How was your trip to Canada on June 20, 2005?
On June 20, 2005, I went on a trip deep into Canada. Before this date, I was no more than 50 feet into Canada. I've added ten to this on this day and changed feet into miles. Journeys in general are so rare, though I wished they occurred far more often. One of my top interests is travel and exploration (hence my large collection of such related dreams). Along the way, especially on the way back, I took nearly 100 photos using my mom's digital camera! I tend to take doubles (if permitting), one for backup just in case one of them don't turn out. I'll only post the best ones that I took. Originally, they were 1152x864 photos.
Unfortunately, many of the photos weren't as good, mainly because of the smashed bugs on the windshield. In some of them, I couldn't tell what they were of. From about 120 photos, I've taken the best of those. Even if they weren't all that good, the important ones have been included as well.
Back when I was in school, I learned that many other countries used metrics instead of things like miles and feet. I never really believed this (and never really believed that such places did exist as shown on maps), however, this trip proved that the textbooks, after all, are correct, at least for this part.
In the following sections, I've given details in great depth on just what was going on during the day from start to end.
I will be returning to Canada on July 25, 2005, hopefully that is. This is during the state fair, but trips and exploration are way higher in interest than carnival rides. It's almost like Carnival rides are about 50¢ where as a trip to Canada would be the equivelent of $10! I'll definitely miss a day at the fair for such a super rare thing of extreme interest. The fair goes on for nine days as it is.
2. Travel log
This section tells of the events that happened to within 2 minutes accuracy. Any comments and/or notes follow after the // indicators (this is how comments are noted in programming).
7:45 AM to 7:50 AM: Left home. // this is the most uncertain time of them all.
8:45 AM: I was nearing some mountains/hills with the tops about 2° above the horizon. // I don't know the specifications of what makes a mountain a mountain and a hill a hill. I know it has to do with height. The place is called "Turtle Mountains", but they are so low that I don't really consider them mountains at all. Only a topographic map would assist in figuring this out.
8:55 AM: Arrived in Bottineau; ordered large pizza from Hot Stuff pizza. // The pizza wasn't that bad and the cheese tasted better than normal. Because I don't eat much and eating in restaurants isn't worthy with me, this makes up for it to some degree. A pizza this size is enough to last for quite some time. It was $12.99, which isn't too bad, though I didn't have coupons.
9:52 AM: Crossed the Canadian border. // Getting through the port of entry went far faster than expected, considering the events of Sep 11, 2001. Yep, all the signs were in metric. Speed limit signs had "maximum 100" and, on some, "maximum 100 km/h". Fortunately, my mom had me along for the math whiz stuff to calculate this in mph. Distances were in kilometers, (or meters for short ones) weight limits were in tons (the same as the US, only I'm assuming it's metric tons instead (1000 kilograms)). When I first saw this, I was amazed that the text books and photos on the net were, in fact, true and accurate.
10:05 AM: Entered first Canadian town. // Name unknown, but follows the roadway past the border control where the Peace Gardens are.
10:44 AM: Entered Brandon, the main destination. // This city is about 60% the size of my home town which isn't too bad.
10:55 AM: Primary destination approached, but one way streets made getting around very difficult. // Knowledge of the address system (which is strangely similar in Canada) helped find the place in a short time period. I've helped my mother figure out how to work around the problems, something I rarely do.
10:59 AM: Arrived at destination, the point of the whole trip: a dentist office. // While I was there, I was trying to figure out the gas prices. I saw from 88.9¢ per unit (probably liters). In the US, gas prices were around $2.20 ± 2¢. From what I'm told, $1.00 is US is $0.74 in Canada. Then I figured out the cost per gallon then did the monetary conversion. This worked out to about $2.49 1/8 in USD.
12:25 PM: Dental mission over with. // the wait was so long, I had a hard time keeping company. So, when the staff weren't busy with anything, I was telling them about some math tricks and shortcuts. I even gave my website address so they can find the shortcuts and make use of them. I told them about the copy trick, my most effective trick of them all. I was doing the calculations at high speed and it seemed like they were amazed on how fast I was... doing it on paper. They were also amazed that I knew the trick/algorithm behind how to multiply a column of numbers. I also shown an example of a very simple computer program and told them to some degree on how the computer is doing what it does.
12:35 PM: Went to a place called "Homebuilding Center". // This place was of medium size. There were two sections and it was sort of like Menards, only a lot smaller and doesn't have all the different supplies Menards has. It wasn't bad though.
12:43 PM: Left the place. // no comments for this: it states the obvious.
12:45 PM: Went to Shoe Warehouse. // Mom was looking for shoes so I ended up going here. Mirrors blocked my access to 95% of the store and was limited to only the entrance area.
12:55 PM: Left store and went to Penningtons superstore. // The two places were but about 150 feet from each other. Use the photos as a guide to get better estimating. Again, mirrors blocked a large portion of the store, but about 85% instead (better than that shoe store).
1:05 PM: Left store. // no comments
1:25 PM: Went to a strangely named place called "Computer Recycle Center". // In here, I found out that getting a newer, faster hard drive would be the top priority of improving system performance. I didn't buy anything: they wouldn't allow checks and I never carry cash as I find it a lot less secure. I mainly only carry pennies as cash, hardly worth anything as it is.
