04 October 2010

Walking Over to Canada

Yesterday, I spent the whole day in my office, working. I typed my IRB protocol, and hopefully that was good enough so I can submit it to the reviewers soon so I can conduct my dissertation experiments. I already gave a copy to my adviser to review and comment on; I'll just wait for his feedback before I submit it.

But, at around 3:00, we got bored. We were there since early, since around 9:00 AM, and we were getting antsy for being in one place at the whole time we were there. So, an idea popped into my head, what if we do something different? What if we walk over to Canada?

We thought that was a good idea, so we went home, and grabbed our passports. Thirty minutes later, we were walking the Rainbow Bridge in Niagara Falls. It's a good thing that the US-Canadian border is just ten minutes away.

So we had our passports, and the Canadian officer asked us what we were doing in Canada, and so we responded that we just want to see the Niagara Falls from the Canadian side. How long will we be in there? Just about an hour or two. Are we bringing anything to Canada? Some cash and an umbrella. So I got another stamp in my passport.

And then we walked over. Wow. This was actually the first time I saw the Niagara Falls from the Canadian side. And yes, it's prettier. Way prettier. Unfortunately, I didn't bring my camera, since it was a spontaneous thing, and the weather was overcast anyway.

After an hour of watching the falls, we crossed back to the American side, and there was another border patrol. That was easy.

So looking back, apparently, this is the third time I walked to a new country. The first was when I entered the Vatican City from Italy. That wasn't too much of an impact, as there isn't a border, just a museum entrance. The second time was when we crossed from Hungary to Slovakia, and given the fact that both countries have a common border, there was no passport control. We just crossed the Danube and there were big flags everywhere, and our cell phone providers immediately kicked in roaming. So this third time indeed had a big impact, as I got another passport stamp!

(Curved Corridor, from my Pisac Series)


  1. I saw your comment on Zhu’s blog. So I came over and read your post on Religious Background and Religious Knowledge. I’d like to add that I was brought up in secular France and when I came over to the US and found so much religion I started to read about it as I knew about nothing. Got a few religious books, the Bible, the Koran, the Torah, the Book of Mormons, Buddhist literature and the Tao Te Ching, etc. and perused them. Many people here only know what their preachers wish them to know. I see you read Renny’s blog. I went to his Blog Gathering in Oslo in August. It was great.

  2. Nice trip dude. Canada is one of a must visit country in my traveling calender. I want to see the waterfall.

  3. Vagabonde,

    Welcome to my blog. Yes, you're right with respect to most religious believers: they just take for granted the information that was handed them and not examine it for themselves. And I am glad that you enjoyed Renny's Blog Gathering. I read his blog from time to time, it gives me glimpses of Norway that I have that in my travel destinations list in the future.


    Welcome! Canada is a huge country looming north of where I am, and unfortunately, I haven't explored it much yet. But I am slowly getting there.

  4. Eh eh, welcome and hope you visit us again soon!

    I agree with you, the Canadian side is much nicer than the U.S. side. And I'm not being patriotic here... the U.S. side is just very run down it seems. But I was in Buffalo on a cold winter day so it may have affected my perception of the city.

    (Hello Vagabonde! Tu vagabondes de blog en blog je vois ;-)

  5. Zhu,

    No worries, I will visit you again sometime soon!

    But you're right, Niagara Falls, NY is a sad place. There's so many tourist traps, and artificial establishments. I mean, why would you install a snow jump and a haunted house in the vicinity? Just because there's a waterfall nearby?

    On the other hand, if you go all the way to Buffalo, NY there are a few gems the city has to offer. You just have to know where to look.

  6. If I'm that close to the border, I'd be doing this walk a lot of times if the weather is great. The Canadian side of the falls looks better but the Disneyfication of its surroundings is certainly not.

  7. TNP,

    Oh I agree. The US side is worse, there's snow jumps, haunted houses, everything touristy. The Canadian side is a still more sassy (with big business hotels around) but still there's too much neon around it.