March 26, 1995 Niagara Falls
Bonjour Mi Amore. The long road was much longer this week—about 300 miles longer. Only this time it wasn’t full of hardships. Becky and I drove all the way to Ontario, Canada, to Niagara Falls. Only two people knew we were going—Becky’s roommate Shirley and my friend Elisha. Becky and I decided to take the trip on Tuesday and we left on Friday.
I picked Becky up from work and took her to get her things and to drop her house key off at the Roseland Tavern where Shirley was. It was 4pm when we got on US 30. Then we got onto 71 North and I90. We traveled through the city of Cleveland and through the states of Pennsylvania and New York. The Highway looked much the same. The trees were still bare and there both curving hills, empty fields, and, of course, the usual cityscapes. It took us six hours to get to our destination.
The lights weren’t on the falls, so we didn’t get a very good look at them until Saturday. Becky and I shopped mostly. We walked up and down the main stip. People were friendly. The town was well lit and clean. Around Midnight we pulled into the Comfort Inn. We paid $38 for a descent room. We wrote out postcards, talked and then slept.
Morning came and we ate the breakfast that I had packed. Then we ended up calling a taxi service to jump my stupid piece of crap car. Around 11:30am the car was running and we took off. We continued shopping, browsing a lingerie shop and a discount souvenir shop. Around 1:30pm we went to actual Niagara Falls Park. It was absolutely breathtaking. I couldn’t believe that I was actually there. I took lots of pictures and walked around quite a bit. The roar of the falls was constantly in the background as we explored.
After mailing out our postcards we decided to head back. It was after 5pm by the time we crossed the bridge back to the USA. We detoured a bit, but found our way to the US Park at Niagara Falls. First we stopped at the Rainbow Outlet Mall and ate our dinner in this beautiful greenhouse place outside of the mall. We got our picture taken in one of the fun photo-booths and then took a very long walk along the US side of the falls. The American side was just as breathtaking and beautiful. My feet ached by that time though. We had nearly walked around the whole damn thing by the end of the day. It grew dark, so Becky and I hopped back in my car.
I drove for a while and then let Becky drive as well. We stopped briefly to get not only gas, but oil as well. The car leaks and burns oil something awful. We spent maybe a total of $45 on gas. We also had to spend money at the toll booths along I90. Oh, and we got pulled over by a cop in New York for staying in the passing lane and for the huge cloud of smoke coming from behind my car. He told me to get my car fixed ASAP and let us go. Thank goodness we didn’t get a ticket, but it did give us a good scare. The rest of the way home we sang to the radio and talked. It was lots of fun, but we were exhausted by the time we arrived back home.
We got to Shirley’s place around 11:30 and midnight. Shirley and Keith had had a huge fight and I wasn’t allowed to spend the night. So, I drove the rest of the way from Lucas to Shelby and got home nearly 1am! Even though I was very tired, I couldn’t sleep. I tossed and turned before I finally got up at 9am.
Mom and Harold had gotten up and were getting ready. I told them that I’d just gotten back from Niagara Falls. It was a minor shock to hear she’d be getting a postcard from Canada. I’d merely told her I was spending the weekend with Becky. I hadn’t told her that we’d be leaving the country though. She probably wouldn’t have minded too much, but I knew she’d worry all weekend about me and my car. She would have been afraid that we wouldn’t have made it or that something would have happened to us.
Being independent like I was this weekend makes me feel more important and stronger. To experiences travelers it would be no big deal, but to this wide-eyed free spirit the adventure was simply marvelous! The freedom was wonderful and it was great to get away from all my daily emotional burdens that I’d been feeling all week long. For a long time I’ve struggled to just get through my day and now I think I will finally sleep soundly tonight and peacefully. I am going to surrender myself again and let it all go.