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Published: September 21st 2009
7am on train from New York to Niagara Falls
Blackpool I mean Niagara
Well having arrived on the very nice (very early) Amtrak train, on a beautiful sunny afternoon, we were all ready to have a wash and go explore. However it would seem that Canadian officials were unaware of our plans and of the actual arrival of the train as we waited about an hour for them to put their coffee cups down and come and do boarder checks!! 40 mins after being asked, did we have any gifts for anyone here (no I don’t know the people on the train that well!!!), why are we here, where are we going etc etc we got off the train to find our hostel just down the road, thank god.
NO NOT THANK GOD THANK SATAN!!! The hostel was well meaning, run by kids just out of college and was really trying to be hip and happening. Maybe I’ve been out of uni too long and used to a level of sanitation but let’s just say it was like an episode of “how clean is your house”. I know Nath didn’t think it was as bad as I did but when I ate my toast the next morning with
Food on the move
Yummy train food mmmmmmmmm
a topping of jam and peanut butter that had been left out for the flies to land on, it was actually finding a hair in my cup of tea that finally confirmed to me I would not be eating here again!!
(Nath - admittedly the kitchen / cutlery was not that clean but that’s because it was down to the guests to clean up after themselves, the rest of the place was perfectly adequate in my opinion)
The rooms were fine I guess (cold for once at night) and the shower hot so I can’t complain there. That night we ventured into the very run down surroundings of Downtown Niagara (every other building boarded up or shut down with the odd very nice boutique in between, very strange!) to find this great little bar (4triple5) with a chef/waiter/owner that looks strangely familiar, like a film star or rock star neither of us can quite put our finger on it. He did nice sandwiches, good beer and told us all about the jazz and local rock and viper fate that was happening this weekend - cool
Next morning after that terrible breakfast we were just going to get some
emails etc done and head into town when “Mick Dundee’s” older brother started talking to us. Seemed nice enough at first if not a little rough round the edges, but after then inviting himself to come along with us for the day we were beginning to loose patience and find him weirder and weirder. After walking right round most of Niagara we got rid of him!!! The last we would see of him for the next few days (basically as we would avoid him at all costs).
Anyway I guess the point of this blog is meant to be about Niagara itself. All I can say is beautiful. It’s immense when you’re stood next to it, watching over 110 million litres a minute pass over the edge. Luckily we had lovely weather the whole time we were there which meant we could see the far reaches of lake Ontario etc. That day, after promising we wouldn’t walk that far again after New York, we walked for hours around the whole site and then settled in a “pub” for dinner. We stayed out all day till 10pm as that was when the fireworks started above the falls. They were beautiful
Maple train 63
One for the boys
and Nath got some really good shots. But it was freezing by this point and we were both desperate for bed.
Next morning we had breakfast over the road at “dad’s diner” a much better idea and then Nath had his hair cut at an old fashioned barbers. We headed into town past the bar we had gone to the first night and saw the little street come to life, with row upon row of viper sports cars and bands playing etc a proper mini festival. Once we got into Niagara again we went on all the typical attractions, the Skylon tower where we got a birds eye view, the maid of the mist were Nath got soaked and the journey behind the falls - well you understand what that is I guess. All great but again a very tiring day and we still had to walk home that eve when again we had forgotten how cold it gets at night.
We stopped off at the same little pub (4triple5) again for an evening of jazz and drinking with the locals and noticing how most of them had the same handle bar moustache!!! Before heading back to bed.
Dorm at Niagara
Guess it doesn't look too bad ....does it????
And here we are now on another train heading for Toronto. Again the view out of the window is lovely with all the trees starting to change colour (or should that be color) I’m crossing my fingers the next hostel will be a bit nicer!!!
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