0135 Not exactly the best acoustics (USA 067—revisit)
Niagara Falls Travel Blog› entry 13 of 49 › view all entries
I vividly remember my first visit to Niagara Falls while on a family trip back in 1988. Here is where I launched out on my first solo international adventure. While the rest of the family was just relaxing on the American side of the falls, I headed out on foot across the bridge to discover Canada. I’ll never forget that thrill of crossing that majestic bridge high above the river and feeling a was about to go discover a new world all on my own.
But when I reached the Canadian side, I guess they got a little suspicious about a skinny 14 year old going to Canada all on his own with no identification, so I was told to go back. Determined to make the best of the situation, I grabbed some leaves off a tree which I would take back as proof that I “went to Canada”.
Back on the American side, a very stern looking border official took me inside and questioned me for a while—which actually made me feel even prouder of myself… I had made it to Canada and survived a border guard interrogation!
So here I am, 20 years later, finally finishing what I started. This time I’m confident that I’m have more than a couple of leaves as evidence that I’ve made it to Canada…
Once again, as usual, I park my car in a residential neighborhood for free and hike into town--on the way I get an idea "why not just walk across to Canada and then come back?--that way I won't have to mess with looking for another free parking place.
But first, let's experience Niagara Falls USA.
The city seems to be a bit of a mix of boom and bust... An enormous new casino dominates the skyline... but around are many vacant areas where buildings and factories came and went... The place is confusing--you look one way and you feel like you're in a big city. You look the other way and all you see are scattered remnants of a city that was.
I wander around--cross over to the island, taking a few pictures and learning a bit more of the history of the place and the role these falls have played in America's industrial development. The roar of the falls doesn't exactly give the best acoustic atmosphere for parkbenching--but I'm not going to complain. To be able to play music next to the one of the most impressive combinations of nature’s power and beauty is certainly is a privilege in and of itself.
And with that, I head across the bridge, remembering this crossing I made 20 years ago.