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The latest update as of January 27, 2016

Post Vacation Update - What A Long (and not so) Strange Trip It's Been

It's been almost four months since Gail and I set sail from Vancouver for the South Seas. We spent the first 25 days on a cruise ship, visiting Southern California, Hawaii, Samoa, Fiji, and New Caledonia, enroute to Sydney, Australia. Then it was a whirlwind three weeks seeing the sights in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Brisbane, with sidetrips to the Hunter Valley, The Great Ocean Road, the Barossa Valley, and Noosa on the Sunshine Coast.

The pace slowed somewhat when we flew up to North Queensland and stayed in Cairns for seven weeks, with lots of trips to Cape Tribulation, Port Douglas, Cooktown, the Atherton Tablelands, and of course, the Great Barrier Reef. Our stay there saw us right through Christmas and New Year's and it was certainly a different Christmas than we'd ever experienced before. Palm Trees and "Chrissy" Trees side-by-side. The day after New Year's we were on a plane again, this time flying further north to Singapore.

After an overnight stay there we boarded another cruise ship for our first look at Southeast Asia, stopping in Bali for three days, followed by Komodo Island (yes, the place with the dragons), Phuket (major party town in Thailand), Penang and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, then back to Singapore. But wait: there's more! We decided to extend our trip by another week for some much needed rest at a beach resort near Ao Nang in Thailand. It was the perfect way to finish off the vacation before we made the long trek home.

That last day was quite a tour-de-force, starting with breakfast in Bangkok, followed by lunch in Hong Kong, and finally, many hours later, dinner at home in North Vancouver. We went from hot and humid in Bangkok, to very cold in Hong Kong, and finally, the usual west coast winter weather in Vancouver.

It's now two and a half days since we got home and the suitcases are still open (but nearly empty) on the floor, the laundry is almost done, the refrigerator is nearly back together (long story there) and everything else is back to normal. Except for the bank account; that's on life support at the moment. If it was a race engine, it would be so lean that parts would be melting and/or exploding by now. Usual deal here though. More news as the week progresses.