Welcome to our travels and adventures


Welcome to our travels and adventures

A Surprise 3 Day Vacation

1401100 Jan 28 Terry In The Buffalo AirportBarb & I arrived back in Buffalo early Tuesday morning with no weather issues and our flight was on time – whew…. at this time we are hoping we can get up to Jasper to see Jim and Lydia then head back to Alabama and our winter home. We are also looking forward to some heat and sunshine to warm these weary bones!

We arrived in Washington DC for a shortish layover. As we wait, we hear an announcement that our flight to Pensacola had been cancelled and we have to check-in with the airline for further instructions. Waiting in line, we learn that Pensacola has been closed due to sever ice on the runways. The flight attendant booked us on the next day flight and gave us a chit with instructions on hotel information with an 800#. We learn that because the cancellation was due to weather, the airline does not cover the costs of accommodations but will help us with preferred rates. We made reservations at the Sheridan Suites in Alexandria, VA, just a few minutes from the airport and they have shuttle service. We spoke with another couple in the same predicament that were flying down for a month of warm weather, escaping out of Truro, Nova Scotia.

Our room was great for the price we paid – the rate card suggested it was a $300/night room but we got it for $80. It was a suite with a separate bedroom, a microwave and coffee pot and a sitting room, we thought for 1 night, it will be fine. We had free internet access in the lobby so as I was checking email, the Truro (Phil & Linda) couple walked past and of course I had some smart ass remark and they stopped to chat. They were coming to Orange Beach for a month of beach time.1401101 Jan 28 Stuck In Washington Pensacola Iced In1401102 Jan 28 Our Room In Sheraton Suites Virginia1401103 Jan 28 Looking Into The Bedroom

 

 

 

 

 

We kept an eye on the airline plane schedules first thing Wednesday morning and found out Pensacola was still closed and we were here for another night. I checked with the front desk about the room rate and found out we had to go back to the airport, check in with the airline and get another chit for the Wednesday night! You might think that the desk staff would know that we are already inconvenienced with the layover and yet they required us to go to the airport again to get a chit for the ‘special’ room rate! So, Barb, Phil & I were back on the airport shuttle to check in at the airline again! So, the three of us are checking in and the attendant says the earliest we can get out is Friday now! Yikes…. We asked the attendant if she could give us 3 chits in case the worst happens and we get to stay beyond Friday and she said certainly, how many do you want? She would give us any amount  whatever we asked for! It took me a few minutes to determine if there was some easy money there but….. nothing that I wouldn’t get thrown in jail for! So, back to the hotel and plan on something to keep us occupied for the rest of the day and Thursday!

1012183 Dec 31 Happy New Year

 

It was Wednesday afternoon that we found out that our dear friend Jim had lost his battle with cancer and passed away while at home in Tate, GA. We spoke to Lydia and his funeral is set for the following Tuesday, in Jasper, GA. We will make our arrangements when we get back to LA. Again, our hearts are full of sorrow for Lydia and their family which we have been with for a couple of Thanksgivings in Georgia. Jim was another good guy that we shall miss deeply.

There was a small grocery store down the block so the four of us ventured out for happy hour supplies etc. Oh, what do we find next door but an ABC Package store for more goodies! Now we have all the accoutrements for added fun besides hooking up with other Canadians while stuck during our return flights. We hosted the1401104 Jan 29 Phil Linda From Turor Nova Scotia Stuck In Washington first happy hour and of course, there was way too many treats but we all fought threw it and had a fun time doing it. We also agreed to plan an outing for Thursday, like a city tour etc. Phil & Linda were easy to befriend and we had lots of laughs and a great time. After we devoured the treat trays, we met in the lobby later for dinner.

We needed to add time to our prepaid cell phone so back to the grocery store to purchase a card but they didn’t sell our brand but apparently the 711 a few blocks away did. The clerk was not sure exactly where it was but a lady in line behind us was and she gave us directions. Off we go, walking to the directions she gave us and it was cold! After about 30 minutes of trudging through some snow and ice, we start to think she was somewhat mistaken! We turn around and stop at a couple of gas bars along the return trip but no success. We ended up back at the hotel, cold and empty handed and a cell phone with very few available minutes on it!

1401112 Jan 30 Canadian Embassy In WashingtonThursday, we met Phil & Linda in the lobby and 1401110 Jan 30 Snow On Capitol Hillwere off to our city tour of Washington, DC. We saw many of the high lights of DC, The FDR Memorial, MLK Memorial, Lincoln, WWII Memorial, Korean Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, the National Mall, the Capitol Building and of course, the White House. We were on a double decker bus with a blind lady with her service dog and no one else! Wow, talk about personal attention by the bus driver, it was great! The four of us were seated across the top level in the first row of seats, what a great view. The only thing that could have improved our day was some warmer weather!1401135 Jan 30 Baby Its Cold Outside

1401143 Jan 30 Roosevelt Memorial

 

 

 

 

1401149 Jan 30 I Hate War Saying

 

 

The FDR Memorial was most moving. His quotations etched in marble can still ring true today but of course, today’s politicians have their own ideas. The next was1401159 Jan 30 Soliders In The Field Depiction the Korean War Memorial. The statues and the pictures 1401161 Jan 30 Soliders Marching Up The Hillin the marble wall were breath taking. The statues were so life like to the looks on the men’s faces as they wade through a field. It was another incredible scene. The last one was the Vietnam Memorial. The wall of names really does cause one to stop, pause a minute and first pay your respects and then consider what lays in front of you.

