REGINA — Julie Payette is making her first official visit to Saskatchewan more than a year after taking office and says being Canada's Governor General is a great privilege.
There have been questions about Payette's work ethic and she has faced criticism recently for how she has approached her role as the Queen's representative.
But, when asked about the barbs in Regina, she invited her critics to spend a few days in her office and see what it is like.
The Governor General arrived at the provincial legislature to a 21-gun salute and shook hands with Premier Scott Moe.
On Friday, she is to tour a Canadian Forces Base in Moose Jaw, the same base where the former astronaut obtained her military pilot captaincy on a Snowbird jet in the 1990s.
Payette says she specifically chose to come to Saskatchewan in mid-October to see the final air show of the season.
On Saturday, Payette is to walk through the Humboldt Broncos Memorial Exhibit before watching the junior hockey team in action.
Sixteen members of the Broncos died and 13 were injured in April when the team's bus and a tractor-trailer collided at a rural intersection.
Payette's office says she will make her first visit to Manitoba at the end of November, but not before she makes a state visit to Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast and Nigeria at the end of October.
She has yet to go to Yukon.
"We have to do the entire country (and) it's a big country," Payette said.
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Ryan McKenna, The Canadian Press