I got a late start on my journey to Canada but I need the sleep! I found a local coffee shop and then set a course for the Costco gas station nearest to the Canadian border!
When I got to the border I chose the wrong line and had to wait over thirty minutes to talk to the Canadian border guy. Then I realized his line took the longest his line because he was so delightful! We had a lovely chat about my pending journey thru Canada to get to the rally. Turns out he was from Kitchener (where I planned to spend the night) but he was really sorry he couldn’t give me any recommendations since his family moved away from there when he was three.
From the border it was a long (dull) ride to Kitchener. I finally arrived at the Crowne Plaza and they upgraded me to a corner suite with a nice view of the downtown area.
It had been a long day so I ordered in some poutine and called it a night.
The next morning was my longest drive. I rolled out fairly early and turned on my Canadian playlist (nothing but Men Without Hats, a national treasure! Then I pulled into Tim Horton to get a maple donut (because Canada!) and I was dismayed to discover they didn’t have ANY maple flavored donuts of any kind. Then the cashier and I tried to out-nice each other, which didn’t end well for me. You should never try to out-nice a Canadian! Instead of the four cheese bagel with cream cheese I wanted, I ended up with a plain bagel with butter! But we both enjoyed the experience so it was fine.
Then I drove forever and ever on the freeway. I decided to stop and buy some souvenirs so I pulled into the Real Canadian Superstore. It turns out they don’t carry much in the was of Canadian souvenirs. If I hadn’t arrived the day after Canada Day they probably wouldn’t have had any!
I decided I’d just pick up a few goodies at the duty free store at the border. I resumed my drive and things got much more interesting when I crossed into the Quebec province. Suddenly there were French road signs!
I stopped to pay a fortune for gas and saw another Tim Horton. Since I’d skipped lunch I popped in for a maple donut. Everyone there spoke French but I was able to point to the only maple donut they had left and somehow communicate iced mocha!
After that I turned off the freeway and the best part of the drive began.
It was glorious! The road passed through a lot of little villages and twisted through very fun curves.
Time flew by until suddenly I arrived at the border. The duty free store was closed and the whole place looked deserted.
When I pulled into the inspection lane and shut off my car the border agent came out. I think he was thrilled to see me. He asked why I’d been in Canada and I pointed to the Rally sticker on my bonnet. Then we had a lovely talk about the rally and the rest of my travels. Honestly, those border guys were all just super nice!
It took me a while to get to my AirBnB in Hardwick. I had hoped to pass a grocery store and a car wash but no such luck! Instead I unpacked the car and made myself dinner out of road trip snacks.
Tomorrow I will find a car wash and a grocery store. Tonight I dine on jerky and Perrier!