Thursday, July 7, 2011

Back in the USA

(Sault Sainte Marie, MI) Hi 79 Lo 58 -- We were up early and it was gorgeous out. The air was brisk and the lake was like a mirror.  We had mixed emotions today knowing we were leaving Canada, at least for this year. We’ll be back someday.

We pulled out at 9:15 and enjoyed the scenery as we went west. The terrain was rocky at first, with meadows and lots of trees. The farther we went the more trees we saw.  We stopped at a KFC for lunch in the town of Blind River.

We followed a river when we got closer to Sault Ste. Marie.
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And as we neared the International Bridge we waved goodbye to Canada.
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Of course we ran into road construction as we traveled through town and had to detour, which messed up our Google Maps route. We were thankful we had Nuvi (our Garmin GPS) to find our way to the International Bridge to the US.  When we got on the bridge I was ok at first, but then the border traffic backed up and Jim slowed way down then stopped... IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BRIDGE!!  I’m glad he talked to me, I was near panic. We sat quite awhile, so I finally got used to it enough to get a couple pictures.
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I was so glad to see the border station. Notice the grass on the roof of the building to the right.
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It took 1/2 hour to finally get to the head of the line. I was right behind Jim as he moved up to the booth. It seemed like he was taking forever, and he even turned his engine off. I thought, uh oh, things must not be going well. What was going on?  He finally turned on the engine and pulled away from the booth and stopped to to wait for me.

When I drove up to the booth the guy was laughing and said, "I hear you’re from NC."  He then said he used to live in NC and he started talking about the Carolina Hurricanes (hockey) and what a big fan he is. I knew then that everything was fine.  The only question he asked was, “Did you buy more than the two t-shirts your husband bought?”  I told him we bought a lot of food he laughed and welcomed us back to the states.  Jim said he asked if he had any liquor (which we expected), and then asked if he has any moonshine.  Jim must have given him a puzzled look, because he then laughed and started talking about his relatives in western NC who make moonshine. All in all, it was a real hoot... the border traffic was backed up for about a mile and he and Jim were just kicked back and shooting the breeze!  So we had no problems with the border crossing either coming or going.

Sault Ste. Marie straddles the St. Mary's River, which carries ship traffic between Lake Huron and Lake Superior. The city is in Canada on the north side and US (Michigan) on the south. We exited I-75 immediately and looped around and under the bridge to head into Sault Ste. Marie, MI.
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We were doing fine till we ran into more construction and another detour. This one was a lot rougher, with very narrow streets and tight turns. We even had to wait on a cement truck to clear out before we could go on. We finally got to our destination, Aune-Osborn Campground, which is right on the river just down from the famous Soo Locks. We’re very happy with this park.  It’s a lot like Mayport, FL where we stay whenever we travel to and from Florida.  The only thing we don’t have is a cement pad and sewer hookup.  We’ve already met neighbors that have been full time for seven years. They’re giving us some ideas on things to see and places to go in the area.  We're here for three days (four nights), unless we extend our stay.
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We have someone right behind us, but we can see the river from our side window where our chairs are, so we won’t miss much. 

We went to dinner at Antlers Restaurant, just a mile down the road. It’s a little pricey, but the food and atmosphere are both great. It's not hard to guess why they call it "Antlers."
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We always feel a little tired, but very relaxed, at the end of a travel day. We have a lot planned for the next few days so stay tuned.


Gypsy said...

You were fortunate to meet a nice border guard who wanted to talk Carolina. I've never had problems with the Canadian guards when entering that country, but have always had American guards with the personalities of a snake, and I'm probably insulting the snake.

Rick and Elaine NB said...

you had a great day....we've never had problems on the canadian side...but found like Gypsy the Us side was always a bit more tricky..glad your back on US soil safe and sound and that you enjoyed Canada :) next time come east!!!

Jay said...

I agree, the guards at the border crossing in Mexico are all business, never nice. We're planning to be in Sault Ste. Marie in a week or so.

Deborah said...

I have friends with a camp at Sault Ste. Marie....we hope to get up there one day soon...

Our experience with the border crossing into Canada is the disbelief that we don't have guns with us, since we are from Tennessee. Maybe once we get our South Dakota id's, we will not be questioned so heavily about firearms.

Mike and Terri said...

Welcome back to the U.S.! Glad to hear it was uneventful crossing back in.

KarenInTheWoods and Steveio said...

Glad they let you back in! After Sandra's experience, ya just never know what could happen!

Karen and Steve
(Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard

Nancy and Bill said...

Glad your back in USA!!

Another RV-Dreams couple is camping at Aune-Osborne. Roger and Diane Norris, blog (travelwithwhippets), arrived there on July 7th also!!

Margie and Roger said...

Roger and Diane (motorhome) who write the Travelin With Whippets blog are in the same campground as you.

Jim and Dee said...

This is a small world Travelinwithwhippets is sitting right behind us. Our window is facing their back end of the MH. We're waiting to meet them, they're not home at the moment.

Jim and Dee said...

This is a small world Travelinwithwhippets is sitting right behind us. Our window is facing their back end of the MH. We're waiting to meet them, they're not home at the moment.