Oh Canada!

Having my US passport state I was born in Arabia was never really a problem, that was until 9/11. Perhaps the fact I sport a shaved head with beard adds to some people’s issues. Oh well, I like my shaved head and beard.

Continuing on our US road trip, our original plan departing Portland, Maine was to head south towards Savannah and then down to the Florida Keys. When Hurricane Kyle had decided to badly pound the eastern seaboard and the south, we rethought our plans.

So we shifted gears and at the urging of all around us (“go to Canada, it’s beautiful and the people are amazing”) and went north. We headed up the 201 towards Jackman and the Canadian border on a wonderful fall afternoon.

We arrived at the border crossing with no other travelers in site, this was gonna be a fast trip across the lines. At a small booth at the edge of the US, a Canadian Mountie examined our passports. “Thank you sir, here is your passport,” he says handing the passport back to Frank, and then he stared at my passport intensely. He walked away from the window, he walked back, and he walked away again and then returned.

“You didn’t sign your passport, I’m going to ask you to pull around to the station over to the right sir.” “Really?” I replied thinking to myself I had been all over South America and back on that same non-signed passport.

We parked, walked around and entered the border crossing office. The mountie behind the counter asks about my business in Canada. “Just seeing North America, sir” I reply. “Where are you staying in Canada?” Going to Quebec City and then on to Montreal with no real set itinerary” I stated. This did not seem to be the answer he was looking for. “Have a seat” he said and was off.

After what seemed like an eternity but was closer to 30 minutes the mountie returned.

“Thank you Mr. Murphree, have a great day.”

As we leave Frank whispers, “Did he even have you sign the passport?”

“Uh, no.”

“At least those French Canadian mounties were gorgeous, so it was worth the wait,” he laughs.

Yeah but I’m still not shaving off my beard.

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a couple of ‘mos with a story or two to tell…