I wrote this blog, whilst sitting at my gate waiting to board my flight from Toronto to Chicago. Sometimes you undergo such wonderful experiences that you immediately feel the urge to pen down your thoughts. The moment you say you’ll do it later the inspiration has gone. This was one of those moments, whilst I waited for the boarding call, I felt the need to write a blog and talk about what an amazing airport, Pearson International truly is. None of my videos from my recent trip to Canada are ready, and they won’t be on my channel until much later, as I have a huge backlog of videos to produce hence this will be a rather text heavy blog but I hope you read it to the end.
I arrived at the airport and made my way to an American Airlines kiosk to check myself and my bag in. I wait in line for a couple of minutes and my turn is up. The kiosk checks me in but fails to mention anything about my bag that I’d like to check in. Never mind. I go up to the American Airlines check-in counter where the line is longer just to check my luggage. Took me 30 minutes to clear the line. I paid for my checked in baggage and proceeded towards dropping my bag off. It needed a bag tag, no not the ones for the Airlines’ scanning purposes but the paper one that contains your personal details in case your baggage is lost along the way, or gets into someone else's hands. Fair enough, a lot of bags look he same. Next stage is the security screening, hat actually is a smooth process.
For those who aren't familiar, if you happen to be travelling to the United States of America from Canada, your customs is processed at the Canadian airport. I go up to yet another kiosk. The machine asks me for a visa or any legal documents. I scan my passport. Yet again it asks me for a visa, with no mention of ESTA. I ask a lady for help, who didn’t want to be there herself, and put that frustration on me. Thanks, much appreciated. She says to push the following buttons and I follow suit. Now, the machine wants to scan my fingers for fingerprints which is normal and part of the process. First try, failed. Tried scanning my other hand for the second try. Failed. Third time lucky, maybe? Nope. The kiosk cancels my application altogether. Off all things I’ve failed in, in life, I’d never anticipated that scanning my fingers for finger prints would be one of them. I now had to fill in a physical customs form and stand in line. Took me an hour to clear the line. I guess, it is what it is. Nothing can be done about it.
I clear customs and head towards my gate. This really is the best, the crème of the crop. I always walk towards my gate first so I know where it is before heading off to find me some food. I noticed a small café and made a mental note to grab a coffee later. I find my gate and made my way back. That. Was. The. Only. Café. And it proudly serves Starbucks coffee, just in case you didn’t know. I’m not one to hate Starbucks but that sign annoyed me. You’ll know why shortly. I look at their fridge to see if there’s anything edible. The sandwiches looked dry and they they’d been there a while. Ain’t nobody got time for diarrhoea on a solo trip. I took a bottle of SmartWater (no this is not a sponsored blog).
I went up to the counter to pay and hopefully buy a coffee. That’s when I figured you’re only paying for Starbucks cups (and well the beans from Starbucks) at Starbucks rates, you make the coffee yourself! The milk and water are kept right next to the counter. This is probably normal for those who live locally, but for international travellers like myself, we see that and say what the ****. I guess, just the water it was. I made my way back to my gate. Thank god for free Wi-Fi. I have about 2-hours to kill. I connect to the W-Fi, but nothing is operating. I disconnect and reconnect and voila it worked. I listen to Spotify (still not a sponsored blog) to drown out all the noise as I wrote this blog in the Notes section on my phone. Suddenly in the middle of Rita Ora’s Your Song, everything goes quiet. I look around forgetting that I had headphones on. Oh my the internet has gone. I disconnect and reconnect again and get back to the music and blog. The song finishes and there’s silence again. You get the pattern. I had to disconnect and reconnect after each song. I think I disconnected and reconnected to the Wi-Fi a good 100 times in the span of 2 hours.
Sitting at my gate with nothing to eat and not much to do and when I say gate I mean the one door that’s dedicated to my flight. There were about 4 gates in the one place. If you’re travelling in and out of Toronto, good luck.
Until next time,