Under Arrest

When I walked the 8-year-old to school yesterday we turned the corner into the school yard and I saw 2 police officers, instantly thoughts started racing through my head that they had come to arrest me!

Was it the bag of pot??? Is it an offence to make jokes about baking pot cookies for the teachers???  It’s funny how the minute I see a police officer I all of a sudden feel guilty like I have done something wrong when I am completely innocent.

I also get like this walking through customs at the airport.   Breaking into a sweat because I have a chocolate bar in my handbag, wondering if you can have a half eaten chocolate bar.   I think the problem has got worse over the years due to my fascination with the TV show Border Security.  I love every countries version of it, but I must admit the Australian version is my favourite.  I think because of Australia’s distance from the rest of the world and it’s Island status free of many diseases it has some of the strictest customs and border security laws in the world.   This doesn’t stop people, suitcases full of food, an entire supermarket in people’s pockets.

Passengers that have travelled on a flight for 20 hours with a suitcase full of raw chicken or meat products.   I feel sick just thinking about it, how are these people still living?

The look of innocence when the Beagle dogs have sniffed them out and they are pulled aside to open the offending suitcase and reveal what is inside.   “What do you mean I can’t bring in the entire deli section of the supermarket in my suitcase that contains only food and no clothes?!?  What do these people even wear when they arrive, the last time I checked you can’t walk out into the street wearing a chicken carcass as underpants.

Or Mr Meaty pants and his trouser pants full of salami meats arguing with Border Security.  Sometimes they get physical and sometimes they end up throwing the food like a 2-year-old having a tantrum at the officer.

The bit I really don’t get?   Why travel half way around the world with a suitcase full of poultry products that are available for sale in the country you are going?   Are they stupid?  Tight asses? or both?

I walked away from the police officers at school yesterday not under arrest but great mates after having a chit chat for about 30 minutes.   I felt like we should have gone out for coffee and doughnuts.   The big issues came up, one gave me advice on taking Vitamin D tablets having moved from sunny Australia to winter in Toronto.   He spoke from experience having moved from Mexico and told me depression can sneak up on you from lack of sunlight as it had done to him a few years ago.   I haven’t felt any signs of depression since our move but took his advice and stocked up on Vitamin D for the entire family.

They also told me something I already knew,  but they confirmed it for me, that Torontonians are crap drivers.  They also answered some of the questions why?  I couldn’t work out why I don’t really see speed cameras or red light cameras or many police with radars on the motorways.  In Australia, this is the case big time with huge fines and loss of licence depending on speeds and amount of offences.  Unlike Australia where most people pay the fine, accept it and hopefully learn a lesson from it, in Canada my new friends told me most people argue the fine and take it Traffic Court.   Traffic court apparently has a huge backlog and the police officer that wrote the ticket has to actually turn up to court, if they don’t the fine gets thrown out and the person doesn’t have to pay it.   It is a ridiculous waste of police resources and time.   Every time a police officer writes a ticket for someone on a mobile phone driving or speeding it just doesn’t end there, so many more man hours and costs are involved plus they are taken off the street from doing other police work.    I get the feeling the system is really broken.

Speaking of broken,  we are spoilt for choice with pubs in immediate proximity to our home so have been trialling them all to determine which one will become our new local.  Sitting in the pub last night, we could smell burning hair only to discover that one of the ladies sitting on the table next to us hair had caught on fire.  A candle was on the ledge behind her (stupid place for a candle) and lucky her friends put out the fire quickly.  She was ok (she stayed at the pub drinking, and I certainly hope the pub gave her free drinks) but I think we will keep searching for the pub that will get the title as “our new local”.


Does anyone else get nervous going through border security?





      • joannesisco

        I got caught by the radiation detectors on two separate occasions – once at the airport and once at a land crossing to the US. Who knew?!!
        It’s just a wee bit intimidating when you watch them bring out the dogs to smell down your car :/
        The second time wasn’t me though … apparently my car and the one beside me crossed at the exact same time and they couldn’t tell which car triggered the alarm. It still meant a 45 minute delay.

  • womanseyeview

    You got the police to chat with you – you have quite a talent then😉. I think a lot of border security workers also have fun trying to make us nervous – probably have a contest telling each other stories at the pub after work…although hopefully not a pub where your hair catches fire!!

  • Joanna

    I got in trouble once! I declared wood so showed my items to the loverly customs officer, she asked is that it? I replied yes. After further rummaging through my bag she found a bag of little things that light up when you shoot them up in the sky that I had brought for the kids. They had small sticks not much bigger than matchsticks for launching . She went off, started telling me I could go to jail for lying! She wasn’t interested in I forgot about them story. I received an offical warning and walked away thinking I will always have a target on my head forever! Often thought it was quite unjust after after watching the crap the Chinese fill their bags up with.

    • Maple Bacon Please!

      My husband is worse than me and so completely paranoid crossing borders that he won’t let me buy anything that doesn’t come in a package. I’m so glad I travelled without him in my youth and have some lovely wood homeware products (all declared) from around the world.

  • Tippy Gnu

    I hate customs. I always worry that someone has planted stuff in my luggage, trying to sneak it across without me knowing. Like maybe my wife. Yeah, she’d do something like that.

  • Cill & Chris

    Yep, always nervous, even if I have nothing even vaguely an issue.

    V interesting about fines. I had noticed there don’t seem to be anywhere near the number of speed or red light cameras or even police pulling people over in Vancouver compared to Melbourne. Its no wonder there is tons of speeding and running red lights!

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