About Us

The Open Road Project exists to spread kindness and meet the needs of strangers. We travel in a 1979 GMC Vanguard named Lily. These are our stories.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Enns Battery & Tire

Hello dear friends, I'm assuming that you know from the title of this post that this is Jeremy speaking. Jeremy Enns, son of Rudy Enns (current president of Enns Battery & Tire), son of Jacob Enns (founder of Enns Battery & Tire in 1971).

I wanted to create a post that could fill you in on how I spend my 8-5 Monday to Friday & 8-12 on Saturdays. I have worked at my fathers Tire Shop since the humble age of Grade 9. I mean 14. The reason I say humble is because I started off sweeping floors. My 95 pound grade 9 body could not handle the pressures of changing tires, except perhaps for bicycles and lawnmowers. However, as the years progressed, I grew in stature and wisdom, and my knowledge of the tire and battery industry grew impressively. Now I like to refer to myself as a Professional Tire Technician, Tire Consultant, or among my friends, as the Resident Tire Expert.

You have already been introduced to Josh Willms. One thing that he forgot to mention, is that at one point, he was also a loyal Enns employee. During high school, we would have a riot out back playing dodgeball with scrap tires, usually ending up soaked with dirty, stale tire water. We would spend our afternoons in the used tire yard shooting wasps with foam spray pretending we hunting aliens on a far away planet. We were fairly immature, and there were a few occasions where Rudy had to ensure we were keeping up with our flat repairs and split us up onto different jobs. Whether we were eating lunch together, sharing freezies with eachother or finishing one anothers sentences, slowly we came to the realization that the other shop guys would make fun of us. They would call us all sorts of nasty names like Seemore and Doless, (chiming in on our apparent lack of motivation) or Tweedledee and Tweedledum (commenting on our apparent lack of tire knowledge). But we didn't care. We weren't going to let that get in the way of our work relationship err friendship.

Making a long story short, Willms ended up leaving Enns for his uncles company All Green Irrigation where he is now a Certified Irrigation Techinician. I have worked my way up the ranks at Enns since he has been gone and quite enjoy my time there (mainly because I'm getting crazy buff). I have spent some time learning about the more administrative end of the shop with my Mom (she is a CA with an office attached to the shop) as well as making myself a little more responsible for making the day to day run a little smoother out in the shop. So if you need some new rubber for the ol' whip, come on down, I would be happy to personally take care of you and your battery and tire needs.

Enns Battery & Tire. Quality service since 1971!

Meet The Boys Part 1/5: Josh Willms

Name: Josh Willms
Credentials: C.I.T;
Bio: When i was asked to write a little diddy on myself my first thought was, “Well i don’t really like to boast but if that’s what I have to do then...sure why not.” Still, the last thing I’d want was for this to sound like my eHarmony profile.
So I write this with my utmost humble foot forward. First off, I come from a long line of Willms’, outlined by Engineers, Businessmen, Humanitarians and Entrepreneurs. I am a Certified Irrigation Technitian, and Irrigation Designer, where I specialize in the area of lawn sprinklers. I am a founding member of the FSU crew and will be loyal to that group till the day I die. I’m a lover not a fighter, but I will fight for my love. I thoroughly enjoy long walks on the beach..........Naaahhhh, try 6 hour runs up a mountain. I chum with only the best, and will do almost anything for my boys. I enjoy a nice glass of vino every once in a while, and have caught myself, more than once, lost in the tranquility of a paperback. This is Xena she’s my dog. I grew up on a farm in Niagara on the Lake and am still best known for the canoe incident of 2010. But most of all I love this guy named Jesus. Why you may ask? Because he loved me first. I have been given the opportunity to spread his love across Canada and the States, with a bunch of my boys and I'm going to take advantage of it. Life’s a story, and this is the first chapter.

Meet The Boys Part 0/5

Just a heads up to ya'll, our blog is soon going to evolve. For about 5 weeks our Open Road Project will consume every post. We will post increasingly interesting and crazy stories on a daily basis. We will still be posting about our daily lives, thoughts and random experiences- however, they of course will obviously always relate back to our Project as we will be living it all day, everyday for the 5 weeks.

Three other men will be involved in all that we do, so its a good idea you get to know them as they will be just as much a part of this blog, writing posts and likely included in almost every story.

For best results and future reference were going to make this easy for you. Facebook lurking will only get you so far, and the frequency of their personal want adds in the newspaper seem to be diminishing. So we would suggest it best that they make their introductions now. Coming one post at a time, be ready for Meet The Boys Parts 1-5.

