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Jim_Iain

Jim_Iain Live Blog - Infinity B2B - Carribbean and East Bound TA

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2 minutes ago, Jim_Iain said:

 

Hopefully it will be as nice as last year.  We will be going to Ayrshire. 

 

I will be staying in Aberdeen with trips to Edinburgh and Inverness. Hoping for clear skies!

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8 hours ago, edunava said:

Good morning from Barcelona.

 

We embarked on May 6 in the Infinity, I hope your comments ..... thanks!

Oh! Leave the boat in good condition please. 😊

 

Good trip!!!!
Edu.

 

We will make sure the ship is in pristine condition for you.    Hope you have a wonderful vacation.

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17 hours ago, Jim_Iain said:

 

I can emphasize with you about having a difficult time getting away with the limited amount of vacation we American's get.   I think you would really enjoy a TA.   They have a huge following and once you have done one you will be addicted.  

 

Retirement really is a game changer and it is nice when you really don't have any restrictions from being away for longer periods of time. 

 

5 hours ago, Dawniepoo said:

I'm in the same "boat" as you. We want to do a TA too, but there is NO WAY my employer would allow me to take that much time, and we are far from retirement. This is the closest we are going to get!

 

I have to admit - this is NOT my employer's fault.  I actually, technically have an "unlimited" number of PTO days each year, but when you work for a small, boutique firm, it's tough to take so much time off.  My "restrictions" are those damn kids I for some reason thought would be a good idea to have - school and college tuition, their upkeep, their oversight ... Calgon (or Celebrity), take me away! 🙂

 

Hoping for a smooth travel day for you tomorrow, Jim!

 

Linda

  

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4 hours ago, OhioDogLover said:

Love your blogs.  Will follow along on your adventures.

Thank you for posting.

 

Ohiodoglover

 

3 hours ago, jimbri said:

Looking forward to your review.  Have a great time!

 

3 hours ago, rcssmom said:

Following along as well.  Enjoy your trip.  I will be along in spirit as I read of your adventures.  Thanks for sharing with us.

 

Karen

 

Welcome along.    If you haven't followed one of my blogs, they are free flowing and happy for all those visiting to jump in and share their experiences.   It is incredible how much I learn from reading all the blogs and posts from others. 

 

I'm a glass half-full type of person and while I may point out some shortcoming I generally don't dwell on them and allow them to upset my vacation.   You will probably not find any reviews of shows here as we don't usually go to them - 1/2 because they have gotten to be rather stale and the other half is that we don't like the way they schedule the timing of the show.   If they had a show after late dining we would be more likely to attend. 

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2 minutes ago, SleepingUgly said:

 

 

I have to admit - this is NOT my employer's fault.  I actually, technically have an "unlimited" number of PTO days each year, but when you work for a small, boutique firm, it's tough to take so much time off.  My "restrictions" are those damn kids I for some reason thought would be a good idea to have - school and college tuition, their upkeep, their oversight ... Calgon (or Celebrity), take me away! 🙂

 

Hoping for a smooth travel day for you tomorrow, Jim!

 

Linda

  

 

I can understand how difficult i can be to get away with all of our daily demands.   I was lucky pre-retirement that I could basically work anywhere if I have an Internet Connection.  

 

All 3 of our kids are now grown up, graduated university and now have their own families.   It really frees up to enjoy retirement.  

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Posted (edited)

I still have my dad to assist, but as he gets older, we have to cut down our vacation time.  This year we are not spending time in Europe, but flying back to the states.  Being able to work when and if I want is nice, but I just end up working more, as my DH loves to ski all winter long.  However, the day will come when we plan to be gone several months at a time and doing some b2b’s...for now, I live vicariously through those who can take full advantage of their time while sharing pieces on Cruise Critic!

Edited by Lastdance

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Usually our cruises are limited to 14 days, we have a house sitter for our beautiful fur babies, but she is in her 80's and we hate to be gone longer, just in case.

