An incredible and unforgettable day. Standing in the circle around an ancient longhouse foundation with Elder Lyall, whose direct ancestors lived on the Islands, sharing his knowledge with the youth. Having Chief Ron Sam and his family, Cheryl Bryce, Charlotte Charlie, and other Songhees Nation members, and guests together on the land supporting each other created a beautiful day. Imagining the Reefnet fishery happening alongside the village and learning about the willow (still there) and local technologies to create the nets and hooks was so much more powerful standing on the land right where it would have been happening thousands of years ago. Hearing about current ecocultural restoration efforts on the land and water helped round out the learning – reminding us that life carries on and there is valuable and enjoyable work to do today.
It was an honor to hear Lyall sharing his memories and stories about traditional fishing and the need to remember history and why it is key to healing and decolonization.
Thank you Rayn and Frankie for your coordination – along with Cynthia and Linda ( all SAYL Living Lab summer interns) The team are doing a great job supported by other SAYL members. Oh yes, the gelato ice cream was also amazing to top off the day….