darktenshi17 replied to your post
Oh my gosh you’re like 20km away from me right now! I’m in K-town.
We looked out the windows of the B&B to try to see the fireworks, and there was a display going on straight ahead that was far too distant to be Gan’s display, and eventually we poked at Maps and common sense enough to be like… that’s Kingston.
There was another one out in the water that had to be like, Howe Island or something, but we weren’t sure. Anyway, *waves hi* Hi! It’s nice here, and I’m really enjoying the weather. Not too sunny!
1) Fireworks in colors other than red and white seem to be unknown locally. Possibly it is the exceptionally festive nature of the current festival, I don’t know.
2) Petunias in colors other than red and white seem also to be unknown locally, which is entertaining.
pre-1 flashback) the highway was basically entirely full of Ontario plates for the entire distance we drove in the US and it was a little terrifying. One dude was dragging his muffler and throwing sparks. Canadians are terrifying drivers and have only the most nebulous grasp of things like “keep right except to pass”, and absolutely zero concept of “cruise control”. They’re terrified of the state troopers who patrol the Thruway, though, as they should be, and maybe too scrupulous about the new “get over” law– you don’t have to stop in the fast lane, guys, just because there’s a cop…
3) at the border the guy was like “have you been to Canada before?”… brief context: my dude has a Nexus card, the kind that costs a bunch of money so you can get security prescreening, and he had just handed it over to the guy. you get those in Buffalo if you commute to Canada, which he was at the time he got it. I guess there are other reasons to get them but I’ve never known anyone to have any other reason. Also we had just told the dude that we were from Buffalo. “Uh,” we both said, “yes?” He literally sounded exactly like the lady who sold us tickets to the boat museum. “have you been here before?” she asked, and then when we said no, proceeded to take the museum pamphlet and draw a little proposed route for us on the map, so we’d know where to go. We theorized that if we’d said no, this guy would have done the same thing with a map of Canada. “And this here is the 401, okay, and you’re going to want to avoid that one, eh?”
No, instead we both explained that yes, we were familiar with the concept of Canada and approximately how things are meant to go, so he could save his brochure for some real newbs. We laughed about that for a good ten minutes.
3a) the boat museum. Clayton, NY has an Antique Boat Museum. Gananoque is building a sister museum. You can borrow skiffs and row around. We did not. It’s cool, if you like boats and such. I recommend it. My dad would LOVE it so I risked data roaming charges to send him a text about it. However, we discovered a sort of sad thing:
the St Lawrence River is currently at its highest level in the history of ever. It has never ever been this high. Boat launches, docks, boathouses, etc., are underwater all over the 1000 Islands. [Side-note: it is NEVER written “thousand islands” on signage or anything. ALWAYS written “1000 islands”. Side-side note: there are more than a thousand islands, and in fact, there are close to two thousand.]
Worse, people’s cottages are underwater, and have been for six weeks, and the insurance you can get around here doesn’t cover such things. The B&B proprietor grimly pointed out that there are loose floating docks and sceptic tanks and debris of all kinds just all over the river now, people’s stuff is just ruined, and it’s going to be weeks before they can even assess the damage. “It’s going to be worse than anyone knows,” he predicted grimly.
4) I wore a bright red lace dress sort of by accident and wound up being Extremely Festive. HOWEVER like every tenth woman who went by had a DIFFERENT headband with canada flag antennae on it and I was EXTREMELY JEALOUS where does one get such a thing??? One had springs for stalks, so the flags wiggled. Another had silver pom-poms at the base of the stalks so it looked like the flags were being shot out of fireworks. Everyone was in different shades of red, or fresh out of the bag souvenir t-shirts, so that was entertaining. A man with a heavy Ontario accent asked us if we were from around here, because he wasn’t. We said no, but tried to help him anyway.
Another man with a less-intense but still Canadian accent sort of aggressively asked us if we’d like to get by his family on the sidewalk since they were walking slowly. No, we said, a little surprised, we’re walking slowly too, it’s cool? Sometimes Canadians come on real strong with the sorry and you’re not sure what to do. You never know when those wily bastards will throw down, y’know?
That’s my takeaway lesson here. That politeness is not weakness, folks, they’re Ready At All Times. They’re On Top Of Things. They’re Keen-Eyed Opportunists. And they drive like lunatics.