Monday, June 16, 2008

We're Here

We arrived last Wednesday night having driven through the biggest thunderstorm I have seen in awhile for the last leg of the trip. Since then we have been unpacking, cleaning, and sightseeing with Taryn who was an amazing driving companion.

I'll try to post about our trip over the next few days - driving 2,000+ km with a 3 year old and a dog during a heat wave in June in New England was certainly an experience!

Days 1/2 - Annapolis Valley to Portland, ME via the CAT (586 km according to Google maps)
We left the Valley on Saturday afternoon to spend a night in Saulnierville with Bernard and Diane before catching the Cat on Sunday. Diane and Bernard made seafood chowder and rapure. I think Diane outdid herself this time on the chowder - I wish I could have brought some with us! We even had time to hit Frenchy's on Sunday before heading to Yarmouth.
I haven't taken the ferry to Maine since I was very little and after lots of discussion we decided it was the best option for this trip and we were right! The ferry was pretty empty since it is early in the season and I had a bag of activities for Isabelle for the 5.5 hour trip which I never opened!! There were three other young children on board and an activity director who coloured and glued with them the whole way. Eight movies showed during the crossing including Ratatouille and Flushed Away for the kids. The only downside was the food - which for the most part didn't look all that appetizing. We ended up having hot dogs but next time I would take a picnic lunch.

We arrived in Portland on time around 8:30 est but were the last in the line up for customs. This took a while since I had to apply for I-94 cards, get Maggie in and import the car. The officers were great - very patient and understanding. It helped that I had all the documents in one place. Since they were already processing someone else when we arrived they just took my paperwork and started mine while they finished the other and we waited outside the office. One big plus was that Paul had made multiple colour copies of all our passports and birth certificates (long form for Isabelle with both our names on it). So, rather than making black and white copies of our documents, they took the extra colour copies which were more legible. Essentially the border was easy since I was well prepared - vaccination certificate for Maggie, passports and birth certificates for Isabelle and me, marriage certificate, notarized letter from Paul saying I could cross the border with Isabelle and letter of compliance for the Subaru.

We spent the first night in Portland and I had some faxing to do since our stuff was in a truck at the border waiting for my paperwork to come through. I didn't sleep much but we had an easy day of shopping ahead in Kittery.

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