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Rick and I didn’t do much traveling while we ran the motel. We had our heads down working, raising the children and we both had commitments in the community. We took our children to Disneyland and to Disneyworld and we went to Hawaii twice. That was pretty much the extent of our travels for eighteen years.

When we started the B & B it was all very new and we again put our heads down and worked year round without holidays. I don’t regret any of it as we were there for the children (probably more than they liked at the time) then so busy re-establishing ourselves in a new community that we didn’t think we were missing out on anything.

Five years ago very good friends introduced us to the world of international travel away from North America. We flew to England, Scotland and Germany with them and had our eyes opened wide and wider. Oh yes our mouths were hanging open too! I learned that architectual ‘old’ is new again, and that for all of the crush of people in the cities there are still some very beautiful historical sites and farm lands in the countries we visited. I had developed my own little interpretation on each country from books, movies and television. Many places were surreal knowing that building was bombed during the war, or that one has been here since the Romans, oh yes and this is where the Queen lives. Yes that man running towards me with two body guards really is the Prince, only I didn’t realize it until he passed by! Not that I would have tried to stop him!

Our children used to tell us we needed to ‘get a life outside of our business’. Now they complain they cannot keep track of which country we are coming from or going to. We are home about ten months of the year working and the other two months we have some wonderful capable innsitters that look after our B & B while we travel.

Last evening we were talking with our guests and the subject of cruising came up. They are heading out on a cruise to South America soon and are doing a great deal of investigating into different tours in different areas . It brought back great memories of the two cruises we have taken in the last couple of years. We had talked about going on the Alaska cruise but I wasn’t sure if four days on a ship on the water would be too confining…then we were told about the cruise through the South Pacific and we jumped in with both feet without another thought. Well there were many thoughts and many nights when I worried about everything from the weather, the seas, the food and what if we didn’t like the ship. We were going to be on it for 35 days! Well, being the seasoned travelers we would make the best of it. Wouldn’t we?

Both cruises were with Voyages of Discovery and each touched a different side of South America. The first cruise started in Tahiti and traveled through the South Pacific to the west side of South America stopping at six of those ‘in my lifetime I would love to see’ spots – Bora Bora, Easter Island, Robinson Crusoe Island, Machu Picchu, Galapagos Islands, and Panama Canal, and many others in between. This really was the most amazing trip I have ever taken. I am still in awe at the many sites we saw, the wonderful people we met (locals, Discovery staff and cruisers), the accommodations and food we experienced along the way.

The repositioning cruise last fall from Lisbon, Portugal to Buenos Aires, Argentina was our second and we enjoyed it as much as the first. Before we crossed the Atlantic Ocean we stopped at Madeira Island and Cape Verde two very different landscapes. Madeira was lush and green with terraced farms and Cape Verde was barren red lava rock with only a few scrub brush. Crossing the ocean was calm and beautiful – not much to see for a couple of days but there are many things to keep you busy on board. Once we started to see the Brazil coast line there were offshore drill platforms, sailing ships and freighters in the shipping lanes.

It was very different on the west side of South America as we stopped in bigger ports so our tours were mostly city tours. Every port has their down side but each also has their charm. We learned a bit about the history, the people, the culture, the architecture and the food. Every stop along the way was well worth the time. Of course when you are doing city tours of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Montevideo in Uruguay, and Buenos Aires in Argentina it was again ‘in my lifetime I would like to see’ moments. What is not to like?

From Buenos Aires we flew to Iguassu Falls. We stayed on the Argentinian side and took a day trip to the Brazilian side, which I would highly recommend as the view is entirely different from each side. Back to Buenos Aires then we flew home. Creating memories!! Next cruise March 2009!

We tried a new ‘Amazing Apple Museli for breakfast’ this morning. It was finished off with relish by our guests so we now have a new cereal dish to include in our menu list. It will be great when the apples come off our trees in the fall.

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