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Motorcycling to Toronto

In order to give you the context in which this blog will make sense to you, it is necessary to bring you back to about February, 2008. An old friend of mine, Rob, invited me to come to his best friend's wedding in Toronto in the summer. I agreed to go, but I guess my acceptance of the invitation wasn't emphatic enough, and he thought that my answer to his request was "maybe" or "no", not "yes" which is what I absolutely said. Because of whatever bizarre brain synapse misfire that happens in Rob's brain, he "forgot" to tell his best friend that he would in fact, be bringing a date to said wedding celebration. In four months, he couldn't call up his best friend and mention that he would indeed be bringing a guest to this party. Right.

This brings us to the present day. Two days ago, Rob sends me an email and explains the situation. There is no seat for me at the party, because

1) he NEVER listens to ANYTHING I say and

2) his brain is retarded.

So I have come to the conclusion that Rob is a complete idiot and therefore, (wait for it) dead to me. Just like a certain former co-worker that I won't mention right now. All my Carver peeps will know exactly who I'm talking about. The wrath that I feel toward Rob is exactly the same wrath I feel to the aforementioned former co-worker.

About a half hour after I get this last-minute update from Rob, I also get an email from my dear, sweet mother. A friend of hers has to give away a stay at the Holiday Inn near the Toronto airport, and she wants to know if I could use it this weekend, (she thinks I'm still going to this wedding).

"GOD NO!" I reply, and call her up to explain the situation.

She says, "OK no problem, me and dad will use it, there's two beds in the room, so feel free to join us anyway, if you feel like it."

I had already started to plan a trip to Vermont since I got that mail from Rob, but I thought it over and quickly changed my mind. I am Toronto bound once again! To hang out with my mom, dad, aunt and uncle during Pride Week, what a crazy party that will be!

Context explanation over.

Friday was EXACTLY 60 days since I first wrote my M1 motorcycle licence, so that means that I am eligible for my M2. I woke up this morning, hopped on my motocyclette, and headed directly to the drive test centre, to change in my M1 for am M2. This means I can drive on 400 series highways and also at night. This means I won't get a fine for driving to Toronto this weekend. I was lucky I did, because it took me about eight HOURS to do a drive that usually takes five in a car.

But holy CRAP it was fun.

After a pretty spazzy day at work, I headed off to Toronto. This is AFTER I dropped it in the parking lot at work and screwed up the right side mirror. A problem that would plague me for the rest of the trip.

I printed out some pretty crazy "avoid highways" directions from google maps, it looked like a lot of fun to find my way to Toronto that way and it really really was. I was driving through little tiny towns with signs that say things like "God loves you whether you like it or not" and stuff like that. It was totally great.

I also vaguely knew how to get to Mississauga by using the 400-series highways, so if I got lost somewhere in the backwoods of central Ontario, I'd be able to get there without too many problems.

Everything was going great until it started raining. The weatherman had forecast a HUGE storm for the evening, so I thought, "Oh god, this is IT, the BIG THUNDERSTORM". I pulled over right away in a tiny place called Black Lake. I bought an ice cream from a nice 18-year-old named Cassidy. She was very talkative, probably because she never gets any customers, but she told me she was going to Pembroke to college next year to become a paramedic and how she hates it in Black Lake. It was so similar to all the typical highschool girl things I used to say to people that came into the store that I worked at, so I was laughing in my head the whole time. I guess small town kids never change.

By the time I finished my maple-walnut ice cream* the rain had stopped and the road had already started to dry off. I didn't even have to put on my rain gear, I just started back on my way, amongst the beautiful pine trees, lakes and hills of the great Canadian Shield. Aw, patriotism, it's always latent in my heart, and comes out unexpectedly, at times like this (cheeseball)

Not much really happened on the way here. I just kept riding and riding, completely amazed at all the little details you notice, if you're on a motorcycle. When you're out there in the air, not caged up in a metal box, you really notice the beauty of the place you are traveling in. Less so, than you would on a bicycle, I know, but I think that a motorcycle is a pretty good compromise between environmentalism and fantastic roadtrip travels. (I only used $12 worth of fuel in the eight hours it took me to get to Toronto)

Soon it began to get dark, so I stopped to fill up. I had to make a decision, continue on the back roads in the dark, or brave the 401 to Toronto. I figured I'd probably get lost in the dark on these roads, and I probably wouldn't make it to Toronto before 4 a.m., so I decided to suck it up, get my butt on the highway and hightail it to the hotel. This was exactly the right decision.

On the 401, there is never a time when there is no traffic, so I was a little frightened, but kinda calmed down after I found a slow-ish truck to follow, and went about 95 km/h the whole way. Not bad for my little Marauder, that seems to struggle with anything over 80. I was afraid he wouldn't make it that fast, but he was OK.**

I pulled off at the airport, because I knew the hotel was in the area, and I was so delirious and tired from so much motorcycle riding that I could barely find my way on the map. I called the hotel my parents were staying at, but the hotel guy said there was no one of that name here. Fine, it was probably registered under my mom's friend's name. I asked him for directions to the hotel WITHOUT going on the highway. He couldn't provide them to me...great. So I drove around and around the Dixon Rd. area and SOME HOW, I managed to find this place, located in the middle of an industrial office park, so weird. By the time I got there it was midnight. Pretty much exactly what time I JOKINGLY told my mom I would get there. Who knew my jokes were so accurate? Haha. Mom saved me some of her Italian dinner from Mamma Mia's so I ate it, bitched about Rob some more, then went to bed.

*That was the only flavour they had besides vanilla, because they just got a NEW FREEZER and Cassidy was "cooling it down". She was evidently very excited about the prospect of having DOZENS of different ice cream flavours in the coming weeks. She immediately rattled off all the names of all of the flavours they would soon have for sale at the little outpost I had found myself in at the moment.

**If anybody has an idea for a name for him/her, I'd like to hear it, I'm the most uncreative person I know.

Posted by baixing 17:00 Archived in Canada

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