Today I am beginning a series from Canada Day, our national celebration on the first of July. I'm starting with a view of Parliament Hill, taken late in the afternoon a couple of days earlier. Getting onto the Hill on Canada Day requires going through security screening and is much too packed anyway, so my routine tends to involve museum visits and fireworks, but I wanted to start off with this image. The stage was set up by then.
The day itself was hot, humid, and mostly overcast. I stopped at the National War Memorial, where military sentries were on duty at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Canadian flags were set on the tomb in a similar fashion to how it's done with poppies on Remembrance Day. And wreaths were placed at the foot of the Memorial. This is typical on July 1st, for a good reason. On that date in 1916, soldiers of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment launched an attack at Beaumont-Hamel as part of the Battle of the Somme. In one day's fighting, the regiment suffered 90% casualties in deaths, wounded, and missing. Wreaths are placed here early in the morning of Canada Day each year, commemorating what is still a dark day for Newfoundlanders.
I carried on from here onto Wellington Street. This was as close as I got to the Hill itself.
There were buskers out and about on Canada Day in various places. I caught these two mimes about to start one performance on Wellington Street. Their clothes? Some of you might remember the equivalent to the Ugly Christmas Sweater: the Ugly Christmas Suit, which was in stock in some shops last year. I featured a couple of them in my Christmas posts last December.
I turned east to cross Plaza Bridge en route to my next destination. The Chateau Laurier and the Government Conference Centre are on opposide sides of the street, both dating to 1912- the latter was originally a train station. Coming back this way in the evening after the fireworks, the street was packed, but it was all in all fairly busy throughout the day.
Here we have a view from Plaza Bridge looking north over the Rideau Canal, the Ottawa River, and Gatineau. You can see how humid it was by the simple fact that the Gatineau Hills were nothing more than a faint outline.
This is a view from the pedestrian overpass bridge at the Rideau Centre, looking west. The work you see in the foreground is part of the LRT station work; sometime in November there'll be trains running beneath this portion of the city.
On my way to other destinations, I stopped in Major's Hill Park, which was a busy spot through the day. Two Mounties in full dress uniform were happy to pose for photographs with passersby. I took some myself before moving on.