Americans, I’ll meet you at the beach at midnight on November 9
I wrote yesterday I have no substantial fear in my privileged life. Let me re-frame that…in this moment of late October 2016.
There’s another fear: Donald Trump as president of the USA.
Listen, I live in Canada, and this scares me. It’s a low grade dread, a dull pulsing anxiety that emerges if I allow the thought of it to follow through. Mostly because of what it says to my girls. About decency and leadership and service and inclusivity and the value to women. I fear for all the explaining I’ll have to do over the next four years, particularly with my 6th-grader.
A few months ago, some friends were visiting, one of them from Seattle. As we walked our local beach along the Haro Strait — looking across to the San Juan Islands of the USA, we wondered aloud about the distance. Does the coast guard patrol? Could you paddle across? And I joked that we might see a surge in kayakers and paddlers on these still glass waters on the morning of November 9th.
Here’s what I can offer if things don’t go well.
To all my comrades bound by the threads of decency, human rights and progress…I’ll meet you down on the beach of the Haro Strait at midnight on November 9th. I’ll sit in the dark on the sand, with a blanket and some hot tea and snacks. I’ll signal with my flashlight out across the shipping lanes. Short-short-long. Short-short-long.
Paddle toward the light.
I’ll bring some Canadian friends. We’ll be there waiting.
Short-short-long, short-short-long. Just keep paddling. We’ll usher you safely to land.
Then once you’re ashore, we’ll sit with you on my blanket on the beach. Under the moon and stars. My Canadian friends and I…we’ll sit and listen while you talk. We’ll hold space for your fear and dread and uncertainty and how-did-it-come-to-this’s.
You just keep talking. Talk until you see your path — either back home across the water into the fray of the country that needs you, or onto something new.
When you see your path…we’ll light up for you and say “Ahhh, there you go.” Then we’ll give you a packed lunch and a hug, and send you on your way, with good blessings for the journey ahead. Whether you paddle home or take a different direction.
America, Canada is here for you.
And, as I hope and truly believe, if the morning of November 9th dawns with the heralding of your first Madam President — we’ll also be here. Cheering, saluting, beaming with pride and wiping our inter-continental brows with collective relief.