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Oct. 16, 2021 | Saturday
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Trudeau visit from local teen perspective
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau with Kelly McGirr and Chase Brunton on Wednesday morning at Silks Country Kitchen in Virgil. (Supplied)

When the prime minister visited a popular restaurant in town last week, some patrons grumbled about his policies or the latest political scandal – but 14-year-old Chase Brunton simply told Justin Trudeau she liked his socks.

“I didn’t get to talk to him very long, I only said one thing to him – which was that I liked his socks. They were nice socks. They were red and blue, and polka dotted,” she said. It was the first thing she noticed when she saw him.

When she arrived at Silks Country Kitchen in Virgil on Wednesday morning, where she has been working as a busser for about a year, she said she had no idea she would be meeting the prime minister.

“I walked in at 8:45 a.m. and I was half asleep. They told me Trudeau was coming in 10 or 20 minutes,” she said. Though unexpected, she said it was an interesting and chaotic experience.

The restaurant was full, and Trudeau’s convoy of security and staff members took up much of the bar, she said.

Aside from complimenting the prime minister’s stockings, Brunton said she didn’t have a chance to say too much else to him. Though she did say she was unimpressed with some of the patrons’ attitudes toward meeting the country’s leader.

“I thought it was really nice that he went around to all of the tables in the restaurant and talked to all of them. There were a couple of tables that were not fond of him being there, which I think is kind of weird because even if you’re not a part of the Liberal party, it’s still kind of cool to meet your prime minister,” Brunton said.

“They weren’t being very nice, and I just thought that was rude. He would ask them questions and they would just give one-word answers. One table, I heard say, ‘I guess we picked the wrong day to come in for breakfast,’ ” she said.

Though some diners weren’t happy with Trudeau taking over their breakfast spot for the morning, Brunton said some tourists in the restaurant were surprised by his accessibility.

“There were American tables, too, who thought it was crazy that our prime minister can just come into a family restaurant, and we’re still allowed to be in here. They said you never see the president just out and about. Even though he had a lot of security, they were just shocked that he was out in public,” she said.

Overall, she said it was an experience she was happy to have stumbled into. Whether she supports the Liberal party doesn’t make a difference, she said — she was still happy to meet the prime minister. She even managed to snag a picture of herself, her mother, Kelly McGirr, who also works at Silks, and the prime minister.

Trudeau, though maybe a little “shocked” by Brunton’s acknowledgment of his socks, was just as polite as she would have expected, she said.

“I guess it’s not really a normal thing to say to the prime minister. He just thanked me and was really polite,” she said.