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Randy in Arlington
May 29th, 2004, 09:06 AM
Hey, have any of you read the thread on the Celebrity Message Board on what "Friends of Dorothy" means?! Some interesting posts. Maybe we should change "Dorothy" to "West Texas Girls" after President Bush introduced Sen. Frist's wife this week, saying, "She's a west Texas girl, just like me!"
--Randy

pennstatefan
June 10th, 2004, 01:22 AM
Hey Randy,

Just wondering. My partner Stan's from Arlington, VA and I'm from PA. Where do you live?

We're headed to the Paul Gaugin June 26 in Tahiti..can't wait!

What's your next cruise?

Randy in Arlington
June 10th, 2004, 08:31 AM
Hey, Penn State Fan,

Small world! My partner and I live in the Rosslyn area of Arlington, VA: a couple of blocks from the Potomac River, just across from Georgetown University.

We've cruised sporadically over the years, but took a 10-day Caribbean cruise this past February on Celebrity's "Summit". (Had a very nice time too.) This September we're going again, this time on "Galaxy", transatlantic Rome to Baltimore. We're taking a couple of close friends who live in Falls Church, Va, who usually go with us to France in the summer and for whom this will be their first cruise.

I understand "Paul Gaugin" is very top-drawer and posh . . . and French Polynesia sounds wonderful too! Be sure, among other things, to bring home some Tahitian vanilla. (Come along on the Rome/Baltimore cruise too, if you can spare the time! Nothing like a westbound crossing: all those sea days, and most of them 25-hour days.)

--Randy

garykool81
June 10th, 2004, 09:34 AM
Had to tune in to this one --

My partner and I are just north of you folks in Rockville, MD!

We're right off exit 8 on I-270.

Gary Kulash
www.badelephant.com (http://www.badelephant.com)

Carnival Holiday 8/02
NCL Majesty 1/03
NCL Norway 5/25/03
NCL Sea 7/03
Celebrity Galaxy 3/04
Celebrity Mercury 10/04
HAL Zuiderdam 12/04

gaupin
June 10th, 2004, 11:48 AM
randy in arlington...can't find fod thread on celebrity board...can you help with date of post? also, i lived at 1310 n. meade street, just across street from iwo jima monument and below prospect house for 8 years. jeez, what a perfect location that was, with lincoln, washington mon. and capitol as a perfect view from picture window~!! now in florida, so give a shout (email on my profile) if coming to fll for a cruise...be interested to "ponder" over old neighborhood! mike

Randy in Arlington
June 10th, 2004, 12:31 PM
Sorry that I'm not technically savvy enough to put a link here, but the FOD thread is on the Celebrity board; and currently lists on page 5; original poster, I believe was cruiseorbust; and the title of the thread is "friends of Dorothy? Friends of Bill W."

Actually, the overall thread is informative and positive, it seems to me, which says good things about most cruises--whether gay or straight.

Thanks for the FLL offer too!

--Randy

P.S. Hello to Gary in Rockville, MD, too! Before moving to Rosslyn back in 1991, we lived in Gaithersburg. Always claimed it was "Thersburg" until I moved there!

CelebrityMan
June 10th, 2004, 07:08 PM
Yes, I agree the Celebrity thread is overall positive.

As loyal fans of Celebrity Cruise Lines (upcoming Canal cruise in 2005 on the Infinity) we've always found the ships of the line to be comfortable, enjoyable and fellow passengers to be sophisticated enough to be quite accepting of gay travelers.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say most folks have been sophisticated enough that a gay-straight mix was a non-issue.

BEAV
June 10th, 2004, 09:29 PM
Here's a link...

Friends of Dorothy (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=147097554&m=524101812)

Randy in Arlington
June 13th, 2004, 09:59 AM
Hey Gary, if you check in this thread, I have a Galaxy question for you. My parter and I are one the Sept. 3 transatlantic Rome-Baltimore cruise, and I read on the EB transatlantic thread (Baltimore-Rome, May 5-17) that one passenger were pretty critical of the ship's fabric and the food. ("The executive chef is English and all the beef is overcooked and the salads are bad.") Knowing that taste is highly subjective, and since you're family and live in DC, I figured your take on the Galaxy would be more aligned with ours.

Anyway, any comments? advice? Thanks!

