Archive for April, 2012

Ailish loved politics.

A lot of times, when Ailish loved something, it was because it was an excuse to spend time with other people. She loved beer because you’d sit around in a pub, chatting. She loved running because sometimes she could convince Siobhan to skip the running and go straight for the ice cream and conversation. She loved snowboarding because you headed to the mountains with a bunch of friends.

I’m absolutely sure there was a lot of that driving her love of politics, too. But I have never met someone who cared more about Canadian (Canadian!) politics. Who could express so eloquently how the different levels of government worked in Canada. Who got so annoyed when municipal candidates talked about items that were the province’s purview. Who was so frustrated that CBC didn’t produce a Canadian West Wing.

We had cable t.v. so she could watch hockey games (live, not streamed three seconds behind real time). But mostly so she could watch Canadian news shows in the evening. Every time they had a panel of political experts on, Ailish said how she desperately wanted that job. Not now, perhaps, but later in her career.

Ailish asked me once to rank how important the different levels of government were, in my daily life. I said I saw myself as Canadian first (well, once I get citizenship), Albertan second, and Edmontonian third. I don’t think I got a word in edgewise for the next half hour as Ailish corrected me, explained how I had the order the wrong way around, and justifying every part of her position. She absolutely believed municipal government was the most important, and counted herself an Edmontonian first. She worked for the City of Edmonton because of how strongly she believed this, and how much she felt she could contribute there.

This past Friday, Ailish would have been 29. We would have gone out to a fancy restaurant and eaten fancy food. But with Alberta in full-on election mode, I know exactly what we’d be talking about.