BL21 – 0011 0101 – South past Selma With Louise


A Fun story about the Practice of Public Privacy.

POLICE!: Please note the photo of Thelma and Louise flying in a car is NOT an indication I am thinking of suicide. My story is about Canadians being ACCUSED of being suicidal for wanting to winter with their motorhome in Florida this year.

Did you like Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant in “Notting Hill”?

The frantic ending scenes where he seeks her a the swanky hotel desk, and they refuse to connect him to her room unless he knows her code name? He tries “Bambi?” and finally the clerk suggests” “We do have a Snow White!” and the lovers end the movie with a new baby in hand, well, in utero, anyway.

Remember that ages-old convention of stars checking in under a fake name to avoid the fans?

Warning: Obscure segue follows….

COVID-19 disrupted a lot of Florida Snow Birds who are banned from driving across the border with their motor home or travel trailers.

I know a couple who did just that on January 15, 2021 and ALL the laws are on their side. Which ones?:

  1. Only Ottawa can change our use of airplanes. Many people do NOT know that all aviation in Canada is Federal in nature.
  2. Ontario can ban travel outside our homes here, but not outside our country.
  3. The USA can ban all people trying to drive across the border.
  4. The USA permits all commercial vehicle traffic. And all aviation.

So, there you have laid out for you what to do to drive your motorhome to the States….

  1. Do not even try to drive out,
  2. Get the motorhome and your stuff trucked out commercially from the border crossing town.
  3. Fly yourselves out.
  4. Find your motorhome again, and
  5. Drive it to Florida like usual.

So, “Louise” and husband “South of Selma” ship their clothes and trailer to the USA, and go to stay overnight at a Canadian motel at the border for a “carry on” flight east (hint) next morning. They awake and go to the Canadian airport to fly to the USA. Time passes.

After the planned flight time, I emailed the airline asking for my friends by name, and asking if they got out ok.

But just then, my friend texts me that the flight is cancelled due to weather and so they will return to their motel.

I also get an email back from the airline that Louise’s flight was moved to next morning, very first thing.

I want to send them some wine to relax, something they will not have due to carry on rules. I then attempt to call them at their hotel.

Me: “May I speak to Mr. and Mrs. South of Selma please?”

Hotel: No. Privacy laws forbid us to do so, call them on a cell phone if they have one.”

OK, so I am stymied for a moment. Maybe they are there, maybe the flight went out… I cannot tell.

Next morning, I reply to the airline, asking again for their status, again by stating their names and destination. They reply instantly: “Mr. and Mrs Louise are now in the USA.”

Why the VERY different approaches to the same “privacy” requirement?

The hotel was being “international” and respecting privacy at all costs, lest they be sued. They refused me. They allow no guest pseudonyms.

The airline was being Canadian and practical. I knew the two names, the airline, the date and the flight time and the destination. They gave me what I asked for.

I like “practical” because buying a new cell phone in every country I visit so my family can call me is very expensive. As is roaming in 3rd world countries.

So, “Call me at the hotel!” is no longer a “thing”.

And if you drive TO the hotel, do not expect to get ANY more information .

Author: Bob Lepp

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