--Randy

garykool81
June 13th, 2004, 10:53 AM
Randy,

I consider myself to have high food standards and a good thermometer for what is poor, average, good and excellent. I will post here a section of the lengthy Galaxy review I posted on the Celebrity boards several months back:

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> DINING EXPERIENCE

Advertised by both Celebrity Cruise Lines and critics alike as having some of the finest food available for the premium cruise market (note: premium is not luxury. That is another step up.), one cannot help but go onboard any of their fleet members with high expectations. Master Chef Michel Roux was contracted out for a fee as a culinary consultant in helping Celebrity to set its original food standards and overall menu design. And, Celebrity has put that money to good use, touting it several times throughout their website and inside marketing material.

Dining in the Orion Restaurant both met, and in some important cases did not meet, our expectations. Overall food quality aboard the line when judged on the basis of fruits, vegetables and deserts is superb. When it comes to vegetables in particular, we were quite impressed. Always fresh, crisp and wonderfully seasoned, the vegetables onboard Galaxy were phenomenal and a welcome addition to any entrée we were presented. Likewise, fruits were fresh consistently and made for an excellent ingredient for chilled soups and desserts.

Those who have read into the experience and philosophy of master chef Michel Roux do not, however, enter the vessel on a Celebrity cruise expecting awe-inspiring food presentation with cute decorative touches. He is a fan of simple, thoughtful and traditional layout. This was the case onboard Galaxy, with food being presented in normal restaurant manner, without the cute sauce swirls or greenery sticking from the potatoes or entrée.

Appetizers, soups, salads and desserts were all standard size that customers have come to expect from the industry. Small, yet tasteful portions allow guests the possibility of enjoying a true five-course meal with dessert minus the buttons bursting off shirts.

The entrées, on the other hand, were quite large. While opinions about entrée size vary greatly, we found portions to be oversized to the extent that food was left on the plate nearly every evening in order that one might enjoy a dessert with coffee following the main course.

Though this topic in particular can inspire some heated disagreement with many onboard, we find that meals trading quantity for quality generally prevail in the end of the evening.

Perhaps the most disappointing aspect of dining aboard the Galaxy was the meat selections offered to guests. On almost every basis, we found meats to be dry, tough and in many cases under seasoned. This was frequently the case with beef products, and although chicken portions were often cooked properly, they lacked flavoring from either a quality sauce or other spices.

Dining room service aboard the Galaxy was acceptable, with wait staff offering in most cases prompt and professional assistance, though, this service was occasionally impersonal. As is the case with many ships, service standards unfortunately varied from night to night. Many evenings included a chair pulled out for the guest followed by assistance in placing a napkin on their lap. This was a courtesy extended only fifty percent of the time.

On this particular sailing, special homage should be paid to the Assistant Maitre D’ who on almost a nightly basis could be seen visiting numerous tables and engaging guests in conversation as he glowed with joy. The bar staff in Galaxy’s main dining room was also exceptionally friendly, talkative and pleasant to see every evening.

While most passengers choose to conform to the ship’s nightly dress code, there are always several who do not. While Celebrity for the most part was excellent in enforcing this policy, the first night included appearances by guests wearing NASCAR t-shirts and hats, jeans and shorts. On a formal evening, several guests wearing nothing more than a dark shirt and jacket minus the tie or tuxedo were admitted into the dining room.

Again, while some passengers may not exude audible disagreement with those not abiding by the ship dress code, many are offended at the sight of other passengers strolling through in casual outfits on a formal evening after they personally have spent more than an hour preparing for the dining experience.

Overall, Celebrity’s Galaxy ranks just a hair above average in the GOOD category. While service and many foods were excellent, the overall quality was brought done by bland entrées and meat selections. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

If you would like to read the entire review, which is quite lengthy and detailed (and unlike many reviewer's "mistakes," focuses ONLY on the ship rather than embarkation and ports of call, please visit:

http://www.epinions.com/content_135288032900

Gary Kulash
www.badelephant.com (http://www.badelephant.com)

Carnival Holiday 8/02
NCL Majesty 1/03
NCL Norway 5/25/03
NCL Sea 7/03
Celebrity Galaxy 3/04
Celebrity Mercury 10/04
HAL Zuiderdam 12/04

Randy in Arlington
June 14th, 2004, 07:24 AM
Thanks, Gary! Very helpful and, indeed, well thought out and reasoned.

--Randy

JeffCoud
July 6th, 2004, 06:05 PM
Hey, another DC cruiser here! Just wanted to say hey. The Galaxy is still my favorite ship, have sailed her twice, but not since Alaska in 2000 or so.

Jeff
http://mysite.verizon.net/vze8gsqo/jeffcoud/

JoeAndMichael
September 11th, 2004, 05:13 AM
:mad: Here's a link...

Friends of Dorothy (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=147097554&m=524101812)