I have been watching on You Tube the testimony of various people involved in the January 06 attack on the Capitol. This is like a terrible car crash with dead bodies and blood, you are attracted to it and you cannot get away. Absolutely awful and very worrying in the context of what is happening around the world at the moment. As one well known commentator put it the other night, “we cannot allow Russia to win this war, the consequence for the world would be too awful.” I agree with him, Russia wins, we all loose and in a major way, not just militarily but economically and we see it already with inflation, oil prices, etc. Russia will not stop at Ukraine, the long term plan is to reconquer other former satellites of the Soviet Union. China will be embolden to attack Taiwan and make chaos in Asia, it would also be a victory for North Korea. This is not a joke, we are in very deep trouble and then Climate Change and Covid which is endemic now. I remain despite it all an optimist, I truly believe that things will sort themselves out.
Today we travelled 40 minutes out of town to Belle River, its a settlement on the coast where the Belle Rivière as it was known before 1755 was called. A friend of ours has an old farm house, so we visited him and we brought lunch with us. Given the 25 C sunny weather today it was a Summer lunch of cold chicken and Will’s own Cesar salad which is the authentic version. Our friend’s house is full of wonderful books, music and architectural drawings of ancient classical temple in Rome, a very comfortable house. It was nice to get away from the noise of Charlottetown. We are a week away from Summer vacation time and 2 weeks from our National Day, the traffic in the city is getting worse and the number of tourists rises every day, not fun.
So yesterday I came upon this photo of the Centre Block of Parliament in Ottawa. The 3 Parliamentary buildings on the Hill are under renovations until at least 2027 maybe later and the cost is currently around $ 3 billion CDN dollars. Nothing has been done in terms of maintenance since 1917 when the Centre Block was built, the last time I was in the building about 4 years ago before it was closed down, the electrical system was failing and only part of the building had working lights. Both the House of Commons and the Senate have moved out while this massive work is underway. The Senate is across the street in the old railway station which was completely renovated at a cost of $600 million and the House of Commons is in the West block which can be seen in the far left corner of the photo. It too was completely renovated at a cost of $500 million. Democracy is not cheap!
The photo shows a deep trench in front of the Centre Block, the Parliament Hill is solid rock, part of the Canadian Shield, so to achieve this, all the rock had to be blown up and removed. What is going in there? I really do not know, I remember hearing it would be a visitor centre and possibly a television media room for the broadcast of Parliamentary daily debates and other legislative work. Looks impressive, I would say this trench is at least 50 feet deep.