* August 2: I met Dan and Dale at Starbuck's in Aloha. Dale was late, but Dan was expected to be typically late. This time he was over an hour late and Dale verbally beat him up over it, but we had a good laugh over it. It must go on the record that I was on time! I had once concern with my bike, Barney. Recently it has been oozing petrol out of the left carburetor and, on this morning it was really bad. While waiting for the boys, I lowered the float level hoping that would fix the issue.
We eventually got rolling and headed north on I5. My bike wouldn't run faster than 60mph though. Dang! We surmised that it was due to the float level now being too low, so I raised it slightly and the problem went away. It still continued to sweat gas around the float bowl though. We stopped in Bellingham and I treated everyone to dinner at the Olive Garden before crossing the border and debated about where to cross at. I suggested the smaller crossing at Sumas, but Dan insisted it would be faster at the main crossing at the Peace Arch, since Sumas was 10 miles or so out of the way. I wish I would have chosen Sumas.
We made our way to the I5 crossing at the Peace Arch and split into three different booths as we rode up. This is where things went horribly wrong. The Canadian official inside the booth asked me where I was going and I said, “I'm finally going to Alaska - woohoo!” I exclaimed.
He said sternly, “Take off your sunglasses.” I did. He then asked for my name.
I replied, “Tom Niemela. Hey, how many people have said their name was 'Tater Salad' to you?”
He replied, “Where do you work and what is your occupation?”
“I'm a geek at Intel” I replied, then chimed in, “Hey, any way you can tease my friend over there about smuggling jelly beans or something?”
He replied more sternly, “Where do you work and what is your occupation?”
“Um, I am an engineer at Intel Corporation” I said. Clearly he was not pleased with me.
“Where's your badge?” he asked.
I replied, “Now why would I take my work badge with me on vacation?”
“You seem like a troublemaker to me. Here is your passport. Take it and this paper, park over there on the left and step inside the building.”
WTF? I must've did it good this time. Sometimes I just don't know when to shut my yapper. I went inside and waited for what seemed like forever while they must have ran a full, life investigation on me. While I was waiting, one border guy was giving a major ass chewing at some guy about taking tires over the border and not paying a tax or something crazy. I mean he was in his face! Then they called up some other guy and started inquiring about some checks he bounced in 1982! Good God, if they're zeroing in on something from that long ago, I figured I was toast.
So you are probably wanting me to cut to the chase, so bottom line, they denied me access to Canadia. Yep, denied. Guess I should've paid that speeding ticket in California from 1987. Never thought I was a 'troublemaker', but I now have proof.
Note to self: don't be a smart ass to the border guards. I was stunned and embarrassed as I came out of the building and had to lay down the bad news to D&D. So all the jubilation we were feeling just moments prior was now completely polarized. I had to then bid farewell to D&D and got in the line to come back to the States. This sucked and the USA border dude couldn't believe it either, but it wasn't his country, so there was nothing he could do.
So my trip is now completely changed. I'm heading East to Glacier Park and maybe even Yellowstone. It's been awhile since I've been to both. Hell's fire, I may even take in the Sturgis Rally and hang with the Harley posers, but I'm not going to let some schmo at the border (and my stupidity) ruin my vacation. So stay in this forum to continue reading about D&D's Alaska Trip – I won't be a part of it. And yes, I considered crossing at a different location, but thought better of it, since I was now in their damn computer. So I've created another forum for my 'Anti-Canadian Trip' and you can monitor that by CLICKING HERE.
Best of luck Dan and Dale and post when you can, so I can live vicariously! Alaska or bust? I went bust!