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How not to drive a stick...

Location: London, Ontario, Canada

It has certainly been a long day, but very productive. I stayed up all night last night, and more than anything, got all of my ducks in a row. I made about 20 lists of the things that I need to get done before Thursday, I scoured places for us to stay on Thursday and I did some thorough cleaning of my e-mail boxes. In addition, I made some substantial progress on my project for the Port of Long Beach; not enough progress to be able to relax and go out with my friends tonight, but enough progress to where I didn’t have to work in the car.

The drive today was incredibly short. We just had to pop down from Rochester to London, Ontario where we are staying with some of Dan’s friends from Panorama. We left Rochester at about 11 and headed for Niagara Falls. We ran into an anomaly at the US border when the border guard felt the need to chat us up and joke around with us for a couple minutes. He was so nice and I was glad to not suffer through the nerve racking interrogation that usually occurs when crossing the border.

We tried to find a parking spot near the falls so we could get out and walk around, but alas, we couldn’t find anything for less than $20. So I blurt out, “Well, why don’t I drive and drop you off and just come back and pick you up in like 15 minutes?” Great idea, Hesser… especially since you haven’t driven a stick in like 5 years. So Dan and I switch spots, he cringes as I kick the thing into first gear and we pull ahead… slowly… slow… almost… Yes, no. Stall. Ok, that’s fine, it was my first try in a while, and it’s a new car for me. Breathe. Alright, let’s try again. Breaks, clutch, first gear… slowly… ease… Ahhhh! *Jerks Forward*, *Jerks back* , *Jerks forward*, *back*, KEEP, *Jerks forward*, GOING, *back*… ahhhh… first gear :) And we’re off! I managed to circle the block while the boys jumped out to look at the falls, and didn’t completely strip the gears.

The rest of the way through Canada was smooth sailing. Dan got his first glimpse of Lake Ontario (I tried to tell you it looks like the ocean!) and then we turned south. We arrived into London in time for Trevor (our host for the evening) to take us on a nice leisurely drive through the hotspot that is London, Ontario. It was quite a pleasant place, looks a bit like Tulsa, actually. We’re back at the house now and watching a bit of TV (while I’m getting some more work done and hanging out with my new best friend, Trevor’s cat). Looks like we’re going to head to a sports bar tonight to watch MNF and the Leaf’s hockey game. Excited for a little relaxation!


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