Friday, April 27, 2018

Disembarking the Ruby

Well like many last night I had a very hard time sleeping.

All of sudden I was awake at 3 am and I look outside and the moon is just stunning!  So that must of been the reason I was woken - to see the moon.

I try to sleep some more but really never got back to sleep.

The sail into Vancouver is probably one of the most beautiful I have ever seen.  I really will miss it when we leave.

Then the sailing under the Lion's Gate Bridge takes your breath away.

It is a beautiful day here in Vancouver, certainly nicer than San Pedro was.

We shower and pack up our bag and head out of the cabin around 7:45.  They had requested that you vacate by 8:15.

Breakfast is being served in the Horizon Court, Dining room and in the International Cafe.  We opt for the dining room since this will be the only time we get to eat here.

It was nice to sit and reflect on the voyage.

There was a large table behind us with people complaining about the disembarkation and that they should be able to get off whenever they want.  Well I did not say anything but I wanted to say "well that would be crazy trying to get 3,000 people off at any time they want".

After breakfast we take a seat in Vines and enjoy some quiet time.  I review the bill and take note on how much we actually spent on beverages that would of been covered by the drink package if we had it.

We spent $275 on wine, cocktails, sparkling water, and martinis - and one soda.  If we would of gotten the drink package it would of cost us $414.  Note we had coffee cards so that was covered with that.  So it was a good decision for us to not get the drink package.  We never felt like we were limiting ourselves, in fact maybe we should of though.  If we would of gotten the drink package I know we would of drank more and gotten our money's worth it but I am glad we did not.

Around 9:15 we start to make our way towards Club Fusion the Platinum Elite Lounge but as we got past Explorers the crew member there asked many of us if we were walk off.  Yes we were and they said we were clear to go off.

So we turned around and walked to the gangway.  

We walked off and right thru the port with a brief stop to hand over our customs form.  Wish Canada would also get rid of the custom form at the pier. We did not have to fill out the customs form when we flew into Canada in March.  Hopefully it will change soon for the pier.

We walked out to the street and caught transit to our car and we were on our way home.

It was a wonderful little get away.  We loved the break and loved seeing friends on board.  

We really loved our cabin too.  We had A202 which was very very quiet - the last passenger cabin on Aloha deck.  Still find balcony cabins noisier than inside but it sure was nice having the fresh air.  

Second Sea Day Evening

This is where we are moving! Ruby Princess has been there.

We start the evening with drinks in Explorers chatting with Ronnie.  But he can not chat much as he is so busy - which is a good thing.

We ordered drinks with our drink coupons.  For these short voyages they provide a drink voucher in your cabin in lieu of the Captain Circle Party.  They now have our name, cabin number on them, where before they were completely blank.  When we have had the drink package before we just gave our coupons away, guess we can not do that anymore.

Tonight we have dinner reservations at The Salty Dog and Ana from the cruise staff is going to join us.  We first met Ana on her first contract and we are so proud at how far she has come.  

I have a love hate relationship with Salty Dog.  

What I love is the food, the live music, the price - $12 and the casual pub like atmosphere.  Tonight Guitar Player and amazing singer Frostie.

My dislikes are the high tables and chairs, just not comfortable and service.  I think this is probably our 6th time at the Salty Dog and we have never had very good service.  I equate it to the servers that are just not waiters but are bar staff.  

Drinks take a very long to arrive and then we are never asked how the food is until they are clearing the plates.  I also notice tables being cleaned very unprofessionally and not even wiped down just the place mat being reset.  Little things that checking to see if you need anything shortly after you are served so they can add it.  

I will note all this in my survey and hope that it can improve.  It won't stop me from going back but it would cause me to go as often as I would if the service was better.

After dinner we wander around and have a Bugsey Martini in Crooners and really enjoy the music from Funch.  

We head to Crown Grill to say goodbye to Randy and then up to Share to say goodbye to Riza.  

We are back in the cabin at 11 pm and we head to sleep.  Back to reality tomorrow.

Second Sea Day

One thing about these short voyages is you just get on and then the first evening you get your disembarkation information!  

It looks like most have been assigned Walk Off.  This makes sense since most have just carry on bags.  Although there was the option for you to put out bags too.  Also there were hours at the Purser's desk where you could get different luggage tags if necessary.

We have been assigned Walk off 19 for a time of 9:35 and that works for us so we leave it.

Again this morning we ordered room service and it arrived promptly and the guy who delivered it once again asked "no coffee or tea I brought extra just in case".  We declined, but now talk about service.

