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and the friendly soccer match
May 21, 2000

     The trip to the Canadian Tulip Festival and the friendly soccer match - Embassy of Ukraine in Canada - "ZUSTRICH" Association in Ottawa was announced three weeks prior to the outing. We'd like to extend our thanks and gratitude to Gennadyi Melnikov and Orest Bobyk for having accompanied in their own cars all those who could not get a seat in the bus, for the maximum of places in the bus was limited to 48.

     We left Montreal at eight o'clock. Ottawa is located at 175 km of Montreal. At ten o'clock we approached the Parliament in the national capital of Canada. Upon invitation on behalf of Mr. Taras Malyshevskyi, Second Secretary of Ukrainian Embassy, we commenced our visit of the Embassy.
     A solid fence - a heritage of the cold war, surrounds the building of the Embassy. The interior is rather comfortable. We admired the floor of the central room of the Embassy (a masterpiece!) parqueted by the artist Volodymyr Illyushchenko who now lives in Montreal and who often took part in the activities of the "ZUSTRICH" Association.
     Later we returned to the bus for a tour of the city. Throughout the bus tour, Mr. Malyshevskyi briefly described to us the buildings that we passed. We saw the National Gallery of Canada, the Canadian War Museum, the Currency Museum of the Bank of Canada and the National Archives of Canada where the records of the first Ukrainian government (1918) had been kept until the Ukraine became an independent state in 1991. Mr. Malyshevskyi pointed out the Ottawa City Hall, located on a small island, the Honorable Prime Minister's residence which stands adjacent to the Embassy of France in Canada. The masonry of the Embassy of the United States of America is enormous and resembles the "Titanic" (before the shipwreck, obviously).

     While on our first voyage to Ottawa, we visited the Canadian Museum of Civilization. We decided to return there. The wooden Ukrainian church (depicted on the left) recalls to its visitors the role of our ancestors in the "conquest of the Canadian West.

     We did not visit the Parliament though. It was necessary to save our energy for the festival of the tulips as well as and the soccer match. We rested for a short while on the lawn and some pictures were taken.

    The Canadian Tulip Festival has grown into the largest tulip festival in the world from a gift of thanks given five decades ago. In the fall of 1945, Princess Juliana of the Netherlands presented Ottawa with 100,000 tulip bulbs. The gift was given in appreciation of the safe haven which Holland's exiled royal family received during the Second World War and in recignition of the role which Canadian troops played in liberating the Netherlands.
     Over 75 colourful and decorative boats entertained and amazed crowds of over 100,000 people. The festivities began at Dows Lake at 1:00 p.m. and continued along the Canal to the National Arts Centre where the boats arrived at approximately 2:30 p.m. Each houseboat float featured a ten-foot spectacular floral design, created as a tribute to this year's floral theme.
         The boats lined up along the quay. Their crews started to distribute flowers to all the assistance. Several among us brought splendid bouquets back to Montreal as a souvenir of the Tulip festival.


     The match began at four o'clock in the afternoon. Some of the our players are members of the soccer team "Ukraine". We were confident and foresaw a sure victory. The adversaries turned out to be tougher team we had expected.

     The first match of the highest row in the history ended 7:5 in favor of the reds. After the match, the two teams posed for a group photo. During off time, we discovered that half of our adversaries are the participants of the Canada-Ukraine Parliamentary Program. Good luck!

We would like to extend our thanks to the Secretary of the Embassy of Ukraine in Canada, Mr. Taras Malyshevskyi
and the President of the Sports Association " Ukraine " Mr. Lucien Kulik for their efforts in organisation of this trip.