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Live the adventures of Dan Walker's travels through reading his travel journal. The travel journals are listed below in descending order of date. To search the travel journals, use the keyword search at the bottom of the page.

Journal Entry:

Tuesday, July 21, 2009 10:55:29

Rolls Alaska to Argentina & back: 1 - Getting ready

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I finally managed to get away from Costa Rica with a series of on-time Continental flights that landed me in Victoria, Canada at 6:10 PM. My wife, Marilynn, was already there, having left on June 13. Initially, we were scheduled to leave June 6, but that was changed to the 13th, then for me to July. The airline likely profited more on the ticket changes than the flight!

Costa Rica has been hit by the backlash of the sub-prime mortgage scam in the US, and many developers to whom my partners and I provided bridge financing went broke when the US market collapsed. I've been trying to help them find ways to save their projects, but it looks like we will be moving into the development business with a large inventory of condominiums, a hotel, a tourism project, office buildings, a lot of subdivisions and land - all at about 25% of their appraised value!


Our 1957 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud that carried us around the world in 2007 spent the winter having substantial repairs done. Apparently sand got into the engine through a faulty filler cap seal while crossing the Gobi Desert and did serious damage during the thousands of mile driven subsequently. A number of other problems were rectified, many originating with the beating the car took through Siberia and across the Gobi, including the front end shudder that made last year's run through New Mexico unpleasant.

The original idea was to travel to Whittier, near Anchorage and Seward in Alaska, by ferry, then to drive across Alaska, the Yukon Territory of Canada then south through BC, Alberta, the US, Mexico and Central America to Costa Rica as phase one of the trip. However, due to the situation in Costa Rica and at the urging of the mechanics who wanted to go over the car after it had a good run changed my mind. We'll go pretty much as planned, but continue south down the Stewart Cassiar Highway through central BC, a route I've never driven, and back to Victoria.

The car was ready and waiting for me upon arrival, and seems to be running well. It was a frantic 3 days of contacting clients & friends, visiting kids and grandkids and doing last minute shopping for trip necessities. All went well, and we were ready and anxious to roll on time.