May 19th --The Niagara Falls to Detroit through Canada--


It was very very fortunate of me that I could get the full amount of traveller's check this morning. I could get the necessary amount of cash at CitiBank, and could also buy the same amount of traveller's check at AAA. Now I know that the limit varies place to place. Anyway, all I care about now is the progress of the repair of my car.

I drove into Canada and parked my car near the Table Rock Complex. It was raining and very chilly, so I went up a cliff by the incline railway. I found the "OK gift shop" on the top of the cliff. This is owned by a famous Japanese TV entertainer called Kyosen Ohashi. If you are a Japanese, you can't miss this place. When I entered, I was surprised to hear people say "Irassyai-mase" (May I help you?) right away, without any hesitation, as if the shop were in Japan. They even repeated it through microphone when a group of Japanese came in. Goods sold there were pretty good indicating a good sense of Kyosen.

After shopping, I went back to the incline, took some pictures and went down the cliff. I walked to the waterside, but shower with strong wind brought me into a fast food. I had a lunch of minimum quality and went back to my car. It was time to leave. I drove to the Rainbow Bridge to take the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW). On the way, I found a welcome sign of Ontario. I tried to take it from my car, but I couldn't. I decided to go back and stop in front of the sign. I drove around the area for some time and took a good picture of it.

The QEW went along the Lake Ontario for some time. Then I changed to the highway 403 west, which merged the highway 401 soon. The road in Canada was almost the same as in US except for metric signs. The speed limit was 100 km/h. I wondered if they measure gas by liter. So I dropped by a gas station and be pleased to see the metric pump. The price say 70.4, meaning 70.4 Canada cent per liter. Yes metric system has settled in Canada. Three hours drive took me to Windsor, the other side of Detroit. I went to the waterfront, rollerbladed a little bit, took some pictures of the city of Detroit. Then I took a tunnel to Detroit. The Michigan State welcomed me.

I drove in the downtown. As is often the case in a big city, I lost my way again. I stopped to make sure my way. I took the US-12 to find a motel near the Henry Ford Museum. There are many old, empty buildings showing the declined industry. The town along the US-12 was like a ghost town, as if time had stopped long ago. I found a huge building with broken windows on my left. I stopped and took some pictures. Watching this reality was shocking to me. And this is never "none of my business". Semiconductor industry may have similar experience in the future leaving a ghost town in silicon valley. I believe that preventing this kind of thing is one of the important missions of the government. A motel was also no good, maybe the worst cost performance I ever had.

The welcome sign of Michigan

The OK gift shop

The Horseshoe Falls

The welcome sign of Ontario, Canada

The city of Detroit seen from Windsor

An abandoned building


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Copyright (C) Tadao Hashimoto