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He was 99 and a half years old and was born in 1898 in a Musqueam village at the mouth of the Fraser River. Together we spent many hours driving along the  shoreline of what is now called the city of Vancouver, my grandfather beside  me, and one or more of my children in the back seat, listening closely to him  telling us the history of our great lands. The same histories his grandparents,  who raised him, told him as they drove along in horse and buggy. The stories  their grandparents told them, walking along the same shores or in their canoes.  About 300 years of stories are still being passed on. Because of these oral traditions my grandfather can rest in peace, knowing I have, as he did, retained  in "my computer -- my brain" what we shared as the peoples of this land. 
 
Because I was blessed to have this time with him, I will take with me into the future the success and integrity of our people through these reflections. 
 
I know who I am. 
I know my history. 
I know where I come from. 
 
My roots are planted firmly in the very soil that my ancestors are buried in. I am connected, my children are connected, and my grandchildren will be connected.  We will be here another millennium as we have been here for nine millenniums  past. 
 
Some people say that there are no signs on the mountaintops, that it is not  written anywhere that this is First Nations land. Anywhere you open the earth  there is evidence. It is written in the earth. 
 
-- Debra Sparrow, “Know who you are” (Portrait V2K 1999).