“What?!” It’s Canada Day weekend, and it seems like everyone and their grandmother is getting out of Toronto and hauling all sorts of pop-up campers, canoes, motorboats, and bored teenagers with them. Back home in Jersey, there would be tailgating, passing in the right lane, and cussing as well as everyone’s blood pressure rising all the way to the Jersey Shore.
These Canadians are taking this logjam in stride. Not like Gary and me, two Jersey boys on a Honda VFR DCT (with red paint so deep you can see yesterday) and a frisky young NC700x that want to see the world. We’re getting frustrated with the sloth-like progress. After all, we’ve got the Bikers Reunion rally to catch up north in New Liskeard, and it’s halfway to the North Pole. The traffic loosens up somewhere north of Orillia, and we tack west toward Parry Sound along rolling backroads as we stretch the throttle cables to make up for lost time. The area is lush and thickly wooded, and it has the feel of a big city weekend getaway spot. We stop at a Starbucks in Parry Sound. A guy named Bobby Orr was born in this town a long time ago; I think he was some kind of Canadian apostle or something. You know what I mean? The caffeine line is quiet and polite. There are no loud cell phone talkers. Hey Gary, we’re not in Moonachie anymore!