Seven years ago...Accomplishing tasks feels good!...


On this date in 2014, similar to the main photo in this post of December 14th, once again, we looked toward the driveway to discover giraffes coming our way.  What a glorious sight! Click here for the post from this date.
When we left Minnesota to begin our world travels on October 31, 2012, we knew we were embarking on a long journey. We never imagined we'd be traveling in 2020 or beyond.

We began a road trip to Arizona, where we rented a holiday home for two months thinking it might be a good idea to stay for future reference. Would we consider Arizona as a possible permanent home when we decided to end our journey? 

We stayed in Old Towne in a condo where for two months we worked on the balance of the tasks we had ahead of us before we could officially leave the US on January 3, 2013, seven years ago. 

Yesterday, Tom reminded me of this fact after I'd already uploaded the post. As a result, we decided to write this story today. At that time, we didn't have a clue as to how to take photos and barely included photos in our posts until later on.

During this period, we also rented another holiday home in Henderson, Nevada, where Tom's sisters and spouses stayed with us during Christmas while other family members came to spend time with us: son Richard from Henderson, cousin Phyllis from Massachusetts and her two adult daughters, Robin and Wendy and, my sister Julie, all from California. We had a fantastic time.

After the holidays we returned to the condo in Arizona and spent the remainder of December continuing to complete the tasks we had on the agenda including purchasing and setting up new digital equipment.

On New Year's Day, we headed to San Diego and spent two nights with niece Kely and her husband Dennis at their lovely home in San Diego where our first cruise on the Celebrity Century was sailing away on January 3, 2013.

We'd never been on a cruise, but as boaters in Minnesota, we had no doubt we'd enjoy being on the water. Also, we were confident we'd never be seasick. Our assessment was correct. We love cruising and have never been seasick.

Here's the link to the day we boarded our first cruise.

Our mouths were agape during the entire cruise. Not only were we in awe of the outstanding itinerary and beautiful ship, but we were also enthralled by the social interactions that continued day after day. 

Those first few days, we were so naive about cruising we booked tables for two at dinner in the main dining room. We were having a great time together, but in only a few days we got into the groove and started booking "shared dining" in the main dining room and the good times escalated.

If you'd like to read about this first cruise, please click the above link or visit our archives on the right side of the page beginning on January 3, 2013. You will easily be able to read through the excitement of that first cruise which ultimately shaped our opinion of cruises which hasn't changed much over the years.

As a part of my tasks mentioned in yesterday's post, I needed to start updating our new 2020 Excel spreadsheet, including a page for cruises only. At this point, we have five cruises booked, including the upcoming cruise from Mumbai, India on April 3, 2020, which ends in London on May 2, 2010, a full 29-day cruise.

We cringed when it was required to pay for the entire expensive Mumbai cruise fare at the time of the booking, but now, we're happy to have that behind us. Now, it's imperative to begin booking holiday homes for the six-months between the Mumbai cruise and the cruise returning to Africa for which we've yet to be provided a visa waiver. 

On Monday, with the holiday season over, we'll start making phone calls to find an immigration lawyer in South Africa to assist us with the issue. That item was on yesterday's to-do list. The time difference is quite an issue.

As a matter of fact, from the seven items we'd listed in yesterday's post, we are down to only four items, when we immediately got to work accomplishing these tasks. More on this later.

Last night, we had a happy hour get-together at our place with the family and our two new neighbors. Today, there's a party by the pool at 3:00 pm which we'll attend with the family and other locals who'll gather around our table.

Tonight, at 10:00 pm, we'll pick up Margie from the Mesa airport and our family group of seven will be complete. However, within the next few weeks, another of Tom's sisters, Rita, will arrive from South Dakota and, Mary and Eugene's son Kevin (Tom's nephew) will also arrive. And then, there were nine! The good times continue.

May you be experiencing good times with your family and friends in the New Year!
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Photo from one year ago today, January 4, 2019:
One year ago today, we spotted young zebras running around a circular path playfully chasing one another. For more photos, please click here.

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