The Everson loop - Northwest passages: riding out the storm - CycleBlaze

July 7, 2020

The Everson loop

To Greece, or not to Greece (continued)

You’ll recall that earlier in the spring we briefly had hopes of an autumn in the Balkans.  The concept was that we would use Delta’s no change fee, low risk COVID-19 policy to buy a flight to Thessaloniki.  If we ticketed before July 1st for an itinerary beginning before October 1st, we could cancel or change it for a different itinerary starting within the next calendar at no cost - the full original purchase price would just go to the price of the new tickets.  How could we get hurt, really?  Surely by next year we’ll be flying somewhere if this one falls through.

Almost the day after sharing this vision with you, the EU revealed that our country had been lumped together with Russia and Brazil as COVID-19 pariah states.  Ordinary travelers from these unhappy lands would be barred from EU entry for the foreseeable future.

So, not to Greece this autumn, and not to Europe.

Or so we thought, until this evening when I open up the NYT and find an article listing the few countries that are now admitting tourists from USA, without quarantine.  Not Greece, of course, but I’m surprised to see that the list includes Croatia, Albania, and North Macedonia - all countries that could be lovely to visit in the autumn.

My interest piqued, I look at flights and find still more encouraging news.  Delta has extended their no change fee offer through the end of July now, so we still have a few weeks to reconsider.  Better yet, Air Canada now has essentially the same policy.  This one really hits home to Team Anderson, because we have a credit with Air Canada from our cancelled spring Copenhagen-to-Rome tour.  This is starting to feel like a free flight!

So we’re staring at the map again, dreaming up itineraries, and validating assumptions.  Here’s our current brainstorm, born in a feverish night’s sleep: fly to Zagreb, and spend September biking to Dubrovnik; fly from Dubrovnik to Skopje (North Macedonia), because we can’t yet enter Montenegro, the next country south; spend a few weeks biking through Macedonia and southern Albania; and book a return flight from Athens, hoping that by late October we’ll be able to enter Greece.  If we can’t go to Greece, we’ll just alter the itinerary and fly home early from Albania instead.

Maybe something like this.
Heart 2 Comment 0

We’ve still got a couple of weeks to think about it, so watch this space.  If this falls through though, we’re definitely going somewhere when autumn arrives.  We’re getting tired of marking time in the PNW, and are ready to move on to a new journal.  If all else fails, come September we’ll leave the Jetta with our friends and just start biking south down the coast.

Today’s Ride

Before all that though, we were out on the bikes again today.  We went out on a loop northeast of town toward the Nooksack, on a route similar to our July 4th ride but a bit further south.  A bit cloudy and chilly, but otherwise very nice.  We’re likin’ the bikin’ here.

Lots of rust in these fields. Sorry I didn’t zoom in on the grill to see what this classic is, but you probably know anyway.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Much nicer than the usual warning about vicious guard dogs on duty.
Heart 5 Comment 0
Nice to see. A welcome change from most of the more hostile political signs we see in the countryside here.
Heart 5 Comment 0
On Kelly Road, dropping to the Nooksack.
Heart 3 Comment 0
A good day for rusting relics. Studebaker?
Heart 1 Comment 2
Bill ShaneyfeltMight be a '53?
Reply to this comment
4 weeks ago
frank jellisonYou are right. That's a Studebaker . This design ran from 1953 though 1955. A Studebaker fan, like our old friend Chuck, would probably know the actual model year. The design by Raymond Lowey was very advanced for the time and much more modern than anything that other U.S. automakers were manuafacturing at the time. A beautiful car
Reply to this comment
4 weeks ago
Along the river. Here on the west bank it’s flat, but the hills rise steeply just across the water.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Looking to the gloomy east we’ve been a bit worried about the weather, but behind us it’s clearing up nicely.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Lunch stop in Riverside Park, Everson. Rachael would like me to hurry up so she can get down to business.
Heart 1 Comment 0
It’s turning fair all around, including the view to the east now. Still no view of Mount Baker though.
Heart 3 Comment 0
some big wheels, Wiser Lake Road.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Every American’s dream: a gas station right in your own back yard.
Heart 2 Comment 0
So what’s happening here, anyway? Is this a berry harvester? How does this work?
Heart 3 Comment 1
Andrea BrownYes. They typically operate at night when the air is cooler and the berries less likely to be damaged. They straddle the row and shake the ripe ones off.
Reply to this comment
4 weeks ago
West toward the coast. Such beautiful country.
Heart 1 Comment 0
On Wiser Road still.
Heart 2 Comment 0
Another mystery. Hop dryer? Water tower? Alien invasion?
Heart 2 Comment 4
Bill ShaneyfeltLooks sort of "windmill-ish.
Reply to this comment
4 weeks ago
Bruce LellmanTo Bruce LellmanI suppose it should be hops dryer.
Reply to this comment
4 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanMust be right, although an alien invasion still seems possible - the top looks like Darth Vader’s mask. I was surprised to learn that hops are grown up here, but research confirmed it.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Heart 0 Comment 0

Ride stats today: 48 miles, 1,200’

Rate this entry's writing Heart 8
Comment on this entry Comment 4
Bruce LellmanAfter 7 of 8 Delta flights when the plane broke before take off resulting in us having to sit inside the plane sometimes for hours, I quit flying Delta altogether. I'm amazed they haven't had a major crash by now. I had other issues with Delta as well. My point? They are the Capitol One of airlines and I'd go with Air Canada any day.
Reply to this comment
4 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanThe Capital One of airlines! Good to know. I wish we’d kept better track of our own travel travails. We’ve had a few flight problems, but I’ve no idea who the carriers were. Knowing this though, I don’t think I’d even go to Delta for an oil change.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Jen GrumbyHow exciting!

I'm back to the edge of my seat, eagerly awaiting updates.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Jen GrumbyMake yourself comfortable because it may take awhile, but we’re getting serious about this. We’re starting by asking for confirmation from the Croatian government that we’ll be permitted entry and under what terms. Wish us luck!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago