The Cruise – Day 1

We are currently sitting in SEA-TAC airport waiting for our flight to Portland. The trip is done, but I was unable to post anything while underway. Instead, I kept a running diary and will now cut and paste all that stuff to get you up to date.

Here goes …

April 9, 2023, Easter Sunday – Fort Lauderdale, FL

We loaded up our luggage and checked out of the condo we inhabited for a week in Fort Lauderdale, Florida prior to boarding Holland America’s Eurodam for a Panama Canal cruise.

We dropped our car off at the FLL airport rental car return facility and worked hard to find a ride to the Eurodam. The tickets didn’t come with instructions. I finally located a little counter inside the terminal that checked cruise people in and gave them cards to get a ride to the ship. They didn’t have any cards left when I found it, but they let us pay $38 for two seats anyway.

It was a long walk to the bus, but we made it and I didn’t fall down even one time. There were lots of people around us at all times so I probably wouldn’t have actually hit the ground had I fallen.

We finally embarked aboard Holland America Eurodam at 1030 after parting with our luggage in the parking lot. We were assured it would all be delivered to our cabin. It was an act of faith to walk away.

Once on board, we went to the Lido deck where I had a hamburger, from the Dive In grill, and part of a chicken sandwich Diane couldn’t finish. Both were pretty good. We had to wait for the crew to determine that our cabin was ready for us to move in.

The ship was scheduled to leave at 1500, was moved to 1530, and was still tethered to the pier at 1630. We finally got underway at 1645 in the rain. We went to the Lido deck to watch the world go by and stake out a seat for supper that was supposed to start at 1730, but they opened at 1715. I had NY steak, salmon, fruit, and a very large salad. I need to find out where they serve pasta as least once on this trip. Two of the windows, next to the table we selected, had huge cracks in them. Apparently, there was no danger in sitting there because there were no warning signs. Still, the danger lurked in the back of my head that the window would fracture and we would be sucked outside and into the sea. After thinking about that for a minute, I suspect that’s only a danger on an airplane.

Bobbie Lee and Doug, people we didn’t know, sat at the table next to us. He’s an old Navy guy from the Korean era. We had a nice visit.

After our meal we wandered around the ship for a while then went looking for our stateroom. The ship is massive, right at 1000 feet long. Finally found #6097 around 1830. It’s a very spacious cabin with a nice size TV, which was very important. We have a balcony, too, where we can while away the hours on nice days.

Diane christened the shower immediately as we were very sweaty from all the hullabaloo getting to the ship and checking in. I showered later. We were both very tired but the next couple of days are at sea so there’s nothing to do but eat so we’ll have plenty of time to rest up.

All of our luggage appeared outside our cabin door before the afternoon was gone.

Our first port visit will be Cartagena, Colombia. We’ll only be there about 5 hours.

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