I'm not allowed to cross this road,
because this is the town of Stanstead, Canada.
On the other side of the street is Derby Line, USA
and the border between the two countries runs right down this:
For local residents, that can be inconvenient.
- I've lived here all my life, so 63 years.
Today you cannot cross over the line and visit your neighbours, like years ago.
If you want to cross, you have to report at customs.
You know I used to cross every day, but now
I probably cross once every... about once a week
because I come down to the post office over here.
To go through the border, basically, they ask you for your passport,
they go inside, I guess they look at whether you have a record or not.
They'll look at your registration of your car
and a couple of minutes and you've gone through.
I'm a dual citizen so I'm American and Canadian.
So it's easier.
- This is a place where the idea of a border
as a solid, easy to understand line gets a little bit fuzzy.
The road doesn't run at exactly the same angle as the border, not precisely.
The official line is that this is Canada and that's the USA,
but both countries' maps show the road as being entirely in the US just here
and entirely in Canada, up there.
The houses are definitely in separate countries
but the road is not quite as clear.
And in practise, if I was driving I'd be okay. Even on that side of the road,
I am considered to be still in Canada,
as long as I don't stop and walk up to an American house.
It's fair to say that there's a little bit of leniency here,
if you're just nudging the border by a few centimetres.
Or if you're on that side, a couple of inches.
But while I was setting up my camera here, the police turned up, lights flashing,
to move along those bikers you saw earlier
who were admiring the view from the other side of the road.
It all seemed in good spirits, but they had crossed the border.
- Well, the library is part on the Canadian side
and part on the American side.
But you stay on the Canadian side and you stay on the sidewalk,
and you go through the front door and it's permitted.
On Canusa Street, there's a sidewalk on the Canadian side,
so back years ago, it was tolerated that people on the American side
could cross over and walk on the sidewalk,
so, basically it's dangerous to walk on the side of the road
and now today, well, it's not tolerated no more.
I think the rule hasn't changed much, but they're more enforced.
When you cross, they ask you more questions than they used to, you know, years ago.
Before when you went through the border, you knew most of the customs officers
and they used to wave to you, y'know.
- In 1783, this section of the Canada-US border was set
at the 45th parallel, a line of latitude.
Slightly inaccurate measurements were accepted by both countries, so it was locked in.
But as for this specific road?
There are local stories about drunk surveyors and pranks,
but no one really knows.