Sherman, getting some maintenance work done in Alpine, Texas.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Lost Alaskan RV Park, Alpine, TX.

Where are they going next? Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico.

Monday, September 30, 2019

More Ecuador planning

Last day of September! And our Ecuador trip starts in less than two weeks, so I figured I had better get some more planning done.

We are only there for three weeks... not very long in Kevin and Ruth time. And out of our 21 days there, we are a full week in Quito and 8 days in Galapagos, so that only leaves 6 days to see the rest of the country!

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Weekend away, day 2

Well, we must be getting older and wiser. It seemed like nobody woke up with a sore head from excessive consumption!

But, we did wake up to rainy skies and it stayed that way until well after lunch. So it was an inside morning.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Away for the weekend

Yesterday, I kissed Ruth goodbye at around noon, and arrived at the "cottage" at around 2:00pm. I took all the back roads and the route was 141 kms (87 miles). One section was pretty curvy, but there has hardly any traffic the whole drive.

No problem finding the place.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Booked for Galapagos!

Yesterday, I finally received my ScotiaBank Passport Visa card with its 0% foreign exchange fee and six free airport lounge passes. For a traveler who is based in Canada, this is by far the best credit card available.

And that essentially completes our transition from TD Bank to ScotiaBank. The bank and investment accounts are all switched over, and direct debit and deposits are changed as well. Glad that's all done!

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Home renovations in Ottawa

We are pretty proud of our daughter Lindsey and her husband Justin. They are finally going out on their own in the business world and he is going to work for himself. It's a big step to give up a regular steady income when you've got a mortgage and bills and a young family to support. I remember doing that myself when I was at that stage in life. It's very exciting, but you're a little nervous at the same time!

He's going into partnership with a good friend of his (also named Kevin!) who he has been working with for the past several years at a major Ottawa construction company.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Road trip!

Monday after lunch, we headed out on a road trip. It was about a two hour drive from here to the little town of Ingleside on the St. Lawrence River across from New York State.

We had been invited to visit our friends Bob and Denise and their dog Scarlet! You might remember them from last year's Mexico RV Caravan trip.

Monday, September 23, 2019

If you are not enjoying yourself, then what's the point?

When Ruth and I were out on our 5 km (3 mile) powerwalk this morning, we were discussing the things that people do with the hope of extending their life. Many of these things are related to doctor's visits where they are trying to fix a problem that could have been avoided in the first place.

That's exactly why we exercise and keep active.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

A great day to go see the RCMP Musical Ride!

A few weeks back, daughter Lindsey asked if we wanted to join them at the Ottawa Fall Horse Festival where the headline act was to be the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Musical Ride.

If you've never seen the RCMP Musical Ride, it's quite the special show. Ruth and I have probably seen it two or three times before in our lives, but it's been a long time. Plus, it sounded like a fun way to spend some time with our daughter and her family.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

You deserve to know why we are changing banks

I mentioned earlier this week that we began the transition to a different bank here in Canada. We have been with TD Bank for over 30 years, but their fees were no longer the best deal for our lifestyle.

During this transition though, I became frustrated with the fact that I had to do this at all. It's a pain in the butt changing banks. But my math said that we would save around $700 a year... so it's worth it!

Friday, September 20, 2019

No, we won't be doing any Galapagos cruises!

I spent far too much time yesterday on the internet doing Galapagos research. I read a lot of blog posts from people who have been there, and I researched prices and activities.

Many people say that you must do a Galapagos cruise in order to properly experience the islands. I don't think this is necessarily true. Plus, Galapagos cruises are ridiculously expensive.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Well, it looks like we are going to Galapagos Islands!

When we booked our trip to Ecuador in July, the idea was to visit a relatively inexpensive country for a change. And, we did get a great deal on the airfare, at $535 CAD ($410 USD) each, round trip from Ottawa.

I mentioned at the time that we were thinking of taking an intensive Spanish course while there, but we've decided against that. It would simply take up too much time that could be better spent exploring!

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Yeehaw, our camera is back!

On September 9th, we approved the quoted $345 CAD ($260 USD) cost to repair our damaged Nikon P900 camera at the Nikon Service Center in Toronto.

They have an online portal where you can check the status of the repair. I had been checking it regularly, and under "Status" it still said "Shop". Last Friday, the status was changed to "Approved".

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Reflecting on our Australia RV trip

Well, it's already been almost a month since we left Australia! And while it's still fairly fresh in our minds, we wanted to go over the trip with you and tell you what we might have done different if we were to do it again.

So here's the good and the bad... but mostly good!

Monday, September 16, 2019

Thanks for sticking with us!

Back at the beginning of May, we began testing out a new advertising partner for this blog. At the time, most of the response was positive. The ads were kind of overwhelming though... and because you were so used to the clean look that I had given the blog without the advertising it was a bit of a shock at the time.

