Tuesday, January 27, 2009


To get to day one of this journey, scroll down to Dec. 15th/08

Our luggage has now gone to the airport and we are almost ready to say goodbye to our home for the last 20 days, the MS Amsterdam, whose staff is eager to get us off the ship, to make room for new passengers arriving to follow the same voyage we are leaving.
Our disembarkation time is 9:30, so we have time for our last breakfast and to say goodbye to some of the wonderful friends we made along the way. We scanned our pictures and room card one last time as we left the ship.

Tom was taken in the wheelchair and carried down the gangway, and then one of the crew took us to our bus that was quite a distance away. There was quite a bit of confusion as some people where staying over in Rio, some going to a hospitality suite at the Transcontinental Hotel,, because of late flight. Ours doesn't leave until 10:15pm. I made sure they had a reserved wheelchair to meet the bus when we arrived at the Hotel.

Confusion finding the right bus, but with Tom in the wheelchair and someone who knew where he was going, and helping us, it went smoothly.

Now, this looks like a nice city, and better then what we seen from the dock area.
However, intermingled with nice looking modern cities we again are in favelos'. Our guide on the tour to the Hotel told us all about how they exist together. Below is Sugar Loaf Mountain.

Standing on the top of the mountain (below) is the ever present statue of Christ. Hard to see from these bus pictures and it's also raining now.

A very short drive into another roadway and we are at the Intercontinental Hotel, a very nice place, in a beautiful location, right on a spectacular looking beach.

I'm beginning to see another side of Rio now!!
Nice eh?Turn my camera in a different direction and there are the favelos again. Strange eh?
Odd looking trees!
A beautiful beach area. Lot's of beaches around Rio, but I never found out what this one was called.This is the hospitality room at the Trans Continental Hotel, provided by Holland America. There are sandwiches, coffee, juice, pop, cookies available and replenished all day as we wait and wait!
Meet again with our new friends from the cruise. This is Ester.
It was a LONG DAY!

When we first arrived, a bunch of these loungers where already grabbed by the first bus load. We where about the 2ND bus to arrive and only had the chairs at tables to sit at. Beside us sat this woman who had fallen in the bathroom on the ship and had possibly cracked ribs. She was a very vocal person and the type who is forward enough to get what she wants. So, she went out to see the manager and requested 3 more lounges brought down from the pool area for her, Tom and luckily me!! When they arrived with the loungers, everyone ran for them, but this lady put her hand up like she had a huge stop sign in her hand and told everyone she had requested them and they where for us!!

So, we didn't have it so bad there. I slept for about an hour and then before you know it, our bus to the airport was called at 4:15. Those lounges where taken over very quickly!

Now we are on our bus heading to the airport in Rio. Hopefully the wheelchair as requested will be there for Tom.

Watch your head!!! Coconuts!!

Away we head to the airport! Now, I'm showing you exactly what we saw, I didn't just pick out these slum area's. They are everywhere!!!

Around the next bend this was our view. Look at those "buildings" way up high on the mountain!

Lot's of these great tunnels in Rio.
Here comes another tunnel! Nice area here.


We arrived at extremely busy airport in Rio!! Very crowded, and again the warnings to be very careful and watch for pickpockets and keep your belongings close to you. Also, we where warned that every kind of crook hangs out at busy tourist places, especially the airport. Also, told that men in suits, looking very much the well groomed business man, may sympathetically ask if you need any help and where advise to NOT to accept their help, or you may be directed into some corner and robbed. Sounds like I'm being over cautious here, but it did happen!!! Three men, who I noticed first, where looking us over, and then approached us and asked if we needed help. Just then the PUSHER (guy who takes people in wheelchairs and helps through the airport) arrived. He just gave them a look like "shove off" and away we went through bag check in, ahead of the lines in customs, and all the way to our gate and first on the airplane!! They where wonderful and so much help and this happened for us all the way home to Vancouver.

We flew from Rio to Miami to Texas, where we had to have some de-icing done on the planes, and then our last leg to Vancouver.
Neat to watch!!
Just had my camera up to the window at the right time as another plane heads the other way. I THINK we are over Oklahoma.

It looks what Heaven is suppose to look like....or is it?

Yes....that's Vancouver! Yeah!!! Home!!

Snow? Ice? In Vancouver? We left in the snow, which is rare, and coming home in what was a terrible weather week before we got here! Wished I'd known, I'd have enjoyed the heat of Rio more!

International Entrance to Vancouver Airport
Tom's family was waiting for us, and ohhh boy, was it good to see them! So good to get home too!
We really enjoyed every second of our trip and learned and saw so much of what I never dreamed possible. Every country was unique in it's own way, and much of it spectacular!!
I've heard that in one or two years, the cruise ships will cease to go to Antarctica for environmental reasons. I'm just so very happy to be one of the lucky ones to have had this experience.
We met lots of wonderful folks along the way, so I hope will keep in touch. I really do hope that some of you reading this will leave a comment on the little button you just have to click on the top of this site. Say hello, tell me if you enjoyed the blog and if it brought back fun memories. It's been a whole damn lot of work doing this and many, many hours put into it.
I'll be back with my usual fun blogging of what's happened since home, in a few days. I need a break from the computer for a day or two.
Please come back for a visit!!
Bye for now!!!


Santiago to Puerto Montt.................................635 NM

Puerto Montte to Punta Arenas .......................1078 NM

Punta Arenas to Ushuaia...................................279NM

Stanley to Buenos Aires...................................1155NM

Buenos Aires to Montevideo................................143NM

Montevideo to Rio de janeiro.............................1031NM

Total distance ..............................................6413 NM

1 Nautical Mile =1.15 Statute Miles =1.85 Kilometers.

Fuel Consumptions: Diesel Generators..120 tons/day (32,000 gallons)

Water Production

Potable Water Production: 1,400 tons/day (370,000 gallons)

Potable Water Consumption 600 tons/day (160,000 gallons)


1 comment:

  1. Hi Linda-

    Thank you for this wonderful blog. My husband and I are going on this cruise in 1 month and we found your blog to be very insightful!

    I hope you have a wonderful holiday season and now we are even more excited for our upcoming trip.

    Best Wishes,
    Gene and Mary


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West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Living life to the fullest and enjoying every moment! In love with a wonderful husband!! A Capreol Girl from 1959-1975, Belleville 1975-1985


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