Alaskan Cruise (Part 4)

Read part 3.

Nothing particular interesting happened in the last handful of days. Just a stop in Ketchikan where we did a little more walking around. We only docked in the late morning though, so there wasn’t much time before naps had to be taken. The weather continued to be beautiful and there was more deck time.

Oh, and our ship, the Zaandam? Yeah, it was christened by none other than the Olson Twins, back in 2000. That was a fun discovery!alaska part 4 (1)alaska part 4 (2)
Cruising in Conclusion

Being my first cruise, I didn’t know what to expect. Over all, I had a great time and cruising is a wonderful way to vacation when you don’t want to have to take care of your own meals or laundry. There were a couple things that felt a little strange to me:
I felt like such an intruder on these tiny Alaskan towns. Here we are, coming in on our floating resort that is pretty much as long as their main street, crowding their sidewalks and stealing their WiFi. We come in the day and leave the place deserted at night. Can’t we leave the locals in peace and let them have a balanced life? Victoria is a cruise port, but it is more of a destination for people to stay in hotels, so I never felt like the cruise ship passengers were intruding on our city. Plus, Victoria is much bigger than the ports we stopped in. As an aside, at the hotel I worked at, we could tell who was going to go on a cruise or who came off of one, just judging by their luggage! They always had the biggest, heaviest bags.
The other thing is just the feeling of…something…with the staff. They are all so friendly and great at what they do, but at the end of the day, you know they go down just a floor or two below you, and sleep in rooms more crowded than yours, not seeing their family for months on end, while we are all partying with our families, having them wait on us and serve us all this food that their families could probably only dream about. I kind of felt bad for them and wished they could experience the ship the way we did. But that is the nature of a cruise ship I suppose. The crew can’t go home at the end of the day. We all have to share the same toilet water. Maybe this is coming across different than how I feel? In any case, I loved the staff. A handful of them made it a point to remember the boys’ names and make them smile and ask where they were if they weren’t with us at the moment. They recongnized all our faces, and were always “on”.

A couple quick notes about cruising with kids:
I can only speak for Holland America line, but children who are not potty trained are not allowed in the pools or the kids club. The case may be different on say, the Disney line, where they cater to kids. Well, maybe not the pools still because water on a ship is precious. But even on a line that usually is more adult oriented, I never felt like the boys were snubbed or not thought of. If we were to go again with just our family, I would look for a line that has more amenities that my kids could take advantage of. I didn’t bring anything along for Calvin, besides some books, but there was no shortage of stuff for him to do between tennis, basketball, ping pong, and just plain running around. The boy loves his sports activities! If your child isn’t into that kind of stuff, I don’t know what you would do.

And that’s all!

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