade 6.” He says that he has the mind of a 14 year-old.

Enright asked him how his night time forays into the land of flower gardens was connected to his health. Brett replied, “I think it’s just the rage to live. I want to die the way I’ve lived, which is more or less at full speed.”

As a result Brett pruned city trees and helped himself to flowers so he could brighten up his home. He also took cherry and plum blossoms, as well as magnolia blossoms. How could he resist? “A lot of them ended up in my bedroom and so it was pretty extravagant. For a while there I went into a real frenzy.”

Eventually, his conscience, or his fear of the law, got the better of him and he stopped taking flowers without permission. He appreciated the work the gardens did making the city beautiful and stopped robbing them. He admitted, “‘I can be trouble.”

His cancer prognosis has improved recently, and once again he might cheat death as he has done so many times before. Now his doctors say he as 2 or 3 years to live. “I’m pretty creaky and I’m on 19 pills a day, but I have a remarkable ability to survive.”

In the meantime, Brett continues to fill his small home with beauty. He is a still a predator of beauty but gets permission for his predations. He wants  his room to be filled with things that bring him joy. As he said, “I just love beauty. And it’s more than the flowers. I love to be surrounded by beautiful objects.”

I felt a little like Brett this morning. Along the Trans-Canada Highway we made a few stops including one where I wanted to see the mountains under gray skies, but I was instead struck by the beautiful flowers just over the roadside barrier. I wanted to be a predator of beauty too. I wanted to grab some images of the precious mountains we were soon to leave behind. Gray skies made that difficult. Beside one of those stops, I found a few gems (wild flowers) worth preying on, but I did not use shears, only my camera and tripod.

Flowers I saw included the following: Chicory (Chicorium intybus), Spotted Knapweed (Centaurea maculosa) Common Mullein (Verbascum thapsus), and Klamath Weed (Hypercium peforatum).

 

I hated that last name, how could you call such a lovely flower a weed? So disrespectful. Such a derogatory name for such a lovely flower, but it has had devastating effects in California where it was somehow introduced from eastern North America and ruined 250,000 acres before a European beetle was introduced to control it. Often such attempts to “control” species don’t work well but his one has seemed to work.

I was grateful to Chris for indulging me in this half hour stop to predate beauty. So much fun.

Rockin’ Chair and a beautiful young girl

 

 

I love listening to music on long car trips. On our drive from Kamloops to Salmon Arm, looking out at the mountains, often beside the railway tracks,  brought me back–right back–to the days of my youth. Specifically the memories of the summer of 1970. Those memories flooded over me.  With amazing luck I got a job as a porter in 1970 and made a number of trips to British Columbia. Invariably on the trip back to Manitoba I got lonely. I missed my friends and in particular this new girl I had just met that spring Christiane Calvez. She was beautiful and fun and I wanted to see her as soon as possible. But I needed to work to put my way through University. Somehow, I don’t know why or how, the lyrics of a song filled my mind on one of those long train rides back to Manitoba. It was a song I was not even conscious I knew until the lyrics and tune came to me as I sat alone on a seat  on the sleeping car. Those lyrics resonated with my loneliness being so far from home.  The song was “Rockin’ Chair” by The Band.

Rockin’ Chair”

Hang around, Willie boy,
Don’t you raise the sails anymore
It’s for sure, I’ve spent my whole life at sea
And I’m pushin’ age seventy-three
Now there’s only one place that was meant for me:

Oh, to be home again,
Down in old Virginny,
With my very best friend,
They call him Ragtime Willie
We’re gonna soothe away the rest of our years,
We’re gonna put away all of our tears,
That big rockin’ chair won’t go nowhere

Slow down, Willie boy,
Your heart’s gonna give right out on you
It’s true, and I believe I know what we should do
Turn to stern and point to shore,
The seven seas won’t carry us no more

Oh, to be home again,
Down in old Virginny,
With my very best friend,
They call him Ragtime Willie
I can’t wait to sniff that air,
Dip that snuff, I won’t have no care,
That big rockin’ chair won’t go nowhere

Hear the sound, Willie boy,
The Flyin’ Dutchman’s on the reef
It’s my belief
We’ve used up all our time,
This hill’s to steep to climb,
And the days that remain ain’t worth a dime

Oh, to be home again,
Down in old Virginny,
With my very best friend,
They call him Ragtime Willie
Would’a been nice just to see the folks,
Listen once again to them stale old jokes,
That big rockin’ chair won’t go nowhere

I can hear something callin’ on me
(And you know where I wanna be)
Oh Willie, can’t you hear that sound?
(Down in old Virginny)
I just wanna get my feet back on the ground
(Down in old Virginny)
And I’d love to see my very best friend
They call him Ragtime Willie
(Oh, to be home again)
I believe old rockin’ chair’s got me again!

