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Tuesday 27 Jul 2010
Queen Charolette Island, USA

First 2 days

 Experiencing technical difficulty uploading all pictures... some OK... others... no go... will try again from Glacier Bay....

7/25/2010 - 7/26/2010 Beaverton, OR to Queen Charlotte Island, BC, Canada -- 750 miles North


                Did we say we were going for 7 days or 7 weeks ?!  Eleven (11) bags for four people for seven days. Four of which were carry-on's including two backpacks, one purse, and one rolling bag with six bottles of wine and six bottles of champagne.  Somehow Tony and Uncle Jim fit it all into the back of our Kia Sorento (see photo).  Ellie and Aunt Sue didn't need headrests as there would be ample protection stacked to the head liner.


                It only took 3-ish hours to get from 206th and Baseline in Beaverton to Pier 91 in Seattle where the Oosterdam was docked.  The sun shone all morning and the temperature never rose above 75 degrees.  Out of the driveway by 8:00AM and into the baggage drop at pier 91 by 11:30AM with only two stops, one for coffee and petrol just after leaving the house and another in DuPont, WA for a hydration break.


                Once onboard the ship we partook in lunch by the pool on the Lido deck (deck 9).  The food is very good and served cafeteria style instead of the expected grand buffet.  The stations are organized by food type and duplicated on both the port and starboard side of the central kitchen.  This eliminates a long line of diners waiting for their turn at the serving trays and also probably leads to less wasted food as there is no self serve anything.


                Another nice feature is the strict use of your cabin key for everything.  It is used to pay for drinks at the bar(s), purchases from the souvenir shop, and even in the casino.  Everything is charged to your cabin.  Tips are not expected at the time of service but collected at the end of the cruise (an amount per day/per person is advised at time of booking - additional gratuities can be included as you settle your bill at the end of the cruise).


                Ellie and Tony have an outside cabin with a large balcony and large windows facing the portside scenery. Unfortunately, this means that until Tuesday we will only have beautiful view of the Pacific horizon. But on the way back to Seattle the port side of the boat will have the best views.


                Much to Ellie's dismay there is NO steam iron in any stateroom on the Oosterdam. It seems they are worried about the potential fire hazards, plus there would be little room to set up a full size ironing board. So what's a girl who is addicted to ironing supposed to do? Well, it turns out that there is an "unlimited pressing" package available. As many garments as we want for the entire cruise for $28. We couldn't pass it up. The only drawback is that it could take as much as 48 hours to get our garments back. Better plan ahead!


                We had a wonderful dinner Sunday evening in the Pinnacle Grill.  We dined for 2 hours while we indulged in lobster bisque and crab cakes, Caesar salad, flaming seafood skewers (Tony), filet mignon & scampi and ended the meal with chocolate, coffee and vanilla crème bruelè and raspberry cheese cake. 

                After dinner we checked the casino action - Some of us did better than others (Aunt Sue) but a good time was had by all.  We called it a night about 11pm.


It hasn't taken much time to ease into the cruising life. We've explored the ship and now have our bearings.   To work off some of that fabulous food we had last night we headed to the gym this morning to check on the availability of the equipment  - Apparently a lot of people had the same idea !  There wasn't a machine in sight that didn't have someone on it.  We strolled out onto the bow in front of the gym (on the 9th deck), and Ellie's reading glasses were snatched by the wind - They shot straight up in the air and were gone in seconds !  (good thing they were not prescription !)

We decided to get some exercise by walking around the Promenade deck six times which equals 2 miles. On the port side of the ship the 20 - 30 mile per hour wind pushed us toward the stern and on the starboard side we had to lean into the wind.


                While the weather and seas were very calm on our departure from Seattle once we passed Victoria, BC, and exited the Strait of Juan de Fuca around 10PM Sunday, the Pacific got down to business with 8 to 10 foot seas and gale force winds greeted the ship.  It sounds worse than it is.  The ship does move side to side and up and down but it's not terrible and not causing any seasickness at least among the 4 of us. It does make it hard to walk a straight line anywhere on the ship (we now know what they mean when they say... "walks like a drunken sailor" !) and the water in the pool on deck 9 splashes and sloshes all over.  The kids are very happy and ride the pool waves up, down, and around the pool. Once the Oosterdam returns to the shelter of the "Inside Passage" I'm sure the rocking and rolling will calm down quite a bit.

Ellie is indulging in the Therapy Suite package (Laura... you are with me in spirit !) while we're on board.  It includes unlimited use of the two aroma therapy saunas and the hydrotherapy pool.  She spent about an hour this afternoon getting further into the cruise frame of mind !

Tomorrow (Tuesday) we arrive in Glacier Bay but tonight we are going to be dressed to the nines in our fancy dresses and suits for the first of 2 formal evenings.  We don't get dressed up too often so are looking forward to it.

More to follow.....

1 Comment for this Travel blog entry

LOLA Says:

27 July 2010

AAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!! Enjoy that spa - don't forget to hydrate the proper way (champagne) while in there - do they have cucumbers for your eyes and whatever else you choose to put them on?
still jealous, jealous, jealous - what was in your morning coffee?

Alaska Cruise 2010

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Travel blogs from Queen Charolette Island

First 2 days
27 Jul 10 | Queen..., USA

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