She’s been called a broody “so-and-so,” as fickle as a — oh, let’s not go there! Joseph Boyden had even worse things to say about Mother Nature in his novel Through Black Spruce; he accused her of killing you “the first chance she got.” The Temptations sang about her, and the Beatles sang about her son.
I, on the other hand, know Mother Nature as a little child.
I babysat Mother Nature.
I recognized the name when I first heard it . It’s a name from my childhood – she was the same age as my baby brother. Her mother and my mother chatted Philharmonic things, and perhaps her father, a dentist, and my father, a medical researcher, cavorted in the same circles. At any rate, she grew up about three houses away from me, the cute little blonde girl named Catherine.
When I heard the name in relation to the cabinet posts that would be announced by Trudeau Nov. 4, I was intrigued. Could it be the one and same Catherine McKenna? But it was a fleeting thought, mostly because of busy lives, not the probability of it being true.
The fleeting thought was stopped dead in its track the next day when Catherine McKenna stood to take the oath in front of the Governor General. There was no mistaking THAT Catherine McKenna for MY Catherine McKenna. I confirmed it. Little Catherine had, indeed, gone on to graduate from St. Mary’s High School in Hamilton, and study international relations, French, and law. Her career highlights are remarkable. There’s no lack of experience in her portfolio.
This is not really a story about Catherine, although who could argue she personifies Mother Nature with that smile? It’s meant to be a story about the marvellous things that become of us. Catherine was shaped for success by a loving supportive family that gave her strong roots from which to grow a healthy, happy tree of her own. At 44, she has her own little ones to mother now, to nurture, so to speak. With a bright and challenging future ahead of her, she is, as she once was, as full of energy and sunlight as we would hope from the one to whom we entrust our environment.
Yes, I once babysat Mother Nature; but Catherine McKenna did all the rest!