Friday, February 20, 2009

Finally got home Wednesday afternoon after two great days on the Empire Builder - there is a real difference in the attitude in the staff on this train - very much more professional and courteous than on the City of New Orleans - train also arrived early into Seattle so I was able to catch the early bus back to Vancouver - while there were only nine of us on the bus it took a while to clear the border as there was another bus in front of us and one of the young lads on the bus who just arrived to study English took a while to answer the usual questions of such student.

After cashing in some American money at the currency exchange I grabbed a quick bite to eat at McDonalds having had breakfast at 6AM on the train - then I walked home dragging the suitcase behind me - it was a nice pleasant day and after three days on the train I needed to get some exercise. On the scales later at the gym I was actually down a couple of lbs so I guess all that walking on the trip which I estimate to be around 60KM made up for the ice creme on the ship and those decadent desserts on the train.

Yesterday I got back to the real world - buying groceries, cooking meals, making my bed etc. Still have 2 - 3 loads of laundry to do later in the week.

Also worked on trying to find some more volunteers for the FOYP work party next weekend - not having a lot of success but it looks like I will have at least 10 people working on the projects.

Met with up Jim for dinner last night and watched the Canucks game - they are once again interesting to watch.

Woke up early this morning - still somewhat operating on the Central time zone - 2 hours different as I couldn't sleep all that well.

Have now transferred all of my video from the cruise etc onto my desktop - now starts the editing process and coming up with a best off album or two.

Still hope to do a detailed review of this trip replete with images and video and get it posted before too long. The weather turned cold and snowy as i may my way across the Northern high line states as they like to call the Empire Builders route - these three images are of Chicago skyline near the Sears tower, me at one the stops between Chicago and Seattle and a snowy scene at one the stations along the line - It is Minot, North Dakota.

Well the major cruises are finished for the foreseeable future - with my pension income down this year and no big income tax refund likely anymore such trips will be harder to take - still intend to do the one nighter from Seattle to Vancouver in September - haven't decided on whether to book the Pearl or the Star or perhaps even a different cruise line.

I also submitted an online application for employment in the upcoming provincial election as an election official - there can be as much as 5 days of work and depending on the job the pay is between $200 and $300 a day.

Hope to get out on the bike at little later today - the nice weather won't last forever so I might as well enjoy it while it lasts.

More later



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