From there we headed for Seattle then on to Canada to meet our friend the gallery owner to pick up a piece of art. We had agreed to meet in Delta which is a small burg south of Vancouver.
Crossing the border is not our favorite activity, especially coming home. I guess they resent the fact that we might have spent money in Canada rather than here or some such. Who knows.
One thing we never expected, however, was to be stopped on our side of the border by our security people on our way to Canada! As we approached the Peace Arch we saw the road was barricaded and a half dozen men with automatic rifles and flak jackets were stopping each car. The two in front of us were waved through. We were not. We were driving our van. What the...?
As one grilled Hub the others were busy checking out the vehicle including "patting down" the sides. The security officer, from Customs and Border Security according to their caps, was especially interested in how much cash we had with us. It seemed odd in this day of credit cards. Hmmm. He had trouble with the intent of our trip. To meet the owner of a gallery from Port McNeill and pick up a totem pole. Would it fit in the van? Yes. It is a small one - 5 feet or so. Did we commission it? No. We just saw it and liked it and bought it. We had been looking for one for quite awhile. Did we have a place for it on our property? It's going in our great room. And so it went.
We got a similar grilling on the way home. Curious. Who could possibly have manufactured a tale about picking up a totem pole?
We asked our friend if he had any idea what it was all about. It seems that one thing it could be is that since the Canadian dollar is now stronger than ours, they're coming to the states to shop. While at the big malls smugglers hide drugs in or on their vehicles. When they leave the smugglers follow them. If they get caught, the smugglers get off scott free while some unsuspecting shopper is subjected to the drill or worse. If they aren't caught the smugglers follow them to their destination, retrieve the drugs and go on their way.
Pretty neat, eh? The only problem with that theory and what we went through is that they seek out cars with B.C. plates. Ours, obviously, are not and who knows where our destination might have been!
'Tis a puzzlement. What were the CBP agents looking for? A couple of elderly gray hairs on an outing? If we fit some type of profile, I'd sure like to know what the heck it is!