With just a few more hours left in the Governor General's time at Rideau Hall, children and neighbours are gathering in the rain to say goodbye.
Daniel Stanton, 11, gave Michaelle Jean flowers at her inauguration five years ago. He is making a return engagement, more flowers in hand.
This afternoon, Jean will plant a tree at Rideau Hall, as all Governor Generals do. Of course, the tree is already planted. She will add a shovel full of dirt and thank her neighbours.
Jean won't be far from the tree; she and her family are moving just down the block.
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced his new EI policies this morning at an odd
venue -- a furnace store on a mall strip in suburban Ottawa.
In between salespeople sorting out their furnace-repair pickups and end-of-season barbecue sales were bewildered customers. Who are all these people, they asked?
Apparently the store was chosen because it's a small independent business. Perhaps the finance minister could use some sizzling condiments on sale this time of year.
From colleague Hannah Thibedeau:
If mom says no, is it then OK to then ask dad?
Well...Prime Minister Stephen Harper appears to think so.
In Lawrence Martin's new book, Harperland, he talks about the 2008 constitutional crisis.The Conservative government was on the verge of being taken down by the opposition coalition. So the PM went to Gov.-Gen. Michaelle Jean and requested a prorogation of Parliament.
But if Jean wouldn't save Harper's government, he would have gone over her head, the book says.
According to the book, Lawrence Martin asked Kory Teneycke, then Harper's director of communications, what other avenues the PM was exploring in case the decision had gone against him.
Teneycke replied, "Well, among them, the Queen."
The House of Commons spoke with one voice on Wednesday night, but the subject matter may have caught some off guard.
They weren't speaking on a matter of policy, but rather about the cover of a magazine, Maclean's to be specific.
Here is the motion put forward by the Bloc Québécois:
"That this House, while recognizing the importance of vigorous debate on
subjects of public interest, expresses its profound sadness at the
prejudice displayed and the stereotypes employed by Maclean's magazine
to denigrate Quebec nation, its history and its institutions."