We returned to our home in Wakefield, Québec last week, after a holiday in Haida Gwaii.
We flew in and out of Prince Rupert. On our way home, exhausted, we were faced with the prospect of killing 12 solid hours on a Sunday in your town.
I have to admit that the view from the airport bus terminal downtown did little to commend Prince Rupert to my family. However, our decision to walk over to the (gorgeous) Museum of Northern British Columbia changed that impression profoundly.
As it happened, our route took us past the Fire Station Museum (closed at the time).
I picked up an antique sign from where it had fallen off a telephone pole and propped it up.
A few metres later, we passed the Prince Rupert Fire Hall and I stopped to mention the sign to one of the group of firemen who were standing outside, suggesting that the sign was old and interesting and would benefit from a couple of nails.
Immediately, the firemen spotted my children (aged seven and 11) and invited them in to take a look around.
Needless to say, my kids didn’t need to be asked twice. They ran inside and were given a grand tour.
Next thing we knew, one of the fire trucks came slowly out of the fire hall. My children were grinning ear-to-ear from inside the cab! The truck pulled out and turned around, giving its sirens a brief whir!
Eventually the children said their ‘thank you’s and rejoined me and my girlfriend. They proudly showed me two cloth fire hall badges the firemen had given them as souvenirs that I’ll sew on their school bags. This little intermission broke up our day and renewed our enthusiasm for your town and its people.
Thank you, firefighters of Prince Rupert!