Polar bear at the Toronto Zoo, Canada.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Ottawa, Canada.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Reuniting with Max in Germany on October 1st.

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Our new motorhome is paid for... and we think we will be using it next month!

Wednesday was moving day as we made our way from Korca to Pogradec. Not a long drive, only about 40 kms (25 miles). 

Pogradec is a small city with a population of about 21,000 people. It's located on the sandy shores of Lake Ohrid. The border between Albania and North Macedonia runs right through the lake, and we are only about 6 kms from the North Macedonia land border crossing.

Here is a map of where we are right at this moment...

You can zoom in or out as you choose.

Not a very exciting drive up through an agricultural area separated by two mountain ranges, but here are a few photos...



Hahaha... too funny.
But more seriously, that looks like hard work.



Scenery along the way.

We had no problem finding our apartment. When we got to the building, I didn't know where to park. Just to get off the road, I pulled down a lane beside the building, and into a spot where I would be out of the way. I went up to the front and our host was there waiting for us. He laughed, and said "You obviously know what you are doing, you parked in the spot that is reserved for you!"

Nice new building, and a new apartment with new furniture. Really well set up, and he's running the top floor as all short term rental apartments, and he's doing it right.

Fully equipped kitchen.

He stood there as Ruth went through the kitchen equipment and asked if there was anything else she needed. She mentioned one larger pot would be nice, and sure enough he went and got one right away.




Little balcony.

Great views.

It's a nice little studio apartment on the top floor of a 7 floor building. For 2,300 lek ($27.60 CAD, $22.70 USD, €18.80) per night we are really happy with it.

Yesterday was also a special day for us as we celebrated our 37th wedding anniversary. We made plans to go out for dinner, but when we arrived at the place of our choice, it was closed. We were a bit disappointed, but we will make an effort to go there another day because it looks really interesting. Instead we made a last minute second choice, and it turned out to be just okay.

Nice salad.

Grilled vegetables.

Grilled pork ribs.

The food was just okay, but the people were friendly including the Albanian who currently lives in Scotland who came over to help us and the waiter understand what we wanted to order!

For 2,500 lek ($30 CAD, $25 USD), including tip and a big beer and a big glass of wine and two shots of raki, it was a decent meal and we walked away full... it's just not what we were looking for.

We went for a walk along the lakefront. Lots of people out and about enjoying the evening,

This lone amusement ride was operating on the beach.

Now, onto the important news...

We have made the final payment on our new motorhome located in Germany. We have sent them the full total of €52,700 including tax. Because we have made payments over the last four months, they have been at a varying exchange rates. The total we shelled out in Canadian dollars came to $79,493 which is a little cheaper than the $82,000 we were expecting to pay. The Canadian dollar has strengthened versus the Euro since we made the decision to buy it. We only have yet to pay for the added extras... solar panels, upgraded batteries, oven, and bicycle rack which they have said we can do by Visa credit card when we arrive in Germany.

And when will we arrive in Germany?

Well that's the big question, isn't it?

Our new motorhome.

We are now very confident that we will be able to get into Germany when our time is up on June 15th. And in fact we are so confident that I am going to purchase flight tickets today for that date. Over the last two weeks we've been closely watching Europe make its plans to re-open, and of course we have been watching Germany the closest. Germany relaxed a whole bunch of restrictions yesterday, and while we still can't officially travel as tourists, they are getting there. They removed Albania as a risk country, and normally it takes about ten days after that for it to be recognized as an "unrestricted travel" country. Also, I found a loophole that would likely allow us to go there now. We could enter Germany as transit visitors with 72 hours allotted to leave the country. Canadians are welcome in Poland for tourism, and you don't have to quarantine if coming from another EU country. So we could arrive in Germany from Albania and we wouldn't have to quarantine. Then pick up the motorhome and drive to Poland where we would be home free.

But, we aren't going to rush things. We are quite happy staying here in Albania until June 15th. We have pretty much unrestricted freedom here, more so than we would in either Germany or Poland. And there are still things we want to see and do!

