2009 NetLetter #1051 - January 10th, 2009

#1051 - January 10th, 2009
Vesta's Corner
Vesta StevensonWhy not allow the NetLetter be your platform, and opportunity, to relive your history while working for either TCA, AC, CPAir, CAIL, PWA, AirBC etal. and share your experiences with us!

Canadian immigration officials are trying to determine if a baby born to a Ugandan woman on an American airliner in Canadian airspace is a Canadian.

Sasha came into the world with the help of two doctors who were on the Northwest Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Boston while the flight was over Canada.

Nationality notwithstanding, the baby is said to be doing fine.

Ray Lindsay has sent us this follow up to the story in NetLetter nr 1050 -
The Black Guillemot - while native to the East Coasts of North
America and the North Atlantic as well as the Atlantic coasts of  
Western Europe - has a very similar cousin - the Pigeon Guillemot - out here on the West Coast of North America and it ranges from
California to Alaska and right across into Siberia. But some Black
Guillemots are known to breed in Alaska as well.

The two birds are very similar with the Pigeon being slightly larger
than the Black and both have distinctive red feet and legs. So lets
hope that taking this bird back to Newfoundland hasn't confused it
any further! Did it have an accent? Maybe WestJet is just too eager to please for the bird's own good?

Meantime I'll check the colony of Pigeon Guillemots that nests on the cliff below our house in the Southern Gulf Islands of BC to see if any are missing and sending urgent messages from Newfoundland!

Ray Lindsay
Air Canada - our first 70 years

1969 - enRoute in-flight magazine gets a brand new look and goes from 20 to 24 pages.
  • November - The company announce the construction of a new two bay hanger at YUL. required by the acquisition of the B-747 and L1011 aircraft.
  • December 1st has the introduction of non-affinity group travel fares over the Trans-At routes.
uniforms-1The August 1969 issue of "Between Ourselves" has an article on the uniforms, and here we have these two  photos.

TCA/AC People Gallery

Over the past months we have been publishing various photographs from earlier "Horizons", should any photos prompt a memory in seeing one of them, feel free to send us your comments and thoughts.

Musings from "Between Ourselves"

Issue dated April 1969
johnsonHere is a group gathered to wish "Curt" Johnson, District Sales Manager at Birmingham a happy retirement.

Johnson was one of the first employees to be established with the company in Europe after WWII. Curt joined Trans-Canada Air Lines in its original Cockspur Street offices in London in May 1946.

Issue dated June 1969
In the past few issues of the "Between Ourselves" we have found several stories of T.C.A. flights being asked to locate missing small aircraft - here is another one -

The pilot of a Cherokee reported to Boston ATC that he was lost. The crew of a T.C.A Vanguard over Maine enroute from Moncton to YUL/YYZ was asked to hunt for the aircraft which was reported to be in their vicinity. Under the command of Capt. Al Shaw, the aircraft was located and escorted to a safe landing in Caribou, Me.

vanguardThis picture of the front end crew.

Under the heading "Pickets aid search" is a story about how the pickets at YYZ came down five days before the settlement between the company and IAM. The reason was humanitarian, the local police requested help to search for a missing child. The child was located, cold and tired, and the pickets went back up. The police thanked the picketers and stated they were good citizens and compassionate people.

From issue dated August 1969
Some members of the London England chapter of the A.C.R.A. had the opportunity to visit the Filton division of the British Aircraft Corporation and viewed the prototype Concorde.

lhracraHere is the group, but no identifications unfortunately - (perhaps they all called in sick -eds)

On a charter flight from Seattle Washington to Halifax, Nova Scotia, the crew found that the passengers were 83,000 fingerling rainbow trout. Now that's some fish story.

fishyHere's the crew.

programmersAnd here we have a photo of the first graduating class for Station & Cargo Services from the programmer school after six months of hard grind!

Issue dated November 1970

The A.C.R.A presidents from the various stations met with the company to iron out problem's in the areas of communications and cooperation.
Here are the participants.

Remember when the overseas region golf tourney was held in Ireland? Tournament winner was Tony Dunn of London with low gross. Competitors from London, London Airport, Prestwick, Glasgow, Toronto and Montreal. With guests from BOAC, PAA, ATC, Met Services and Irish Air Lines. Held at the Limerick Golf Club, with a wind up do at the Village in the grounds of Dunratty Castle.

regiongolfHere we have this photo of the AC group. .

Bytes and Pieces
Alan Rust ACFamily Network Photo Gallery
Although we have had a quite extensive Photo Gallery operating on the ACFamily Network for many years now, I think many of you may not be aware of it.

