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Old 12-23-2003, 03:02 PM   #1
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Well I went to Vancouver over the weekend and wow. This is the first time I've been to Canada but it won't be the last. I loved it! Even the bums were better dressed than our average hillbilly. Everyone was really nice too, as if they got paid to be nice. We were driving around like confused morons (read on) and conveniently got lost in a parking garage so we just stopped in a spot and got out looking around like, "are we supposed to pay to be here?" Some lady in a van pulls up and says "You looked lost, here", and handed us an all day ticket to put in our window. Lost and confused in an underground parking garage in America? Three steps, 1. Lay down, 2. Place wallet 5 feet infront of you, 3. Face down so as you can proclaim "No I promise I can't identify you". hahaha. I'd feel comfortable falling asleep in an alley with $100 sitting next to me up there. I was amazed at the culture shock, of sorts, I went through though. First off, what the hell is up with the blinking green street lights?! I tried to figure it out myself but there was no consistency. Sometimes it'll go from red to blinking green, sometimes red to straight green then blinking green. Sometimes it just friggin blinks green, wtf?! I was so scared it was a "Hey Dumbass, you're about to T-Bone someone" warning system. And what the hell is up with road signs every 20feet?! I had a sensory overload trying to keep up with them. 4 (FOUR!) pedestrian crossing signs plastered at every crossing. They're the size of my windshield each! I must have seen 30 "Maximum 100kmh" signs in a 5 mile stretch. Most seemed to take that speed limit as a loose suggestion, I was getting passed left and right. And the straight arrows with the green circle? How about the black box with the line through it, is that a "No UPS drop-off" area?! That along with like 5 "6.3234242592m" height warning signs at every overbridge and 3-5 warnings about an upcoming exit. It made for an eventful ride, I've never paid that much attention to the road. I still swear one sign said "LOL". Oh and the drivers! Holy crap! No blinkers, EVER. I was following behind and to the left of some F-100 (F-100?!) truck that was swerving left and right and even hopped a curb and clipped it 2 other times. Did people back away? Nooo, aparently they're used to it because people kept driving right next to him as if he was driving perfectly. I've never heard so many horns in my life. I forget cars come with horns, but holy crap do Canadians let you know they work. Sometimes I was driving completely normally (it was a straightaway with no signs ) and I'd still seem to get horns. It was as if it was some form of greeting, and in some instances a full conversation. I'm driving for about a mile in the far right lane through the city and all of a sudden I come up on a stopped car. I stop behind it wondering what the hell is going on. After about a minute I look around it and realize that they just said "Fu#k it" and parked right where they stopped. This wasen't an isolated incident either. Several times I was in the 2nd to the right lane and someone would just jump into my lane because people were parked in the right one. The concept isn't new to me but why the hell is the lane open for travel?! I was so scared someone was going to merge into the side of me trying to avoid a parked car. All my Canadian driving ignorance culminated when I was on a street that ended at a cross street. The street I came to had street lights going both ways and much traffic on them. All I had was a stop sign, no street light. Wtf am I supposed to do? Carefully watch for when they turn red and go?! Well thats what I did and as I panicked and made my left turn I nearly ran over the 5-600 pedestrians that are walking EVERYWHERE. I was on Robson street and I hear its like bourbon street in New Orleans, it was nice though. All in all I had fun there, even if every time I was in the car I kept crying "Please don't hit me, please don't hit me". I would definately go back, matter a fact me and the wife were considering moving up there as soon as I'm out of the military. I'll definately have to retake my driving classes though. You crazy Canadians.
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Old 12-23-2003, 03:38 PM   #2
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Hehe... the flashing green lights must be a Canadian thing, they're known as advance lights.

If you're in the left turn lane, turn. You have the right of way, and the dudes on the other side coming your way still have a red light. If you're not in the turn lane, go straight or turn right, because that'* still your light. Although I think you're slightly confused, the light shouldn't go red to green the advance light, but rather red to advance light for a few seconds to green.

Sometimes, there won't be an advance light, but an extra light under the green. It'll have an arrow indicating the same thing as an advance light - it'll show up after the red, with the green light... sometimes, these can be seen for the right turn lane, too. Here'* a pic that a guy I know online took during the big blackout in August, in Burlington, Ontario (west of Toronto/Mississauga, and Jim)... Ironically, the car he'* in is a '92 LeSabre.


Lotsa road signs up here in the Toronto area too, and when the speed limit is 100km/h... most people will probably be going 120km/h (74mph) or 130 (81mph).

Goooooooo Canadian drivers
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Old 12-23-2003, 03:39 PM   #3
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I'm glad you like our little piece of the earth.

Some of our traffic laws are as crazy as some of our drivers.

Blinking green light means you can turn left in front of opposing traffic....just take your chances.
There are driving lanes on the main routes that are only for "environmentally conscience" autos with 3 or more people or buses. They are not as busy and you can make better time during rush hour conditions.

The signs are placed everywhere due to previous litigation and the need for proof when you get nailed for speeding.....thank God the radar cameras have gone the way of the Do-do birds.

Goog thing you didn't drive around in Richmond.....close to the main airport....it is just about totally oriental..........RICERS......everywhere. You haven't seen driving anywhere else in the world. Sort of a cross between Crazy Canadian and Kamakazee Bonzai.

Another very courteous habit we have is alternating every other car whenever merging onto bridges or when 4 lanes merge to 2............unless you're so far ahead you can muscle in earlier.

Oh..and pedestrians always have the right of way.
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Old 12-23-2003, 06:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2000SilverBullet
Blinking green light means you can turn left in front of opposing traffic....just take your chances.
There are driving lanes on the main routes that are only for "environmentally conscience" autos with 3 or more people or buses. They are not as busy and you can make better time during rush hour conditions.

Goog thing you didn't drive around in Richmond.....close to the main airport....it is just about totally oriental..........RICERS......everywhere. You haven't seen driving anywhere else in the world. Sort of a cross between Crazy Canadian and Kamakazee Bonzai.

Another very courteous habit we have is alternating every other car whenever merging onto bridges or when 4 lanes merge to 2............unless you're so far ahead you can muscle in earlier.

Oh..and pedestrians always have the right of way.
You said it bullet.... flashing green lights... ricers... "one on one" merging and pedestrains w/ the right of way..... Welcome to Canada DrJay!

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Old 12-23-2003, 07:03 PM   #5
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So, Doc, what were you driving?
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Old 12-23-2003, 07:11 PM   #6
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Guess i better bone up on Canadian driver regs before going to the GTA meet in Mar.
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Old 12-23-2003, 07:21 PM   #7
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Canadians get really excited when Americans talk about Canada

Glad you like Vancouver Doc....to bad it may be awhile before you venture to Southern Ontario....aka CDN traffic Hell
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