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2011 The Nightingale's Oddessy Our exchange year in Canada.

Erie Pennsylvania US Thanksgiving

CANADA | Thursday, 8 December 2011 | Views [459]

The Big Shopping trip; US Thanksgiving Weekend, Erie Pennsylvania

Our last trip South of the border, this time for the Thanksgiving Weekend in the States. Thanksgiving Black Friday is like Boxing Day back in Australia, when all the bargains are on offer. So ourselves, the Barnards and McMahons all decided to head down to Erie in Pennsylvania to do some shopping. Why Erie you may ask?

- Mainly because it was somewhere new, we were told it has some big malls and Pennsylvania doesn’t have any state tax, so it is cheaper all year round than other states.

Chelle arranged to finish early on the Friday so we could hopefully beat what we expected to be heavy traffic at the border. As it turned out we were across in 30 seconds!  However it was at the border the fun began.....  As I applied the park brake there was a loud snap as the cable broke. The border guard heard it and Chelle was worried he might mistake it for a gunshot and do something silly. Luckily he didn’t and we moved on a little down the road and discovered the broken cable.  So began our tentative drive to Erie ...2 hour trip....

Anyway, we made it to Erie ok and got parked, ( luckily it’s an automatic) First thing we noticed was that the rest of Ontario had joined us to do the shopping. There were nothing but Ontario number plates in the parking lot!! Once settled in, we met the others in the restaurant for dinner. The motel had its own restaurant and bar where we had all envisaged having a pleasant meal!!! The food here would have made truckstops look good; Kev had a pizza that was the greasiest I have come across, Laureen’s sampler of vegies tacos and other nameless morsels had been deep fried within an inch of their life and the piece de resistance was Belinda’s garlic butter chicken wings, that was a swimming pool of garlic butter with some wings floating precariously amongst it.  Our arteries were hardening as we watched and attempted to drain the gallons of oil off our food before eating reluctantly.(needless to say – much was left over)

Dinner put paid to the idea of relaxing in the tavern so Kev, took the girls shopping to get Friday night bargains while Mick and I took the kids back to the rooms to watch TV and play DS’s. The relatively late night, meant a bit of a sleep in and before taking our lives in our hands and trying breakfast. Yep breakfast wasn’t much of an improvement over dinner. I did get to try grits however (some kind of spicy sausage gravy) and vowed never to do so again.

After breakfast, it was hit the shops and then after lunch the guys took the kids to Splash Lagoon indoor water park. The kids had been looking forward to this part of the trip ever since I had mentioned it and luckily it wasn’t a disappointment. The afternoon for the kids was spent in and out of all the pools and slides at Splash Lagoon.  One of the many things they do well in this part of the world is indoor water parks. I guess because of the cold weather. Later that evening we met up with some foot sore and weary women all shopped out after their big day and unlike the night before we had a pleasant meal at one of the bar and grill places nearby called “Applebees”.

Sunday, after breakfast, we left the others and set off early hoping to beat the rush at the border, again our luck must have been in, because there were no lines and the wait was less than five minutes. We had been anticipating hours, especially as we had seen so many people from Canada with the same idea. Anyway, both us and the car made it safely back home and we ticked off another weekend and good times with new friends in new places.  Our only regret was that other Exchange families couldn’t have joined us in the adventure and laughs....

Another weekend full of activity and one less to go.....


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