The Photo Gallery is administered by Tom Grant who has also posted over 800 of the photos there. We have photos of Pionairs Events, RAPCAN Events, Aircraft (including Air Canada, TCA, CPAir, etc), People and more.

ACFN Photo GalleriesShown is a drawing of a DC-3A used with TCA between 1945 and 1963.

Click on the image to visit the ACFamily Photo Gallery or visit this link.
Canadi>n/CPAir/PWA, Wardair, etc. Events & People

Over the past months we have been publishing various photographs from earlier in-house magazines, should any photos prompt a memory in seeing one of them, feel free to send us your comments and thoughts.

Pickings from "CP Air News"

Issue dated April 1984
togetherCP Air purchased Eastern Provincial Airways and Air Maritime Limited adding (6) B-737-200 and (4) HS-748 aircraft to its fleet, all for ca$20 million.

EPA was founded in 1949 and, in 1963, merged with Maritime Central Airlines which was formed in 1941.

Issue dated September 1984
propsyvrWe have this photograph of Jet-prop aircraft at YVR in 1969.

Non-stop service between YVR and YUL to be re-introduced Oct 28th.

CP Air Holidays to introduce new services between Wiinipeg-Phoenix, Calgary-Las Vegas, Calgary and Edmonton -Mazatlan, Calgary-Puerto Vallarta, Vancouver-San Diego.

Issue dated November 1984
norsemanNorseman, CF-BAW, one of 16 inherited during 1942.

Issue dated January 1985

CP Air announced its intention to reinaugurate service between Canada and New Zealand in early November. CP Air previously served New Zealand from 1951 until 1969. The South Pacific was CP Air's first international route when it pioneered the service to Sydney on July 13th 1949.

Issue dated February 1985
CP Air announced plans to inaugurate service between Canada and Singapore commencing April 1986, its first additional international destination since Milan in 1974.

During 1984, CP Air ran their Travel Bonus Program. for frequent travelers.

travelstaffHere we have a photo of some of the staff involved.

terraceFrom the issue dated January 1985, we have this photo of the staff at Terrace B.C.

Reader's Feedback

Here we have the conclusion of the "Great Air Race" story we started in NetLetter nr 1050

They made their decision and put out a May Day call which was picked up by other race planes in the area as well as several airliners crossing the ocean. They gave their approximate position and were told it would be relayed.

At this point, Bill began to prepare the aircraft for ditching in the ocean. He held open the door of the Bellanca Viking and threw out all loose objects. He recalls thinking: "clothing stays, all heavy maps  and radios go"

At this point a Danish C-54 got on the radio and told them to give the Simiutaq Beacon one more try.

They did and it came in, but they knew that they were too low on fuel to make the beacon, then the additional 50 miles up the fjord to the airport. To make their chances of being rescued better, they headed in towards the shore, but by then they could see the ice flows packing up tightly and decided that it would be too dangerous to attempt a landing on the ice.

They turned the aircraft 180 degrees and headed back out to sea.

They became visual with the water when the altimeter read zero and estimated that they were at a height of 30 feet. Forward visibility was about 100 yards. Paul, who has had experience flying float planes, did the landing and the Bellanca Viking hit the water tail first, then the nose settled and they stopped in 60 feet.

They threw the life raft out, opened it and walked across the wing and climbed into the raft.

The fog surrounded them and they thought they might not be rescued for a couple of days.

Several aircraft had reported their position to the airport at Narssarssuaq, Greenland and rescue aircraft were already under way. They had a Rescue 99 on board which kept sending out a distress signal and enabled the search planes to pinpoint their position.

They eventually heard two aircraft fly overhead, but could not see them through the dense fog.

One was a C-54 from the Danish Air Force base at Narssarssuaq and the other was an EC-121 from the American base at Sonderstrom. The Danish plane had to leave after locating their position to lead another aircraft, low on fuel, into the right fjord and towards the airport.

Approximately four hours after they had ditched, a helicopter appeared over them and dropped a basket to retrieve them from the raft. They later said that the ride up in the basket to the helicopter was the worst experience of the trip. The water was about 20 degrees and you must jump into the basket submerged in the water and then ride up with the helicopter downwash chilling you all the way.

The Greenlanders crowded round to see the two men who had been pulled from these waters and had survived.