So now, four months have passed and I thought you deserved an update.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Yesterday, we stopped in to see the house we used to own

September is probably the best time of year to be in eastern Ontario, Canada. Daytime high temperatures tend to hover between 18C to 25C (64F to 77F).

The mosquitoes and black flies that are common in this area during the summer are pretty much gone. And the kids are back in school.

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Two years without a car

It has now been two full years since we sold the little blue car. At first, it was odd not to own a car. But with our nomadic lifestyle, it was difficult to work out the logistics of where to store it when we are not in Canada, and of course there was still repair and maintenance and insurance costs to worry about.

Normally, I am pretty good at finding a reasonably priced car rental deal for our time in Canada. This time, nothing great ever came along... sometimes the deals just don't exist!

Thursday, September 12, 2019

The calendar is filling up!

We've been here for two weeks now, and have just over one month to go. Time is going by quickly though, and the calendar is filling up.

Had an old friend over for dinner last night. My accountant from my collision repair shop days. He's 99% retired now, but we still try to see him every couple of years.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Absolutely no regrets

Yesterday, while I was outside cutting the grass here at Ruth's father's house, I was reminded that I do not for a minute miss owing a house and all the associated work and expense. Some people find it enjoyable... every time Ruth and I see a property with a big lawn, we say "they must really like cutting grass!"

And while it is good exercise... I would rather be out hiking somewhere!

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Out for lunch!

Yesterday we were invited for lunch with Kimberly, a friend who lived near Ruth's father's place here in Galetta.

A couple of years ago, we spoke to Kimberly in depth about our RV lifestyle because she thought she might be interested in doing the same thing. But she ended up taking a different path.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Making some progress

Thanks for all of your comments and suggestions regarding what to do with our Nikon camera situation.

For now, we have decided to allow the new camera to be delivered. We have 30 days that we can send it back if we choose to, plus it gives us some time to test the repaired one to make sure that it is working properly. Hopefully the repaired one will show up towards the end of this week. I have read that the Nikon Service Center is fairly efficient, so I guess we will see.

Sunday, September 8, 2019

We're moving up in the world!

By the time we finish 2019, we will have been on 23 different airplanes!

And because we don't do very many direct flights, we spend a lot of time in airports waiting for connecting flights. This year, we will have spent time in 16 different airports.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

So, I heard back from the Nikon service center

Regular readers will remember that I dropped our camera last month while in Australia. It wasn't much of a drop, and it was in it's padded case at the time, but it was messed up anyhow.

And when we returned to Ottawa, I packed it up and shipped it to the Nikon repair facility near Toronto. It cost $38 CAD ($29 USD) just for that.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Wearing out our hiking boots

Well, this week flew right on by! It's Friday already, and we haven't got much done yet!

On Wednesday, we went and picked up Ruth's father at "the villa" and took him for a drive. We stopped at Tom Horton's because he loves their coffee. If he had his way, we would have stopped at Dairy Queen too, because "ice cream is good for you" he says. But, we'll save that for another day.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Planning for Mexico

We are returning to Mexico again this coming winter. And like last year, we are taking seven other RV's with us.

But this time, we're mixing things up a little bit. First of all, the trip will be 136 days from the time we cross the border, so we will be in Mexico about 4 1/2 months.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

We will have no problem keeping busy during our time here

So we are back in the village of Galetta, staying at Ruth's father's house. He is no longer here though... both physically and mentally he is deteriorating and he is now at an assisted living facility in the nearby town of Arnprior.

We are here until October 13th, so a total of six weeks. Normally, we don't come back to the Ottawa area for such a long time. But Ruth's brother who lives nearby needed a break from looking after their father and so he is taking off in his travel trailer for a much needed vacation down to the U.S..

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

August Expenses

Considering all the travel we did, it was not a bad month.

We spent a total of $4,310 CAD ($3,223 USD) during the month of August, however we also recorded a profit of $2,345 ($1,754 USD) on the sale of our Australian RV, bringing our net expenses down to $1,965 ($1,470 USD) for the month.

Monday, September 2, 2019

RPC Day 3... Picnic Lunch in the Pines

Day 3 here at Red Pine Camp. Sadie wasn't feeling well in the morning. Probably a combination of two late nights in a row, plus too much candy from the tuck shop the day before!

After breakfast, Cameron was off to Junior Program and we hardly saw him all day. At 8 years old, and with a few different friends to play with, it's not tough to keep him busy around here.

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Archery practice at RPC

It was a little chilly in the morning, but it turned into a nice afternoon... sunny, with a high touching 24C (75F). Pretty much perfect! And, they are calling for the same thing today.

The kids are kept busy here. In fact, they are at the age where we don't really see them very often throughout the day. Really, only at meal time, and even then Cameron is usually off sitting at a table with his friends.