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Jan & Julie’s Cruise Diary: Not Missing Seattle’s Snow

On the verandah, warm weather, cool drink.

Seven days on a Holland America Line ship is never enough, so when my daughter and I decided we wanted to cruise the Caribbean we looked for a cruise of at least 10 days, preferably 14. What we decided on was a Collector’s Voyage out of Tampa. It’s back-to-back seven-day cruises on ms Ryndam with different itineraries.

It’s a great idea, but I must admit I’m feeling a little twinge of guilt. We left Seattle on a Saturday and a couple of days later we were sitting on our verandah in 81-degree weather with a cool drink in hand, when we found out the folks back home were suffering through a blizzard! A blizzard — in Seattle? Before Thanksgiving? But then the guilt passed and I’m doubly glad we booked the two weeks on the ship. The snow should be gone by the time we go home.

And in the interim, we’re going to enjoy sunshine and warm weather this week in Key West, Belize, Honduras and Casa Maya, and next week in more enjoyable ports. I’ll look them up when I have time, but right now I have to get ready for dinner and maybe a show. We’ll drink a toast to all in Seattle who are stuck in the snow.


Mix is a popular and lively new spot on ms Ryndam.

My mother and I are now three days into our two-week cruise to the Western Caribbean on the ms Ryndam. This ship is the sister ship to the ms Statendam, so I thought that I knew the layout, as I have been on that ship several times. I was in for a pleasant surprise when I found that the Ryndam has had some nice upgrades. The most prominent to me is a reconfigured area for the bars and casino called the Mix. It is an area with the piano bar, the sports bar, a martini bar all next to each other with no walls in between. In the sports bar area, there are these tables with Microsoft Surface installed. As your basic geek, I was anxious to get a look at these toys, but had to wait until the second day to do so because they were so popular! They have several games installed on them and a great way to spend some time and make new friends. Easy to use, no instructions were needed to get going.

So far, the highlights include a great day in Key West learning about Jimmy Buffet from a local, had dinner at a BBQ on deck and spent a little time in the casino and the Crow’s Nest. We keep missing things that look like fun in the program, because we are doing so many other things. I think we just need more sea days!

Tonight is formal night, I love the excuse to dress up and go out for the night, so I am looking forward to that.

I am not missing the snow in Seattle while on this trip!


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