I’m writing this post while keeping one eye on the cricket between
Anyways, I was in and around
The trip got off to a great start at The Crappiest Place on the Planet, or as it is better known, Terminal 3 of Chicago’s O’Hare airport. I was in line waiting to go through the metal detector thingy. I had taken off my belt and my shoes and put my cell phone, ipod and wallet in the little plastic container that they give you. My carry-on bag had absolutely no metal in it, unless you consider flip-flops and t-shirts metallic. I’m usually very careful about this stuff. Because I’m brown, I’m over cautious in trying not to arouse any suspicion, if only to avoid delays and checks. Anyways, so I pass through the stupid machine, don’t set it off (as usual), and prepare to walk to my departure lounge. There’s a security dude standing a couple of feet back of the machine, checking ID and making sure it matches the name on the boarding pass. So he says to me, “Boarding pass and ID please.” I hand him my passport and boarding pass. He took one look at the words “Islamic Republic of Pakistan” on the front of my passport, circled something on my boarding pass, and said, “Sir, you have been randomly selected by American Airlines for a security check. Please step to the side.”
I had not set off the beep at the stupid machine. My bag had absolutely nothing in it. I am a normal looking person, and was wearing normal looking clothes. I was functioning on a severe lack of sleep and had been carrying two heavy bags all across
But, honestly, having to go through a superfluous security check is not even what pissed me off the most. No, what pissed me off the most was the fact that the jackass in uniform used the words “randomly selected.” Randomly selected? Randomly selected? Are you fucking kidding me? I was not fucking randomly selected, ok? I was selected because of my Pakistani passport. Please do not cause me unnecessary delays and insult my intelligence. If you want to pat me down, pat me down. But when doing so, just use the words, “Sir…actually, wait scratch that. I’m not calling you ‘Sir’. I’m calling you BP, for Brown Person. BP, we’re going to pat you down, even though you didn’t set off the stupid beep. We’re going to go through your bag, even though it has three t-shirts and a pair of flip-flops and the guy behind the computer knows that. BP, we want you to know that we’re going to do this because you’re brown, and all brown people are security threats. Please step to the side. And wipe that exasperated expression off your face, unless you want your country to be bombed to the stone age. Thank you. Actually, wait, scratch that. There’s no reason to say ‘Thank you’. Just step to the side and wipe that exasperated expression off your face.”
This is something I just didn’t understand. The airport code for the Pearson airport in
This is apparently the longest street in the world. Guinness Book of World Records and everything. It’s also pronounced “Young” though its spelling suggests it should rhyme with “sponge”. Anyways, I was given a tour of this street in the downtown
I actually preferred this street called
I got my token “Canadians Being Really Nice To You” experience in this area. My fiancée and I sat down at this coffee shop for a break from all the walking. About 45 minutes after leaving, I realized I had left my backpack on one of the chairs at the coffee place. As am I quite wont to do, I got quite panicky, especially considering the backpack had my ipod, keys and camera. I ran back and it was right where I had left it, more than an hour after I had done so. When I found it, I heaved a sigh of relief, and then asked myself why I was so worried. These people have the nicest friggin’ reputation in the world. I don’t even think tourists are surprised anymore when Canadians are really nice to them. I mean, if someone had taken that bag, they could have made $600 on ebay, plus have access to the abject destitution that is my room in
In many ways,
Aren’t They Supposed to be a Environmentally Conscious Country?
I was completely and utterly shocked to discover the cost of public transport in
One word of advice: Go. Just go. Ok, that was three words, but whatever. This was honestly one of the most exhilarating experiences of my life. The sight of the falls itself is unbelievable, what with the rainbows and everything, but they have a thing for tourists where they put you on a boat and take you right under the falls. You’re just a few meters away from billions of liters of water crashing down. It’s one of those things in life that you simply have to do, provided of course you have the opportunity to do so. Trust me on this.
Oh, and go from the Canadian side. Apparently the American side is much crappier. That’s what everyone says.
Next post, maybe tomorrow: applying for my