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Posts Tagged ‘Carnival Legend’

Amazing Moments: Best Friends

In Uncategorized on November 24, 2013 at 7:19 pm

Today’s amazing moment is brought to you by my dear friend Alexey aka RP, aka Blexey, aka my Bestie. I have met some amazing people on the ships and in my travels. Some of which I won’t ever see again, but will always remember and some I know I will be connected to forever and will see again. The fabulous people I have encountered will always stay with me because I’ve learnt something new from each of them. Some, however, make me wonder how I ever lived without them, and I know I’ll never be able to live without their presence in my life. Alex is one of those, we were attached at the hip for most of our contract, through all the ups and downs of ship life, and exploring Europe. Through office dance parties, heartaches, adventures and misadventures. Alex is one of the only people who can keep up with me; getting up at 5am, running in the pouring rain to catch a train out of Venice to Verona is a chance we both jumped at when everyone else told us we were crazy and stayed in bed. This picture is one of my favorites, the Russian sunset in the background and us laughing hysterically at who knows what. Every time in look at this picture, a million stories and memories flood my brain and I can’t help but laugh. We look so happy and I love it.

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Amazing Moments: Strait of Gibraltar

In Uncategorized on November 23, 2013 at 8:35 pm

The next amazing moment I want to share with you as one of the highlights of the last 7 months is sailing through the Strait of Gibraltar. The first time we did it, it was in the wee hours of the morning and we could only see the headlights of cars and bridge lights. The second time we sailed through it was daylight. It was so amazing to see Europe on one side and Africa on the other. In the daylight we were even able to see the rock of Gibraltar. Magnificent!! This photo makes me remember how far we came and it also reminds me of all the times we gathered together on the open deck to watch for something life-changing.

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Amazing Moments: Trevi Fountain

In Uncategorized on November 21, 2013 at 6:53 pm

As I enjoy my delightful vacation, I’ve been going through all my pictures and remembering all my magnificent adventures. I have been so many amazing places and as I sift through my memories, certain pictures and stories keep coming back again and again as highlights. So I wanted to share some. Today’s photo is from my last day in Rome. The whole day was an amazing experience and the following picture of me tossing a coin into the Trevi fountain just reminds me of it. I can’t not look at this picture without it making me super happy. From the ring I’m wearing that was a gift from my two favorite guests on a Venice sailing to Barcelona, to the smile on my face, to the fountain itself, to the story it reminds me of, everything about this picture will always make my day!

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Quaqartoq in Pictures

In Uncategorized on November 8, 2013 at 4:12 am

I know, I know, I’m on vacation and I’ve left you all hanging! Don’t worry, I have plenty of things to say and opinions on life, Miley Cyrus and cruise ships. But for now, I’m doing some resting, thinking, reading, and reflecting upon the last 7 months. As I sift through mountains of memories, I really am starting to process everything. I just wanted to share with you some pictures I took in Quaqartoq, Greenland. I can’t even find the words to describe how stunning it is, so just look.

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New York State of Mind

In Uncategorized on October 21, 2013 at 9:35 pm

Our amazingly fantastic transatlantic voyage ended with a call into the Big Apple!! NEW YORK!! I worked in the morning and had time to take a quick jaunt out into the city. I was not at all prepared for the culture shock. I’ve been to New York before, but this time, after a 15 day voyage, 8 serene sea days, and ports of call who’s populations were doubled while we were in port, it was just a little bit terrifying. Times Square is flashy, so much neon. I’ve never been as overwhelmed by a city as I was when I walked off the ship in Manhatten. In Quaqortoq, our ship carried more passengers than live in the town, in New York, that many people live in one skyscraper! I walked up to Times Square and all of my sense were assaulted, it literally took me a solid half an hour to adjust. That’s never happened to me before, it was a very strange experience!

