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September 2012 - Nr. 9
Sybille Forster-Rentmeister, Editor-in-chief

Dear Reader

It has been a long and hot summer and it is not over yet; not for us anyway. There were picnics to go to and work to be done at home. We only managed one trip to the beach, which is unforgivable. For that reason we are taking advantage of a trip to the East Coast in September, were we have never been in all our decades in Canada. We made it to the West Coast, but never in the other direction. I am hoping for a splendid adventure seeing the wales in their natural habitat.

Picnics: like visiting friendsThat of course means that we might not be here to go to all the September Octoberfests. We also have to be forgiven for not attending all the picnics in the community. It is not that we did not want to, but sometimes it just was not possible. We had to forego the Crown picnic because, even though we got on the way, after Vaughan the rain was so bad that we could not see the car in front of us. Thus we turned back. Later we heard that a few kilometers north at the picnic it only rained later in the day. I am happy that it was not canceled and that people had a good time! On the same day the Danube Swabians had a picnic and since we could not be in two places at the same time we missed that too. We did however attend the Burgenlaender Picnic, the Remembrance Society Picnic and the Hansa Picnic. There also was an afternoon of culture and undeniably inseparable from politics, called Tag der Heimat.

The summer seems never long enough in Canada and thus we do all sorts of things to lengthen outdoor pleasures, hoping all the while hat the autumn has many warm days and splendid colours. Bit by bit indoor events take over as the days grow shorter and the nights stay cool. Oktoberfest is but one of the many traditions to partake in. There are wine fests, concerts, opera and dances; and we shall embrace all those too while slowly starting to think about Christmas. We cannot help it, it is forced on us. Used to be that the first displays of Christmas goods appeared the week after Thanksgiving, our Canadian Thanksgiving, and one month earlier than the US one. I always thought that this was plenty of time to get ready. But I have now seen already Christmas cards and wrapping paper on display since early August. They are very unwelcome reminders of the much too short summer.

Since there is nothing we can do about that we might as well make the best of all that is offered, just forget the apple picking, there are not any or nearly enough to pick this year. The same goes for other fruit items like pears too. Our irregular spring made it impossible for the trees to carry fruit. It will be mostly imported fruit in the markets and that means higher prices, which is something else we will never get used to.

What I can get used to a cultural afternoon with the Hansa Choir singing our old familiar songs and letting us join in every so often, a great photographic slide show by Dieter Wutherich, who also conducts and some poetry, read by me. I must say, it is one of my favorite activities and stems from my family tradition, one I am happy to share with a larger family.

Do hope to see a lot of people at this and other events to share all of our traditions together as best as we can. As we are a shrinking lot we all have to try harder, support each other and stick together.

Yours truly,

Sybille Forster-Rentmeister

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As the editor of Echo Germanica Sybille reflects on cultural, artistic, political and daily events within the German-Canadian landscape.
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Sybille Forster-Rentmeister, editor, editor-in-chief of Echo Germanica, comments, cultural, artistic, political, daily events, German-Canadian, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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