Sep 30 2022

Finally, we closed

After 20 months long wait, we finally closed on our house.

We got the call and then the email on August 9: walk through is on August 31, and the closing is a week later. Although there is seven months delay, but we don’t have the option to pick ‘walk thro’ and ‘closing’ dates. Whenever it is offered to you, that will be the date.

I just finished this book by  former Attorney General William Barr (well written!) and feel the title is fitting for our walk through: one damn thing after another.

The walk through is the only chance, for the owners to pick bones and mistakes before closing. The man who is doing this, must feel disdained: repeating himself hundreds of times, and prepared to receive negative feedbacks, oh well. Someone got to do it.

The major problems for us, for example, is one of the high hats over the kitchen counter that is too close to the wall, that the cabinet door couldn’t open if we use pendant lights, which we definitely will.

Some minor problems, like a few kitchen cabinets are missing doors. One of the shower head is missing. The staff said, “missing shower head is on purpose because workers steal. We put on the night before closing.”

Before closing, the house is not locked, so anyone could come in … “And I caught two neighbors stealing refrigerator’s filter, which goes for $55 each. It was a Saturday morning. I said to him, put it back or I’ll call the cop.” OH WELL. Some community -:)

More to do

Sep 30 2022

Sauna & whirlpool

Deck 8 on the Vega ship has sauna, whirlpool, two showers, and fee based spa.

Sep 29 2022

Day 5 & 6, to Canada; @ Club

Day 5 and Day 6 are at sea, crossing Davis Strait (D

Sep 29 2022

A disco night @ Observation

A mini iceberg Sarah fished out of water for our drinks, on the way back from Ilulissat.

Deck 7 on SH Vega

Observation lounge on Deck 7 is our town hall, where daily briefing, lectures, nightly entertainment take place. Opposite from the Club lounge, it has a bar that also serves the pool.

  • an iceberg seen at 2pm on the 6th day, crossing the Davis Strait


Sep 28 2022

Itilleq, Greenland

Itilleq, Greenland

Day 4: Itilleq, Greenland. Population 89.

The highlight of the day is the true Polar Plunge.

Itilleq is a settlement in the Qeqqata municipality in central-western Greenland. It

Sep 27 2022

Icebergs of Arctic

Ilulissat, Greenland

This area is a newly designated unesco site. We got on the boardwalk to the end after the museum. The walk is rather long but easy. The view is good.

Given UNESCO World Heritage Site status, the Ilulissat Icefjord is a popular tourist destination, and thanks to the productive Sermeq Kujalleq glacier, thousands of gargantuan icebergs calve from the Greenland ice cap into the sea.  

Just a thought: when the ice is melted, there won’t be a site, would it?


Anyway, after the walk, we got on the Zodiac and circled back to the unesco site from the water, and saw many beautiful icebergs.

As we were heading back to the ship, I saw two Zodiacs near by, and joked, “are they smugglers?” Then we all saw the Swan flags and the next thing we knew, they’re there to bring us some much needed champagne. Oh … thank you so muuuuchy! That’s thoughtful and sweet.

Sarah Scriver fished out a big piece of ice, or small iceberg, to take back to the ship, for making drinks tonight: Whisky Sour and a White Russian.

Sep 27 2022

Water boots

2022.10.06 @ St. Anthony

A few company issues that are conveniently provided by the ship Vega: binoculars, water proof boots that gives me so much fun with, how often would I wade in the water?

How often would I wade in the water? Not often at all, and I seize every opportunity to do so with the boots:

Sep 27 2022

Ilulissat Isfjordscenter

Ilulissat, Greenland

The museum is about Greenlandic nature and culture. Walking on the roof of the aerodynamic building, with the background of symphony of the dogs, both are pleasant and unusual. Museum has bathroom and a cafe.

The building is shaped like a twisted structure miming the wingspan of a snow owl. Danish architect Dorte Mandrup (1961-) got her poetic design inspiration as a

Sep 27 2022


Sarah’s ice – she fished it and it will be used for drinks tonight
Day 3: Ilulissat Icefjord, Greenland: the museum & unesco/icebergs. Champagne delivered on the Zodiac. Swimming.

~ BBC’s Global News podcast 2022.10.12, on Greenland’s Ilulissat @ 26:15 ~

Since waking up at 6am, I started seeing icebergs floating around our ship – this area is the capital of iceberg, as we’re sailing toward Disko Bay. Morning $499 helicopter ride cancelled due to weather, and we’re late to dock for about an hour.

Because of the icebergs, our ship couldn’t get too close to the port, and the Zodiac spent 45 minutes transferring us from the ship to the shore at downtown Ilulissat. A short bus ride takes us to their newly built museum Ilulissat Isfjordscenter.

A little glitch: the local bus company isn’t doing the scheduled pick up, which should be every ten minutes. We planned to take the bus back to the port to board the Zodiac because I don’t like going down hill. However, by 2pm, no bus was around and we got little concerned, and decided to walk back. Since we planned to bus back, so we didn’t pay any attention to the route, and got lost, at 2:30. The last Zodiac pick up was 3pm. My phone battery was running low and I got panic. Unfortunately, there was no way I could contact the ship or Zodiac. So I emailed my US booking agent. Oh boy… In the end, we arrived at the local port for Zodiac right before 3pm. I think the right thing to do with the local bus, is to reduce the frequency to every 30 min and set a last pick up time from the museum. Anyway, this episode shows that this route is very new to the ship as well, and they’re feeling their way around too.

We took an ice cube back, to be used with our drinks.

Our dinner

  • lamb chop
  • crab cake
  • pasta
  • veggie
  • key lime pie
  • Ryder Estate, 2019, Pinot Noir; Central Coast, CA
  • Siete Fincas, 2019, Malbec, Mendoza, Argetina

At the Club lounge where they offer early simple breakfast and afternoon tea, a nice staff insisted to bring my better half some cookies. Within a day, the serving staff, almost all from the Philippines, calling us by name. Their cheerful manner is just  contagious.

Sep 26 2022


One of the nice touches of this SH Vega is their wine and food, which are very decent. And they even provide loose leave Darjeeling (from Kusmi Tea, N 37 bio), and kind enough to give me a small jar in my room. Waking up to the hot pot of tea is heaven, especially starting today when the icebergs fill the water.

Over all, I’m  pleased with their tea selections from Darjeeling to the instant bag teas, and Bauscher cups they use.

Kusmi tea of Paris was founded in 1867, that also offers wide range of bag teas. I tried a few of them: Camomille, Vert jasmin, Vert gingembre-citron (ginger lemon green tea), AquaRosa, th