The next morning, another race plane was preparing to leave Greenland to continue on to Quebec City and the pilot offered his one remaining seat. Bill and Paul flipped a coin and Paul won.

bellancaThe following day, reports came in that the Bellanca was still afloat and they were sending out a police boat to bring it in. Bill supervised its rescue and made sure it was safely stored away in a hangar before he left for Goose Bay on another race plane.

For both of them the race ended with flights back to Toronto, but they're both back flying again and will remember for some time their experience in the "Great Air Race"

Gordie Aitchison

This and That.

In March 2009, it will be 90 years since the first Canada-U.S. air mail service.

In the "Between Ourselves" issue dated April 1969, is an article to commemorate the 50th anniversary tells of a flight from Vancouver to Seattle which was re enacted by the Boeing Company. The aircraft used was a replica of a Boeing B & W 1A following the exact route made 50 years prior.

airmailWe have this photo.

The coming year will be a special one for KLM. On October 7th, 2009, it will have been 90 years since KLM was first founded. This makes KLM the oldest airline in the world still operating under its original name.

It out lasted the Second World War and survived 40 years on the bottom of the Pacific but a heavy snowfall has felled the last remaining Handley Page Hampden bomber.

Volunteers at the Canadian Museum of Flight in Langley, British Columbia, are appealing for help to put the little-known but historically significant aircraft back together again after snow broke the left wing off the twin-engine bomber. Like many small museums,
the facility has to store some of its collection outside and that's not normally a problem in the usually temperate coastal area of B.C.

HampdenBut this year the area has been slammed with half a dozen snowstorms and, while museum volunteers did their best to clear the snow, an especially big dump on Dec. 26 was too much for the Hampden.

Quarter Century in Aviation Club
The Quarter Century in Aviation Club meets on the 3rd Tuesday in the following months: October, November, January, February, March and April.

The Quarter Century in Aviation CLub
Quarter Century ClubThe next meeting of the club is on Tuesday, January 20, 2009.

The club includes airline employees from all areas of aviation meeting as friends to share their experiences and memories.
If you wish to join the club, you must have 25 years in aviation
(any airline, any job) and the membership fees are $15/year.
Guests are welcome, so you are not required to join the first time you attend.

When: January 20, 2009, Social - 17:00 hours, Dinner - 18:00 hours
Dinner: Chicken and Schnitzel buffet dinner is served and the cost is $19 per person.

Where: The Austrian Vancouver Club, 5851 Westminster Highway, Richmond.B.C.

Guest Speaker: Fred Carey

See: www.acfamily.org/quarter for more information.
Terry's Travel Tips
Terry Baker
Starting June 1, 2009 U.S. law requires that all Canadian citizens present a valid passport or other approved secure document to enter the U.S. by land or sea.

On January 1st 1970 pass privileges were extended in the area of dependants.

No fuel surcharge on travel within Canada and between Canada and the U.S.(source - Air Canada web page 3rd Jan 2009)

Munich Airport is reported to have dog lovers in mind. For a fee, travelers can have their favorite pooch - usually Alsatians - housed in separate kennels at the airport  so that, when their owners return, they are brought to the arrivals area to greet their masters.

At Halifax (YHZ) FlyGlobSpan airline plan flights to Glasgow commencing May 2009.

Airport Improvement Fees: Many airports in Canada and around the world have implemented Airport Improvement Fees (AIFs).
Some airports collect these fees at the airport at time of departure, others are collected at the time of ticketing and are reflected in the additional charges portion in your fare.
Canadian airports that include the AIF on your ticket are as follows: (All amounts in ca$)

