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Zoom Seekers, Re-openings, and more (please scroll down for details)
I am not a fan of darkness at 5PM . . .
ZOOM SEEKERS THIS TUESDAY - I hope you can join us this Tuesday evening, November 9, at 7:30PM for our monthly Zoom Seekers meeting. Our guest speaker is Renee Capozolla who really and truly started out as a point-and-shoot photographer a few years ago and who has blossomed not only into a fabulous photographer, but has been named "Photographer of the Year" for 2021. She will be sharing the story of her journey as well as dispensing some photo tips so whether you're a newbie to pixels or a pro or even if you don't shoot at all, I think you'll enjoy what she has to say. Here's the link:
ZOOM SEEKERS IN 2022 - I've been very pleased with both our speakers AND our monthly turnout so I'm going to keep Zoom Seekers going through 2022. I'm in the process of assembling our list of speakers now and hope to have it all finalized by December 1. And if there's anyone who you think we should book, please shoot me a note with your suggestions.
U.S./CANADA & U.S./MEXICO BORDERS OPEN MONDAY - Tomorrow should be the day you can freely travel north or south as both the Canadian and Mexican borders will now be open to vaccinated U.S. citizens. (The rules are a bit different if you're not vaxxed.) No quarantine is required but you will need to have a proof of vaccination which can be digital or paper. In Canada, many places still require masks and social distancing, so if you're traveling north or south, be aware of the various rules and regulations.
AUSTRALIA & THAILAND STARTING TO RE-OPEN - Just because you hear the word "re-open," don't assume it's anything goes and everyone c'mon down!!! Australia is "re-opening" but not fully. Aussies can now travel to and from but regular old tourist still aren't being allowed in, although it's presumed that will change in January. In Thailand, there are still some restrictions, but they're relatively minimal. Here's an article from Associated Press that explains it better than I can: AUSTRALIA & THAILAND RE-OPEN.
CAYMAN OPENING TOO - Starting November 20, just in time to welcome snowbirds, the Cayman Islands will also re-open to international tourism. They refer to this as Phase 4 and you can read the details here: CAYMAN ISLANDS TO RE-OPEN.
CARRY YOUR COVID CARD WITH YOU - Even here in L.A., you now have to show proof of vaccination (or a negative test) along with photo ID to get into bars, restaurants, and a number of other places. Many of you have your vax info on your smartphone. I'm still a dinosaur and don't carry a smartphone with me all the time (still have my trusty flip-phone) but I think I found a way to kill two birds with one stone. I took my CDC vax card and scanned it and then printed it business-card-size on photo paper. And I took that and taped it to the back of my CA driver's license. (That's something I always have with me.) So now if I have to show proof, I show them the back to verify I'm vaxxed, flip it to the front to verify my ID, and good-to-go. If you're like me and don't always carry a smartphone, give that some thought. (I also put a piece of clear packaging tape over the back so the vax card won't get smeared.)
RAPPEL RENAMED - Many of you have dove Rappel with me in Bonaire, so named because when the Bonaire dive pioneers first started diving it, they literally had to rappel down a cliff to make the entry. Last month the site's name was modified to "Bruce's Rappel" to honor longtime Bonaire diving legend Bruce Bowker (owner of Carib Inn), who died about a year ago. Nice touch and a lovely honor for Bruce, who helped make Bonaire the diving mecca it is today.
ANYONE WANT A FREE TOASTER-OVEN? - Yes, there's a small catch. Here's the deal: I've had a Black + Decker digital toaster-oven for years that I really like because of the small footprint. But the wire tray and the crumb tray have seen better days. I was able to find replacement parts for them on-line for about $60. But then the other day I happened to be in Bed Bath & Beyond and saw that they had non-digital ones that appeared to use the same wire tray and crumb tray. And the new one was only $30. So I bought it and took the new wire tray and crumb tray out and pout them in my toaster-oven. Voila!!! So now I have this brand-new, never used B&D toaster-oven that has knobs instead of being digital (see pix below) and I'd love to see it get a new home. The caveat is that yes, it has a wire tray and a crumb tray, but they're my old ones that are serviceable, but could stand a good deep-cleaning. If you're interested shoot me an e-mail or give me a call. First-come, first-serve. You can either come by my place in Westwood to pick it up or I'll ship it to you via UPS as long as you pick up the shipping charge. Here's what it looks like (minus the shiny new trays):
And that'll do it for now. Have a great week and let's go diving . . . in a few months once I've cleared the post-COVID no-diving protocols.