November 14, 2011


It has been about three weeks since my last blog, so the time is ripe for another installment. We are back at Glen Eyrie, hosting the Pink House for the remainder of November.

Meanwhile we visited he southwestern Caribbean and went through the Gatun locks of the Panama Canal. We got back from our cruise on November 6 and then re-packed to come to Colorado Springs by November 10.
We were kayaking in the rain forest of Costa Rica on November 1 and about a week later we had two inches of snow in Des Moines, just in time to go west. On our trip to Colorado we were blessed with beautiful weather, however.

We had booked our cruise last June and had been looking forward to visiting the ABC islands, also known as the lesser Antilles. This cruise was scheduled to enter the Panama Canal then turn around in Gatun Lake and moor for the day in Colon. We preferred this over a transition cruise to


The day of the cruise was upon us! We boarded the airplane in Des Moines,
our checked luggage was free; no $25 per case... The pilot told us that Memphis had fog, and we might have to circle to land, but we were sure we would make our flight to Fort Lauderdale. While we are on final, close to touchdown we all of a sudden feel the airplane take off again. Once above the clouds again, the pilot informed us that his navigation system had malfunctioned and we needed to go to an airport with visual approach and landing. Thirty minutes later, we landed in Nashville. Information was scant, help was available but 90 people needed help. We thought we might have an option on another airline but we had no time to get the necessary paperwork; besides, our bags would be in “limbo.” We realized that we would miss embarkation and subsequent departure from Ft. Lauderdale.

I all of a sudden remembered the episode of “Keeping up Appearances” where the Buckets miss there departure on the QE-2. We went back to the gate where we arrived and waited for the agent to be available. He took care of us in a special way, by telling us to relax in the “Sky-Lounge,” and make the necessary calls to our travel insurance in a relaxed atmosphere. Delta Airlines provided lodging and meal vouchers for us in Miami and we were able to book a flight with Surinam Airlines to Aruba where we would be able to join the cruise 3 days later. We were blessed by encountering many great and helpful people during our flight and in those few days getting ready to join the cruise in Oranjestad.

The remainder of our cruise was “uneventful” but great. Good food, nice harbors, a good Panama Canal experience, rainforest humidty; monkeys and sloths; bananas so sweet, papaya juicy and tasty, warm sweet pineapple, and that was just the local fruit.

We had opted for a large table and late dinner, so we had good experiences on board as well. After four days at home we headed for Colorado Springs.