Alaska Trip: At Sea


Morning saw us up a bit later than usual, but still time to head up to the buffet galley for some good food for breakfast. The food has been wonderful and we have been very pleased after each meal.

We wandered around for a bit, and then headed to the Sky Lounge to see the sights. The ship was smoothly plowing ahead and we just relaxed for awhile. I entered an archery contest, and Robin Hood ain’t got nothing to worry about at all. We went back to our rooms after more plonking around and had a nap.

We toured more of the ship, and entered a trivia contest that was about movies. We won the competition and got as our prize two luggage tags. Then, we visited an art gallery auction, where we were promptly served champagne, and where I got promptly sleepy. Mr. Drinks, yup, that’s me. We left, and then entered another trivia contest, but didn’t win this one. Then we had dinner, with steelhead trout and saffron rice with fruits as the fare. It was very good. Annette and I have been trying very hard to eat more seafood, and we have been very successful during this trip.

We saw a feature about humpback whales, and what to expect when we see them live. Then, we puttered about some more, and then turned in for bed.

That’s what ya do on the ship, eat and sleep. Not bad at all.

Alaska Trip: Seattle


Annette and I arrived in Seattle around 7 pm. The airport was undergoing construction (as all seem to do, perpetually), and we made our way through the winding trail, aided by a blue stripe denoting that it was for Über. We got into an Accord and found our way, fifteen minutes later, in North Seattle, following the North Alaskan Way highway, to our destination, the Loews Hotel.

Loews Hotel was very nice. The room was decorated in a modern, minimalist fashion. Annette and I got a kick out of the glass partition separating the sleeping area and the bathroom. There was a spacious tub and a shower, and we set about trying to solve the mystery of where the faucet was for the tub. We looked all about trying to find it, until Annette pointed up at the ceiling, and sure enough, there it was.

For dinner, we ate at the hotel, at a place called, “All Waters Seafood and Oyster Bar”. Annette had the clam chowder and bursts cheese, and I had a grilled Alaskan salmon with some of the best and biggest French fries I’ve ever ate. Naturally, I avoided the spread of artichoke, ‘maters, and olives under the fish, preferring to allow them to marinate the underside of the meal. I had a Blue Moon for drink, and after I had finished my drink, the waiter came over, looked at me apologetically, and said, “We’ve poured another Blue Moon by mistake, would you mind having this one on the house?” Well, not wanting to disappoint her, I “reluctantly” accepted, heading thereafter to our room where I lay down on the pillow, and opened my eyes to morning.

A quick tour of Seattle for Annette to buy some knitting supplies, which resulted in a one-half mile trek uphill through the Market Square, to our destination.  A few minutes later, we made our way back to the hotel, where we stopped at the original Starbucks Pike Place Coffee Shop.

Seattle is a very nice place.  The temperature is very mild, and the weather is nice.  We were clearly in the Art District of the town as the Seattle Art Museum was next to the hotel, and art galleries, speakeasies, bars, and yes, coffee shops abounded.  The place, didn’t smell, a novelty for a port city.

After checking out of the hotel, we embarked to the shipyard, for check-in and boarding The Celebrity Solstice, our ship.  We arrived on-board at precisely 12:25 pm, and promptly went to the fourteenth deck for our first luncheon.  This is a big ship, with multiple decks, but no island.  The bridge is vast, and almost spans the width of the fore of the ship.  Not as big as an aircraft carrier, but pretty damned close.  Glass elevators inside, huge dining areas, and just about every eats, from several cultures, if that strikes your fancy.  Personally, I like the beef and potatoes stuff, and there ain’t no problem with that fare at all.

Our room is what you’d expect: a bit cramped, but homey, when one backs the trailer in the lot at Jellystone, or KOA campgrounds.  We are on the starboard side, aft.  We have a veranda, and minibar.  The bed is adequate, and firm enough.  The bathroom (head) is tiny, and if you’ve got to do business with anything but tinkling, well, you’d better plan ahead.  Naturally, I christened the joint as soon as we arrived, with Annette thouroughly disguted, but a captive spectator all the same.  I’ve done worse elsewhere that she has forgiven more than once.

Out at sea, we ate dinner.  Seared salmon, with crushed potatoes and assorted vegetables.  Then, we visited twelve of the fifteen decks as we walked around to get our bearings.  We found the track for walking, and an excellent panoramic view in the Sky Lounge.  The Solarium was nice, too.  Then, we were a couple of pooped puppies, so we went back to our room, and went to bed.

More to come…