Border Crossings

The flashing sign says its a 40 minute wait today to cross the border from Canada back into Washington State but its been more than 40 minutes already and I’m a long, long way from the check point and I’m not handling the wait well at all. I have to pee big time and worse, I’ve got the bad lane.

You know what bad lanes are. They’re the slow ones and I’ve got the really slow lane. The one that doesn’t move. The one where you sit and watch 10, 20, 30 cars go while you just sit, jeans too tight, having to pee and regretting that Starbucks grand latte in Vancouver 2 hours ago. Why didn’t I have a tall latte? Why didn’t I have a petite latte? Why a latte at all?

I’ve just had my friendly border patrol man with bomb sniffing German Shepard circle the car and now a fresh-faced Border patrol makes notes of everyone’s license plate and I’m still a good 20 minutes from getting through. Since my window is rolled down I ask fresh-face Border Patrol how to pick the lanes–is there a system? Anything I can do to make this a little less tortuous if I ever do this again? He says no, that’s just the way it is, but then he corrects himself and says, yes, stay right (I’m on the far left). The right side has 3 lanes while the left has 2. Great. I was in the right lanes earlier and then jumped over. Why?

In the meantime I am trying not to lose it. I loosen my belt, unzip the top of my jeans (please don’t let any Border Patrol look inside) and take deep calming breaths that don’t calm at all. I try to divert attention away from peanut bladder to thoughts of the past weekend in Bellingham and Vancouver, Canada. Had a great weekend, two fun book signings at independent bookstores and the two workshops to the Vancouver RWA chapter went very well. After the workshop and signing last night a group of ten of us crossed the street to eat at The Grammercy Grill. Excellent company, food, and wine but I must not think of wine. Wine is liquid. Wine is bad.

I change CD’s again. Find soothing music. Happy music too bouncy. Bouncy music makes me want to pee. Soothing music doesn’t soothe. Not when I’m behind the guy in white convertible who won’t scoot up regularly. He just sits there while the space in front of him grows. I guess he’s got stick shift and doesn’t like shifting so I try not to look at the yawning space in front of his car, enough space an 18 wheeler could fit in because looking at space makes me crazy. I feel crazy. This is why I don’t drive. Type A personality becomes Type AAA. I’m dying to lay on my horn. It’s all I can do not to yell out the window, “Move up, buddy!” Obviously, I don’t. Can’t. Border crossings and border patrol–even the fresh-faced officers–are serious.

This is the longest 55 minutes of my life. Or so it seems. Please God, please God get me through and to a bathroom and I won’t drink coffee ever again. Or at least not until tomorrow.

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