We moved to Ottawa when I was 4. I only have a couple of memories from Winnipeg (which is where we lived prior to our move). Since moving to Ottawa, I have lived all over this great city. I know it’s not the place for everyone. I have heard all of the negative remarks you can think of to describe my home. Boring, government town, no nightlife, blah blah blah. Today, the whole of our city and the whole of our country have been brought together through a series of horrible events.
This morning, on our way downtown to meet up with my girlfriends for a play date, my sister and I heard the breaking news on the radio. There were reports of an armed man on the loose, with one person shot at the war memorial. I pulled over and called my girlfriends, all of whom were on their way through this affected area to the park we had chosen (Jack Purcell, off of Elgin). Thankfully, we were able to reach everyone and planned to meet in a safer area. I reached my husband, who was on lockdown. He works for a non-profit downtown, just on the edge of the affected area. I met up with my friends, we kept an eye on the news and paid attention to our surroundings. As we left the park, an hour or so after meeting, we noticed that all cellphones had been blocked and that reports had changed to state several shooters. Pat called and begged me to go home, which is what we did. Shortly after arriving home, the power went out, and cells went down again. We started to hear helicopters, so we moved ourselves to the basement and hung out there until the power returned.
I am no expert, nor do I have any sort of insider knowledge as to what is going on. You can follow those details on any major news outlet (Here is the CBC report). We were about 2.5kms away from where this was all happening before we decided to head home. The city is oddly quiet now. Lockdowns are slowly being lifted. Information is slowing down and we don’t know much about the current situation (other than that people should remain vigilant). Pat is home now, and now we are all just tired, and sad. Our poor city. Our poor country. My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who was effected by these events today. My thanks and thoughts are with the first responders and those who assisted those in the core. Be gentle with yourself, perform self-care. I am going to snuggle my family close tonight. Our city is proud and strong. We will get through this.