1:40 PM: Left store with some new information. // again, no comments.
1:52 PM: Got directions on some good scenic routes in the area. // About to head back home, I thought of getting some scenic views. It turns out that luck hit me. Very nearby was a place up very high where I can get a photo of the entire town I was in!
2:10 PM: Officially began leaving to return home. // Mom was tired and thus we couldn't do much, plus we couldn't decide on what to do.
2:26 PM: Stopped at "Carriage House Antiques and collectibles". // This place featured really old stuff. There was even a grandfather clock that was over 200 years old and was in very good shape. I didn't catch the price, but I suspect that it could be worth tens of thousands of dollars. The clock had the usual: seconds, minutes, and hours, but, this clock also had the days of the month (from 0 to 31). I've never seen a clock with the days of the month on it. I wouldn't expect that it would be difficult to design such a clock, it's the randomness of the 30's and 31's in a month (and the odd February with 28 or 29) that would make this inaccurate, but for those days, it's certainly decent. I didn't really look around much though.
2:41 PM: Left shop. // error: no comments found.
3:31 PM: Arrived back in the US. // Like going into Canada, this went faster than expected. Being US residents helped to some extent, though IDs were asked for and a few questions were being asked, but nothing much else. I recall them asking whether or not we took anything back. Mom said "pain" and I said "pictures, as from a digital camera". This was my favorite part of the whole thing. It wasn't much of a big deal, thankfully.
3:48 PM: Arrived at Dunseith, mainly for a bathroom break (for both of us).
4:05 PM: Pulled over to the side of the road to get photos of a quicksand pool (and sign). // Encountered a small pool of quicksand and, strongly thinking of my famous mud dreams, I just had to get an up close photo. We pulled over to the side of the road. As for safety, I looked both ways before crossing the street. When a gap was available, I "hit the gas" and ran across at very high speed, topping close to about 12 to 13 mph. I looked for options on getting the best angles and photos. The problem: the Sun. Yep, I found a work around and was able to capture it. I wonder if this'll trigger and increase in mud dreams....
4:15 PM: Arrived in Bottineau again. // De Ja Vu anyone?
4:16 PM: Arrived at "Pamida Discount Center". // This store was a department store and was quite comparable to those in my home town. Mirrors blocked about 5% of my access, nothing much to worry about. I was seeking after pencils, but they didn't have the kind I liked. I also saw a magnifying glass and I was thinking about getting two of these (for double magnification (and a portable mini microscope)). Giving a check for $2.00 isn't worth it so I rejected the idea of getting it. It wasn't of high priority though. It was more of low priority. During the visit, I found a very strange kind of soda: "honey lemonade". When I saw that, I was big time confused and amazed at the strange name. There were two others (not fully certain, but there was one other for 100% certainty).
4:45 PM: Left store. // a fatal error has occurred: no comments could be found.
4:50 PM: Went to Dairy Queen and went through the drive through. // Being 80°F outside, getting a Dairy Queen was one of my suggestions. We both got the usual: ice cream cone and, for me, a misty slush. Although I hate cold stuff, there are a few exceptions. I'm extremely sensitive to cold so I eat/drink cold things slowly. When I drink my Powerades/Gatorades, they're always at room temperature. I avoid buying from vending machines and coolers as much as possible. Normally, I can drink a 12-ounce can in about 10 to 15 seconds. If it was cold, about 40°F or so, then this becomes about 3 minutes and I don't like it. As quoting from Speed in my favorite line in my script, "Speed is the name of the game! Those who are slow and not on my side always lose!". This certainly holds true for me in almost any case. Why go 3 mph when you can go 8 mph when permitting? Why spend 3 minutes drinking something when it could only take 10 to 15 seconds? I'm overly focused on speed.
5:30 PM: Made final turn off toward home, the final stretch of highways. // this is where Highway 83 made a very abrupt right turn (if heading north) or left turn (if heading west). The road splits into two completely different highways.
6:00 PM: Arrived home. // Due to excessive rain, I was seeing nearly 100 mosquitoes in my field of view in the garage area alone.... I guess it was one mosquito for each photo I took.
3. Photo gallery
I have taken over 100 photos, about 30 or so of which were merely backup. To help save bandwidth, I've paginated the list into 4 pages for 40 photos. To access it, using the same window, go here. If you'd like to browse the gallery in a new window, go here instead.
Notice: since many of the photos didn't come out as I was hoping, mainly due to taking the pictures through the windows, some of them have smashed bugs on the windshield and others have reflections. Hopefully, you won't mind this too much. Also, I've editted out license plates on cars for privacy reasons.
4. Reexperiencing this
On July 25, 2005, I'm likely to return to Canada again for a very similar reason as from this trip. However, this trip will be somewhat different. Although I'd end up missing a day of the state fair, this would certainly take priority.
However, I've also noticed something. If gas prices are really high, and the vehicle gets like 25 mpg (miles per gallon), $9 for 100 miles doesn't seem like much at all. Seems like everyone complains about it, but, looking at the numbers, it don't seem much at all. It's only like $100 to get to the Rocky Mountains and back. This is hardly anything compared to a plane or something which costs like 3 times as much.
Return to the main blog
There are no footnotes for this page.