Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mexican-Canadian Collision

This last weekend I planned with my foreign exchange roommates to drive up to Vancouver, Canada to visit some of Belen's "English speaking" Mexican friends. Not a problem right? We had all of their paperwork including: visas, foreign exchange documents, even a permission slip from Peggy Earl explaining they would be traveling with me.

We set out for our adventure Wednesday around noon; the Mexi (Belen) in the passenger seat, the Taiwanese (Tricia) chillin in the back. We arrived at the border in no time, it was great! 4.5 hours, record timing! Too good to be true. The Canadian security guard's hideous grimace could no doubt make anyone feel hostile. He interrogated our lives with many questions and slapped down the fact that we were not going to Canada that day because the Taiwanese didn't have a Canadian Visa. What the? No one else needed one, why her? And we were seriously a half hour from our destination: (

The rest of the evening we spent hours driving between cities trying to find internet to see if the Canadian Visa was attainable within the next 24 hours; sadly our answer was no. We play a thousand scenarios on what to do next, meanwhile with nowhere to go. Dave and Peggy are gracious enough to help us find a hotel. We spend the night and decide that we will drive 2 hours to Seattle the next morning. Tricia had graciously decided to hitch a ride/day trip with an Earl family friend to take her back home to Moses Lake.

Belen and I drive up North again for three hours for a second shot at getting through the border. We totally have this one under control, we are thinking. Bam! We get stuck with some security lady who looks like she hasn't smiled in years. Okay, seriously did someone write terrorist on our foreheads? Because she didn't believe the fact that all we wanted to do was see Canada! ( So we didn't really want them to know about the people we were seeing in Canada because we didn't want a thousand questions asked...not doing that again) But I think she thought I was kidnapping a Mexican and we were running away together to live illegally in Vancouver.

We were sent inside the official building again, just like the day before, and they questioned us together and separately for roughly 10 minutes each (it could have been shorter, but it felt like a mill years). Trying to match our stories up? Who knows? We finally made it through after they did a full inspection of my vehicle. Ha, but didn't catch the carrots I hid under my seat!

So that fiasco consumed the first 32 hours of the trip, how wonderful! What was the result? The beginning of my getaway vaca. landed me with wasted money on gas, miles, hotel and was finished with a weekend of hanging out with Mexicans! Belen and I saw a little bit of Vancouver. But I had a hard time remembering what country I was in! English was spoken sometimes, but rarely (and no I was not speaking Spanish all weekend. I was speaking broken Spanglish. Oh so fun!)

What sort of things did we do? Oh that's right we ate at Mexican restaurants, went clubbing...loved the idea of that until I realized we were going to a Latin club, and we just chilled a lot at their apartment listening to Spanish music.

Oh, how I love stories like this one! I enjoyed myself in the end and I really enjoy the Latin culture, so it worked out great. And of course, Belen and I were stopped at the border for 45 minutes for "random inspection" at the U.S. border to top it off!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The first and hopefully not the last

Whitney is venturing into the blogging world. Why does she feel a need to write about herself? She is just a 22 year old girl who spends her days thinking about what color her hair will be next, what vacation is around the corner and what food she is anticipating to consume. Her thoughts are clearly confined to her own selfish life, but she wants to give more. Give more to her friends and family that are always giving to her. So here it goes, the first and hopefully not the last blog post.