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Published: September 23rd 2008
port of Seattle
Look at the city and the shipping. We went through an area with containers stacked high.
Heading for Alaska
August 27 I flew from Atlanta to Los Angeles. I was supposed to go on to Portland, but our plane was too full, so I spent a short night in a hotel in LA and flew on early the next morning. I took the MAX, the Portland light rail, to my friend’s condo.
My friend, Mariana, called me with the idea of taking an Alaskan cruise, at the end of the summer. “Let’s get the discount for the last cruise.” Her aqua aerobics partner was a travel agent and recommended Holland America.
I know nothing about cruises, so I was glad to take advice. Soon we were booked on the August 31 cruise on the Westerdam, a new ship in the Holland America stable. “It will be about 1,000 people,” I was told. Sounds large to me, but it’s really a mid-sized cruise ship; and it actually holds 1,848 people.
Ahead of time, each passenger chooses side trips for the ports: Juneau, Sitka, and Ketchikan. Thank goodness for email and cell phones since the trip was planned over a long distance. (Although my European trip last winter was planned via Nanjing, Cardiff and Atlanta.) Mariana and I agreed
Another ship leaving Seattle
This cruise ship in the background looks somewhat like ours.
on a photo safari by land and sea of the glaciers and rain forest in Juneau. We separate in Sitka; I go bird watching and Mariana goes on a Colonial Russian America and Cultural site. In Ketchikan we go on a wilderness exploration and crab feast. (Get jealous, Mike, it’s Dungeness crab.)
Mariana hurt her foot so she’s on crutches. I dropped her off with all our luggage, then went off to park the car. When I came back she had a porter and was at the head of the line getting signed in. I think the man assigning rooms took pity on her and we got a room right by the elevators. We’re on the 8th deck and have a balcony.
We boarded at 2:00 and by 4:00 we were all, 1,848, downstairs on deck 3 in our life jackets, lined up drilling emergency procedures. Of course, if we fall in the water by the glaciers we’ll freeze up in 2 minutes. Maybe they will pull us out in time.
Next we left our life jackets in the room and went to the send off party on the top decks. They had a raffle and I won a bottle
Mariana is happy
We're happy to get on board.
of bubbly wine. I took the wine to dinner and shared with four other people. They had seen me win it and were appreciative. What a dinner! Salmon, prime rib, lamb as entrees. For dessert several of us had baked Alaska, of course.
Back in our room, we watched the sun set from our balcony and then slept. We started early this morning in Portland and succeeded in becoming somewhat familiar with this 10-story floating resort. We both decided, WE LIKE IT! Neither of use expected to like it, but we do.
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