Baie-Comeau, QC (YBC) $10  
Bathurst, NB (ZBF) $40  
Calgary, AB (YYC) $20  
Castlegar, BC (YCG) $7  
Charlottetown, PE (YYG) $15  
Comox, BC (YQQ) $5  
Cranbrook, BC (YXC) $10  
Deer Lake, NL (YDF) $15  
Edmonton, AB (YEG) $15  
Fort McMurray, AB (YMM) $10  
Fort St. John, BC (YXJ) $12  
Fredericton, NB (YFC) $15  
Gander, NL (YQX) $20  
Goose Bay, NL (YYR) $12  
Grande Prairie, AB (YQU) $20  
Halifax, NS (YHZ) $10  due to increase to $15.00 eff Mar 1/09
Hamilton, ON (YHM) $15  
Kamloops, BC (YKA) $10  
Kelowna, BC (YLW) $10  
Lethbridge, AB (YQL) $10  
London, ON (YXU) $15  
Moncton, NB (YQM) $15  
Montreal, QC (YUL) $20  
Moosonee, ON (YMO) $7  
Ottawa, ON (YOW) $15  
Prince George, BC (YXS) $15  
Quebec, QC (YQB) $15  
Regina, SK (YQR) $15  
Rouyn-Noranda, QC (YUY) $10  
Saint John, NB (YSJ) $15  
Sarnia, ON (YZR) $15  
Saskatoon, SK (YXE) $10  
Sault Ste Marie, ON (YAM) $10  
Smithers, BC (YYD) $15  
Stephenville, NL (YJT) $15  
St. John's, NL (YYT) $15  
Sydney, NS (YQY) $25  
Thompson, MB (YTH) $10  
Timmins, ON (YTS) $10  
Toronto, ON (YYZ) $20 Originating passengers $8 Connecting passengers
Val d'Or, QC (YVO) $10  
Vancouver, BC (YVR) $5 Travel within BC/Yukon $15 Outside of BC
Victoria, BC (YYJ) $10  
Waterloo, ON (YKF) $15  
Windsor, ON (YQG) $10  
Winnipeg, MB (YWG) $20

#1054 - January 24th, 2009
Vesta's Corner
Vesta StevensonWhy not allow the NetLetter be your platform, and opportunity, to relive your history while working for either TCA, AC, CPAir, CAIL, PWA, AirBC etal. and share your experiences with us!

Air Canada - our first 70 years

1970 - Construction commenced on a new test cell for YUL, due for completion in April 1971.

- New freight stop at Windsor. The new service is non-stop from YVR enroute to YUL.

May 23 -

dc8Last of the DC-8 fin 879 was received, the first, fin 804, was delivered on February 7th, 1960.

Dec 15 -

yulDorval Base celebrates its 10th birthday. Inaugurated on this date in 1960, here we have this photo.   

-  Exchanged service to Portugal from Canadian Airlines International for service to Munich.

Where are they now!
BAe-146-200 fin 209 C-FBAQ c/n E2111 returned to BAe and sold on to Minden Air who will convert to a water tanker.
TCA/AC People Gallery

Over the past months we have been publishing various photographs from earlier "Horizons", should any photos prompt a memory in seeing one of them, feel free to send us your comments and thoughts.

Musings from "Between Ourselves"

Issue dated June 1970
The company's first non-stop YUL-YVR left June 1st under the command of Capt.Bill Irving.

yulyvrStewardess Anne-Marie Maidich was named Miss Transportation - here she is.

lhrcommyThe London England commissary came up with a better way to perform the tedious job of bagging cutlery.
Here is a photo of the project team.

Issue dated July 1970
After 29 years in "temporary" quarters at New York's JFK airport the company moved into a new passenger terminal on June 30th.
DC-9 fin 727 CF-TMB was the first arrival to use the new facilities.

laxcrewFirst appearance of an Air Canada prop jet freighter at Los Angeles during June.

Here we have this photo.

When Viscount fin #651 rolled out of the CAE Aircraft Industries hangar on May 6th, it marked the end of a major modification program to the Viscount aircraft. The program began back in
1958. Portions of the lower spar boom had to be changed on all the company Viscounts and was known as the "Spar Mod" .

wpgcrewHere we have this photo of the crew at wind-up time.

Issue dated October 1970

southerngangFirst meeting of all managers in the Southern Region was held in Toronto during September 1970, and here we have this photo.

Bytes and Pieces
Alan Rust Coach Class vs First Class

Seems that you get what you pay for, even in a disaster!

The image below wouldn't be amusing at all if it weren't for the fact that everyone escaped relatively unharmed.

Note - I figure that the airline contingent passengers are still on board up to their waist in water.

First Class/EconomyClick on the image to display a larger one. Or click on this  link.

Canadi>n/CPAir/PWA, Wardair, etc. Events & People

Over the past months we have been publishing various photographs from earlier in-house magazines, should any photos prompt a memory in seeing one of them, feel free to send us your comments and thoughts.

Pickings from the "CP Air News"

Issue dated May-June 1986
A salute to the DC-3 was made at Expo-86 on June 7th. One of the CP Air's DC-3 was amongst the DC-3 armada, the largest rally ever staged to mark the 50th anniversary of the DC-3's entry into commercial service. CP Air operated 17 of the examples.

Before CP Air obtained the DC-3, they gained experience with the DC-2 which were briefly loaned from Canadian Colonial Airways of Montreal.

