Links to Inside Passage photos and videos from the cruise 

5-29-08

This morning we ordered room service, and Lis gamely repeated her hard boiled egg order. We had theorized that for a room service order, where the chef wasn’t worried about the passenger sitting and waiting for their food, they would be able to give the egg the full ten minutes – and we were right; Lis said the eggs were perfect. I had scrambled eggs and bacon, and my breakfast was also very good.

At 9 am we reported to the Constellation Theater to go through US Customs. The customs agent was sitting at a table in front of the stage, illuminated by a single bright spotlight, with the spangled stage curtain sparkling behind him – it was quite impressive. I told him he should have someone take his picture for his desk, and he laughed. It’s funny how much friendlier the US Customs people are as compared to the Canadian Customs folks. I didn’t expect it, based on both the things I’ve read about the experiences that non-US citizens have had at our borders since 9/11, and my own experience of the friendliness of Canadians in general. And maybe this is not a general experience, but the times I’ve gone to Canada, the Canadian customs people are invariably unsmiling and even surly, and the US folks are friendly and affable. Go figure.

At 9:30 we had a seminar to attend, which made us a bit sad, as we love lying about on sea days. It lasted until noon, and was your basic seminar – tolerable at first, and then tedious, and then mind-numbing. But then over.

The schedule said that there was a Friends of Dorothy meeting in the Horizon Lounge at 12:05 pm, which is where we went next (for the uninitiated, Friends of Dorothy is a get together of gay and lesbian passengers – not to be confused with Friends of Bill W, which is an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. Though, as one of people we met pointed out, there is probably some overlap…). There were about 16-18 people, including 2 other lesbian couples. Three of the guys are in a Master’s Suite, and they invited us to a cocktail party in their suite on June 2 – we are very excited; we’ve always wanted to see the Master’s Suite in person, plus no one has ever invited us to a cocktail party in their suite on a cruise ship.

Then we were off to lunch, this time in the La Veranda buffet on Deck 11. Because it’s a sea day, there was a fish barbecue on the pool deck, and Lis went and got us some salmon, grouper, mahi mahi and swordfish. The salmon didn’t seem cooked enough, but the rest of the fish was divine. Let me point out here that I am not much of a seafood girl, but I’ve had halibut, smoked salmon and caviar, in addition to the above, so far in this cruise, and I’ve enjoyed everything but the caviar. At lunch a lovely gentleman from Tennessee struck up a conversation with us – we enjoyed him very much, especially his Pat Summit stories. We’ve met some very nice people so far, and have surprised ourselves with our sociability – we can be a bit hermit-ish.

We spent the bulk of the afternoon in our cabin, sitting on the balcony reading or lying in bed practicing our Spanish. While we were lazing away like this, the phone rang, and Lis said “Damn – the bridge tour!” – we had forgotten that we’d signed up. We threw on our appropriate-for-outside-the-cabin clothes (we’d been in sweats) and ran down to the reception area (literally). Then we were taken to the bridge, where a very cute, very funny and well spoken young deck cadet named Larissa showed us around. She was very knowledgeable and very talkative, answered all our questions and told us funny stories – we were there for over an hour and had a great time.

We ate dinner in La Veranda tonight. We enjoyed it, but they seemed to have a harder time handling Lis’ diet, and the steak I ordered wasn’t as good as the one Lis had had last night in Compass Rose. Still, it was very lovely, and Lis said her salmon was very good. Then back to the cabin for the sunset. Everything we’d read said that you should get a starboard cabin for a northbound Alaska cruise, because you see more of the fjords – so we tried, and were disappointed to find ourselves in a port cabin. But I think I might like it better, because we’ve had two glorious sunsets in a row. Plus we sat in the sun this afternoon, which may not be what you want in August but was really nice in May. Lis: sitting in the sun on the balcony this afternoon was my transcendent moment of the day.

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