 

1401162 Jan 30 Solider Reflected On Solider Lazer Wall

1401169 Jan 30 Vietnam Wall Of Names

 

 

 

 

 

 

1401130 Jan 30 Looking Through The Centre

 

1401153 Jan 30 Martin Luther King Statue1401155 Jan 30 MLK Entrance Rocks1401166 Jan 30 Barb With Lincoln Both Frozen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1401122 Jan 30 This Is The White House1401130 Jan 30 Looking Through The Centre1401164 Jan 30 The National Monument From Lincolns View

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our bus took us right back to the door of the hotel. It was Phil & Linda’s happy hour this evening. After, we couldn’t decide on where to go for dinner but Phil noticed the hotel dinning room was offering half price wings! That didn’t tickle Barb & Linda fancy but we were sure there would be something on the menu they would like – what could be better for the guys? Touring most of the day and then cold beer and good wings! After dinner, we said our goodbyes as they were off very early in the morning and we would not see them but we did agree to get together when we all got back to Alabama. Our plane departed at 1PM and we arrived in Pensacola at 5PM.

Our next challenge will be Jim’s funeral but for now we are ‘home’ and we have some down time before we drive up to Jasper, GA. Hope all is good where you are and come back again…..

Not a Great Start to 2014

1401049 Jan 16 Barb Shows Her Challenge Flag FrontAfter hearing the shocking news of Gerry’s passing, 1401051 Jan 16 Dinner At Fish River Grill 2 With Dick Marcia Bill AnnBarb and I muddle through some of our activities in a bit of a fog. But life does go on and we try to keep busy, keeping our minds busy to keep down the sadness we feel. First things we had to do was cancel our cruise to Hawaii and reschedule our flights to take us back to London, Ontario. Our daughter offered to pick us up but a rental car would give us more flexibility while back home. There are complications when one dies outside of their home country and it sure made us think about our own situation of being snowbirds.  Our good friends sent us home with a going away dinner.

 

1401053 Jan 17 Everyone Preparing Dinner1401054 Jan 17 Sitting Around The Table Telling Stories Of GerryThe flight home was uneventful, get into rental, stop by the ‘hobby house’ and head to Chez Terri & Mark’s in Toronto. Kerri & Kelly, Gerry’s daughters and their significant others came by for dinner and the evening. We sat around the dining table remembering their dad and telling stories. As the wine bottles fell, the funnier the stories became. It was a great pre-celebration!

1401059 Jan 18 Stopping By To Ray Donna 50th Wedding Anniversary

 

John gave us a heads up that friends Donna & Ray were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. So, on Saturday on our way to London, we just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to stop by and hoist a beverage with them. We surprised them completely and had great fun for the short time we were there.

 

 

At Anne’s, the family all gathered for dinner and stories. Anne’s kids, grand kids, 1401067 Jan 18 William Callum And Kayla In LivingroomTerri & Mark, Anne’s sister Rose and her husband Flo with their daughter Leanne. A tremendous amount of food was served, the odd beverage consumed with lots of fun and good times remembering Gerry – it’s too bad this was one party he missed or did he!

Gerry’s service was held at the funeral home, attended by many, many family and friends to honour Gerry’s memory. Terri provided a eulogy that exemplified Gerry’s life and accomplishments. It was a tremendous and deserving celebration for a send off of a truly good guy – we will miss you Gerry…..

 

1401085 Jan 23 Barb Mark At Restaurant In TorontoWe spent the remainder of the time in Toronto,1401084 Jan 23 Terri Terry At Restaurant In Toronto waiting for our flights home. We had dinner at Corrie’s and visited with our grandsons Mackenzie and Nathaniel, dinner downtown with Terri & Mark – now that brings back past memories, we used to do this lots when we worked downtown in our previous life!

On the weekend, we’re off to the cabin – no, we’re not skiing but Terri & Mark did while Barb & I sat in the lodge doing the apr├Ęs ski thing – I’m good at that part of the sport.

1401093 Jan 25 Terri In The Snow

1401086 Jan 25 Dropping The Kids Off At The Hill1401091 Jan 25 Apree Ski With Mark Terri

Monday, we drove back to London to have lunch with Anne and Kelly and a farewell. The weather was threatening so we did not stop off to visit John & Di but headed back as quickly as we could. Brrrr, cold and snowy is not our idea of a fun time! All the time away, we are keeping an eye on FB and our email for news on Jim, our dear friend in Jasper, GA. His battle with cancer has been hard fought but he has been in the hospital lately for blood problems and we are hoping we can drive up to see him after we land in Pensacola on Tuesday.1401122 Jan 30 This Is The White House

But, our return trip was unfortunately extended by bad weather in Pensacola and the airport was closed down for 2 days with ice. We got held up in Washington DC for 3 nights before we could get a flight out. More unfortunately, we found out on Wednesday that Jim had lost his battle and passed before we could even get out of DC! Jim and Lydia are the type of people that you meet once and immediately are best of friends. We spent many great times together even though we only knew them for 4 years. They would tell anyone who listened that Barb & I were the couple that inspired them to go full time RVing. That’s a heavy title to bear but love them both.

More on our unscheduled holiday in Washington, DC in our next post. We hope all is good where you are, it has been a shaky start to 2014 so far.