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A High Seas Encounter Blossoms into Romance

Thanks to Susan Argento for this romantic post!

Keeping with an annual tradition of cruising, in 1994 a large group of us booked an inaugural cruise on the Ryndam. We loved it so much we booked 6 large suites for a 10 day cruise the later part of 1995, also on the Ryndam. We had a blast; service was excellent, food outstanding and staff could not have been more cordial or customer service oriented. Due in part because we were a younger group than perhaps the average age for HAL, the staff in the Crow’s Nest and casino gravitated towards us and helped us to enjoy our time on board even more. At the end of the cruise several took our email addresses and vowed to stay in touch; particularly because they knew we would again be booking a cruise for 1996.

On Valentine’s Day (of all days, lol), 1996, I received an email from the Casino Manager inquiring how we were all doing and to inform us that 1.) he would be on holiday and planned to be in the Washington, DC, that summer (all of us were from the metro DC area), and 2.) that he was no longer on the Ryndam but had transferred to the Nieuw Amsterdam. He also inquired if we had booked our ’97 cruise.

We responded that we’d love to see him during the summer and no, we hadn’t yet decided on a cruise. We did, however, know we would not be cruising on the Nieuw Amsterdam because the ship did not have the size suites/balconies we desired. I thought his email thoughtful, but honestly didn’t think we’d hear from him again.

Imagine my surprise when the first week of August he called to say he was in town. Not only did we get together, but I went on to the Carolina’s with him to play in a golf tournament. Over the next 6 weeks (he was due back on the ship October 1) our relationship blossomed, so much so, that he decided not to return to the seas and give our young-love a chance.

I am very happy to report that we were married in the Spring of 1997 and will be celebrating our 15th Anniversary this April! Thank you Holland America for giving me the husband of my dreams (and I’m very sorry you lost a Casino Manager — well, not that sorry). 😉

We keep promising ourselves a cruise on the “Ryndam”, but have not yet had the opportunity.

Sincerely,

Susan Argento
(wife of Paul Argento)

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