Sunrise at Cap Bon-Ami

Cap Bon-Ami at sunrise is a magnificently mystic site. Not surprisingly it is the chosen site for the Mi’gmaq (Micmac) Traditional Gathering which took place on August 9. It wasn’t part of the FMBM, but it set the tone wonderfully for the events to come. I participated in the sunrise celebration that welcomed a beautiful sunny day with a ceremonial fire, prayers to the natural elements, family and ancestors and hugs and best wishes for all present. It was an exhilarating way to start the day especially as sunrise is the perfect time to appreciate the dramatic beauty of this magnificent site. The first rays of sun turn the vertical cliffs subtle shades of orange and yellow all the way to Cap Gaspé.

It was a very different effect this morning (Sunday, August 13). I started the day with a walk from Grande-Grave to Cap Bon-Amie at 3:45 am. It was pitch black and slightly foggy, hushed and damp with the rain from the evening before. After only about 90 minutes sleep that night it involved a conscious effort to stay focused and not fall down the steep trail. When I got there the site was filled with an estimated 700 (probably) sleep-deprived spectators, some of whom had spent the remainder of the night there. Nature gave us a very different show this time. Dense clouds and fog covered the top of the cliffs leading to a state of introspection and drowsiness. It was a perfect setting for Chloé Sainte-Marie and her show of poetry and philosophical songs. She said later on that she felt like she was floating on air. Nature gave us a mirror image of our altered collective state and the show with music, poetry and participating choir singers was an excellent choice for this year’s Sunrise at Cap Bon-Ami show.