Walking on the beach at Pogradec, Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Pogradec, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Shkoder, Albania on May 19th!

Saturday, March 13, 2021

So now we wait

Yesterday was Covid PCR test day. 

We are flying to Albania on Sunday evening, and although the country itself does not require any sort of testing as a requirement for entry, we are flying with Qatar Airways and they require a negative Covid PCR test certificate that has been done within 96 hours of boarding the plane.

So we made appointments to have the tests done at the nearby Muhumbili University Hospital. You book the day, but not the time. They said they take samples between 8am and 5pm, and we wanted to show up right at 8am.

We were also told that we had to pay the 230,000 shilling ($125 CAD, $100 USD) fee in cash, so first we made a stop at an ATM and took out sufficient cash.

We had checked it out the day before, so we knew exactly where to go. And we arrived there at exactly 8:00am.


Yup, this is the place!

There were a couple of other people waiting too. They all had masks on, but there is no mask rule, so some staff did, and some staff didn't. Personal choice, I guess. We thought it was all a bit odd. Then somebody came in and sat right beside us, despite other seating being available. Not that we are paranoid, but we moved. I honestly thought that being in a hospital, people might be more aware.

An older couple were also waiting, but they had masks, and even gloves on.

They asked if we had paid, and we had not. So they sent us to an NMB bank agent where we gave the control number that was issued to us when we made the booking. We paid the cash, and a receipt was printed out that automatically had our names on them. Everything is linked with your passport number as well. I was actually pretty impressed. As soon as it was paid, I immediately received an email and a text message saying that it had been paid.


Then, back to the testing place where we filled out a form manually with the same info that had been on the online booking. They give you a sample container, and label it with your name and passport number. Then you go into another room where a guy administers the test.

It's pretty simple, and not nearly as uncomfortable as I had read about. First, they stick a swab in your mouth, and briefly let it touch the back of your tongue. They break it off and put it in your previously labeled sample container. Then they stick another swab up your nose, pretty much until it can't go any further! Then they break it off, and put it in the sample container as well.

And that's it, we were done. We were out of there by 8:35am.

So now we wait.

Part of the information you gave listed your flight date, and we had told them we were flying on the 14th. We also noticed on the forms that the couple ahead of us were also flying on the 14th. So we're pretty confident that we will get the results in time for our flight. We're also pretty confident they will come back negative, but there's always this lingering doubt in the back of your mind so we will feel a lot better when we actually see the negative certificate! I'm guessing it will show up by Sunday morning, but I read one report of a guy who didn't get his until he was on the way to the airport. Test results are available electronically to airport staff because they are linked to your passport, so there is no need to print them off.

We did have to get a Passenger Consent Form printed for the airline, so we got that done on the way back home.

I haven't booked our accommodation in Tirana yet because I don't want to lose anything in case the tests come back positive. There is quite a bit of availability, so it will have to be a last minute thing.

Mongolian Beef Curry.

We went back to the Indian restaurant near us for dinner. Really tasty food, I had a chicken and rice dish, and Ruth had the Mongolian Beef Curry that was really good. Maybe we will go back again today and I will order it!

What else. Oh, we watched that movie Nomadland. It's winning all kind of awards, but I'm afraid we weren't impressed. I actually found it quite depressing, and didn't find it entertaining at all.

For those of you who aren't aware, it's about a woman who lives in her van. Now, there are all kinds of people who live in vans and motorhomes and trailers and other sorts of RV's, and most of them do so by choice. And most of them love it, for various reasons. This movie didn't showcase those reasons at all, in fact it seemed to focus on the negative side of it. As I say, I didn't enjoy it at all and would have been happier if I hadn't watched it.

And finally, we received a full refund for our KLM flights that we had booked last December, and then changed in February. Nice to have that out of the way.
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6 Piece Bathroom Towel Set. All colors on sale.

And in Canada...

18 comments:

  1. I found Nomadland to be very powerful, and was impressed with Bob Well's tribe system and its sense of community that has likely saved many depressed and financially strapped people from taking their own lives from loneliness and monetary despair. I think he's done a great deal towards helping many folks have a fulfilling life on income levels that would be poverty levels in the city. I was rooting for the main characters to have a happily ever after ending and be together though, so that was sad.

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    1. We totally agree with what you say about Bob Wells and what he has done for the RVing community and how he has made people feel part of a like minded community and brought many people together but really that was only a small part of the movie.

      We still think that they could have got the point across and shown both the positives and the negatives to the fulltime RVing life, even with a low income level.

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  2. Thanks for your comments about the movie Nomadland. I had already decided not to watch it because I had read negative comments similar to yours, on the part of RVrs, full-timers or others. Hope you get negative results on your tests and best wishes for safe travels to your next destination!

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    1. We really don't think you will miss anything by not watching although we have read of others who liked the movie. It all has to do with personal taste like so many things in life.

      More news on the test results in the next blog post.

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  3. Angela and I agree with you about the movie. It was depressing. We have a small spot and picture in the book Nomadland.

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    1. We are glad then that we aren't the only ones that feel that way about the movie. Neat that you have a picture and spot in the book. I guess you weren't lucky enough to get a spot in the movie?!

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  4. Glad to hear the covid test went well. A 96 hour window is much more reasonable when it can take more than 48 hours for a result. When we fly home to Canada it will be tight with a 72 hour window and always that possibility of a flight delay. That beef curry looked delicious!

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    1. It is a very reasonalbe amount of time, especially for countries where the test results take a little longer to get back, thankfully here you normally get the test results back by the next day, as was in our case. Good luck, when it comes time to get your results back and get on your flight home.

      The beef curry dish was delicious, so much so that we went back to the same place yesterday evening for dinner and Kevin ordered that dish this time.

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  5. Hope your tests are negative. Safe travels to Albania.

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    1. Kevin will be writing about the results in our next blog post!

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  6. Glad you got your tests done. We normally have tons of Canadians wintering in Maui but this year there are far fewer. It is interesting listening to them planning to circumvent the 3 day quarantine in a hotel if they fly home. Some are going to fly to Seattle then drive across the border to avoid doing that.

    Your meals look really delicious. Go well.

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    1. We are too and we already have the test results back. Kevin will be writing about that in the next blog post.

      If we go back to Canada in May and they haven't lifted the 3 day mandatory hotel stay then we may be doing the same thing. We would fly into Ogdensburg and take a taxi to the border and then have a car waiting there for us or have someone to pick us up and take us straight to my Dad's house for the 14 day quarantine.

      The meal was delicious, we went back there last night for dinner again. :-)

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  7. Hope your tests come back negative for Covid and you have a safe flight.

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    1. Thank you! More one that in the next blog post.

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  8. I watched Nomadland, as did our 20 yo ds. Both of us found it slow and boring. Aim sure if the script were written a little different, it would have been more entertaining, but I found myself reading a book halfway through and looking up now and then. Ds said he finished it only because it was hyped up so.

    Good luck on your test results.

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    1. We came close to turning it off several times but decided to watch it right through to the end. It certainly wasn't quite what we were expecting, even though we had checked out the reviews.

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  9. I was excited about seeing it and then saw all the reviews. Plus, we watch nomad rvers on YouTube so we get our fill of what is going on, both good and bad. Have a great weekend!

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    1. You really haven't missed anything by not watching it!

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