Thursday, July 21, 2016

89: Oh, Canada!

We crossed the St Clair River into Canada on the Blue Water Ferry and began the international leg of our journey.
Arrival in Sombra, Canada

As we rode into Ontario, I noticed that this part of Canada looks quite a bit like the part of Michigan we just left. It is flat farmland, peppered with small towns. Here comes the big three again:  corn, wheat and soybeans! We also saw sugar beets, which were being grown on the US side of the border as well.

Scooping up the wheat chaff for baling
One thing that we did NOT see, which was curious to us both, was roadkill. Maybe someone can enlighten us. The roads were similar - rural, in farming country, lightly traveled. There should be lots of wildlife here on the Canadian side of the border, just as there was in America.  And yet, there are no flat animals along the roadside. It's hard to imagine there are no small mammals crossing the roads in Canada.  Are the Canadian drivers just too courteous to hit them? Are the animals faster, or smarter, and therefore able to avoid being hit? Or does someone come along and clear them from the roadside? If you know, please let us know. In nearly 50 miles riding today, I saw only one or two small animals by the way. Statistically, that's phenomenal!
Then OUT comes the bale!
We were lucky enough to catch one of the farmers working to bale the wheat stems and chaff left on the fields. A little further down the road, we saw someone going through the field, using a large machine that seemed to be turning the soil under, so the remaining stalks could be mulched. And later we saw a truck carrying many bales of straw from one field off to storage. At one farm, a truck was being loaded with wheat coming from a silo through a long tube. Off to market for that batch! So I guess that's the final step.
Taking the straw bales in from the field for storage

It's funny - we are so fastidious about food safety.  If you drop a cracker on the ground, someone will tell you to throw it out. But here is all this wheat being trucked around and stored in big silos, then vacuumed up into big trucks again, and who knows what's in those trucks? We should all just lighten up a bit, probably! Nothing on the ground is going to hurt you compared to what that wheat's already been through!

We had our fifteen minutes of fame today: at our lunch stop (great restaurant in Wallaceburg, James Street Eatery), we met the Assistant General Manager of the local radio station. So we went over to do a short interview with him! If I can find a link to the spot, I will let you know.
Roger with Jay getting ready for our interview!
After lunch, we made a stop at a very interesting historical site: Uncle Tom's Cabin. For real. Josiah Henson was a former slave who made it to Canada and established a community near here to provide support, education and jobs to other former slaves. He was also a preacher, and was the inspiration for Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom.
This was the home of Josiah Henson - the historical "Uncle Tom"

Another milestone today - a new nation! That, plus the worst spaghetti I have ever had, completed another amazing day. We are looking forward to reaching the shore of Lake Erie tomorrow, where we will ride for the next few days.
Just how high is an elephant's eye, anyway?

The day's report: Marine City to Ridgetown, 49.8 miles/4472 to date


  1. Roadkill = shepherds pie?........... ;)

    1. I asked someone today, and he said that they actually do come out and pick up the dead animals. So who knows?

  2. I believe that's the job of the Royal Mounted Police in peace time....which is all the time in Canada!


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