Passed USA Border Control – Not yet in USA

It’s the day!!!

After a hectic June we have arrived in July and Canada.

We spent most of June making preparations for our trip. Lots of decluttering and throwing things away. Going through piles of clothes finding items we haven’t seen for a long time, some new and never worn.

Besides the work at home, often tiring, sometimes frustrating and at times seeming to be an impossible task, we have had time to enjoy many blessings.

We feel blessed by the friendship and kindness of the friends we have. Friends from many years and others we have only recently known. 

I’m writing this on an ipad given to us by a group of our bestest friends. A group that we love very much. They give us joy and energy. They make us feel young and as if anything is possible. 

We have received generosity from many others as well. We have a lovely set of panniers that are made here in Canada. A gift that is extremely important to the task of bicycle touring!

And simple but kind gifts of money. We have been told to use the money to buy good food during our trip so that we will have the strength to ride our bike. I am looking forward to doing just that and I believe the food and the love that we will bring with us on the trip will help to sustain us as we travel.

We have been blessed at home as well. We have some neighbours who are looking after our little house while we are away. Neighbours have helped a lot during our hectic month and are helping still while we are away. Even until midnight working hard and happily helping us clear the freezer of ice cream! 

Out of Hong Kong – Into July

All the work has brought us to July. We have arrived in July and we have arrived in Canada on Canada Day and we are now in Vancouver airport waiting for our connecting flight to San Francisco.

Flying with Air Canada, this was our first flight since Jan 2020, in a very different time. It’s quite an experience seeing everyone in flight with their PPE on and being reminded to wear masks at all times when not eating or drinking. It was a pleasant flight and we were well fed with a lunch, snack and breakfast.

We had an exercise in patience during the transit from arrival to departure. Part of the process requires our check in baggage to be screened by US Customs. It’s a process invisible to us but it must be completed before we are allowed to proceed to the US Customs & Border counters. So we waited and waited and waited.

We have four pieces of check in baggage – one of which is 2m long and contains our tandem bike. This oversized baggage took some time and it was “lost” for about an hour before it was finally tracked down. Quite a worry as I was afraid it had somehow been left behind in Hong Kong. In busier times I might worry that it had even boarded the wrong plane but with so few flights in these COVID times I guess that is less likely now. Fortunately they did manage to find it safely here in Vancouver and we were allowed through to US CBP. 

At the US border. In Canada.

The first question we were asked by the CBP officer was “how long are you staying in the US?” My reply of “one year” was taken with a look of “nope – not happening” I went on to explain about the trip and that we would be riding a tandem bike for some 14000 miles. Still he said the maximum stay he gives is only 6 months. Finally he relented and said he would go to speak to his supervisor.

A few minutes later he returned and he continued with the questions…. How will we support our travels? I offered up a printout of our year long US health insurance while my online brokerage was logging in. Happily he seemed happy with what he saw and the questions ceased but the typing went on. Next would come photographing and fingerprints but no word on our length of stay! I am wary to be bothersome but I just couldn’t wait and asked “so is our year long stay approved?” 

“Yes” he said!!!!! 

The fact that we have the financial means and that we had already made this request back in Hong Kong when we applied for our visa was vital in the length of stay we were given. 

Wow, that is such a relief! I almost felt like crying just as I had felt when we first got our visa approved.

I feel very happy and relieved. The length of stay we receive is a major part of our trip. It’s so good that at this early stage of our trip one big hurdle is already passed.

There will be many more hurdles for us. But I am happy that we will be facing them together and no matter where our future path takes us I am pleased with the direction we are going.

wifey sleeping at YVR airport
working on our blog at YVR airport
working on our blog at YVR airport

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Jacque


  2. Ricky Leung

    Enjoy your trip mate missy

  3. Tinker

    It makes me happy to see you both travelling and adventuring together. May your travels continue to be fulfilling and safe ?

  4. 2wheels2seats

    Thank you Tinker. Happy hearing from you.

Comments are closed.