Canada & Europe 2006: San Diego to Toronto

Scarborough, TorontoOntario Canada – July 4th, 2006

American Independence Day, No traffic or people at the airport... WRONG!!!

At 07,30 I boarded my flight to Toronto, Canada there where no problem getting to the airport, but I did have to wait a long time in line for a very long line to get my bags checked and to get through security screening. I did have one problem, I showed the ticket agent at the counter only my ticket to Toronto, the ticket agent then told me that I had to have a ticket to another country or a ticket back home. I forgot that you have be a citizen of Canada to have a one way ticket to Canada, now I remember, this also applies to Europe as well.

The flight was very uneventful flight with no problems, I actually heard French in action!!! Air Canada had all of the announcements and airline literature are in English and French. After the plane landed and we disembarked the Stewardess said good bye to everyone, I said à bientôt to her, she was genuinely surprised that I knew French, later I got through customs with out any problems, but the passport control agent did ask a lot of questions and I did have to wait a very long time for the luggage, after that I meet Chui and Amy in arrival.

As I traveled through Toronto I was amazed how much the city had changed, the city has grown so large and is now inhabited by 4 million people. When I first visited Toronto 25 years a go there were no where near as many people in Toronto, 25 years ago at the time there was a China-town and Little-Italy, but the immigrant population was different, the neighborhood that my Uncle and his wife live at was a suburb outside of the city, but not any more, one part of the city of Toronto is 80% Italian, and in East Toronto, the suburb of Scarborough where they live, it is now mostly Chinese, the Pacific Mall is in this area, Chinese stores and businesses line the streets of this area, I feel like I am in Chinatown in San Francisco or in Los Angeles. The neighborhood use to be very Canadian, and the City use to be mostly Canadian and Canadian French, now, there is ethnic diversity in the city, Italians, Chinese, Indians, Portuguese, Muslims, French and others. It is World-Cup Soccer season right now, everyone has their national and Canadian flags out, all of the drivers have their flags flying on the cars.

Penny closeupAfter I arrived in Scarborough, I was introduced to Penny, Uncle Chiu and Aunt Amy's new dog, I heard that the dog is a terror, but she is really nice to me, I guess she is on her best behavior. I got on the plane early in the morning, and it is already the late afternoon. Ughhhh I feel like I have lost most of the day, but I did finally have my first square meal of the day, after eating a small burrito, and buying a small Sandwich on the Airplane, I was so hungry. At last I have real food!!!

After dinner and some TV, it is bed time, I have to call it a day, it is bed time for me.

  1. Air Canada no longer has meals provided, they serve food for purchase.
  2. No One Way tickets are allowed for international flights unless you are a Citizen of that Nation.
  3. I heard a family member got detained when they last visited Toronto.
  4. Air Canada's literature, announcements, and air crew are all bilingual in English and French.
  5. I learned that after the Hong Kong Chinese immigrated to Toronto and Vancouver many of the Parents who owned businesses in Hong Kong, returned to China to make money and left their families in Canada.
  6. Penny is actually a nice dog, she is trainable, but she is has been through a lot.

Useful Links

San Diego International airport
Greater Toronto Airport Authority
Toronto - The official City of Toronto website