|At Manitoba Legislative |
dedicated to victims of Holodomore
|Lenin, in Ukrainian village in 2004|
A quick google, and I found other monuments supposedly dedicated to friendship but that only sneer at its meaning. North Korea and China have the Sino-Korean Friendship Bridge. No pedestrians allowed.
The Friendship Park between California and Mexico has in recent years morphed from being a picnic area to being controlled by U.S. Border Patrol watch.
Close to home, we have an International Peace Garden between Manitoba and North Dakota. Canada has the longest undefended border in the world. Too bad such a border cannot be taken for granted. Too bad that broken friendships can endanger so many lives.
Friendships can evolve. There was a poem I learned as a child, “Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.” (by Joseph Parry) Built on trust, friendships are fragile things that need more than symbolism to flourish. Ukraine now has new friends and I’m proud of my country for being one of them.
Without friends, I truly don't know where I would be. Can't choose your relatives, but friends are precious, indeed. Real friends don't need monuments, they just need a warm human hand.