Monday, December 20, 2010

A Quick Trip to Maine

A quick trip to Maine...never thought those words would come out of my mouth. This weekend The Canadian and I had to make a quick trip to the States. We drove for three hours, stopped in the US customs building for about 4 minutes, went back to Canadian customs,where we stopped for 7 minutes, and then drove three hours back home. All that to get one little, tiny stamp on the title of my car. Who knew cars had to be exported? 

Driving through Canada is nothing like driving through eastern seaboard of the States. I would go as far as saying it is the exact opposite, actually. Maybe it's similar to the midwest, or Texas, or the Pacific northwest...but I wouldn't know anything about that.

Interestingly enough, Canada doesn't have an interstate system. I think this is due to their lack of states. Driving on an interprovince just doesn't have the same ring to it. There is one highway that spans the entire width of the country - The TransCanada 2. The 2 runs just above the Maine border and has an exit that conveniently directs traffic to the border crossing at Houlton, Maine.

Here's what we saw during the drive:

Plow trucks are everywhere this time of year. The 2 is immaculately kept during the winter months since it is heavily traveled.

Can't you tell?

You know how when you're going on a road trip to visit your Aunt you would say "It should take 5 hours if I don't hit any traffic." You would never have to say that here. There is no traffic, no wrecks, no cops, no billboards, no towns, no McDonalds, no rest areas, no nothing. It goes on like this forever.

Instead of traffic to watch out for, you keep an eye out for moose. I've never seen one here. Or in Maine. But I did see one in the middle of the road in Vermont once. They're not pretty.

There must really be moose somewhere because fences run along side the road to help keep the animals where they belong. Every so often there is a one-way gate to let any escapees back in. All I can ever think about is how much damn money it must cost to fence in an entire country.

I don't think I will ever get used to driving 110. I don't care if it's in kilometers. It just sounds fast. It's against everything I've ever been taught.

As we drove west the temperature started dropping. Several places along the road looked like this. That isn't a frozen waterfall, it's icicles. The kind that will puncture your brain and take you out.

As the temperature drops, weird things happen to your car. For example, your windows freeze closed. And your windshield wiper fluid freezes. This becomes a big problem when your window is so covered in salt that it is impossible to see. But Canadians are clever people and have a solution for this problem. Snow.

Throw some snow on the windshield. Give it a second. Turn on the wipers.


With a clean windshield I was able to catch a glimpse of this bad boy - The World's Largest Axe. Don't be jealous. I sent you a postcard.

We finally made it to the border. Isn't this sign crazy? It's not everyday you get to see the beginning of an interstate. It's like seeing the puddle that starts the Nile - but in concrete.

Just seeing the red, white and blue of the sign gave me goosebumps...I never noticed the interstate sign's patriotism until then. I almost broke out in song. My country tis of thee, sweet land of liberty...sing with me!

Then we turned right back around.

And saw this. I guess it's not too bad...if I had my sled with me.

But billboard? That's all I'm askin'...

Land where my father's died, 
Land of the pilgrim's pride,
From every mountain side,
Let freedom ring.

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