I get my blog posted up very difficultly.  WiFi has been very poor, but it seems to be the entire ship.  We hear from officers later that signal was non existent that they had a hard time updating the weather temp.  Not sure why or how as this is not my specialty but the entire three days it has been poor.

We leave the cabin and head to the International Cafe to grab a coffee and to read, do puzzles and to just relax.  

As I sit there I notice how great the staff in the Atrium are.  They are constantly scanning the entire area - including Vines - which often gets forgotten for plates, cups or orders.  Last time we were on the Ruby this was an area that we noticed service was lacking but it was top notch this time.

But after a half hour it gets way too busy and noisy here.  With weather being poor everyone is forced inside.  There are numerous events happening that increases the noise level.  Egg Drop Challenge sign up and then the Galley Tour line snakes thru the Atrium.  Then the Paper Plane Challenge starts and we give up and move on.

We find a nice spot in Wheelhouse and read until we are ready for lunch.  

Once again we try to go to the dining room but the queue is probably a 100 people deep at 1 pm.  So we once again head upstairs for lunch in the Horizon Court, which was very good, but a bit frustrating.  Again the Club Class takes up such a big part of the dining room and it is relatively empty.  While the rest line up and wait.  No Pub Lunch was offered and it is just too cold to be getting pizza or hamburgers unless you brave the temperatures.

Our afternoon we head to Club Fusion to catch the end of the Princess Pyramid Gameshow.   We then take part in the Before they were Famous quiz show and did not too bad, we got 14 and the winners got 15.  So we can hold our head up.  

Lots of other things happening including Bingo, Afternoon Tea, Wine Blending Experience, Wine Tasting, Eddie the Eagle on Muts, and of course trivias.

I forgot to share that when we walked past the pizzeria they had something new - sandwiches and also empanadas.  

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Evening on Board the Ruby Princess

We dressed for the evening and left the cabin around 6 to head out for drinks. 

The place feels very quiet.  But then again it is early.

For dinner we just head up to the Horizon Court for a quick bite to eat.  It is Asian them and they have these lovely pillar decoration and cute place matts that are Asian theme.

While eating we spotted a school of dolphins.

I enjoyed sushi and a noodle bowl full of veggies. 

Tonight they are also hosting the Crab Shack - again an amazing deal.

After dinner we are at Vines and enjoying a bottle of Pacific Bay.  Jude and Mark take great care of us.

Gidea and her friends join us and we crack open the champagne we were given and catch up.  It is so nice to see her, we did not realize she was on board so it is a gift.

Later Ana joins us for a glass of wine until she has to kick off the Balloon Drop dance party.

There was a lot going on tonight.  Comedian Phil Tag performed in the Princess Theater at 8 pm and 10 pm.  Star Wars was on MUTS, but I can not imagine being outside for an enitre movie - it is cold. 

Passenger Feud and 70s night is on in Explorer's Lounge. 

Overall it was a great day and very relaxing.

Corporate Survey On Board

This afternoon Bernie attended the survey that he was invited to do.  It took place in Botticelli Dining Room at 3 pm.

He described to me what happened and I am reporting it here.

There were around ten tables of 12 people throughout the room.  At each table were the participants, a moderator, someone to take notes, and one other to oversee.

Each table had it's own topic.  Bernie's table was all about the Princess@Sea app.  Others were Entertainment, Dining, Shorex etc.

Questions were asked and each person responded at the table. 

Bernie commented that everyone at his table was Elite but not sure what the make up of the other tables were. 

He was surprised at how many at his table did not know much about the Princess@Sea app making it difficult to participate.

He stated that many confussed the intranet with the internet.  That they did not know that the app did not use their internet minutes. 

Questions were asked about how to improve the system, what they would like to see, what they don't like and Bernie told them his ideas and how the App is lacking and could be used for so much more.

The survey took exactly 45 minutes, as they said and he was back in the cabin at 3:50.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Morning of the Day at Sea

I wake early.  The seas have us bobbing up and then down, up and then down.  I can see many people not liking this movement.  But for us we love it.

Room service arrives and I got what I added, a bagel with cream cheese.  The crew that delivered was surprised we had not ordered tea or coffee so he brought it just in case.  Nice and very considerate and shows real initiative to take care of the passengers but we don't need it.  Oh I should add I did have my soy milk latte earlier.

I write up my blogs for yesterday and get them posted.  I will add pictures once I get home.

It is cool out, the Patter says 54-59.  Seas are calm but breezy.  You need to buddle up to stay outside.

