Most passengers were from Australia and New Zealand. Some were from the United Kingdom, two from South Africa, and two from Guatemala. Toss in a tour director from Alabama and a driver from Ecuador and we were bound to have fun on the 15-day tour I was leading.
The tour began and ended in New York City, traveling by motorcoach throughout the Eastern United States and Canada. Day 9 brought us to Toronto where we were scheduled to visit the Ontario Parliament building. As we rode from our hotel to Parliament, a passenger noticed a flag at half-staff.
“Why is that Ontario flag flying at half-staff?” he asked me.
“I’m not sure,” I answered. “I didn’t hear of any death or major event on the news this morning.”
The passengers and I began to notice other flags along the route at half-staff. Our curiosity was rising by the minute. Upon arrival at the Parliament building, we could clearly see on the left lawn a Canada flag lowered and on the right lawn an Ontario flag lowered. What has happened? I mused.
We parked, unloaded, and waited on the approaching security guard for further instructions.
“Welcome! Follow me this way,” he said, pointing toward the pink sandstone building adorned with gargoyles.
I walked next to him and the group followed. “Why are all the flags in the city at half-staff?” I asked.
He laughed. “Well, no one died. Our flagpole pulley for the Canada flag is malfunctioning. It won’t allow the flag to go up all the way. Because no flag can fly higher than the Canada flag, everyone in the city has had to lower their Ontario flags until we get it fixed.”
On tour the adventures are endless and the laughs are abundant.
“God’s glory is on tour in the skies, God-craft on exhibit across the horizon” (Psalm 19:1 MSG).