Last week, we took a family vacation, seven fun-filled days of togetherness in a car. We started in Niagara Falls. Well first the
saga journey started with a trip to the US Passport office.
Since Hubs and I are planners (yeah right) we decided at the last minute that the girls needed Passports just in case we wanted to go to Canada. On day one of the trip, we would be in the car for over 10 hours, who knew where we could end up ?
Did you know that it is not possible to get a passport on the same day you apply? Us, well, we are idiots. We did know that both girls needed to be there with both parents. Boo had an appointment at CHB (imagine that) so we thought, two birds one stone.
Except we were wrong. You can pay a huge amount of money to receive the passport the next day. We forked over the money, because it is entirely possible we will get lost and somehow cross the border. While we joke that it might be a nice to have the Canadian government babysit the children so we can have some couple time, we are afraid Allie may stage a coup.
Imagine, Allie the PM of Canada. Heck, this kid would probably crown herself Queen. Yup, better get the passports.
We told Boo’s program that she would be out for a week to visit Niagara Falls. They asked, kindly, if we remember that Boo has sensory issues and really HATES loud noises.
Oops, kind of forgotten about that part of her personality. We were just looking at the pictures online and thought how cool would this be?
We were not getting parents of the year, I guess. Because we decided to go for it anyway. Putting the girls in the car at the butt crack of dawn, we took off for Upstate New York for two days of fun or torture. We arrived 11 hours later and after a quick hotel check-in we were off to the US side of Niagara Falls.
Let the adventure begin!
The US side of the Falls is so pretty. A nice State Park with lots of paved trails and views of above the falls.
But we dared to go further, into the falls, into the Cave of the Winds. This was a lot of fun for Allie…
Boo, on the other hand? Well she decided to keep much more difference between the Cave and her chair (notice she is facing the Cave to make sure they don’t sneak up on her)…
The nice Park Ranger took a family photo that we can pass off as Boo entering the Cave. But Allie noticed Boo’s hair wasn’t wet and fears that might give away her secret.
After being up since 4AM and then the excitement of the Falls we headed back to the hotel for some hydro-relaxation-therapy at the pool. Sorry no pics of us in bathing suits. Trust me your eyes will thank me.
Day 2 we went to the Canada side of the Falls. Because we are ignorant Americans we were kind of afraid to drive over the Border. Where would we park? Would the Canadians speak English (after all, I don’t speak French when they come here)? How would we pay (do they accept dollars, what is the exchange rate)? So we decided to walk over the Bridge/Border. Except we ran into one small problem. It seems that Canada isn’t really handicap accessible…
There was no way to get Boo’s chair through! Hubs had to go through and ask the nice Border guard to open the door for us. No photo because, well I am afraid of Border guards. Once we got through the gate we were off to explore Allie, Boo’s and Hub’s first foreign country (hey, I went to Spain at 16 and that totally counts).
And not to judge the whole of Canada on our short 15 mile walk through Niagara, but seriously, would it hurt them to put at least one handicap ramp along our route? Thankfully Boo is small so we could lift her chair up and down the stairs. Allie, well she had to walk. Again, not judging a whole country….
Thankfully the views were spectacular.
After getting our fill of the Falls we headed to higher ground (think a mile up hill, straight up hill). We found an Oasis….Margarita Ville, Canada!
I warned you we were ignorant American’s!! After rocking it out with Jimmy Buffet we headed back out to the Sky Wheel, I think that was the name. I blame the frozen margarita. Where the girls (and us) had a great time seeing the Falls from above.
this was a miniature golf course under the ride
Why did both Hubs and Allie take pictures of the dinosaur? I have no freaking idea. I think it was the 90 degree weather…after the Sky Wheel the adults were in need of refreshment, Allie needed ice cream. And apparently Boo needed a frog fix so we headed to the Rain Forest Café (yes, I know Boo has sensory issues…think of it as
waterboarding I mean therapy).
After refreshing ourselves we headed back to America…
Where the girls got some much needed rest…
Before we woke their lazy butts up at the butt crack of dawn to head to Chicago for our nephew’s graduation. Why did I wake Allie? She said the best part of the trip was the pool. Hello, ungrateful child????
But this is what we learned on our excursion…foreign countries are not scary. In fact the residents of Niagara Canada spoke better English than those at home. Also, they do take American cash and credit. However we never did learn where that handicap ramp was located. In the end, Boo rocked her new chair, Allie had ice cream and the Hubs and I enjoyed our Buffet drinks.
A good time was had by all. And that my friends is the story of our Niagara Adventure.
Oh and one last note…if you do walk to Canada, the way back is much more accessible however it does cost 50 cents per person to come back to America. In quarters. So make sure you are prepared. Otherwise you might have to leave someone behind.
Kidding! We did not leave Allie to take over Canada. However we did let her borrow the two quarters to come home with us.