• Change

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    My mother, and her nephew and niece were heavy drinkers, living in this site here on Number 3 Reserve, Nanaimo First Nation. They drank every week, much to their own destruction and pain. But low-and-behold, one time they’re listening to a religious station – person called Don Gauset. 1960 – I think it was January of 1960. He’s a pentecost evangelist (whatever you want to call them): very vibrant, very vociferous, and commanding in his presentation; and had affected my mother, Harry, Johnny, and Sally Paul. Continue reading “Change”

  • First Time

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    When my daughter was eight months old we caught a cab to our home in Prince Rupert. It was about a ten-minute ride. And the guy turns around and says “Where you wanna go?” It was a black man. It was the first time she saw a black man. And she screamed. And cried and screamed all the way home. Every time she looked at him she cried again. And she grew up and ended up marrying one.

  • Herring Roe

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    I remember my first time really coming into contact with the aboriginal culture was in elementary school. And a young boy brought in a 5 gallon bucket full of herring roe on seaweed… Continue reading “Herring Roe”

  • Crown Land

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    When I was very little we lived in between two reserves, Kulleet Bay and Shell Beach. And the reason we lived in between two reserves, and it was a reserve at one time where we lived, was because my grandmother was married to the son of Prime Minister John Abbott and he gave them that land as Crown land to live on. However, when I was growing up, I always disputed it and said that’s not so, but with the treaty, I found out that was really so. I always felt it was always our land, and I guess it was always our land, but it also belonged to everyone else as well and the people that surrounded us.

  • Contact with My Children

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    I went a few years without contact with my children, who were in foster care. They were apprehended when my son was nine months old and my daughters when they were about five and six years old. Continue reading “Contact with My Children”

  • First Memory

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    Looking back now, I realized that my first contact with anyone who is of First Nations’ descent was a little girl called Debbie Continue reading “First Memory”

  • Playground

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    And the reason why I thought of bringing it up was because in that time I had no concept of really anything to do with First Nations issues. They were just kids on the playground with me. And we just played and we were in that space. And then now, a year, about a year ago, I met the same person in Port Alberni who I hadn’t seen literally since elementary school and we were there in Port Alberni for a reconciliation walk. Continue reading “Playground”

  • Learning To Be Together

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    So it transformed my understanding of what a university could do and could be. It transformed my understanding of who I was as a teacher. I began to see that there were different ways of approaching students, of being with students that involved a different kind of a world vision, a way of being in the world and a way of showing honour and respect between peoples. Continue reading “Learning To Be Together”

  • Authentic Contact

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    And truly try to fully integrate and recognize indigenous people as who they are, the founders of this nation and possessors of values and ideas that would truly do a lot to make Canada the great nation we try for it to be. But again I think ultimately it comes down to if real progress is to be made, if real reconciliation is to be made, it takes real authentic contact between peoples instead of thinking of each other as different or being separate. I think a lot of the barriers, a lot of the problems, a lot of the issues would fall apart if people just sat down and got to know each other in a more meaningful way. Continue reading “Authentic Contact”

  • Friendly Cove

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    So I’ve always had a dream to go to Nootka Sound and go to Friendly Cove where Captain Cook first contacted North American, first nations people here on the British Columbia coast. Continue reading “Friendly Cove”