Posted April 23rd, 2017, 01:13 AM
Last edited by MarkBearSF; April 23rd, 2017 at 01:36 AM
1) Taking the QE2 to Hawaii as she was deadheading to spend 6 months in Japan as a floating hotel offshore of Tokyo and Osaka(?) in 1989. She still had the 70s remodeled mod decor including the eye-popping midships lounge with go-go colors and white baby grand piano. Crew only sailed from Honolulu to Tokyo. Because they crossed the international dateline they missed Christmas, but because they were Brits, they celebrated Boxing Day.
2) Taking the QE2 through the Panama Canal on another holiday in 1997. Our first at sea day was Thanksgiving. What was cute was the decorations were done up by the British staff to celebrate the American holiday. What they came up with was red white and blue bunting and what looked like a 4th of July celebration (admittedly not a big UK holiday either). The turkey dinner was wonderful.
Also, on that trip, we scraped bottom while transiting the Gaillard Cut. We had been hanging with a group which included the boyfriend of the Mauritania Restaurant's Maitre d' - who had crossed from England to NY, done a canal transit to CA and was heading back. So, we were tied-into the gossip mill. Once we completed the transit, we anchored offshore and they shifted ballast to tilt the ship to make it easier for scuba divers to examine the damage - and certify things for the insurance companies. (...and BOY were the rumors flying in the hours we were anchored listing like they were serving Columbian coffee on the starboard side.) Ultimately, the damage was determined to be cosmetic and we were cleared to sail.
We also received an upgrade to Queen's Grill from Caronia. It was an all-time great cruise.
3) We joined the QE2 on a W. Med cruise in Rome/Civitavecchia to Southampton to say farewell to her in 2008 and transferred to the QM2 for a crossing home. This was also the occasion for the Queen to say farewell to the ship she had christened many years prior at a special luncheon aboard after our arrival at Southampton. The crew was all flustered and atwitter in the days preceding the luncheon to make sure everything was just perfect.
It was especially interesting watching in front of the terminal as we waited for our complimentary taxis to take us to the QM2 as there was a steady parade of black cars with all the swells arriving for lunch with the Queen (and the ladies' hats!)
4) Seeing the QM2 for the first time. She arrived in SF with great celebration in February 2007 as part of her world cruise. We traveled to the Wharf to see her and she was breathtaking, No one in town could talk of anything else that day. This was in spite of another fairly large event happening that day elsewhere, the Super Bowl. At the time, I turned to my husband and told him that we'd be on her next year.
And we were. And in a few weeks we'll be back on her for our fourth voyage.
Upcoming Queen Mary 2 - RT N Atlantic crossing - 2018, Queen Mary 2 - NY, Halifax, Boston - 2019,
Eurodam - Pacific repo - 2018, Queen Mary 2 - RT crossing + Bruges - 2017, Queen Mary 2 - N Atlantic crossing - 2016,
Celebrity Infinity - S. America - 2015, Star Princess - Pacific repo - 2015, AMACello - Rhine - 2013,
Norwegian Spirit - W Caribbean - 2011, Crystal Serenity - E Med - 2010, Queen Mary 2 - Canada - 2009,
Eurodam - Baltics - 2009, Queen Mary 2 - N Atlantic crossing - 2008, Queen Elizabeth 2 - W Med - 2008,
Amsterdam - Alaska - 2007, Norwegian Sun - W Caribbean - 2007, Voyager of the Seas - Bermuda - 2005,
Star Princess - Mexico - 2002, Carnival Spirit - Pacific repo - 2001, Norwegian Majesty - S Caribbean - 2001,
Rembrandt - Canada - 2000, Seabourn Sun - SF cruise to nowhere - 2000, Queen Elizabeth 2 - N Atlantic crossing - 1999,
Zenith - Bermuda - 1998, Queen Elizabeth 2 - Panama Canal - 1997, Celebrity Century - W Caribbean - 1996,
Nieuw Amsterdam - Alaska - 1993, Nieuw Amsterdam - Pacific repo - 1993, Crown Princess - E Caribbean - 1991,
Westerdam - Mexico repo - 1990, Queen Elizabeth 2 - Hawaii - 1989, Cunard Princess - Pacific repo - 1987