After my little flat tire setback yesterday I made it to Canada in one piece. I used to drive back and forth over the border during my days living in Detroit, but this time I forgot that I had my entire life packed in the backseat of my car.
After driving most of the way from Philadelphia yesterday, I was only about an hour and a half away from Toronto. I left Buffalo around 10AM in an attempt to miss any traffic. This appeared to be the right decision as when I arrived at the border the line into Canada was only about 10-15 cars deep. After making a quick stop at Duty Free to pick up some gifts for my host family in Toronto, I patiently waited in my car to go through border security. When asked why I was coming into Canada, I responded that I was going to a Blue Jays game. I was asked why my car was so full at which point I tried to explain the 30-stadium tour. I have talked to hundreds, if not thousands of people in the past three months and although I have been asked the same questions repeatedly, the one that I rarely get is “why?”. Perhaps this is because I am generally talking to other baseball fans, but only a handful of people have asked me why I am doing this tour. It is absolutely a valid question, but if you need to ask, chances are you are not going to accept my answer. Even if you are a baseball nut like myself, the idea of driving over 17,000 miles primarily by yourself sounds like a crazy idea. I can only imagine what it sounds like to someone with no interest in the sport. There is really nothing else to compare what I am doing to. This type of tour is not that popular for the other sports. There is really no reason to visit all of the NFL, NBA or NHL stadiums because they are pretty much the same.
What I listened to in the car:
Comedy Bang Bang
WTF with Marc Maron – Hannibal Buress
After trying to explain myself, I was directed towards the immigration building and asked to step out of my car. I entered the building and began to answer questions as to why I was coming into Canada and why I had so much stuff in my car. I have the utmost respect for border control and I understand why being a single man with a car full of luggage and baseball bats may look suspicious. I have been open and honest with you about everything in my life so far, so it would be disingenuous for me to leave this part out. I do not like the fact that I am about to type this, but I also know that being brown does not necessarily work in my favor. I am not accusing anyone of anything, but it is something that goes through my mind when dealing with situations involving National/International security. Once again I will say that I fully understand why my car was looked at more thoroughly and why I was taken out of the line, but that did not stop me from being a bit scared and nervous as to what would happen to me. The woman at the border patrol asked me several questions about baseball including what my favorite team was, my favorite player etc. After I proved that I was in fact a baseball nerd, I was allowed to get back in my car and make my way to Toronto. I am glad that I decided not to cross the border yesterday as I would have been dealing with this at 1 AM instead of during the day, which I am sure would have been much more nerve wracking.
I am staying with a family friend in Toronto who I have not seen in several years. He and his wife now have a beautiful baby girl and graciously are allowing me to crash in their guest bedroom. Their apartment is amazing and I can not wait to check out all that Toronto has to offer in the next couple of days.
Miles Traveled: 98
Time in Car: 3 hours
Avg. Speed: 32.67 MPH
Sleep Time: 7 Hours
Bottles of Water: 8
Bathroom Stops: 1
Traffic Jams: 1 hour at the border
Food Eaten: Chicken shawarma from Liberty Shawarma, garlic chicken and shrimp butterfly from Young Thailand
Total Money spent today $0.00
Cumulative Miles through today 16,360
Cumulative Time in car through today 299 hours 50 minutes