I see there is a Speedy Sudoku at 9:30 and attend that and did not finish first, but it was fun to participate.  As it is later when we attend trivia.  We did not score high but we did have fun, and learned something too.

Oh guess what!  As we sat in Crooners a large pod of whales swim by.  There was at least 20 of them.  We saw them break the surface and shoot from their spout.  So cool.

There were numerous events happening including Zumba, line dancing (which I did take part in for a few songs), Movie Coco on MUTS, Martini Show, Digital Scavenger Hunt and so much more.

At 11:15 in the Atriuim they held a ceremony for Anzac Day from Australia and New Zealand - similar to our Rememberance Day in November.  Many even wear poppies like we do.  The entire ceremony was quite nice and appreciated that the Ruby Princess honoured it.

For lunch we were going to try the dining room but the queue was so long and they had just opened the door so we ended up heading upstairs to Horizon Court for a nice meal. Plus I love the salad bar.

Oh forgot to mention that we are the Most Travelled Guests on board.  The Captain Circle Host - Rachel calls us to let us know.  

She confirms that we get a dinner for two at a specialty restaurant but the Crown Grill can not accommodate us as they are totally full the next two days.  We are offered Salty Dog, Crab Shack or they would cover the added fee if we dine in the dining room and select the filet and lobster.  

We agree to the Salty Dog for tomorrow at 7 pm.  We also get a commemorative box - which we decline (remember we are getting rid of all our possessions) and she offers to send us chocolates in lieu.  Also a bottle of champagne is also an added treat.

We spot Gidea and she is shocked to see us, we did not even know she was on board. Then Lisa Ball is shocked to see us too.   We feel so blessed.


First Evening On Board and Dinner at Share

Tonight we have dinner at Share in Riza's section. 

We dress and head up towards Explorer's Lounge to see Ronnie.  We have not seen him since the Royal two years ago where he was bartender in Vines. 

Ana from the Cruise Staff is leading a line dance class here and we first give her a big hug and promise we need to catch up some time tomorrow.  I did partake in her line dance class.  Not easy to do in high heels and a few drinks.  But it was fun.

It is great to see him and catch up and his wife stops by too.  Heck even the server comes over to say hi.  She remembers us from last summer and even comments we were the most travelled.  Wow I am surprised that she remembers us as we did not have a lot of interaction with her.  A few others spot us and come and say hi too.

That is my favorite thing on board.  Seeing crew we haven't seen and were not expecting to see and picking up right where we left off.

When we arrive at Share we are directed to a lovely table for two.  It is busy in here but most tables are winding down and within an hour there are only a handfull of tables and Riza has more time to chat.

I love this dining venue.  This is our sixth time here and again it does not disappoint. 

Lots of different courses.  The plates are not huge but with all the different courses you walk away very full. 

My favorite thing here is that the dishes are so unique with so many flavors.  The little touches like the coarse salt on the butter.  The buttermilk dressing on the salad.  The gnocchi with the beautiful color that comes thru when you stir the dish.  We loved everything but one dish and that was the mushroom ragout tartlet that was a bit too salty for our taste.

In all the meal took about three hours but we did drag it out with a lot of chatting with Riza.

We missed the Magic To Do show that was happening tonight and this saddeneds us but it was so much better to spend the time with Riza.

Back in the cabin there is a notice to remind Bernie of the Survey Group tomorrow at 3 pm.

Also there is a letter stating we are one of the most travelled and a complimentry dinner for two is available for us at either Salty Dog or Crown Grill.  We will try to make a reservation for Salty Dog one of the nights but we are down to two nights so who knows.

Boarding the Ruby Princess

Our hotel - picture taken from ship

We are at the pier at 12:05 and it is not that crowded.  Because it is a three day voyage not that many are dropping bags off, most are rolling them on.

We fill out the health form and take the escalator upstairs and there is no queue for Priority boarding and only a short queue for non Priority.  They are very efficient here in Los Angeles.

After getting our cruise cards we then go thru security.  Again very efficient.

We are directed to the Priority boarding area but are lead to the line to board.  On the gangway a queue has started for those to take their security picture.  This is what took the longest but still only around 5 minutes.

In all it took about 15 minutes to board and we were kept moving along the entire process.

I have to share this cute comment.  A woman in a wheelchair was being pushed by one of the staff and the guide was informing her that she could go right up to the Horizon Court for lunch.  The woman said and I just show them my card when I get to the buffet to pay?  When the guide said it was all included that you don't have to show your card she was quite impressed.

