Anchors Away!


We are finally back in our room after a busy first day boarding the ship. The ship left port at 4pm, but we had go be in line to get through registration by noon. Our last cruise experience taught us that if you aren’t early, you are seriously late. There is no “just on time”.

I had pre-registered us for the trip online before we left. All our bags had the pre-printed tags, all the Passport information was entered, I had even written in to confirm that we could bring our own wine on the trip. I had looked over the ship’s wine list and it was fairly middle range stuff, at high range prices. Walking through the checkin carrying a wooden wine box tied up with rope as a handle got me noticed.

Our only hangup was Yulia’s Passport, which has a typed date extension that the computers never pick up. Once we had them hand enter that date, we were good to go.

Our room was aftward on the port side, we had a fantastic verandah with a view of the marina as we left. The room was big for on a ship (which is to say small but with smart use of space). We were two decks below the main buffet. We went up to grab lunch and found that the crew was handing food to people from the buffet, instead of self serve. They explained that they did this for the first two days to prevent the spread of any GI illness that someone might bring onboard.

Made sense. It also keep people from pigging out and wasting so much food.

We toured the ship, finding the pools, sports decks, kids deck, spa, showroom, and main office. It’s a pretty big ship but not gigantic. At the dock we were moored next to the Princess Line ship, which was much larger, but we were recommended against that line and suggested Holland America instead. Since Holland America allowed us to bring wine and prices did not, that was going to pay for itself quick. And our ship was a lot less crowded.

For Departure they had a big BBQ on the Lido deck, with a band, food, and drinks specials. Mixed drinks were a pretty good price so we sat with a few mojitos, listened to the music, and watched the ship pull out. It was smooth cruising out of Seattle, and up Puget Sound out to the Straight of Juan De Fuca. We were really happy with the ship.

We signed Sasha up for the Kids section. This place had some xBoxes, games, and was kind of a mixer so the kids could meet. Sasha hung out a bit, but wasn’t in the mood to hang out. We all went down and found a piano bar, with the guy at the piano playing Billy Joel requests.

Epic Win.

We grabbed a couple glasses of champagne, and sang along for a bit. Naturally, I requested “Piano Man” and he challenged us to “fill in the blank” on the words. Of course, no one but me spoke up, however, I knew all the words. It was good. After that we checked out the opening night show. Apparently, overacting broadway wash-ups are the new black. We managed to last 5 minutes before we had to leave the theater.

After that we spent the remainder of the evening in the book lounge, watching the waves outside.

This should be a fun trip.