 

I wanted to be home “with my very best friend” so badly it ached. “Oh to be home again.” Today that “I’m pushin’ age seventy-three,” the lyrics came back this time enhanced with the modern technology of an iPod played through my car radio speakers. Memories are good. Life is good. “I just wanna get my feet back on the ground.” It is still one of my favourite songs. And I have lived with that sweet young girl for nearly 50 years. “Oh to be home again with my very best friend.”

“Nevergreen” in the Rockies

 

 

I have already blogged about this amazing place, but wanted to make one more comment. This is a photograph of my favourite place in the Rocky Mountains. Chris has a better photograph of it than I do. But she will have to post her own blog. (Yes I am jealous). I loved the fact that the sun was coming out and flooding this small island with light.

This  island is a spiritual place for the Stoney Nakoda First Nation, or more properly, Ĩyãħé Nakoda First Nation who believe mountains are physical representations of their ancestors. The Indigenous people have 8,000 years plus of ecological knowledge of the lake and island. They knew the land and creatures and organisms on it intimately. As a result they knew long ago that it was important for the area to be burned from time to time. They practiced controlled burns, long before modern conservationists and ecologists realized their importance. It is surprising how often traditional knowledge of Indigenous people, disregarded by whites for centuries, and dismissed as superstition or foolishness, has proved to be right.

As we saw throughout the Rockies we saw massive devastation caused by Mountain Pine beetles. Everywhere in this area the forest were largely red and green. Even on this tiny island, some have called the “Jewel of Jasper” and some have said is the most beautiful place in the Rocky Mountains, you can see the red trees that should be “evergreen”. Well they will never be green again! I wonder how soon all the trees on this tiny island are red. I hate to think of it. Until recent times when the twin forces of climate change and a lack of burns created perfect conditions for the Mountain Pine beetle they existed in the west but never posed pestilential problems as they do now. Because Indigenous people practiced regular controlled burns and did not cause climate change they never had a problem with Mountain Pine Beetles. Now they are a serious problem and it is all thanks to forces unleashed by modern white society.

Policies of non-Indigenous people have led, Indigenous people believe, to a lack of balance in nature. The natural balance is out of whack. Nature needs to be healed. We need a new attitude to nature. No let me rephrase that. We need an old attitude to nature. An attitude that respects nature, rather than seeing it as a resource to plunder.

Non-indigenous people, who for so long thought they  were better than Indigenous people, and as the Eagles said, “raped the land, ” and “put up a bunch of ugly boxes, and called it paradise,” have a lot answer for. Or as they also said, “Call it paradise, and kiss it good-bye.”

The fact that Spirit Island is surrounded on three sides by the same mountain range is very rare and makes it particularly significant to the Ĩyãħé Nakoda (Stoney Nakoda) people.

The island is called Spirit Island. I love that name.  They call this area, for good reason, the Hall of the Gods. What will they call it when the trees die? I suggest never green.

 

British Columbia: Supernatural

 

British Columbia—Land of: Wine, Hippies, Bennet Buggies, Lotusland, Dippies, Marijuana, Free love, bumper stickers, politics on your sleeve, craft beer, Gluten free, Going Green, artists, Bountiful B.C., Supernatural, Goats on a Roof, Hippies, Doukhobors, Social Credit, Freedom, vortex, tea readings, the end of the world, superstition, gentleness, mountains, Trees that talk, Crazy politics, Eclectic curmudgeons, Happy eccentrics, Aging hippies, Slow food, forest bathing, waterfalls, snow tires required by law, cider, Crazy Canucks, Stanley Park, Chain stores not allowed, Whacky tobbacky, Tie Dye Shirts that talk, Rain forests, West Coast Casual, Vegans and various nuts and bolts that have rolled down from the eastern seaboard.

My kind of place