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4 hours ago, Jim_Iain said:

 

I can understand how difficult i can be to get away with all of our daily demands.   I was lucky pre-retirement that I could basically work anywhere if I have an Internet Connection.  

 

All 3 of our kids are now grown up, graduated university and now have their own families.   It really frees up to enjoy retirement.  

 

Jim  --  were you actually able to work on board a cruise?  Every time I have attempted, I get too frustrated w/ the internet...

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Posted (edited)
58 minutes ago, Von & John said:

 

Jim  --  were you actually able to work on board a cruise?  Every time I have attempted, I get too frustrated w/ the internet...

Wow.. surprising to hear.   I've generally had good luck with the internet.   Most of my work could be done offline and I just had to log in and upload the final product (a rather large file).   I also day trad and on most cruises able to keep my quote server up and running while the market is open.   Once in awhile I get dumped but able to log back on.

 

I had still been working up until December of this year on a consulting basis with my previous company and never missed a deadline.  

Edited by Jim_Iain

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Just got back from my walk.   I'm an avid walker and walk about 30,000 steps a day (about 18 miles).   It is my way of avoiding putting on weight with all of our travels. 

 

In the middle of the walk,  I got a text from United indicated we had been given a complimentary upgrade to 1st Class.   Yea...     I was really surprised with the upgrade as I had booked our tickets to Florida using miles.   

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23 hours ago, Jim_Iain said:

Wonderful to hear.   We were chatting last number wondering how many B2B's will be on the cruise.   Wondering what the first cruise will be like as it will be both a short cruise and also will be over Easter weekend.   I'm hoping it won't be a "Booze Cruise" and not over run with kids. 

 

We will be flying to FLL on Wednesday so will only be overnight.   Definitely introduce yourself if you see us on board. 

We have made it to Miami.  On to FLL tomorrow.  We should meet if noting else at the B2B meeting.  Ginny

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The shoreside concierge sent a placard to put on windshield of car to allow us to get to a special drop off spot exclusively for RS and PS.   

 

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22 hours ago, Jim_Iain said:

Planning for this trip was a bit more time consuming than normal as we plan on flying to Scotland for 10 days at the end of the cruise to visit's Iain's family.   I booked a flight on KLM from Barcelona to Glasgow using ChoiceAir and got a pretty good fare.    Many other's have reported that flight to and from Europe are high this year and we discovered the same for our flight home to San Francisco. Initially the best fare in Business I could get out of the UK was over $5,000 pp.   ChoiceAir again came to our rescue.  I started checking different days of the week and different departure airports and was reward by finding a United non-stop from Frankfurt to SFO for $1,300 each.   I then was able to book a BA flight from Glasgow to Frankfurt for $150 pp.

   

We were planning on staying with Iain's sister while in Scotland but later had to book an AirBnB because his niece left her husband and moved back home with her 2 kids.   We often use AirBnB so was our first choice in searching for a place.   I found a really nice 2 Bedroom cottage in Troon for $75 per night.   It really looks cute and is directly on the seafront.  Since we have an early morning flight out of Glasgow we opted to spend the last evening at the Glasgow Airport Hotel which is directly across from the terminal. 

How do you plan to get to the BCN airport?  We are flying Air France to Paris to rent a car and drive to the Normandy area for a week of bumming around.

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1 minute ago, caymancouple said:

We have made it to Miami.  On to FLL tomorrow.  We should meet if noting else at the B2B meeting.  Ginny

Glad to hear you arrived safely.   I was just looking and there are severe storm warnings for parts of the Southwest.   Hopefully it doesn’t affect our flight.  

 

We we leave at 7:30 PDT and arrive about 5:45 PM.  Time zones really work to our disadvantage when coming from the west coast. 

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1 minute ago, caymancouple said:

How do you plan to get to the BCN airport?  We are flying Air France to Paris to rent a car and drive to the Normandy area for a week of bumming around.

Funny that you ask.  I was just checking and a cab to BCN is flat rated at 39 Euros. I believe that is what we will do. 

