Checking Out

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 18 ~ Day #192
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$19200
$89.21
$16883.63
$87.94
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15815.4+249.4=16064.8
12056.7
7662
196
35979.5

Current Location: Davie, Florida

Today’s Total Expenses: $89.21

Transportation: $52.00 (gas)
Accommodation: $31.47 (camping)
Food: $5.74 (lunch)

Miles Traveled Today:
Road Miles: 249.4 (Land O’Lakes to Davie, Florida)

Checking Out

When we checked out this morning there was no charge for ground fees added to our account, thank goodness. As per yesterday’s post we were a bit concerned that they were going to try to charge us $100/day ground fees, but they didn’t.

However, there was an error on our bill. We were being charged for a bar bill that we didn’t incur. We explained that to them and they said they’d check with the food services manager. However, that person wasn’t available.

We made it quite clear that that wasn’t our charge but they didn’t seem that convinced. I was actually starting to get a little annoyed. They looked up the bill and it was for the types of drinks that Geoff and I never have. We insisted the charge be removed.

They seemed reluctant, but couldn’t find a manager to sign off so we made a note on the bill. They said they wouldn’t charge our card until the matter was resolved (not really sure what they meant by that – it wasn’t our charge, plain and simple).

Note: March 4, 2011 – Believe it or not, Caliente only JUST charged our card (on Feb. 28, 2011) for our Nov. 11-18 stay AND they charged the FULL amount. We were not happy.

I called and left several messages with the accounting department and never got a call back. I gave up leaving messages and talked to someone on the front desk. They assured me that they’d immediately credit our card for the disputed amount but it might take 48-72 hours for the credit to show up.

The credit did show up on our card on March 4th, so they were good to their word.

Back to Davie, Florida

We then hit the road for the drive back to Davie, Florida where we’ll stay until our flight back to Eleuthera on November 23rd.

It was a pleasant day for a drive and, again, we took the less-traveled route as we were in no particular hurry.

Relaxing in the Florida Sun

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 09 ~ Day #183
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$18300
$31.47
$16354.86
$89.37
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15566
12056.7
7662
196
35480.7
Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 10 ~ Day #184
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$18400
$31.47
$16386.33
$89.06
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15566
12056.7
7662
196
35480.7

Current Location: Davie, Florida

Today’s Total Expenses:
Nov. 9 – Accommodation: $31.47
Nov. 10 – Accommodation: $31.47

Miles Traveled Today:
Zero

Combining Days

Once again, we are combining a couple of days into one post.

We are camping again, for a couple of days, and are spending our time sorting out the stuff we had left in the car and the stuff we brought with us from our trip.

In addition to that we reconnected with a few friends we had made before we left and just relaxed around the pool and soaked up some Florida Sun.

End of Our TransAtlantic Cruise

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 08 ~ Day #182
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$18200
$61.47
$16323.39
$89.69
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15551+15=15566
8185.5+3871.2=12056.7
7662
168+28=196
35480.7

Current Location: Davie, Florida

Today’s Total Expenses: $51.47

Transportation: $30.00
consisting of:
$10.00 – cab from cruise port to TriRail
$5.00 – TriRail
$15.00 – cab from TriRail to pick up our car

Accommodation: $31.47 (camping)

Miles Traveled Today:
Road Miles: 15 (Fort Lauderdale to Davie, Florida)
Sea Miles: 3871.2 (3364 Nautical Miles – La Palma to Miami)
Train Miles: 28 (TriRail Miami to Fort Lauderdale)

Disembarking in Miami

Our ship had actually arrived in Miami late last night, so the disembarkation process was able to start very early in the morning – 7:00am!

If you wanted your luggage taken off the ship for you, you needed to have it outside your stateroom door the night before.

Fortunately, we were traveling with backpacks so when we disembarked we were able to carry all our luggage with us and not have to wait for our group to be called. People that had put their luggage out the night before had been sorted into groups and had to leave their staterooms and wait in designated areas for their group to be called. We could get off when we liked because we could take our luggage with us.

Long Line Up for U.S. Customs and Immigration

After a leisurely breakfast, we headed back to our room, picked up our loaded backpacks, a carry-on bag and our laptop computer, also in its own bag, and headed to the gangway to leave the ship.

The line up for customs and immigration was HUGE!

Standing there with fully loaded backpacks got pretty tired after the first half hour. Mine wasn’t too bad as it is actually smaller than Geoff’s. However, Geoff has a bad back and just standing around is difficult for him. But, standing around with a heavy backpack was just too much. He needed to take his backpack off.

The line was pretty bunched up so I had to ask the people behind us to back up a little bit so Geoff could actually get his backpack off.

We then edged our way up to Immigration for the next little while, pushing our luggage along bit by bit.

Best U.S. Immigration Officer EVER

Some people may not know this, but the immigration lines that say U.S. Citizens can also be used by Canadians. That’s because Canadians don’t need to be finger printed or have their photos taken.