There are a lot of new cruisers on board.  A LOT!  I would guess about 50% are first time cruisers! 

There is a big group of travel agents on for a conference too.

A few bachelor, bachelorette, big birthday and families on board.  It is a nice change and bring a different vibe to the ship.

They are selling the drink package like hot cakes!  For us we opt out of it as we find we drink too much when we get it.

The cabin was ready when we got on.  We booked A202 a balcony cabin all the way forward - our desired area.  In fact we are the last passenger cabin on this deck.  We are right next to the Shorex Manager's Cabin and the bridge is right above us.

We quickly unpack and get things settled.  We call the dine line to change out our mini bar to two coffee cards.  The line was answered very quickly and done within the hour.

Our first stop is Share to see Riza.  On the way we ran into Randy who was our server last summer in the dining room.  He comes running up to the Sun deck to see us. 

Finally at the Share Restaurant we catch up with Riza and confirm we have a table for tonight at 7:30.

Back in the cabin we decide we both need a nap and I have no trouble fall

asleep.  But a half hour into the nap we wake to Cecilia our cabin steward knocking.  We get up and meet her.  A few things are needing to be addressed.  First is the bathroom sink is almost completely plugged.  Water is still sitting in it from when we washed our hands and brushed our teeth earlier.  Also the shower curtain is very moldy at the base.  For me I have severe allergic reaction to mold and I was not even able to be in the washroom for long before a sinus headache starts.  So I end up having to take off the shower curtain and put in a laundry bag to contain it.  Now I can at least use the washroom. 

Cecilia addresses both things right away and replaces shower curtain when we are gone to the Muster Drill and sink is corrected while at dinner.

The cabin is great and looks in very good shape.  I love the big balcony (well big compared to the Royal) but not sure how much time we will spend out here on this coastal.

Muster for us is the Princess Theater and it is really nice that we don't have to bring our life jackets.  In total it takes about 20 minutes and once finished we walk thru the Casino and spot Greg - Lisa Ball's husband.  We agree we need to meet for a drink sometime to catch up.

We head down to Vines and meet a lovely couple from San Antonio, Texas - Peggy and Fred.  We end up talking with them for a long time and it was so nice to connect and learn about them and where they are from and their history.

Officer list is as follows:

Captain Giorgio Pomata
Staff Captain Giovanni Cardile
Chief Engineer Officer Andrea Scantamburio
Hotel General Manager Riccardo Capraro
Senior Doctor Louis Van Heerden
Entertainment Director Lisa Ball
Cruise Director Peter-John De Kock
Customer Services Director James Eaton
Food & Beverage Director Andrea Baiardo
Staff Engineer Mauro Boracchi
Enviornmental Officer Georgi Dimitrov Takov
Executive Housekeeper Artur Lopes Ferreira
Executive Chef Saverio Brattoli
Maitre d'Hotel Carlos Justina

Morning in San Pedro Part II

When I left on yesterday I was just about to get a shower and head out.  Well as soon as I posted Bernie came out of the shower to annouce he just had a cool shower.  I then went in thinking how bad can it be.  Well I couldn't even get under the shower cause it was ice cold.

I call down to the front desk and find out that the hot water is turned off because of maintenance.  They are doing some renovations but they did not tell us our room was affected when we checked in.  They said they would turn it back on in about 15 minutes.  I know too that it then takes some time for the hot water to heat and make it up to our floor.  I told her we do not have the time to wait.

The manager called back to say they are so sorry and that they were putting enough points in my loyalty program to give me a free night.  I accepted and put on more deoderant!

I am happy at how the hotel dealt with the situation and would certainly come back.  However; I do feel they could of been proactive and informed us at check in or with a note under our door that the hot water would of been shut off at a certain time so we could of showered earlier.

We left the hotel and walked up to the corner to dine at a local diner called One Happy Diner.  Small, family owned type place where you can see the kitchen and the menu is full of options.  The place was busy and we were quickly sat in one of the last tables.  The food was good and plentiful. 

There is a new tea/coffee place right across the street from the hotel.  Again a small locally owned spot that has amazing teas.  I believe the name was Hojas.  Check out the key to the washroom.

We leave and it is 11:40 so we start to walk towards the peir. 

I definately needed a windbreaker today, it is a little cool, especially along the water.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Good Morning Ruby Princess

For some odd reason I awake and I glance at the clock.  It is 5:30 am!  What the heck.  Then my next thought is I wonder if I can see the Ruby Princess coming in?

