Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Granger, IN to Niagra Falls, NY to someplace outside Rochester, NY

I admit it--I thought Niagara Falls was going to be an highly overrated tourist trap. I also thought it was mostly going to be tall and skinny. I was completely wrong, I happily admit. Touristy, yes, but justifiably so. Cool things I learned about Niagara Falls: they keep getting bigger over the geological eons and in fact a huge chunk on the American side dropped off a few decades ago (there's a great photo of a lone tree that hung onto the edge of the Falls for a month before toppling over); a lot of ice builds up at the base of the Falls every year and in fact one year the Falls themselves completely froze; on the Canadian side a large boat got too close to the Falls and had to sink itself--you can still see it in the middle of the river; a while back the Army Corps diverted the water to go over the Canadian side and completely stopped the American Falls; finally, lots and lots of people have tightrope walked/jumped over the Falls--I thought it was only one or two but I was way off. I would have loved to have seen that. Actually, I'd love to see the Falls in the winter, too. This was our last stop on the Test Drive, which was fortunate because J! and I were both pretty tired, at this point. Also, the mini Niagara falls in the car every time we turned right or left was becoming extremely annoying, especially as it got worse. As a follow up--it turned out the drainage tube was blocked. J!'s dad unblocked it without too much trouble, but unfortunately he couldn't dodge the deluge quite fast enough and ended up with a week's worth of old air conditioner water on his shoulder. Gross. Our final campground was also a KOA near the Finger Lakes in NY. Pretty nice campground but way overpriced, at least for a tent site. If you are a serious KOA fan, on the other hand, this is the place for you--a stocked pond, paddle boats, and a diner. Also, you can rent a go-cart if you are willing to pay the steep $10 per half-hour fee. Go crazy.

So, that was the Test Drive. On the whole, I'd say the Honda did pretty well--held all our stuff and the only problems we had were with the air conditioning. Also, no one ripped us off and the car didn't get stolen. We didn't even find out until a couple of days after we got to J!'s parents' home that the clutch was about to go. Fortunately by that time J! had already sold it back to his dad.


J!, enjoying the hurricane deck.


Niagara Falls--the American side
(looking towards Canada).


Again, the American side (looking towards
the US/Canada bridge).


Lovely Canada, in the background.

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