Today was great, very laid back and relaxing. We’ve been at sea the whole day, but it definitely hasn’t been boring! I woke up late, to the very noticeable rocking of the ship. We were on the open sea, and it can get kind of rough. The intense swaying pretty much meant I was clinging to the wall railings as I walked. Trying to walk without the support usually resulted in weaving like I had an early morning drink or four. Everyone seemed to tolerate it well – I heard lots of drunk jokes from the other guests! Considering my usual motion sickness during long car rides, I was really surprised that I tolerated it so well. I was more irritated by the hindrance than sick!
The swaying died down by mid afternoon, as we left the open sea and began cruising the inside passage to Alaska. The view outside now is incredible. The inside passage can be quite narrow in places; sometimes the mountains and trees on both sides seem close enough to touch! I took a tonne of pictures, but I don’t think that they really convey the immense scope of the scenery crowding us on either side. There have also been a few whales (orcas) swimming alongside the ship, which is incredible to see. I saw two from my seat during dinner. Didn’t get any pictures, but I’m sure I’ll see more.
Because of our speed (and the open sea), the wind has been pretty brutal. But that hasn’t really stopped anyone. Lots of people were sunbathing on the pool deck, although the pool itself was half drained and closed. It took me about 5 seconds to figure out why, when the swaying of the ship caused the pool water to build huge waves that almost hit the sunbathers. It was really neat to see – I took some video of it. Even with the wind, my favorite observation deck was nice and shielded – I got to knit for about an hour.
I didn’t spend all my time laying about though – I met up with this nice couple my age (whom I met on the airport shuttle), and we went to a shopping seminar aimed at giving passengers advice on great deals in each port. And we played Bingo! I’ve quickly learned how to spot the free activities that usually result in free stuff/gifts at the end. (Yeah, I’m cheap!) I got this really nice art print from an art gallery tour yesterday and today the shopping seminar resulted in coupons for diamond charm bracelets and a charm at every port. Nice! You can really make a killing in free stuff if you hit the right events…
We had dinner in one of the nicer restaurants (no more buffet for me!) and now I am ready to crash. We dock in Ketchikan, Alaska early tomorrow morning and we have to turn our clocks back 1 more hour tonight. Time to adjust to another time change!