So, as we got closer to the front of the line, I mentioned to the person that was directing people to various immigration officers that we were Canadian.

We were immediately whisked out of the long line and right to an available immigration officer.

I think I’ve mentioned before that I never like dealing with government officials. You never know what they’ll be like. With some people, if you put them in a uniform, they feel like they have to be officious and obnoxious.

Well, not this guy. He was smiling and happy and pleasant.

As he scanned our passports he actually started joking with us. And then he said, “Oh, Wait a minute. We can’t let you through too fast. We can’t have any Americans thinking that Canadians can get through the lines faster than they can.” And he then started to tap his fingers on the counter and whistle. Then he said, smiling, “I guess that’s long enough.”

We told him that this was our best experience ever and he said he thought Canadians were great. He said, “I’ve never gotten any attitude from a Canadian.” And, after a short pause, a little smirk passed over his face and he said, “Of course, that could have something to do with the fact that I carry a gun!”

We all chuckled. Geoff and I thanked him again and we were on our way. He had even marked our card so that we didn’t have to stop at Customs.

Camping Again

Before leaving Florida in early September we had prepaid our camping fees so we didn’t have to worry when we came back. The receipt was a little cryptic, though, so I had said to the manager, “You had better be here when we get back.” And he had assured us that he would be.

Well, as I’m sure you’ve already guessed, he wasn’t there any more.

It took a little sorting out but the new management accepted the receipt (that goodness we had one and that we’d kept it) and all was well.

Laundry Day

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Sep 04 ~ Day #117
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$11700
$27.20
$9624.32
$82.26
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
13890
4451
000
69
18410

Current Location: Davie, Florida

Today’s Total Expenses: $27.20

Accommodation: $27.20

Early Morning Migraine

Unfortunately I am prone to migraine headaches, but I haven’t had one in ages.

Well, my luck ran out in the wee hours of this morning. I was woken up by a migraine that was pretty much in full bloom.

Yep, light, sound and smell were all amplified and a few days earlier I had spilled some of my perfume in the tent. Now that was all I could smell.

I downed several painkillers and Geoff helped me into the shower (I had to keep my eyes covered because the light in the bathroom hurt) and I let cool water rain down on my head and neck.

It helped somewhat but then the nausea started to set in.

Geoff suggested that perhaps immersion in the swimming pool might help so he lead me off to the pool while I did my best to keep my eyes covered.

Even at this early hour there were still a few people at the pool.

They were all so understanding and began shutting off all the lights to make it more comfortable for me.

Thanks guys!

Geoff, who was able to think clearly, bless him, suggested he make some coffee.

Great idea! Caffeine is a great painkiller delivery system.

Back at our campsite, Geoff made the coffee and I sipped it slowly while trying to will myself to relax. When I get stressed I clench my teeth. When I clench my teeth it can result in a migraine, particularly if other triggers are present (like the spilled perfume).

By the time I was almost finished my coffee the painkillers had started to kick in. About a half hour or so after that I felt like I could finally go back to bed and get some sleep.

Truly, I don’t know what I would do without Geoff to help me through things like this.

Laundry Day

I may have mentioned it before but I just LOVE to do laundry.

As today is our last day before heading overseas, today is the day to do laundry and make sure everything is clean – both the stuff we’re taking with us and the stuff we’re leaving behind.

We didn’t have a lot but it was still two wash loads and one dryer load.

Now we can complete our packing and be ready to go tomorrow.

Using Up Groceries

We’ve also done amazingly well at using up the groceries that we can’t leave behind.

There are a few cans of things left, and that’s fine. They can stay in the car until we get back.

We will use up the last two tomatoes at supper tonight and the last two bananas at breakfast tomorrow.

Everything is working out well!

Getting Our Ducks in a Row

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Sep 03 ~ Day #116
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$11600
$27.20
$9597.12
$82.73
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
13890
4451
000
69
18410

Current Location: Davie, Florida

Today’s Total Expenses: $27.20

Accommodation: $27.20

Getting Our Ducks in a Row

Today I’ve been thinking a lot about what needs to be done before we head over to the UK on Sunday.

Okay, Okay, I’ve actually been stressing about stuff. Not a good idea.

Being uncertain about when or where we might have an Internet connection means I want to make sure that I’ve covered everything that needs an Internet connection.

Getting Excited

Actually, we’re both looking forward to spending some time in the UK. I’ve never been there and Geoff hasn’t been back since he left in 1963.

He plans to show me where he grew up and I expect that it has probably changed a lot in the time he’s been away.

We are also going to spend a few days exploring London before heading off to Nottingham for a week on a narrow boat with friends.

Missing Home a Bit

Even though we’ve been enjoying this trip and are really looking forward to the European part, at times we long for the comfortable and familiar routine of being home.

It’s still almost 3 months before we head back home and, yes, we miss it.

Too Much Downtime

Perhaps this week of downtime has given us time reflect and, therefore, long for home.

I’m sure once we are presented with new places to explore, the excitement of a new adventure will supplant the longing for home.