No-one can sleep late in a motel. All the early risers wake those who wish to sleep-in a bit. On the morning of our third and last day in Detroit, the son and I had juice and pills, packed our stuff, double-checked the room, loaded the car and checked out by 11 AM.
Normally, we would have returned the plastic pass-keys. The electronic code on the door is changed, so you can’t use them to get back in later, and they cost the motel less than a dollar to replace. This time however, instead of two white cards, with “Red Roof Inn” imprinted on them, we got one advertising Hungry Howie’s restaurant chain, with the telephone number of the new one up the street near the Tim Hortons. I’ve seen them in Florida, but I guess they’re moving north.
Corporate America never misses a chance to promote itself. Recently someone commented that, soon, they’ll have advertising in washrooms. Sorry old fellow. Even out here in the boonies, I’ve seen ads above urinals for twenty years. Some of the newer places have even installed flat-screen monitors above, beside, or even in, washroom mirrors.
After we ate our bacon breakfasts, and watched the floor show at Denny’s, we drove a couple of miles up the side road to gas the car up, ready for the trip home. Here in Canada, it’s unusual to see even two-tenths of a cent/liter difference in price between nearby stations. In Detroit, we saved 9 cents/Am. gal. by driving two miles off the interstate.
The Gibraltar Trade Center sits right beside I-75. We returned and went in. The son hasn’t been there for ten years, so he was more interested than I was. He found, and I purchased, the last pancake batter pitcher they had, that the wife told us to keep an eye out for.
I’ve been through the place maybe twenty times. I’m getting bored with it. I saw a TV ad for another Trade Center, further north, that we may try next time the wife and I go down. It also has a Red Roof nearby, I-94 access, and less driving south, then north, to get to the knife show.
We wandered the main floor for a couple of hours, then had some late lunch. Sadly, my lack of physical labor in retirement has cut down the amount I can eat. All I had room for was a plate of chilli-cheese nachos. All that great food available, and nowhere to put it. The bridge said “Thanks!”
We paid our way into the gun and knife show in the show area and looked at some interesting firearms. We each were allowed to handle a “Dirty Harry” .44 Magnum pistol, and a huge .50 caliber handgun. Special note to RCMP officer’s wives who might read this; none of them managed to follow us home, and we left all anti-social tendencies at the border, for the Americans.
At both shows, all entrants were given a half-sheet printed notice which read; ATTENTION CUSTOMERS: When bringing firearms into a Gun and Knife Show, please follow these simple steps: Bring firearm in with no ammo in firearm (no exceptions). Have firearm inspected and safety-strapped by security at entrance. We will not allow firearms to be unloaded at door. They must be unloaded prior to entering the facility. There simply is no room for error in a show of this size. This policy is for the safety of all.
Finally, about 4 o’clock, we climbed into the car, got our snacks and drinks for the drive arranged, dug out American money for bridge-fare, and our passports, and headed back to the sane side of the river. Late Sunday afternoon, the bridge didn’t seem busy, but when we exited to the customs plaza, all 18 lanes were backed up. Still, the lines moved well. We didn’t creep forward for more than ten minutes.
We each delivered our well-rehearsed lines about how long we’d been gone, and how much we were bringing back, to a happy, overly-polite Canadian Customs official, and were soon on the highway heading home.
If all goes well, with the wife’s assistance, I’m including some photos, and possibly a video of the big wind-turbines we took last October, as well as a shot of what Heaven looks like from the Canadian side.