Canada Day – July 1st, 2011, The Downtown Sea of Red

After visiting at the Supreme Court Building for a few minutes, I once again turned my attention to how I might get in position for hopefully a few of the activities on Parliament Hill. One choice was to join the stream of people heading up the slope and past the West Block. I looked at the crowd going that way & decided on the other option!!!

The other choice was to continue along Wellington Street and try to access some vantage point from a street level position. I decided on the Wellington Street option.

At first the going was easy and I stopped to chat with a freelance photographer working for CBC and its affiliates and then headed further along Wellington Street.

As I looked back down the street, I could see folks coming from all directions.

Not realizing that the portion in front of the Parliament Building had been blocked off to allow for later egress of the royal cavalcade of black cars. I was rather surprised when I bumped into the immovable mass of humanity that was blocking Wellington Street only a short distance further on.

Knowing that going further along Wellington would be futile, I headed over to Sparks Street, passed a young girl dancing happily to the sound of bagpipes, passed a busker promising to balance many objects on his nose, and passed a souvenir table or two.

When I arrived at the corner of Sparks and Metcalfe, I headed up toward Parliament Hill.

A young lady performing as a living statue was doing a great job as the sea of red parted around her and headed toward the Parliament Buildings.

Then, I too went past and joined in with the crowd and began the slow task of inching forward.

Each time that someone moved and left a bit of an opening, I would get to move forward a few inches. Each time that someone would decide not to stay any longer, I would move another inch or two forward. I knew that I wasn’t close enough to get any useful shots of the royalty and the on-stage proceedings so I enjoyed myself just photographing what was going on around me. Lots of people were holding up their DSLRs point&shoot cameras as high as they could and clicking away. I’m assuming that they wanted some head shots :-).

Thus it was for the next half hour or so as I managed to move forward to a few feet away from the Wellington Street barricade. Not a great accomplishment perhaps but when I looked back along Metcalfe, I soon realized how far I had come.

The folks behind the window at least had air conditioning but for some of the folks around me, especially those who had young children perched on their shoulders, I expect it was beginning to feel like a long, hot experience especially as the temperature climbed above +30C and we definitely were not in the shade.

Still a long way distance away from any of the stage activities but almost within range of my 400 mm lens (if squinting really hard :-)). We could see the activities on the large screens and could hear the music and speeches over the loudspeakers but not much else. Each time that they showed the Parliament Hill crowd on the big screen I found it hard to imagine that all of those people were actually somewhere in front of me. Quite the experience to be in such a large sea of humanity and surrounded by all those red and white outfits.

Even though I was a long way from the stage, I felt sorry every so often for those who were closer but could probably see even less because of one of those black cars blocking their sight line.

Of course, just like the day before, there were police and RCMP and security personnel everywhere, so with nothing better to photograph I turned my attention to photographing a few of the eyes that were on me :-).

Even the gargoyle seemed to be keeping an eye on the proceedings.

About Ron

Ron has long had an interest in photography and traveling and, in recent years, has had more time to devote to both activities. Long a Pentax user, Ron switched to Nikon gear when he went digital. The advent of the digital SLR camera, and the ease of the internet blogging process, has provided a venue for sharing his photography and travel experience at the local, national and international level. More about Ron
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3 Responses to Canada Day – July 1st, 2011, The Downtown Sea of Red

  1. Wendy Hollands says:

    This is wonderful you have many great photos!! I really enjoyed the security ones as we never remember to look at them. Thanks for sharing!!

  2. Great shots as usual…
    Looking foward to the fireworks photos,
    then I will invite you to a cooking class.
    and thanks for trying to get a photo of me!

  3. Pingback: Pope Benedict XVI at the Plaza de la Revolución, Havana, Cuba | MegaPixel Travel

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