Hamilton Travel Blog› entry 2 of 96 › view all entries
After a furious panic stricken exodus from Cambridge, in which I almost forgot my Citizenship card (the one piece of documentation that would get me into Canada on a one-way ticket) we made it to Gatwick on time. My fellow travellers were cast asunder as I strode triumphantly to the check in desk using my gargantuan bike bag as an improvised cowcatcher. I didn't appear so confident after I saw it disappear down the outsize luggage shoot (marked 'left luggage disposal point - all luggage will be destroyed'). It suddenly dawned on me that I would ACTUALLY be going to Canada and this wasn't just a dream.
I made my last good byes to my loyal troop of followers and headed for the departures lounge. Laptop got scanned, I got scanned, even my loose change didn't escape the wrath of the security guards.
The flight was delayed, so I headed to a bookshop to get some material for the 8 hour haul ahead. I bought 'Dave Gorman - America Unchained' (8) as it followed his road trip coast to coast through the states, in a similar fashion to my intended jaunt. The gate was empty when I got there, so I started reading. mean while the room gradually filled, including a gentleman in a worse state for consumption. He dropped his bottle of whiskey and the security guards pounced to a background of muttering 'if he's getting on the flight, I'm getting off!'
During the flight I settled into my book, and save interruptions from meals and an insightful conversation with my neighbour I managed to crunch half of it, I won't lie to you I couldn't put it down it was hilarious. The plane was an icelandic 757, with all the signs in icelandic too. do I speak icelandic? you must be bjökering.
So my neighbour, it turned out, is an artist (oil landscapes mostly, he's says the Americans love them) and has previously worked on some major film sets. We got chatting and managed to cover a huge range of topics including the secrets of a good marriage and what happens when you die. Check his work out at : http://guelpharts.ca/timmurton/photomedia-listing.php?gid=184 .
Immigration was quite an experience. It was my first time trying to enter the country on just a citizenship card. That part was not a problem and my confidence in cross border bureaucracy was soon restored. I waited patiently for my bags and eventually gained the full compliment. Cow catchin' time! I loaded up the trolley and was soon greeted by lots of interested parties in what the contents of the marhuusive bag was.
I lent over and tapped the side of the bag:
"you alright in there?"
Soon I found myself in the customs office, the contents of my bags being heavilly scrutinised by an official. whoops.