My Watermark moment? Well I have so many of them, so let’s just start from the beginning. As a young boy I joyfully immigrated to Canada and I was so proud to show my friends the pictures and the maps of the Great Lakes, a place that I still hold in great beauty and awe to this day. The first summer and every summer thereafter my family has paddled the Algonquins, the Haliburton Highlands and across Ontario. We found a place, a special place, a place we call the big easy in the Haliburton Highlands. It’s a place where we go to gather and to learn about what’s really important, to understand what matters, stewardship of our land, our children and the gifts that we are entrusted with.
Water – so quintessential and above them all. As Canadians, it is our life blood. Today we have our children taking solo trips into the bush. Young family friends leading structures on the Ottawa River and that circle of life continues on. A connection to all, the water that runs within us all.
So my Watermark moment, well it’s certainly in a place in this country where we all paddle together on the same stream going the same place. Together we swim, we drink, and we fish. Together where we summer on, where we take good care of each other. My Watermark moment – it’s in my heart, it’s in my soul, it’s in my breath, and it’s in my children’s legacy. With will, determination, and grace, our country, our waterways and our lakes will be ours, for all of us.
My name is Gerald Parker and I’m the Executive Director of the Institute of Canadian Justice and a proud Canadian and a dad.