Testing, Testing - Balkan Dreams - CycleBlaze

August 18, 2020

Testing, Testing

We have a pretty full agenda today, our final day before flying out tomorrow morning.  Still, there’s a free slot first thing in the morning which fills in at the last minute when Bruce agrees to meet for coffee one last time.  I drive over, chat briefly with Andrea before she leaves for her shift as doting grandmother to the new twins, and then Bruce and I settle in for a last chat in the middle of their incredibly lush back yard garden.

Bruce has made the most of our recent heatwave, turning the family car into a temporary fruit dryer.
Heart 5 Comment 1
Bruce LellmanI'm glad you didn't include the photo of me coming out of the Honey Bucket.
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1 month ago

An hour and a half later, I swing back by the apartment and pick up Rachael for a string of tasks and appointments.  First up: we’re off to Kaiser for our last minute Covid test - the one taken within 48 hours of arrival in Croatia that we’ll need for entry without quarantine.

Testing is simple and straight forward at a drive-up station.  While we’re waiting to have our brains impaled again we enjoy chatting with the technician - a personable young woman from Moldova.  The test is as painless as the previous one fortunately, and we feel really encouraged when we’re told that the turnaround time is only one to two days.

Five minutes later though, we’re seriously deflated when she returns with a printed record of our tests.  It’s the wrong kind of test - it’s an RNA test, not a PCR test.  Everything we’ve read is that a PCR is the only type that Croatia will honor.

Crushing news.  We should still be able to enter the country, but it sounds like we’ll have to get tested there and self-quarantine until results come in.  The idea sounds ridiculous and far-fetched, but I ask Rachael to quickly look up the Medical One website to see if there are any free appointments today so we can get retested there.  Yes!  There’s one over on Williams, starting in ten minutes.  It’s only five minutes away, so I start driving while Rachael books herself and then books an afternoon appointment for me downtown.

We get to the clinic’s address on Williams Street and are surprised to be staring at the front door of Peleton Apartments.  After a few minutes of panicky exploration we find the clinic a block away.  We’re in time, the attendant welcomes us, and apologizes for the fact that their address is incorrect in the directory.

Rachael is in and out in ten minutes, and the doctor follows her into the waiting area.  She has timefree, so she agrees to test me also.  So, another last minute crisis averted.  We should have the results in 2-3 days.  Other than having taken a pointless test and having rather overprobed probosci, we’re right where we need to be.  Well, and there’s the vexing question of what this will cost us.  The Keizer test is free, which is good.  The other two will be billed to our insurance, so who knows what if anything they’ll pick up.

At Medical One, waiting to get probed.
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Next up, a pair of errands.  We drive back to the old neighborhood where I leave Rachael at the storage unit to drop off a final load and hopefully find our bicycle lights.  While she’s there I walk down to REI to pick up the new, larger duffel bag we ordered last night when we realized we needed more checked baggage storage capacity.

Then, down to the waterfront for an outdoor lunch.  Over a plate of grilled salmon and a glass of riesling we look at each other in amazement, soaking in the fact that we’re really leaving in just a few hours.  

Rachael enjoys a leisurely walk back to the apartment while I drive back and finish packing, pleased to see that the new duffel bag appears to be the perfect solution.  

The duffel bag is perfect. It holds both of my panniers, the helmets, our cycling shoes, and a few odds and ends.
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Next, I’m back in the car again - to drop the bicycles off at the bike locker, and then to swing by Bruce and Andrea’s one last time to drop off the Jetta.  Afterwards I walk back to the apartment and Rachael and I spend the rest of the evening on really last minute tasks: advance check-in at the airport, order a taxi pickup for the morning, and clean up the apartment.

It’s an early start tomorrow, so it’s lights out for Rachael at 8:30.  Five minutes later, we receive emails from Keizer.  Our test results are in already!  Still negative.  Nice to know, but a shame that these results won’t do us any good.

Lights out, kiddies. No hanky panky! We’ll see you next year.
Heart 3 Comment 2
Jen GrumbyThey will miss you!

Is the bike locker close to where your other stuff is stored?
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Jen GrumbyNope. The storage locker is in the Pearl District and the bikes are downtown, about two blocks from the courthouse. Just as well they’re in the dark, where they won’t see the chaos and riots outside.
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1 month ago
I told Bruce he’s welcome to use the Jetta as a second fruit drying unit, but he has to send a photo.
Heart 3 Comment 1
Ron SuchanekHe could have his own fruit-drying syndicate.
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1 month ago
On the way back to the apartment I drove through Chinatown and was surprised to see that the muralists have given the House of Louie a facelift since we were here last.
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The House of Louie.
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The House of Louie.
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Rate this entry's writing Heart 7
Comment on this entry Comment 2
Jen GrumbyStretan put!

Look forward to news of your (and your PCR tests!) safe arrival.
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1 month ago
Scott FenwickBruce has an excellent choice in fruit dryers. I owned one of those Toyoto Tercel 4wd wagons. I think it was a 1987 and even better that his is still on the road. Great cars.
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1 month ago