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Cruise Diary: Southward Bound for Half Moon Cay

Cornelis “Cees” Kloppenburg and his wife Yvon are reprising their role as cruise diarists, this time on board Maasdam. They will be sending in cruise diaries throughout the duration of their time on board. Were glad to have them back!

Hallo again,

We are on ms Maasdam and will try to send in pictures of our experiences on a daily basis. We are at sea now and writing this email, bound for Half Moon Cay. How great it is after having miserable weather in Holland for months now to sail with Holland America Line to sunny places. I try to put some humor in the blogs, the handshaking with the elbow has of course a very important reason these days as all cruise guests know.

After a long flight from Europe and a short night's sleep in the hotel, it was great to receive a warm welcome from the Holland America Line employees in the hotel lobby. Pat Holdstein and her colleagues are there to take good care of the guests and get them on the coach bus to one of the two HAL ships in port at that time.

Check-in was very fast. It took us only 15 minutes from leaving the coach to our state room on board Maasdam. While waiting for the arrival of our suitcases we went to the Lido deck where we had our first bite. How fantastic it is coming from a cold and wet The Netherlands with grey skies to the sundeck of Maasdam.

The good old escalators still to be found on Maasdam.

We Dutch love a good cup of coffee and the Explorer's Lounge is the place to be for us. We had the espresso and I'm sure we will come back for more during our cruise.

Also at port was the Zuiderdam. We sailed on that vessel two years ago and it is good to see her back again.

A very serious business is the boat drill at the beginning of every cruise. The crew member in this picture is normally working in the Lido but look at his face; well trained to give us a comfortable feeling.

Everyone is listening to Captain James Russell-Dunford at the boat drill (yes he was our captain on the honeymoon cruise aboard Veendam to Alaska we took back in September 2008). We are pleased to be back on board with him again. He taught us (for the fist time in our lives) to shake hands with the elbow.

Sail-away from Fort Lauderdale.

1 Comment
  • Eric Wood

    Glad to read another blog of your many trips. I, too, remember on our 25th Anniversary cruise to Alaska in 2006 of Captain James Russell-Dunford and the elbow shake. Thanks for the memories.
    Have a wonderful time!
    Eric Wood

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