On April 30th 1986 the service Vancouver to Shanghai was successfully launched, under the command of Capt. Bob
Weatherley. The route had been in a state of suspension since CPAL began its first international service in 1949.

May 19th saw the restart of non-stop service between Vancouver - Ottawa continuing on to Halifax and Charlottetown.

Perusing the "FLASH INFO" bulletin -

Issue dated April 8th 1987 -
Order placed for six B-767-300ER aircraft with options on another eight.

Issue dated April 23rd 1987
Under the banner of "Airport fanfare to herald Brazil launch" - we have the information that the inaugural flight was May 2nd 1987 YYZ-Rio-Sao Paulo fin # 912 "Empress of Lisbon" under the command of Capt. Bob Weatherley, Capt. Alan Clark, Ron Watson and S/O Bob Anderson.

On May 1st, a new  in-flight magazine entitled  "Canadi>n". replacing publications "Empress" and "Skyword".

The first aircraft with the new "Canadi>n Airlines International " livery was Fin #912 on Mar 31st 1987 a DC-10 on route YVR-YYZ.

Issue dated April 27th., 1987
Joint announcement with Air Canada to merge Pegasus and ReserVec to form a single reservations company. President and CEO is Paul Nelson of CAIL and Anne Bodnarchuck as the new company's chairman

Issue dated June 4th., 1987
CP Air Holidays and Pacific Western Holidays merged into Treasure Tours which was established in Montreal in 1927, and purchased by Nordair in 1975.

In conjunction with Time Air, Burrard Air of Vancouver began providing connecting service Jun 1st for Canadia>n Airlines between YVR and Campbell River, Powell River and Nanaimo
utilizing Piper Chieftain aircraft.

Selection from "INFO Canadi>n" magazine dated September 10th, 1987

Two B-737's fitted for Pope's one-day visit. Pope John Paul II with his 80 person entourage for the flight from Edmonton to Fort Simpson N.W.T. on Sept 20th. Then back to Edmonton where
a TWA B-747 will take the party back to Rome.

papalHere is a photo of the crew for the 1987 charter.  

For the Papal 1984 tour, PWA provided backup aircraft for the  Air Canada B-727 scheduled to fly the Papal party. Unfortunately, the Air Canada B-727 suffered a mechanical and the PWA aircraft was utilized.

Issue dated October 6th, 1987
Air Canada service to Munich has been exchanged for our service to Portugal.

1054/f28Quebecair, Nordair and Quebec Aviation become the airline's Canadi>n Partner in Quebec under the name of Inter-Canadi>n.

Issue dated October 15th 1987
A skunk climbed into a cargo pallet Sept 29th, at Val d'Or causing a one hour delay for the flight.

Employees finally lured it out of the pallet with a crew meal.
(Makes one wonder what the crew have been feeding on in the past, however, the skunk seems to have survived - eds)

Readers Feedback

John Anderton
retired CPA'er has donated a number of 35mm slides.

yorkAmongst them is this photo of a Pacific Western Airlines Avro York CF-HIP at YZF during 1956

Vic Rivers
sends us this information -

dc8sstThis is an interesting historical link pertaining to CP Air's DC-8-43 aircraft #602 which was flown supersonically by Douglas test pilots in 1961 during flight tests on a performance improvement modification to the wing leading edge.

Check this web site -

Vic Rivers

We received this interesting article from  Backwellmic -
Oldest Boeing Airliner In  Flying Condition

This is as it should be - passengers in closed cabin, pilot in open
cockpit so he will stay awake. The airplane is in Spokane , WA , and is the oldest flying Boeing in the World.
After 8 years of repair and rebuilding and 8,000 hours of toil the Boeing 40C rolled out last winter as a finished airplane. They had to wait a few weeks for the snow to melt to fly this baby. They received their Standard Airworthiness Certificate from the FAA and completed the engine pre-oil and fuel flow tests for the first of the taxi tests.

boeingFacts for the Boeing 40 project:
221 gallons of dope/reducer and 120 yards of 102 ceconite fabric. 12 gallons of poly urethane paint for the sheet metal. The wings have 33,000 individual parts in them.

boeing-1The airplane weighs 4080 lbs empty, has a gross weight of 6075 lbs. It is 34 ft long and 13 feet tall with a wing span of 44 feet. Wing loading is 10 lbs per sq ft and power loading is 10 Pounds per HP.

boeing-2It should cruise at 115 mph using 28 GPH, and 32 GPH at 120 mph. It carries 120 gallons of fuel in three tanks. 350 2-inch brushes were used to apply 6 gallons of West Systems epoxy, and 181 rolls of paper towels for cleanup. There were a total of 62 volunteers who worked on the project to some degree. 21 of the volunteers did a significant amount of work, and 9 of the volunteers worked continuously during the 8 year project.

