Dave’s family was going on a family vacation to Alaska with the Norwegian Cruise Line. And since I am practically married to Dave already, I was also going along!
I really can’t believe how fast time has gone since Christmas time when we first decided we were going on vacation because I left for the cruise a few weeks ago and am back already! I’ll be posting a lot about my different experiences on the trip but I’ll start with getting out to the boat.
Our flight was from Boston to LA and then LA to Vancouver where we then boarded the cruise ship. We flew American/Alaskan Airlines and the experience was pretty good overall.
On our long flight from Boston to LA, I spent my time reading and Dave ended up watching a few programs on the personal TV. The seats were more comfortable than other flights I have been on-both in terms of just sitting and the leg room.
Each seat also had an outlet to charge electronic devices. I don’t really have a problem since I switched to my Samsung Galaxy S5 , but when I had my iPhone I was always trying to conserve as much battery power as I could and always was searching for an outlet at the airport between flights. Unfortunately for Dave, having an outlet there meant that the end seat that he was assigned to had less space underneath it to store his carry-on. This seemed to only really be a problem on the aisle seat-the middle and window seat still had a decent amount of space for your carry-on.
But the main downside of this flight was that there were no free snacks. It was a good thing I had a few in my purse or else we might have had a grumpy Jess situation-which doesn’t always go in Dave’s favor. There were snacks available for purchase-but who wants to pay for their snacks on the plane?! The second flight to Vancouver (only about 2.5 hour flight) didn’t have TV’s but was just as comfortable as the first and they also gave us a little snack mix package.
We stayed in a Holiday Inn Airport about 45 minutes outside Vancouver the night before the cruise ship took off. We wished we had a little more time inside of Vancouver because it would have been fun to explore. However, we still enjoyed our time as we stayed close to the hotel and hung out in the restaurant Fogg ‘n Suds next door catching up over food and drinks. The timing was perfect too because it was cousin Shaye’s 19th birthday which just so happens to be the drinking age in Vancouver. Shaye got to enjoy some birthday wine as well as a fried Mars bar!
The next morning, we threw our bags outside our doors and they were collected by hotel staff to be put on our shuttle. Then we all shuttled over to the ship port. Of course a few of us needed to take a picture of this adventure!
Once we arrived to the dock, we went through a few stages of security. We received our ID cards for the cruise ship that were like college IDs because it is used as money while on the ship. You also had to have your card swiped each time you left the boat so that the crew could keep track of everyone.
We checked in on the boat and went straight to the Garden Café to get some lunch while we waited for our rooms to be ready. Meanwhile, the crew was hard at work delivering everyone’s luggage.
Before we could fully enjoy the cruise, we were called for a safety drill practice just in case we experience the “unlikely” event of an emergency (any time an emergency procedure was referenced, staff would say “an unlikely event”). The drill involved heading toward a specific section of the boat (indicated on your ID card) where you had to stand up against the wall until everyone arrived. Once everyone was there, you were given a demonstration on how to put your life vest on properly. If you were one like me who couldn’t see or hear the explanation, the information is repeated on the ship TV station available in your room.
Don’t let this picture fool you-Dave and I got to the meet up spot early so this is only the beginning. The group was probably 7 or 8 people deep and 15 or so wide. Body heat was building up and I just wanted to get out. But I guess, in a way, it reminded me of a race start when you are awaiting the gun to go off so you can get running. This was the start line for vacationing!
I was glad when we could take off from the “start line” because we were all ready to get cruising! I’ll be posting more about my first cruise experience – so stay tuned!