I set out with a goal of traveling coast to coast across Canada this summer. I completed the eastern portion of my journey traveling from Halifax, Nova Scotia to Hamilton, Ontario (the birthplace of my dear Mom). I have decided to postpone the second portion of my trip because of the fire and smoke related travel alerts for the western portion of Canada. However, to quote Arnold, "Ah'll be bach" next year to complete the second half. Until then, here's just a few discoveries I made during my brief time in Canada.
The country and the people are as lovely as rumored to be. Everywhere I went I met local people who were kind, friendly, helpful and interesting. Even the guard where I crossed over into Canada from Maine took the time to give me helpful advice and suggested I file for dual citizenship to make my trips even easier. And the beauty of the countryside is both diverse and awe-inspiring.
There are a few things I had to get used to at first. Gas is only about a buck, but that's for a liter (about a quart), not a gallon. But then, one US dollar equals about $1.30 in Canadian money, so it sorta works out. If you are going 50 miles an hour, you are actually going around 80 kilometers an hour - and you will probably get a ticket from a very nice Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman. People in the east pay a "hydro" bill every month because their power comes from Niagara Falls hydro electric power generators. There's a large part of the east that is very fluent in both French and English, and yes, they are polite in both languages. In if it hits 50 degrees (Fahrenheit) in the US, you are a little chilly. If it ever hit 50 degrees (Celsius) in Canada, it would be equivalent to an insufferable 120 degrees (Fahrenheit) - or as we call that in Arizona, a balmy day in summer. On the other end of the thermometer, Canada has had a single snowfall of over 1 and 1/2 feet. Milk comes in a bag in a box. Not sure what that's about, but it's a thing. When you cross the border, your GPS goes out. But don't panic (like I did). Just call your cell phone provider and they'll hopefully get you back online. There are male and female figures on the doors of some public restrooms. They are crossing their legs and covering their nether regions with their cartoon hands, which kinda looks like most people when they have to go really bad. You don't have to be there long before you too begin pronouncing words "owt and abowt", throwing and "eh?" on the end of your sentence and realize that hockey is the greatest sport in the world. And lastly, based on the omnipresence I witnessed, if the Canadians are the first nation to settle Mars, you can bet they'll have a Tim Hortons on every corner of every settlement so no Martian ever runs out of good coffee and dietary kryptonite, I mean, irresistible pastry.
PS. Is it just me, or does this giant sculpture in Barrie, Ontario look like it has it's arms spread out wide to give a welcoming hug to all who visit Canada? :-)
Note: Additional posts about Canada are below.
Links From On The Road Again (AKA My Road Trip 2017)
Oh Canada! Summer Tour 2017
Amazing Places: Saint Andrews
Amazing Places: Saint Martins
Amazing Places: Edmundston
Amazing Faces: Hallé And Jeff.
Amazing Places: Barrie, Ontario
Amazing Faces: Dean Wiseman
Amazing Places: Orangeville, Ontario.
Oh Canada!: Ah'll Be Bach.
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