Friday, May 20, 2011

A Magical Place

If you’ve been to the place I’m about to describe, you will likely know exactly where I’m talking about rather quickly. I come here a few times a year to help sue with some of the bigger ordeals of the year, and today’s ordeal; spring decorating.

Flowers, pots, and some soil were needed. Naturally I would have thought to go to a home care centre, maybe a greenhouse? Nope, Sue had somewhere else in mind. Had we also needed some fresh lasagna, boxer shorts, sushi, a Basketball net, ceiling fan, prescription medication and fresh lobster- we would have still been in the right place. How many places do you know that sell diamond rings across the isle fireworks? I know one place... COSTCO. Now, besides being a one stop shop for anything ever sold, there is another reason why I so dearly love to visit Costco, two beautiful words: FREE SAMPLES. Since my childhood days mike and I have developed and refined our technique to maximize our samplage. The general play is head down approach toward the table in a swooping action, then flee the scene avoiding all eye contact. Repeat. We would often do a few laps of the place, exchanges sweaters and hat for disguise, and do it again.

Days like today are glorious for free samples, over a dozen stands and not a single one trying to promote bogus health foods. While I was helping sue, I was still getting into the zone, I found this one table sampling mini hotdogs in bbq sauce. Jackpot. I “tested” it maybe three of four times over the course of visit, until the last time I reached for it she stopped me, I feared this embarrassing moment since childhood when I would be told I wasn’t allowed anymore samples. Rather I was relieved to hear on of the most wonderful sentence anyone has ever said to me.

Son, you know there is no limit on free samples here.

God bless you mam! as i grabbed the remaining dog. After that i sampled with confidence for the rest of the day.

Toothpaste next to Nestea, Next to Kayaks, Nice.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Hard[ly] work

Jamie here, and I have some news for you all. If you've been following our blog since my job search post- the news is good. For you who have known me since high school days- my friends, the news is even better. Yours truly has come out of retirement once again. Like Micheal coming back to the NBA, this will be my third time, I have returned to Subway.

Here is my rationale, you will see it is really quite sensible.
• The first one was a major factor. The Roadtrip, while serving as the pinnacle of anticipation for my summer, it has severely impacted my ability to get a quality full time job.
• Second, quantity. Contrary to your typical subway employees, i've been given close to 40 hours every week. I guess I'm just that good at building sandwiches. Plus, they can give me my key weekends off, and will let me peace the province for our trip!
• Third point; Take a second and imagine in your brain your favourite food. Now, imagine that you had a buffet of it all day long at your work. Munching on cookies, sippin chocolate milk, maybe a bite here and there of chicken teriyaki sub, and the odd slice of salami. I'd say that carries decent weights as a perk.
Try getting away with these habits at a clerical job filing papers and sorting excel docs... thats what i thought... not happening.
• Fourth is Tips. Who would have thought you can make tips at subway. Well ya do. Decently amounts too. (furthermore, I've come to notice a distinct relation between the drunkness of the customers I'm serving, and the amount I make) Try adding about 20 bones extra to a days work. plus the scrilla i'm saving on my food, it reasonable works out to like 13-14 bucks/hr. No longer the measly minimum wage.
• Lastly and perhaps most key- Im perfectly bizarre for the job. Most of my co-workers hate their work. They hate coming in, and their attitude sucks. But by some divine miracle I can honestly say i like it. Even excluding the aforementioned points, I honestly just like making sandwiches. I like seeing people come by frequently, I like chatting. I like making spectacular subs that make people happy.

• Still, the undisputed best part about my work remains The subway stories: ill throw some up infrequently as I work throughout the summer. keep your head up- and you'll see them sporadically as part of The Chronicles of Subway.

I have said this many times but the fact remains, i shouldnt like this job as much as I do. but still somehow I do.

Always Fresh,

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Presenting: The Open Road Project

Now we know that we promised that we would deliver some news about our summer plans. Well my friends, this is that post. While many of you may already know what we are up to, this will bring everyone up to speed. It will open everyone up to the same page of the same book. So here it is.

Jamie and I, along with Charles Neufeld, Josh Willms & Adam Epp some high school chums have been really REALLY excited for the summer. Why you may ask? Well, the RV that you read about a few months ago is not just for show. It's not just a fancy peice of decor. It's not just the first piece of many in our antique RV collection. and it is no longer the humble abode of Mrs. Racoon and her youngins. No, she's now ready for action. This RV is going to be used for 5 weeks of pure, unrestrained adventure while we drive over 10,000km through Canada and the United States. No turn will be a wrong one, and all that we will have to worry about will be the open road.

