Toronto Here I Come

It’s been a while since I traveled anywhere for SikhNet. We have been busy with lots of new things so it has been hard to travel anywhere. Generally when I travel I like to ensure that I have a chance to network with other youth leaders and people in the Sikh community. SikhNet being primarily in the virtual world it really helps to have face to face relationships with people and knowing people in person. 

This Friday through Sunday (Apr 18-20) I’ll be visiting Toronto, Canada to network and participate in The Centennial Foundation Vaisakhi Gala as a honoree for SikhNet work. I’m hoping that I get a chance to meet and talk to lots of Sikhs, especially any "youth leaders" who are active in the community.

Whenever I go to Canada I always seem to get pulled aside by customs and questioned/searched. I hope this time around I have all my answers "right". They must think it strange to see a white dude with a turban and feel that they must question me to see what I am. What I have learnt is to know the name and address of the person you are meeting or seeing. If you don’t have this info that’s a red flag. Don’t say you are going to a "camp" which to them might be a "terrorist camp". So if any of you come to the Summer Solstice Camp….. just say you are going to a "Yoga/Meditation Retreat". Such is a life in North America as a Sikh…to stand out. :)

8 Responses to “Toronto Here I Come”

  1. Sohan Kaur says:

    I live right near the ROM (Royal Ontario Museum) where this is being held!  Too bad I didn’t know about this celebration before now.
    Congratulations on being an honoree!

  2. Manjit Singh says:

    Also, Gurumustuk Ji, make sure you have two proofs of picture id’s, one of which must be a proof of Country of Citizenship to get back into U.S.  They just started this rule January/February of this year.

  3. Navpreet Kaur says:

    Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa
    Wageguru JI KI Fateh!
    I can’t believe they question you like this. I have seen so many bearded and turbaned Sikhs working in that airport. It’s putting a damper on our reputation as being a multicultural country.

  4. My husband and I were travelling in SE Asia for 6 months – and we really did get the ‘you’ve got a turban so you must be a terrorist’ routine. Such a shame.

  5. Harman says:

    This is at the ROM? I used to live across the road from that while at uni. Ah, it’s a shame I’ll miss it. Hope it goes well, and congratulations on your honouree status :)

  6. Gurumustuk’s travelling again – somebody keep the handcuffs ready! Have a nice time. When are you planning to come to the UK (Chigwell) again?

  7. Aaron K says:

    That is strange, white sikh’s are not all that uncommon, especially in Toronto. At my university (Ryerson) which is at the heart of downtown Toronto there is a professor of philosophy who is a white sikh, I can’t recall his name. But that is strange that they would stop you for that.

  8. Tejpreet Kaur says:

    It was wonderful meeting you on Saturday.  I frequent your sites on a regular basis and it was indeed an honour to meet you in person.