I quickly jump out of bed and low and behold there she is just sailing past. 

Five minutes later and I would of missed her.

It does not happen often that we stay at a place that we get to see the ships coming and going.  And even when we do we are sound asleep preferring it to seeing the pretty ship.

But it was cool seeing her come in and to realize this is the last time in a while that she will be docking here.

I do end up sleeping a bit more and when we both awake we are taking are sweet time.

We decide on a spot for breakfast close by.  Note the hotel has a nice breakfast buffet for $15 per person or an a la carte menu which we have enjoyed previously but want to head out into the community again today.

The hotel also offers a shuttle to the pier for $5 per person but we are going to walk as we are able to physically do it and all we have is carry on bags.  Personally I would skip the shuttle and take an Uber if I had to.

The hotel room is quite good.  The bed is devine!  In fact Bernie wants to take note of the brand and buy similar when we settle.  The room has an iron/board and a small coffee maker - but the cup I brewed was horrible. 

There are some downsides in the room and most have to do with the bathroom.  Where the tap on the sink for the hot water doesn't not stop turning, you have to position just right to have it shut off.  But that is minor and for the great price, and the great location, and the great bed it is certainly worth it.  And boy is it cheaper than Fort Lauderdale.

Evening in San Pedro

After settling in at the hotel we head out for dinner.  But first we had to get to a drug store.

We know there are two drugstores on Gaffney so we start walking that way.  

There is a Rite Aide at Gaffney and 7th Street that you can get all your cruise needs and even a bottle or two of wine.  

We decide to head back to Niko's Pizzeria on 6th Street (the same street the hotel is on).  We had dined here a long time ago and their pizza is good so we thought we should go again.

We started with a large glass of beer.  Boy it looks huge next to my glass of wine.

I know the US serves large portions, and here it is not different.  Looking around us the servings are large and many are taking home doggie bags.

We start with a greek salad that we share that was very good.

Then we shared a medium veggetarian pizza that also was so yummy.   

Service was very good and efficient.  Prices are reasonable.  Only negative was the constant banging of dishes and what sounded like metal pans being dropped in sinks.  With a chair that backed onto the kitchen it constantly freaked me out.

There are quite a few places to eat at around here but not tons like you would find in Long Beach.  Establishments here are privately run and are not big brand names.  Lots of quaint cafes, bars, a great brew pub just a block away.  Restaurants that are run by families.  

It is now 9:30 pm and we are back in the room relaxing and ready to hit the hay early.  

We are both looking forward to getting on board tomorrow and stepping away from all the hustle and bustle of living on land.

The pictures are a pain to load with on the tablet so as soon as I get on board the ship the pictures will have to wait until I am at home.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Flying to Los Angeles

We pack our small carry on bag for the 3 days and then got in the car for the drive to the Vancouver Airport.  Bernie still is not allowed to drive because of his eyes so I had to drive and listen to how hard it was for him to be a passenger.

Once at the airport we quickly checked in and then proceeded thru security.

It sure helps to have Nexus (Global Entry) and in all it took about 5 minutes.

Our flight is 2:15 and we board easily and even secured the emergency exit seat.  We were lucky to secure space in the overhead with a bit of maneuvering to store our carry on our bags.

The flight was find, it isn't that long a flight - under 3 hours!

I love flying Air Canada with their entertainment in seat in front of you with a plug in for your devices.

Once we land we log on to the free wifi at LAX and request an Uber.

Seven minutes later our Uber is there and we hit the LA traffic running.  It takes about 45 minutes to get ot the hotel.  

The Crowne Plaza San Pedro is our go to hotel when coming to LA for a cruise.  The staff are great and we get a nice room on the 8th floor that even has a view of the harbour.

We are going to rest for a bit and then we will head out for dinner and then to Rite Aide for some items we need.

And We Are Off For A Short Trip

Decided a few weeks ago to do a re positioning cruise.  What is a re positioning cruise.  It is where the ship is moving from sailing in warmer climates during "our" winter up to the Alaska market.

We are boarding the Ruby on Tuesday for a three night cruise to Vancouver (home).

Price is great; however one way flights cost just as much as the cruise!

We are flying out today with Air Canada at 2:15 pm to LAX. 

We have a hotel reserved at the Crowne Plaza San Pedro.  We booked this hotel thru Hotwire for an amazing deal of $92 Canadian.  

We have stayed her numerous times and love the location and the ability to easily walk to the pier tomorrow.

Oh and Bernie got confirmation yesterday that he was chosen for the survey focus group that will take place on board Wednesday afternoon.  For this he will receive an on board credit of $50 and will take less than an hour.