It was quite a big day for us in general. Partially because the ship has been out of the US for almost 7 months, our first US port was a big deal. For one thing, 150 crew members signed off so we had to say goodbye to our friends and colleagues and get ready to welcome a batch of new people to our Legend family. Also, since the ship has been out of the US for so long, EVERYONE and their dog wanted to come aboard and make sure everything was up to their standards. USPH, US Coastguard, CPB, you get the picture. All the crew members also had to go through full immigration to get our permits for working aboard (I-95’s, a very important, very tiny piece of paper that is also very expensive if you happen to lose it). Not to mention that we had to get the 2,200 guests and all their luggage from a 15 day voyage off the ship and a whole new set on the ship. PHEW!! After a long and intense day, I looked at my pictures from the the early morning, sailing into New York with all the buildings outlined in lights and Lady Liberty standing tall and serene and realized for the hundredth time that I’ve been on an extraordinary journey.
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Northern Lights

In Uncategorized on October 20, 2013 at 9:20 pm

It’s been a very hectic few days, icebergs and Northern Lights and cold cabins. We have all been on Northern Lights watch and when we left Reykjavik (which means ‘Smokey Bay’ in case you were wondering) it was much too foggy to see anything. The next night, I finished work at 12:30am, and called the bridge to ask if it was foggy and if they thought we might be able to see the lights. The bridge guys laughed at me and said no, it was too foggy. Dejected, I returned to my busy work, and 45 minutes later, when the phone rang it was the bridge, urging me to hurry to the open deck IMMEDIATELY as the lights were visible. I ran outside and there they were, all glowing and amazing! Once everyone heard the next day that we had seen the lights, I got in trouble from many others for not contacting them immediately. So the next night when I got the call for the lights (much earlier this time, around 9pm), I activated the phone tree and called EVERYONE! We all ran outside and the lights were absolutely stunning. MY images are having some uploading difficulties at the moment (ship internet, not always the fastest!) so i will share pictures later. However it’s just as amazing as I had imagined it to be. Check that one off the bucket list!!

Liverpool, England

In Uncategorized on October 19, 2013 at 9:20 pm

The deviation of this past cruise, while maybe not ideal for some, was very exciting for me. Partly because I’ve fallen madly in love with England and was so excited to see another part of it, and party because of the Beatles. The Beatles were a favorite band of my parents, particularly my fathers, and therefore I grew up listening to their music. For me, the Beatles make me think of home and love and family and warmth and just plain old good music. Of course, on a grander scale, the Beatles are a massive part of pop culture and the landscape of music, which means all their favorite places and influences in their hometown of Liverpool are very much commercialized. Random sidebar, when I was last in Amsterdam, we saw the hotel where John and Yoko famously hid out in for a crazy amount of time. During this cruise, my darling friend Andrea from Hungary whom I worked with on the Liberty has joined the team and so off we went to see as much as we could possibly see in Liverpool. Starting off on the HoHo we toured the city and planned where we wanted to stop and spend more time. Next we took the 2 hour ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ in an amazing bus to all of the important Beatles places. We saw their childhood homes, their schools, Penny Lane, Strawberry Fields, and so on. I really enjoyed hearing all the tour guide’s stories about the musicians and their childhood. The bus played Beatles tunes the whole way and we sang along of course!! After the Beatles tour we got some lunch at Tesco (a store I will really miss when we get back to North America, by the way) and made our way down to the Cavern Club, where the Beatles played a total of 292 times (and many, many other musical geniuses as well). Inside we enjoyed the acoustic music of several fabulous musicians (of course some Beatles songs!!) and gazed at the music memorabilia all over. Being a very big fan of live music, I could have stayed forever, but alas, not possible and we got back on the HoHo to stop at the other places we had wanted to see. Specifically, the Anglican Church, the largest in England, and a beautiful building with very loud bells!! A short souvenir stop ended our Liverpool day and we hurried back to the ship, trying to beat the sudden display of cold treacherous English weather. I could have stayed a lifetime, England I love you and your people (and their accents)!!
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Prince Christian Sound

