So now I've got you wondering who my six heroes could be, right?
Well, five of them are new students at John Abbott College this semester. What makes them special and heroic is that they've come all the way from Nunavik, in Quebec's Far North. For some of them, there are more students in the hallways of Abbott than in their own villages.
My other hero is named Sapina. (She's modest, so I won't tell you her last name.) What I will tell you is that my book The Middle of Everywhere, which is set in Nunavik, is dedicated to her -- and to our friend Joe. Joe won't be here for dinner because he's found himself a very good job at the Raglan Mine in Nunavik. We'll miss you Joe, in case you are reading this, and we're glad to know you are doing so well.
As for Sapina, she not only graduated from John Abbott, she starts Concordia University next week. I'm so proud of her I could burst!! That's because Sapina and I have been friends since she was in her final year of high school in Kangiqsualujjuaq. I think I'm one of many people who helped support her when she was studying at Abbott. I certainly made her lots of spaghetti, didn't I, Sap?!
I've told these young people that though I'm lucky to have done quite a lot of traveling in my life, I've never lived more than a 10-minute drive from the house in which I grew up. That's why they're my heroes -- because they're brave and adventuresome and hardworking and good souls. Here's to all of you! I am trying to make you the best ever spaghetti sauce -- it's got tomatoes and onions and zucchini and green pepper and eggplant -- not to mention my admiration and high hopes for all of you -- in it!!
Just read your article "From the North...To Cegep". What a great article! So fascinating - makes me want to find out more about the Inuit community.