So follow along as I will be blogging.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Condo is SOLD

Our building

When we gave our landlord two month's notice that we would be moving at the end of May his response was that they thought it was time that they sold the condo.

They had owned it since it had been built five years ago.  They had been renting the condo out for investment purposes since.

We met with the real estate agents and the landlord last week and agreed that we would do everything we could to accommodate them for showings.  After all they had been very good to us and we wanted to make things as easy for them.

The condo was put up on the market on Tuesday this week with showings scheduled for set times on Saturday and Sunday this week.

Thursady we received a call that the place has been sold.  Yeah SOLD.

Sight Unseen! 


Now my thought is who buys a half a million dollar condo without even looking at it?  But hey it is a hot market here in Vancouver and it is a good investment that is for sure.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

So Very Busy - But New Life Soon

Ever since we formally announced we were retiring we have been so busy.  So many things to do.

The biggest thing is we have to get rid of all our possessions.  Most is gone already from when we downsized last year.  The rest is being sold and being picked up in the next few weeks.  The last of the items, including kitchen stuff, bed, linens etc are going to a new Canadian refugee family that is just starting out.

Our landlord has been given notice and they have decided to sell the condo.  I will share the link to the listing when it goes up.  

Also Bernie just had cataract surgery on his first eye with the second one to follow May 1st.  So he is not able to drive and he has a hard time with two different perspectives from each eye which is a bit of a pain but he is doing well and this is all normal.

We have to finalize our pensions, health visits, prescriptions, dental visit, insurance, car tune up, hair cuts, and so much more. 

We put in our paperwork with our employer and now the countdown has begun.

I am also having fun planning out what we want to see when we drive across the country. 

See the largest Goose in Canada (sure why not).  Then all the amazing Historic sites are on the list too.  

We will take our time driving and really enjoying our country along the way.

We are also heading out on a short 3 day re positioning cruise on the Ruby in a few days and will blog during that voyage. 

So stay tuned and sorry about not being able to write too much lately or post on the page but soon I will have all the time in the world.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

It's Official! I Can Announce It!

As many of you know Bernie and I are both transit drivers.  I have been behind the wheel for 20 years with a previous career in IT and Human Resources for 12 years.  Bernie has been behind the wheel of the bus for 32 years and prior to that worked in a mill, as a care aid, and was a manager at  K Mart.

We knew after our trip to Peru last year in January that we needed to move forward in our lives.  First thing was to sell our condo.  That happened very quickly and we moved into a rental for the past year. 

We had been talking about retiring early 2019 but late last year we started to look at moving that date up.  

Work was only getting worse both mentally and physically. Physically we were having a harder time sitting behind the wheel for 7.5 hours with no breaks.  Our body could just not handle it.  Then the final thing was an annoying neighbor in our new place and the road noise at a busy intersection.  

So we decide to take the big step and retire earlier. 

We can officially report that we are retiring the end of May!


We are moving to Cape Breton, Nova Scotia!

Bernie is from Cape Breton.  Sydney Mines to be exact.  He still has a lot of family there and one thing we really miss here in Vancouver is family, both Bernie's and mine.  Thankfully we have a nephew we see often here.

So moving to Cape Breton will allow us to live very affordably and to travel whenever we want - especially during their winters!  We do not plan to be there during the winter. 

Not only will we be closer to brothers/sisters, nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews, cousins and so much more.  It is only a day's drive to Quebec to see my family.  Recently with numerous health scares with some of my family members in Quebec I have felt so far away.  Being in Cape Breton means we can hop in the car and visit regularly.  I can't wait.

Of course Cape Breton may not be our permanent home but for the time being it is just perfect for the next few years.

I know many of my Facebook friends have noticed we are selling lots of things.  This is the reason why, it is cheaper to sell than to ship across the country.  Plus we don't really have that much stuff anymore.

We will be driving across the country starting in Late May and all through June.  Taking our time and seeing our beautiful country and seeing friends and family when possible.  Our goal is to be in Cape Breton by July 1st.

Even though it will be very hard to say goodbye to so many amazing friends we have made over the 20 years for me, and 32 for Bernie, that we have lived in British Columbia we are excited about the next adventure in our lives.

And don't worry I will still be blogging and maintaining my Facebook Page Cruising Princess Cruiseline with Vickie.  So make sure you like the page, and subscribe to the blog to follow along.

PS - thanks to many of my friends who have kept our secret quiet, we appreciate it.