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Never done a east bound TA, so will be reading with interest.

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Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Jim_Iain said:

Glad to hear you arrived safely.   I was just looking and there are severe storm warnings for parts of the Southwest.   Hopefully it doesn’t affect our flight.  

 

We we leave at 7:30 PDT and arrive about 5:45 PM.  Time zones really work to our disadvantage when coming from the west coast. 

How long are you in Houston.... that will be your trouble spot for weather.  What time are you due in IAH?  My daughter is a pilot for Southwest and flying tomorrow.  I will ask her to check the flight weather.... they get lots more detail than I normally find.

Edited by caymancouple

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That is some walking each day.....I thought I was good getting in around 9 miles a day.  Not this week,  I have been struck down with shingles since Monday week ago so mostly confined to bed. Can’t believe I contacted this as I am normally so healthy. Enjoy your cruise and I look forward to following along.

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12 minutes ago, caymancouple said:

How long are you in Houston.... that will be your trouble spot for weather.  What time are you due in IAH?  My daughter is a pilot for Southwest and flying tomorrow.  I will ask her to check the flight weather.... they get lots more detail than I normally find.

Just checked with daughter.... chance of rain, but nothing right now forecast that should mess up flying too much.

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49 minutes ago, upwarduk said:

Never done a east bound TA, so will be reading with interest.

 

I'll keep you updated on how it goes.   I'm not particularly concerned about the time zones as it is better than having a 9 hour timezone change on the way to Europe in one shot.    I'm sure we will learn to adapt. 

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52 minutes ago, caymancouple said:

How long are you in Houston.... that will be your trouble spot for weather.  What time are you due in IAH?  My daughter is a pilot for Southwest and flying tomorrow.  I will ask her to check the flight weather.... they get lots more detail than I normally find.

We arrive IAH at at 13:17 and depart 14:20 flying United.   I was just checking today's flight and the flight out of SJC was delayed by 2 hours 20 minutes due to a mechanical issue.   That would have blown our connection. 

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1 hour ago, Provence55always said:

That is some walking each day.....I thought I was good getting in around 9 miles a day.  Not this week,  I have been struck down with shingles since Monday week ago so mostly confined to bed. Can’t believe I contacted this as I am normally so healthy. Enjoy your cruise and I look forward to following along.

 

Oh no.    Hope the shingles are getting under control.   They can really be painful.   I have a neighbor in his 30's that just had an sever attack and was out of work for over a month.   My doctor was recently telling me there is a new vaccination  for shingles but they are really in limited supply and I would have to wait for about 4 months before they get more in inventory.

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Packing has begun in earnest today.  All of the laundry and dry cleaning has been picked up and now we are figuring out what to bring along.   I'm expecting the weather for the first cruise to be temperate with temperatures between 70-85F while the TA will be a bit cooler at 60-75.   Scotland is more difficult to project but expect temperatures from 40-70.   Looks like we will be going with the Layered Look.

 

Over the years we have modified our packing to comply with the new dress codes and luggage restrictions.   Gone are the days when I would bring 2 tuxedos and the accessories.   We now usually wear dinner jackets on Chic nights and Smart Casual for the remainder of the nights.  We now pack enough clothing for 1/2 the number of days of the cruise and then send out laundry as we go along.   One of the nicest benefit of both the RS and of Zenith is unlimited laundry so will definitely be using this service.  

Luggage wise we will be taking one medium suitcase, an overstuffed garment bag, a backpack and a carry on.  

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2 hours ago, Jim_Iain said:

Just got back from my walk.   I'm an avid walker and walk about 30,000 steps a day (about 18 miles).   It is my way of avoiding putting on weight with all of our travels. 

 

In the middle of the walk,  I got a text from United indicated we had been given a complimentary upgrade to 1st Class.   Yea...     I was really surprised with the upgrade as I had booked our tickets to Florida using miles.   

That is amazing as I’ve never seen that as an option when we purchase air with miles.  Are you 1k?

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