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Grumpy1

Prinsendam 2005 World Tour... it has begun

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Slinkie & Grumpie,

I am enjoying your posts immensely. My parents will be joining your cruise in Honolulu. I am a bit disheartened to hear about the water problems on the Main Deck. Yes, that is of course the deck they will be on. I have opted NOT to tell them prior to their sail date. :| