Monday 31 March 2008

Things Tourists Do

Can you believe I've never ever seen Niagara Falls? How can you travel as much as I have and not have seen one of the Wonders of the World when it is in your own country? OK, so it is a big country but I consider this to be a major oversight.

One would assume that given I was coming to Toronto, I would think gee, maybe I oughta pop over and see Niagara. But no. It takes some cleaver colleague to come up with the bright idea. At which point I slap my forehead and think doh, why didn't I think of that.

So yesterday at the crack of dawn, (which isn't really a problem since when consumed with jet lag in this direction I'm up before the crack of dawn) we head off in one rental car, a map (and I use that term loosely), and a rough idea which direction we might find the falls. I just didn't think we would miss it. I mean, it's gonna be sign posted right?

So a little over an hour and 1/2 later (after a couple wee breaks given my water consumption) we know we are close. We are following the signs looking for parking (like obedient tourists). I'm wondering how far of a walk from the parking we will need to take since it is freezing cold. I'm thinking a couple miles and I'm really glad I brought my scarf and glove but I'm thinking the last minute decision to leave behind my hat was a bad one.

We can hear the water but can't see the water. We round a bend in the road and I nearly drive the car off the road as I let go of the steering wheel and turn my body 45 degrees. My mouth drops open wide enough to drive a bus into.

There in front of us is the biggest, most beautiful waterfalls I have ever seen in my life. The trees and walkway railings are covered in ice which has frozen from the mist.

It is early on a Sunday morning and there are very few tourists around. We've got the place to ourselves nearly.

We got soaked from the mist as we walk from the Horseshoe Falls and down past the falls that are on the USA side. It is cold but I have to say, you get a much better view from the Canadian side. When I return home I'll get those photos loaded up pronto!

After spending a few hours gawking at the beauty we took a scenic route back to Toronto and I stopped off at a food court so my colleagues could grab a bite to eat. As they sat devouring their Wendy's burgers and fried, I drank water and lusted after a Taco Bell bean burrito. Yeah, I know, if you're going to break the diet do it big but don't do it with Taco Bell! But my willpower kept me going and I resisted the temptation. Today is Day 30. Only 70 more to go. that sounded good in my head but it now seems a long way off! I don't have a scale in my room so I can't weigh myself every day religiously like I had been doing which some say might be a good thing.

After getting freshened up after we returned to the hotel, a couple colleagues went to the basketball game but I am sure I made a better decision. We checked out The Second City Comedy Club last night. I've always wanted to go there. It is the famous haunt of John Candy, John Belushi and Gilda Radner (to name just a few comedic greats). We saw an amazing troupe put on an hilarious show. I laughed so hard tears were running down my cheeks and my sides ached from laughing for about 2.5 hours solid. I won't even attempt to describe it here. Somehow I feel the humour will have all gone out of it.

TOP TIP: If you ever come to Toronto make the comedy club a must see!


Janell said...

I'd never seen Niagara Falls, either, but now I've seen it through your eyes. Thanks. The vacation I want to take is a train trip across Canada.

Sue said...

I have never seen the Falls either. It is on my "bucket list". Just have to find someone else to go with. (Janell?).

MJ Panton said...

Quote: "the Wonders of the World when it is in your own country?"

Umm... its in Canada....

LaDawn said...

my dear husband, you are mistaken. Go look at a map!

Janell said...

She's right, Marc. It's in the US.