It was perhaps 3.30am when we rolled out of New York and began the bloody awful journey along torturously scarred roads toward Buffalo and onward to Hamilton. Bumped and knocked, jostled and banged, I’d had enough of it all by 10am and got up to draft yesterday’s entry, while the bus moved through northern New York state.
After a small wait at the Canadian border, we dashed through the Niagara region (wine country no less) and arrived at our Hamilton hotel shortly after 1pm.
With another twenty days until the final North American show of the tour, it feels like we’re in the last stretch of our journey. We’ve left the US behind and from here it’s all Canada, but we have plenty of distance to go before the end. We face approximately 9,000 kilometres of back-and-forthing to get us from Hamilton to Regina via St. John’s. A bright side is we have no more border crossings, but I’m still left with two white I-94 stubs in my passport.
What is it with the Department of Homeland Security that can’t seem to get it together to collect these white departure records? If you have one in your passport when entering the US, a CBP official gives you a hard time, because the I-94 should have been collected when you last left the US. The US Customs and Border Protection organisation seems to rely on airline staff to collect the stubs, but last I looked, CBP people have badges, whereas check-in desk attendants have staplers. If I worked at an airport I would certainly ask ‘Why is it my job to do Immigration’s job?’ I’m now wondering what the British Airways staff in Calgary will say when I ask them about these stubs. Brits in a Canuck airport caring about US policy? Oy vey, I have visions of records ripped up, chucked in the trash, and never a word said again.
Yep, you can tell it’s a slow day, fuelled by the grey skies and rain of Hamilton. For a large part of today I was feeling a little ennuiish due to sore things like a neck and shoulders, but it’s amazing what some hotel-room exercise, a hot shower, an avocado (with salt and pepper) and some tea can do for the soul. I now leave you that I may write some fiction.