We made it! Arrived in the Sheraton Anchorage, for our Holland American southbound cruise, around 1am on August 5th. The hotel lobby was deserted save for the lady behind the reception desk. There were two rooms reserved for us and we were happy to finally be in Anchorage. We arrived only nine hours later than originally scheduled. No sightseeing, no dinner, no nothing in Anchorage today. Blame the weather, American did.
Here’s the view from our window.
Luggage, as arranged by HAL, is scheduled for 8am pickup. Rain or shine, someone will be knocking on our door to grab our bags to transfer them to the Noordam. That means Caden and I (JoAnn and Jenna are in their own room) have to be ready at 8. We are taking a train to Seward, where we board the ship, but the luggage goes ahead of us.
For those few of you who follow our travel adventures, I want to update you on our current trip. The internet stinks on the ship and I can’t upload photos. Yesterday I couldn’t even get on my site to write. Maybe tomorrow I will have stronger connectivity. In the meantime here’s the lowdown on our trip so far.
We made it to the Sheraton Anchorage by 1:00am Sunday morning August 5. After a few hours sleep, Caden and I had breakfast and then met Casey, who was staying at the Westmark Hotel, for coffee. He walked over to meet us and then we walked him part of the way back so that we could see a little bit of downtown Anchorage. Pictures to follow.
We took the cruise train from Anchorage to Seward to join the Noordam. Pictures from the train to follow.
We are in cabin 1055, an outside with a window. The room could use more light but it is otherwise fine. The ship is clean and in nice condition. So far the food in the dining room is very good to excellent although our table is not very well located
Yesterday, August 6th, was spent cruising in the Gulf of Alaska as we headed for Glacier Bay. I took photos of the ship and the artwork on board. The art is interesting. After taking photos of art on many ships, I am starting to become a critic of sorts. The art here is definitely of a nautical nature. Pictures to follow.
Today we are traversing Glacier Bay. It’s windy, cold and raining. Taking photos is a challenge but I think I got some very nice ones. Glacier Bay is a true wonder of nature. There is a lot to report about the day. Just one note, our trip into the bay ends at Margerie Glacier which is, according to the park ranger who is onboard to describe our journey, one mile wide and 21 miles long. Pictures to follow.
Ultimately I will posting each and every day. Stay tuned and thanks for reading my blog.
Our local guide, Barbara, works and lives in Venice. She is one of the fortunate ones who still actually resides in the heart of the city. She was exceedingly knowledgeable and, even more important, very nice. After our gondola ride, I asked her for a recommendation of dinner. When I ask a “local” for a recommendation I always couch it by asking, “where would you go for a date or special occasion?” I explain that I am not looking for a touristy place, just somewhere where she would go.
Barbara recommended Osteria Enoteca San Marco. So, we walked over to take a look at the place, liked what we saw, and made a reservation for 7:30pm. Here is a photo taken inside the osteria.
We woke to calm seas and breezy, warm weather on the 22nd. We took our time getting going; what’s the rush? No place we have to be and no one to answer to; as the T-shirt says, “life is good.” We eventually made our way to the stern, outside the Oceanview Cafe and found a nice table, in the shade, near the bar, with a great view of the Atlantic. We relaxed here for a few hours with a couple of glasses of white wine, just taking it easy and whiling away the hours.
View of the Atlantic from our table
Labor Day weekend found us on the road to the University of Notre Dame. We had plans to go to the opening-day football game in the newly enlarged stadium. A friend from high school, Pat, graduated from Notre Dame almost 50 years ago and was to be our guide for the weekend. After 679 miles on the road we arrived at the University on Friday afternoon.
We were just in time for the pep rally. Students, alumni, friends and family, by the thousands gathered to be seen and motivated. Gotta get there, no time to lose.
When we woke we were docked at the Port of Rosyth. It’s a working port and presently there is a British aircraft carrier under construction. You can see it in the distance. The ship in the foreground is off loading cargo.
We decided to take the included tour to Edinburgh. The tour was interesting and we went with a number of our very best, new friends. There is an entire bus load of them that came along with us.
We were planning to go into London proper but decided to stay in Greenwich. We have been to London on a number of occasions but never to Greenwich until yesterday. So, it made sense to stay here and visit the touristy places. Off the ship, off the tender and on to the Royal Observatory. Quite a walk up hill, to the highest point in Greenwich. It was quite a trek to the top but well worth it. The view of London was spectacular.
Landed at Heathrow, Terminal 5, right on time. Flight could not have been better. As we left the airport we were greeted by a warm, sunny day with cooling breezes. Our hotel, the London Marriott Hotel, West India Quay, is located in the heart of Canary Wharf.
London Marriott Hotel
London Marriott Hotel
Our room is nice, with an interesting view.
View from room 803