We have been planning this trip for quite some time and ever since the infancy of the idea realized that we wanted do something that would actually make a difference in other people's lives. While it surely will be a time for us to live it up, more importantly as a bunch of Christian guys we realize that we have been incredibly blessed in our lives and we think it is high time to give a little back. During our trip we are going to engage in some serious philanthropy by doing as many random acts of kindness to strangers as we can. We have contacts in most major cities across the country and are excited to work with these people who can hook us up with opportunities to bless those we meet along the way.

From the road side break downs, the cheapest (yet most lavish) feasts, the smallest towns, the biggest cities, the Supersuit (be sure to remember that name), the hitchhikers, and the non-stop raucous, you can be sure that when you put five guys like us into a situation like this, you going to get some good times, great stories and the best memories. (Run on sentence we know- well allow it, its our blog)

You will notice our little "project" will start to consume this blog as we prepare for our journey.

Keep your head up for the future posts Meet the Boys and Meet Lilly, coming early next week.

Cheers for now,
Jamie & Jer
Adam, Jamie, Charles, Josh and Jeremy. As you can see, a little Jetta is no place for us. Too crowded. We need our RV and the open road.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Muskoka, my friends.

This past weekend a few of us buddies from Laurier made a bit of a spontaneous trip up to the
cottage to visit Mike Dwyer and Alex Kellermann working in Muskoka. It was the life. Granted, their typical day would be a little bit different waking up a 6 and working like dogs, but the weekend, the beautiful weather, the few beers, the lounging on the boathouse balcony- it can't get much better.
I bussed to Mississauga, met up with a good friend Hussein and we were off. Cruising to Toby TechRhymes (koodos if you know who that is) and revelling in the anticipation of a weekend with no responsibility. The weekend was the definition of leisure with a little taste of luxury on the side. I say this because the Dwyer's cottage isn't exactly what you'd call standard...
With enough beds to comfortably sleep about 27, a personal putting green, a boat house on a lake Rosseau and inside it- 3 speed boats (all for different occasions of course) not to mention the cottage was decked with just about every classic cottage furnishing you could want. Dwyer's old man, Kdawg came up for the morning bringing our buddy Miller, and he also dropped off some crucial necessities- like our dinner. 80 dollars worth of 1.5 inch New York striploin steak... I don't mind if I do. so we Q'd those up, cracked a cold one and relaxed. Heres some applicable words of wisdom: when life is good- Love It. the weekend was fantastic, I also learned a new game called Golfy that invovles golf, beer, and consequently- fun. Now however, I am a working man, and it will likely not be until the Muskoka open until I get to go back- so I patiently await that day. So thats the end of that, but not quite the end of the story...

The ride back was a bit of an adventure itself, Husse drove Miller and I home, or a least miller home, and me to the bus stop- almost. I for some reason convinced myself that the bus left at 5 (which ended up being false) so at about 4:50, when we missed the Dixie exit, It's safe to say I was a little bit stressed. I spotted the bus pick up location from the Highway, and in a moment of impulse Husse obliged to pull over on the shoulder of the highway, i grabbed my things, hoped out, yelled bye at him and started to sprint. Off of the highway, over the vehicle barrier, jumping the chain fence and kept on sprinting.

So you can see here friends, in this photo that looks as if it was recovered from some serious COPS footage. What appears to be a convict trying to elude the strong arm of the law, is simply in fact a harmless guy just trying to not miss a bus....which he made in time!

as it arrived only about 2 and a quarter hours later...

Monday, May 2, 2011

Dont Veto your Vote

Today, was the first time Jeremy and I got to vote as Canadian citizens in the Federal election. It was easy, neat, and a satisfying experience.

For me, my voting location was Pine Grove, which happens to be my old elementary school. It was place that I associate with my childhood, carefree days where the halls seem big and 15 minute recess lasted forever. Today, almost paradoxically, I was back in the building for the first time in years, on a short 15 minute break from my employment search. It donned on me as I was standing in the same gym that I used to make fart noises with my armpits- I am here now a voting adult.

the process was cool, I registered myself, they confirmed my citizenship, handed me my ballot, and I voted. Simple as that, and just the way Calvin (our teacher) explained it in the good old days of civics class.

Plus, Old people will look at you with respect. One lady even gave me some sweets. That was nice too.

All in all: good experience, and worth the 15 minutes. If you haven't voted yet, hop online read the platforms and go vote you likely wont regret it.