Today is a day of rest... although we have to refill our cell plan, get some groceries, and go for a walk on the lakefront.

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And in Canada...


16 comments:

  1. Happy Anniversary to both of you! Good news concerning your upcoming plans! Let's hope things lighten up on the border restrictions scene in the coming weeks! I'll keep following you daily!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for the anniversary wishes.

      It is certainly sounding very promising and we are feeling pretty confident that we will be able to get into our motorhome by the middle of next month. We are pretty excited about that prospect, it seems like such a long time that we have been waiting but luckily we have been enjoying what we have been doing in the meantime. :-)

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  2. A belated Anniversary Wish is in order.
    Your research for things to see and do along with AIRB&Bs really pays off.
    Even the farming areas look scenic.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thank you very much for the anniversary wishes, we had a wonderful day.

      Kevin in very diligent with his "homework" when it comes to our travels and yes, it definitely pays off, especially when he finds such good Airbnbs a such affordable prices.

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  3. Hello, from Tigard Oregon! And Happy anniversary! You 2 have endured a lot! How many did grand kidsI'll bet you lot's of g-kids. Take care, Rawn

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    1. Thank you for the anniversary wishes.

      We have two children and two grandchildren. :-)

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  4. Replies
    1. It sure is going to be exciting! It is all starting to sound very real to us now. :-)

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  5. Hello from Rideau Ferry, On. Best wishes on your anniversary. Love that MH. Exciting time for you both. We picked up a 2013 Winnebago Navion, 26 ft. last summer. Built for 2 adults and one large labradoodle. We are packed and ready to roll but we are now in a "stay in place" lockdown. Crazy times we are in. Enjoy each other and your fabulous journey.

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    1. Thank you very much for the anniversary wishes. :-)

      We think we are going to love that motorhome too, and yeah we are pretty excited that our getting to it by mid June is finally sounding very real.

      I am so sorry that you two can't get to use your "new to you" motorhome yet, and we just saw that they have extended the "stay in place" order until June 2nd at the earliest now. :-( These are indeed crazy times!

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  6. Happy 37th Anniversary Ruth & Kevin!
    Loving Albania, it’s going on my travel to list, for when bans are listed.
    Thanks to all your incredible pictures & posts.

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    1. Thank you very much for the anniversary wishes, we had a wonderful day.

      We are glad to hear that you are enjoying our posts and pictures of Albania and that because of our blog, it has made you consider traveling here. We are definitely enjoying ourselves with all the beautiful scenery, history and the friendly people. :-)

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  7. Happy Anniversary Kevin and Ruth! We are following right behind you and will be celebrating our 36th on May 25th by going to a restaurant for the first time since March of 2020. Wow! I like your new digs, and I'm glad you didn't crop the entire fridge out of the shot, so I didn't have to ask you where it was hiding...haha!

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    1. Thank you for the anniversary wishes and Happy Anniversary to you on May 25th. I think I remember you mentioning that on our anniversary last year. It today's world we are both doing well having stayed together all these years. Enjoy your meal out. I am sure it is going to feel real nice to actually be out and doing something that seems normal again.

      Yep, our new Airbnb apartment is pretty nice, and yes with a nice sized fridge, lol!

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  8. Just catching up with your blogs…belated Happy Anniversary greetings! Wishing you many more happy , healthy years together and exploring the world for us arm chair travelers! Congratulations too on paying your cute brand new MT and hoping you will be driving it as planned! Can hardly wait to hear your initial comments on it. Lovely studio apartment ….looks so modern….just wondering if there is a separate shower room?…or did I miss seeing it? I thought Albanians didn’t eat pork?

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    1. Thank you very much Lynnette for the anniversary greeting, we had a lovely day and hope to have many, many more in the years to come.

      We are really starting to get pretty excited about traveling in our new motorhome, with any luck it won't be long before we get introduced to it. :-)

      It was a lovely apartment and in a great location. The shower was in the picture of the bathroom, just right of the toilet, Many showers here don't have an actual stall or curtain around them, they are more like a wet bath in small motorhomes.

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