Turns out there is a giant Canada Day celebration in Trafalgar Square every year. It’s an all day event featuring a road hockey tournament during the day and a raucous concert in the evening. They even had Canadian beer! What beer did they choose to represent all of Canada to London? Sleeman‘s honey brown and genuine draft. Not what I would have chosen, but probably the most popular beer available nation wide in Canada. It was all gone by the time I showed up anyway and I had to drink Carlsberg, gross. Also on hand was Tim Horton‘s coffee and doughnuts, Mission Hill wine, and Bison burgers. This was no slouch of a party either, the concert featured Jully Black and the Hawksley Workman, among others. It was one of the better Canada Day celebrations I’ve ever been to, which is a bit sad. As a nation, we’re more interested in the day off than truly celebrating our nation. We’re just too polite to make a scene…
The most amazing part of the evening for me involved one of the Canadians we were meeting turning up in a circa 1994 Gino Odjick Canuck jersey. There were thousands of drunk Canadians in Trafalgar Square that night and a good portion of them, most of the ones from BC at least, all stopped by to hug, pose with, or otherwise worship the Gino jersey. The first incident I saw involved an extremely attractive woman practically throwing herself at the Gino jersey. If you are a young single Canadian, I recommend showing up next year in a Gino (or suitable 1994 Canuck hero, Linden, Ronning, Mclean, Momesso, Adams, Babych and others not including Bure might do the trick) because you’ll be the toast of the town. I always knew the 1994 Canuck run was a big deal, but it pretty much defines my generation. If nothing else, we have that in common. It’s a bit embarassing though, what with us not even winning. Ginooo!
After the celebration we decided to go to the Maple Leaf, the one Canadian bar in London. Guess what? So did everyone else and we didn’t get in. I’ve yet to check out the Maple Leaf, but I’ll get there and let you know how it goes.