We received this response from Marty Vanstone re NetLetter nr 1053 -

motionmarkRegarding the item about the new CPAir DC-10 livery, I do not recall the term "Motionmark" but I was always amused by the logo on the 737 under which we flew for several years.  
I believe it was called the"Multimark" and it was developed at great expense by some advertising firm in New York.  Of course, when it was introduced, the airline was still owned by the CPR and that same logo was applied across the entire corporation.  

In the hoopla surrounding its introduction, we were informed of three symbologies.  

  • First, the circle was to show the global nature of Canadian Pacific's ventures.
  • Secondly, the triangle was symbolic of the stability of the company.
There was a third symbology that eludes my memory, but my amusement came from the fact that the circle, indicating global reach was only half there; and the triangle, indicative of stability, was balancing on one corner.

Later in this same edition, under discussion of DC-3s, there is mention of 'CZZ' as a former CP aircraft that went to PWA.  
That may be a typo, I don't know, but CZZ (a/c #446) was a DC-6B that saw some service with Wardair and later, I think, with Conair as a water bomber.

Marty Vanstone
(Marty is correct regarding CF-CZZ for the DC-6, perhaps the DC-3 was CF-CRZ eds)

This and That.
In early 1970, a passenger was due to return from Europe to the U.S. via the B-747 of Trans World Airlines departing LHR. The flight was delayed by 4 hours and the 59 passengers were offered alternative flights on a TWA B707, which 58 of the pax accepted.

The lone pax, Joseph Bernard, was in no hurry to return home, so he sat it out and was the only pax when the flight finally departed.

Fourteen stewardesses, one purser, and one in-flight service manager helped make the trip comfortable, as did the lobster, martinis, shrimp, steaks, wine, two movies and a personal announcement from the Captain "Mr. Bernard, please fasten your safety belt".
(Now that's economy class travel - eds)

AeroExpo Europe London 2009
Being held at Wycombe Air Park, Bookery, Marlow, Bucks. Between M4, M40 and M25.
June 12 - 14th 2009
gpb5.00 with discount coupon or gpb15.00
Check www.expo.aero/london/visitor.asp for more details.
Terry's Travel Tips
Terry Baker
Aureen and Jack Morath are two hard working retirees of the London, England Pionair district and they had the details of their recent interesting trip in the monthly Pionairs newsletter, which we reproduce here  -

Aureen and I recently traveled to the Far East for a most interesting trip.

We flew to Bangkok which we made our base and used Thai Airlines there and back using standby tickets. There were a hundred or so empty seats each way. October/November and March/ April tend to be the best times for standby travel.

You can get a ticket that's endorsed for other airlines and you can then use this ticket for four or five airlines to Bangkok. After a few days in Bangkok we flew on Star Airlines (a low budget airline which is part of Qantas) to Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City as it is sometimes called.  It was just over an hour's flight there and we stayed four nights.

This was booked through TIS (Travel Industry Services) who are based in Twickenham and now part of the Dargal organization, the largest travel industry organisation in the world.

TIS can book flights, hotels, cruises etc. and their phone number is 0208 607 3814. 

The five-star hotel we used in Saigon was excellent and the hotel operated a shuttle bus for the twenty-minute drive downtown.   Whilst in Saigon we did two organized tours which were very interesting, one half day tour of the Cu Chi tunnels which were used during the Vietnam War and covered over 200 kms and were around 75 kms from the city centre. 

The day trip was to MyTho on the side of the Mekong River - a two-hour drive from the city. 

We started off with a cruise up along the Mekong River and then a ride on a hand-rowed sampan through the water coconut trees to catch a glimpse of the daily activities of the local people and village life. During the tour we were able to taste coconut milk, seasonal fruit, honey tea as well as a lunch of local delicacies before returning to our hotel near Saigon Airport.
(There is more to come, which will be in the next NetLetter - eds)


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Story in "Between Ourselves" dated June 1970 relates an incident regarding a shipmentof eels from the Maritimes to London England. Domtar, designer of the special octagonal container holding 33 pound of eels, forgot to label the boxes "This side up".
Yes, you guessed it!
An enroute stop was at Montreal and the boxes were given a quick check - unfamiliar with the new design, workers opened the boxes upside down and several hundred eels fell squirming onto the hanger floor.