Sudha, Neil, and I are on a cruise on Sapphire Princess to Alaska. This is a 7 day cruise.
This is the first cruise I ever experienced. We have been on the boat for about 20 hours now, when I am typing, and it has been a unique positive experience. This boat carries more than 2000 passengers and has more than 1000 crew members. It is more like a small town where you have everything. The thing which is little weak is communication. No good telephone â€“ wireless â€“ connectivity. If you need to use, it is quite expensive, I believe about $3/minute. So you definitely can communicate with outside world but it will be expensive. Similarly, internet cafes are available and WiFi is available in many lounges. This is $0.35/minute so about $20/hour. Definitely expensive, but good thing is that it is available.
Food, drinks, and other amenities seems to be similar price as on land and are available in abundance. Of course the basic food cost is included in the cruise price and there is plenty of food available and in different varieties.
With multiple swimming pools, lots of bars, many entertainment areas, library, and art galleries, there is enough things to do. And off course there is enough time to relax and do what you want to do. The rooms are good size have sitting area and two TVs. We have a nice deck that we enjoyed yesterday. I was impressed by the magnificent view of Mt Rainier in the back drop of Seattle. Kept enjoying that view as the boat sailed out of the harbor.
Today, the July 4th, has been a drizzling day. We went to the swimming pool and the hot-tub today â€“ the indoor one. The outdoor one was quite chilly and too cold for us. Time to go for lunch now.
I was thinking about life at UM a couple of days ago and for some unexplained reason did a search on your name. And I came across your blog from your cruise. You were in my “backyard” just around the time I was actually thinking of you. That view of Mount Rainier is available often to us from Issaquah (under 20 miles from you set sail) where I work – and we have gotten so spoilt that we don’t even pause to admire it.
Coincidentally, my parents are on a cruise to Alaska at about the same time with my brother’s family. They departed June 30 and I suspect the two of you are returning to Seattle the same day.
I have no idea if you are heading straight back when you return. If you are going to be hanging around Seattle for a few days, let me know.