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Day Seven

Good morning. Once again I am trying to log onto the internet, no luck. To make matters worse, there is no coffee either. I shower, pack and hit the road. Next, I stop for gas. It’s a bit cold. I decide to stop for a brunch after 200km of riding and beating the GPS in a navigation competition. Someone in GARMIN forgot to map this area and the GPS announces to me every now and then that I am off route. It’s really insulting and now the GPS thinks so too? All along the way there are ‘new’ places; ‘New Haven’, ‘New Baltimore’ (where I stop for brunch) and so on. I have a cup of coffee and some French Toast (soon to become Liberty Toast), and I call a friend to tell him I’ll will be in Toronto tonight. Behind me I hear a couple talking about this crazy guy who’s going out riding today. I don’t understand what they’re talking about. The forecast is sunny and 20C and the same is forecast for Toronto. But between here and there…

I leave the diner and breathe the last dry air for the next few hours, and I’m still unaware of what is to come. Well, it’s time to roll. In two to three minutes the sky turns gray and two minutes more a light rain starts falling. My internal voice tells me to stop and put on my rain gear. Two more miles and there is a rest area where I stop to change. By now, the wind starts to blow as well and it’s cooling down. For the first time I have to cover my ‘uniforms’ with a sweatshirt and a rain coat on top of it. Some of the drivers at the rest area shoot me this look of pity and I continue. It’s raining. Raining I said? Pouring! A flood! I am glad I put the coat on. For a few seconds at the rest area I thought not to use it. I remember I didn’t pick up stones from Michigan and stop on the right shoulder to pick some. I get back onto the road while every one is averaging 85 m/h. I merge into the traffic. The rain continues and continues. The temperature drops. My gloves are wet. The palms of my hands feel like sponge. The hand heaters are on full heat. Rain starts dripping inside my helmet. Now I have refreshing splashes on my face… I close all of the air vents but the visor is already wet on the inside. I take the windshield down a bit so the wind will blow the water from the visor but instead – the water from the shield covers me even more. So, I take it up again and stand on the pegs for a while. It helps for a while. In the morning before I left I cleaned the helmet visor with this anti-fog/rain repellant cloth so at least I don’t have too much fog to block my vision. Not for a while at least. Then it starts. So I lift the visor a little bit and get splashed in the face. At 80 mph it’s like thick needles. I don’t like needles. Why don’t I stop, you ask? Good question. Because the rain is so heavy that I guess stopping on the shoulder might be more dangerous than flowing with the traffic. Each vehicle that moves can hit me. Slowly, I’m getting closer to the border. Just before the crossing there is a right turn to a bridge. The GPS says to continue straight. I’ve had enough with its bullshit for today. I insist and I am right. But, as I reach the turn, there is a sign “TOLL”!!!! They must be kidding me. Toll? Now??? They are not kidding. No toll and no nothing. But the rain! I hardly can see the road on the bridge. From here to ‘flying’ it’s just a mater of time. And if that’s not enough, I decide to take a picture. So this is the view – pouring rain, my bones have melted and are soft enough to be fed to a baby, one hand on the handle bar and one holds the camera. Surprisingly enough, the picture turned out to be clear enough.

I arrive at the immigration booth. I am shaking. But I am in Canada. How do I know? The guy is so nice. Where are you coming from and where too? I explain. “do you remember your license plate number?” I don’t. I try to get off the bike to check and he offers to get out of the booth and do it. I do it eventually. He apologizes for the weather! I swear! He bothers to explain that it was supposed to be sunny and warm and I am dying of laughter inside. Great to be home!

First sign you see – Casino. The rain is ‘easing’ but soon starts again. I arrive at London (Ontario), and at last – no more rain. I stop at Tim Hortons for hot chocolate and a doughnut. Maybe I’ll will join the police force? I call Gidion to complain about the weather he’s prepared for me. He does not understand what I am talking about. Go figure – in  Toronto, 120 km away, the sun is rising and life is beautiful. I believe him, stupid me.

I start riding. 15 minutes pass then 10 minutes pass, and a heavy flood covers the world. What I’ve experienced so far looks like light humidity compare to this. The truth is that I just imagine it because I couldn’t see it. The temperature is 9C (there was a lit sign) and now I leave it to your imagination how I feel. Now it’s hailing! The sound on my helmet is like a million hammers trying to break it. I am passing under a bridge that could have helped if I would have seen it on time. I am terrified that someone will ‘touch’ me. Why? I struggle between trying to see the road and trying to be a bit faster than the traffic and I continue. I disconnected all the electronics (excluding the GPS that is waterproof). Even the “sealed” map case on my fuel tank bag, has leaked. Later on I find that the entire bag is wet inside, including my notebook, telephones list and pictures. The rain coat helped but when I arrived later on that day, I find out that it only partially helped. My riding jacket is very wet and the pillows are saturated.  The sweatshirt under the rain coat – wet. The shirt under the sweatshirt – wet. And as for  me? My bones are shaking.

I am in Toronto. How do I know? A) it’s sunny B) the road has these brown colored lanes (have no clue what it is) and C) the traffic stopped. Stopped. Not moving! The delay from the weather brought me here during rush hour. Switching back to Israel driving mode (how far I can adjust…) and start speeding, slowing, turning…. I try drying my gloves for 30 minutes in the wind. No luck. With the support of the GPS – I made it to my ‘destination’.

I relax and eat. I still can’t warm up. I decide to sleep early tonight but find myself at last writing the English “first two days” of the trip log. 1:15am. Going to bed. Good night.

Total to date – 4,120km