SWT, The Wakefield Quebec local trails.
The Wakefield Boardwalk is a lovely way for walkers, bicyclists, roller bladers, moms and dads with or without baby carriages to savour the Gatineau River and downtown Wakefield. The boardwalk is not long, but it’s more than wide enough for families to pass each other in comfort. Not quite in the middle of the boardwalk is an alcove that juts out towards the river. The alcove is maybe 6’ by 8’ and is a place of peace. A boardwalker can pull into the alcove, take a breath, and marvel at our beautiful river.
And in that alcove is magic. Some kind and generous Wakefield folk have festooned the alcove and fence beyond in both directions with over 1000 pieces of orange tape commemorating the children lost in the Residential Schools fiasco of the last over 100 years. In the alcove, along with the many pieces of orange tape is a collection of tiny shoes, slippers, boots and flip-flops, even a flourishing potted plant, reminding us of the lives so needlessly lost in a Canadian policy of racism, bigotry and cruelty. The alcove delivers a very powerful yet subtle message, and is a destination La Pêche walkers should put on their list of places to explore.
It’s difficult to make out, but the poster hanging from the wire says “Every Child Matters”.
Photo by Stephen Jones