In Uncategorized on October 15, 2013 at 1:00 pm

So, every so often there comes a chance to do something amazing. Today was one of those days. We have had an ice pilot (Captain Fritz) on board with us for a while to assist in navigating our way to Greenland. He has extensive experience navigating ships through the Greenland and Iceland areas, and He presented us with the opportunity to navigate through the Prince Christian Sound. Of course our captain had to agree and whatnot before it could be done, but in the end, he went for it. This stunning fjord separates the mainland of Greenland with the Christian IV Island and other islands near the southernmost tip of Greenland. It connects the Labrador Sea with Irminger Sea and is around 100 km (60 miles) long. It is also narrow, sometimes only 500 m (1500 ft) wide. There is only one settlement along this sound, Augpilagtoq. At this area, our cruise director, John, disembarked via one of our tender boats and took a bag of postcards from our guests and crew to have them mailed from what has been described as the Northernmost Post Office in the world (heads up mom and dad, you’re getting a really cold postcard)! The sound offers beautiful scenery with steep mountains often more than 1200 m high, and with glaciers going straight into the water, creating icebergs. It is unbelievably beautiful and also a little bit daunting at first as it doesn’t really appear that the ship can make it through the narrow channel. It really was an amazing experience. The crew all gathered on the open deck to take pictures and watch as we entered the narrow passage. From above us we could see all the guests gathered on the upper open decks and we waved merrily back and forth to eachother. The excitement was palpable, everyone was awestruck. I really can’t even begin describe how majestic the scenery was. We spent most of the day running back and forth from the office to the open deck to the office again. It’s so cold out that we brought a hair dryer into the back office to warm ourselves up after long periods of time outside. I’m so fascinated by the people who live in these remote areas. I can’t help but wonder who the 115-200 people are who live in Augpilagtoq are and what their day to day lives are like. Incidentally, I learned something new today, in Greenland, people who live off the land are called Unuit, and people who live off the sea are called Eskimos. I love learning new things!

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Cruise Along the Lysefijord

In Uncategorized on October 15, 2013 at 12:57 pm

This post is a teeny bit delayed because I’ve been trying really hard to keep up with the UK isles stuff, and I somehow missed getting this one in! Norway is utterly sublime, and while we were in Stavanger we had the chance to go on a cruise down the lysefijord. We boarded our lovely boat and off we went. The fijords are amazing. It actually reminds me a bit of BC, it made me homesick! We went to an amazing waterfall right next to Pulpit Rock, and drank the waterfall water! They took us all around the fijords and then up to a little campsite/restaurant type place where they served freshly made waffles and homemade strawberry jam. Of course I couldn’t eat the waffles but I drank coffee and watched everyone else enjoy their waffles, all the while marveling at the beauty of the fijord and the mountain ranges surrounding it. As we passed Pulpit Rock we could see people up on the top of it, and later some guests even showed me some pictures they had taken from way up there. The next time I return to Norway I will most certainly be headed up to that brilliant vista.

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Deviation

In Uncategorized on September 24, 2013 at 6:01 pm

Although the Baltic seas have thus far been kind to us, the winds of change are upon us. The Norway cruise got rougher close to the end and as we reached the final day, we learned that there was a very good chance we would need to change our itinerary because of it. We waited on the edge of our seats as the powers that be decided our next course of action and when the email hit our inbox we opened it with mixed feelings. Generally, a deviation of itinerary mostly just means more work and upset guests. Understandably so, people book cruises with the ports in mind, often if we miss one we add a day at sea, we don’t get a replacement port, resulting in sadness and long lines at Guest Services.

Deviations can occur for all kinds of reasons, but mostly it comes down to weather. At the end of the day, we are but sailors, we can not control the wind or the waves, we can only do our best with what comes our way (methinks there’s a metaphor for life somewhere in there, you decide). In this case, the decision makers were able to reconfigure our cruise so that despite missing one port (Belfast) we gain a replacement port (Liverpool) and the other ones move around a bit. As soon as we got the official word, all departments sprang into action. We in the Guest Services department scrambled to set up a help desk with outside lines and internet access available for guests who had booked shore excursions with outside (non-Carnival) companies to try to change them. We emailed/faxed/called multiple countries in multiple languages for multiple hours. Damage control at it’s finest. Our cruise director and cruise staff immediately put together port presentations and discussions to inform the guests as soon as they got on board of exactly what was happening. Shore excursions put together new excursion booklets with tours for the new port and refunded the tours that had to be cancelled due to missing Belfast. By the time the dust settled, we still had some upset guests, but mostly we had ones that were impressed and grateful. We worked so hard that I barely had time to consider that we were about to go somewhere unexpected. LIVERPOOL!!!!! For me, super exciting…maybe not for everyone, but I was really excited to see another British port. At any rate, more thoughts on the upcoming deviation in the near future. I’m off to see what I can see outside, it’s time for an adventure!!