Monday, September 2, 2013

Europe Trip Travel Blog # 10: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

On our way home, we spent time in Ottawa with our friend. He moved there after high school to complete his undergrad. Then he moved home for a year, and this past year he was back in Ottawa doing his Master's degree. And we have never visited him in all the time he's lived there.
So it was about time....especially since he moved to Toronto last week!

Most of our time in Ottawa was spent with him, visiting and hanging out, meeting his friends, getting a tour of his university campus, etc, but we did do a few tourist-y things.

Stephen had never toured Parliament before so we went there.

The Saskatchewan side of the Centennial Flame outside Parliament.

The first room on the tour is the Centre Block, where press conferences are usually held. The main door into parliament is called the "Canada door." On the left is the "English Door," and on the right is the "French Door." The doorways are decorated with carvings showing symbols of those cultures.

On the opposite wall of the three doors is this stained glass window that was put up in 2012 to add Canada's "third culture" (or their first depending on how you look at it) - aboriginal people.
At the top of the window is the year 2008, which is the year the government formally apologized for residential schools.
At the bottom of the window are symbols of residential schools (see the children in uniforms in the centre left panel) and moving up, the images represent hope and reconciliation.

After seeing memorials and statues and things in other countries (I am thinking of all the war memorials in Germany, especially), it was interesting seeing things like that in Canada. It was weird after being abroad for so long, and thinking about my country and how it differs from the ones I was in, to come home to the capital city where everything is super patriotic and political.

This is the Saskatchewan stained glass window in parliament. Each province and territory is represented by a window with that place's flower on it. (but for some reason Nunavut doesn't have a window yet...)

We went up Peace Tower and enjoyed the view of Ottawa.

I liked these Suffragette sculptures in front of Parliament.

On our last night in Ottawa, we saw the Mosaika show - a light show projected onto the Parliament building. It tells a story of Canada. It starts by showing the land, then boats come and it shows the settlement of Ontario and Quebec. There are parts that honor Canadian music and books. There is a cool effect where they make the building dance and it looks three dimensional, like some parts of the building are popping out and others and pushing in.
It was pretty interesting seeing which story they chose to tell, what they omitted, and what they placed importance on.

We flew home out of Toronto and Stephen snapped this pic of the CN Tower from our cab to the airport.

That was our trip!
Check out my other Europe Trip Travel blogs:

and my packing tutorial

1 comment:

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