Purple City S'mores
By Lisa Bromley
I had been residing in Edmonton for a good couple of months before I was promoted to the status of 'gold card holder citizen of the city of champions', or so I was told. The city was stuck in the in between of seasons; the warmth of summer had faded long ago and the wind was beginning to bite when it blew. A couple of friends and I decided that we wanted to brave the elements to sit by a campfire, make some s'mores, and sing some songs – a last ditch effort to hold on to whatever summer sentiment we could muster to carry us through the inevitably unkind Edmonton winter that lay ahead of us.
We wandered from gas station to gas station, in search of any establishment that would sell us firewood. But it seemed the season was quickly passing and firewood was no longer in demand. After an hour of driving around, feeling somewhat discouraged by this roadblock, we tried to come up with some sort of solution to salvage what was left of our evening. This was when we came to realize that the answer was so obvious. An answer that was called: "Why on earth should we waste our time and money trying to find and buy firewood so that we can make our own fire, when there's an ever-ready flame that burns right in the heart of our city?!" (for lack of a better title).
So we headed on over to the Legislature and we gathered our supplies. I was introduced to the wonder that is "purple city", and as I surveyed my home, covered in a romantic purple haze, I couldn't help but think how lucky I am to live here. Down at the centennial flame we brought out our roasting sticks and marshmallows and set out on our task to make our s'mores of champions (they're actually pretty good if you can get past the gaseous aftertaste). We sat by that flame for hours that night, talking, laughing, singing and eating our treats ... the security guards stopped by once or twice to see what exactly it was that we were up to, but each time we smiled sweetly and offered them a marshmallow and each time they politely declined as they continued on their way, shaking their heads so as though to say, "What WILL they come up with next?"
That night was the night I knew that Edmonton had become my home. I've created many memories on those legislature grounds . . . from lazy Canada days, lying in the sun to nighttime shenanigans, playing in the fountains, or showing yet another friend the wonder that is purple city, and of course taking the time with each visit to stop and make a s'more of champions. I even had my first kiss in front of that centennial flame ... and I'm not sure it's ever burned brighter than it did on that night. Not for me anyways ...
So the next time you find yourself driving by our Legislature at night, do yourself a favour and stop by. With any luck you'll find me there making friends and making s'mores, and if we're both lucky perhaps you'll end up with both.