Karl & Nadine's Cruise

Despite some last minute "should we stay or should we go's", we went on our little adventure up to Seattle and back as planned.

Karl had pretty much all week off and I had to work Thursday so that I could leave by midnight.  We thought we'd have plenty of time to get there.  Well, as it turned out, we got there by the skin of our noses.  We didn't have time to even go and see Cami and her family on the way up, so we rescheduled for when we took the trip back.  We left Rogue River at midnight (exactly midnight because our little "Mr. Stinky" that thinks the crawlspace under our house is HIS domain and got ticked when we disturbed his beauty sleep, so he quickly decided to let loose a smell that was so nasty it permeated our pillows INSIDE the Durango until we got up to Seattle.  What a pain!!  What a Stench!!

We got up to just about Springfield and had to pull over at a rest stop to take an hour's rest.  We actually had the back seats down, pillows out and plenty of room for us to stretch out and take a snooze.  Wasn't too uncomfortable at all.  Shocking!

We got up into Seattle after having to rest a few more times.  Serves us right getting up at 6:30am and working and running around all day and then leaving without any rest.  

Pulled into the parking facility at 11:45am.  After going through the ticket process and getting our group number to board the ship, we got to sit about 20 minutes next to a very stinky old man.  We wondered if maybe he was related to our "Mr. Stinky" at home.  Yep, he smelled that rank.  Poor thing.  Anyway, we were in group 5.  The waiting area had cookies, coffee, tea and I think, hot cocoa and lemonade for us to partake of until we were called to board.  We were so tired, we didn't care about it.  It was being served by waiters and tongs.  That should have given us a clue about the adventure awaiting us for this weekend.  Karl had to carry our duffel bags (they were NOT light) because we couldn't find anything else to pack in before we left and we didn't want to check them in.  So, when we got called, he was ready to go.  Up the three gangplanks to the ship. At plank two, we were pulled aside to get our picture taken in front of a fake ship.  Keep in mind we hadn't had much rest in over 24 hours and no showers.  We looked pretty bad.  After humoring the photographers, we walked up to the next level where we got our hands squirted with enough purell for three people. The guy had a HUGE bottle of the stuff and didn't give us the chance to say no.  Just had to use it.  No biggie the first 10 times, but after that, got really old.  I digress....  Next, had to get our pictures taken again.  This time for our passcards.  The passcards allowed us on and off the ship at ports, charges were made with it onboard and got us into our cabin.  Was an important card, but I bet we scared them everytime it came up on the monitors.  Past the pesky passcard stewards, we got on the ship, yay.  Got handed Champagne...bummer we don't drink, right?  LOL  We asked for Orange Juice.  I would have preferred sparkling grape juice and Karl would have loved sparkling apple.  But no...again, a foreshadowing of events.  

Up we took the elevators to our cabin on deck 10, the Penthouse Deck.  Ahhh, beds to sleep on...finally!!  Off the elevator to the left and down the hall to our room.  And then, the housekeeper says, "Sir, the cabins are not ready.  You are welcome to go up to deck 11 and enjoy a buffet lunch, though, until we are done."  MAN!!!! Here we are with our duffel bags, swollen cankels (ankels on crack) and no desire to go up to deck 11 to eat.  So, we sat on the stairs and waited.  We were willing to go upstairs until the cabin was done, but we didn't want to take our luggage with us.  What a pain that would be.  So,  we sat.  Finally, a cabin steward told us we could put our luggage in our cabin and come back later.  So, we did.  Went and checked out the pool area, grand foyer and then up to the La Playa buffet on deck 11.  We didn't realize how many different food stations there were, so we just picked the food from the first one we saw.  It was ok.  Steak of some sort, something with curry in it, and some anti pasta salad that was...uhm...ok, I guess.  Wasn't my favorite.  All the lemonade we could drink, although we missed our diet pepsi's we were gonna bring.  

After lunch we went to the top deck to see if they were untying the ropes for departure and they were busy doing something, but the ropes were still attached.  Of course, it was still only 1pm by then and we weren't scheduled to depart until 5pm.  Our time line was messed up from being so tired.  By about 2pm they let us know our cabins were ready, so we hustled up to ours...after a shower, off to the land of nod we went until about 4pm.  We had to attend a mandatory lifevest thingy for the US Coast Guard.  In fact, they sit out to the side of the ship where the lifeboats are and observe.  It's kinda disturbing almost.  Anyway, that took an hour.  We had to report to our "Musterstation C" to get instructions, then the stand out drill, then we were ok'd to leave port.  After dropping our lifejackets back off at our cabin, we decided to go to the send off party at one of the clubs at the top front of the ship.  It was cool with all the windows (called the Navigator Club) because it was raining pretty good by then.  We'd gone to the pursers desk to get dramamine, so the ship taking off didn't bother us at all.  Watching Seattle get smaller was very interesting.  Seeing all the land around us all the time was strange.  We were going through different islands to get to Victoria.  We stayed in the Navigator Club for about 30 min, then decided it was time to get something to eat.  Off to the poolside grill for some jammin hamburgers.  They were fresh, they were hot, they just tasted really good.  There was so little on this cruise (foodwise) that tasted good....so we enjoyed it. By then, a nice storm was beginning to settle in and the pool butlers were having a devil of a time keeping the covers on the chairs near the pool.  Apparently, cold, windy weather didn't bother some people who had already decided to get in the spas.  Freaks!  

We went to get ready to attend the first nights show and then a late seating for dinner, but never made it out of cabin once we got settled.  We got the tv turned on, watched some old Law & Orders, CSI's, and some other stuff...and decided after a few hours sleeping we wanted room service instead of dinner.  So, at 11pm, ordered room service. It was cool, ordered it on the TV.  You choose what you want and it's just delivered.  VERY cool.  The food, very good and as much as we wanted.  So, we ordered the NY steak w/french fries meal, as well as a chef salad for Karl.  I had a sourdough bread bowl with New England Clam Chowder.  MMM...and a fruit plate that I ended up having EVERY night (Nummy!!).  Karl had raspberry cheesecake every night.  We tried the cookies, they were...ok. Nothing to rave about.  We finished our evening with herbal night night tea and hot cocoa.   Off to a gentle waterbed slumber.

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