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Showing posts from October, 2009

Janie's Big Rip

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Dining on a cruise ship is one of the main events, so I guess it’s not surprising that there were lots of options on how and when you wanted to eat. With traditional dining, you dress up and eat at the same time and with the same people each night. We selected the “anytime dining” option when we booked the cruise. This means you still have to dress up (mostly), but you select what restaurant you want to eat at each night, and go when you want. Usually you’re seated with other “anytime” diners who just happened to arrive at the same time you did. That was the case for our first dinner on the ship.
We looked good. I couldn’t even remember the last time I wore a suit coat and tie to dinner, but it still fit. We were seated with three other couples, introduced ourselves and ordered drinks. Conversation was easy and we were both enjoying ourselves. Just like it was supposed to be. Then Janie had to sneeze. Of course, she knows the current best way to sneeze: you sneeze into your arm so you …

The Glacier Tour

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There was plenty to do and eat while we waited for everyone to get on the ship. We found the work-out center. It was very well equipped with machines and free weights. It was the last time we would see it. There must’ve been a dozen bars and almost as many restaurants and cafeteria’s. We would eventually experience them all. Plus room service. Twice. There were multiple pools and several hot tubs, but it never really got warm enough for that to seem like a good idea. The one time we jumped in to one of the rearward pools (that would be the stern) we had it to ourselves. Could’ve been because it was midnight.
This boat is big enough that it came as a surprise when I realized we had actually pulled away from the dock. I was watching the shore guys cast off our anchor lines but then got distracted (had to find another beer). No tugboats. This ship can go sideways and backwards by itself. Probably steer it with a joystick. First chance I got, I would talk my way onto the bridge and see how…

Whittier

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Anchorage was fun, but after a couple of days we were ready to get on board the ship and do some cruising. Too bad cruise ships didn’t dock at Anchorage. No problem; the cruise people had arranged for a bus to take us and a couple thousand other people to Whittier, where the ship could dock.
You began to get an idea of how big this ship was by the size of the staging area for the bus trip to Whittier; they used a local convention center for collecting our luggage and assigning us to a bus. We were staying just a few blocks from the convention center, so we checked out that morning and walked down the street to see if we could get in early. It was already busy when we got there (apparently lots of people were ready to get started), but we didn’t have to wait long before they took our luggage and gave us a number for the bus.
Alaska is so scenic that even the bus trip to Whittier was amazing. It was only a couple of hours, but we stopped on the way to gawk at a glacier (the first of many)…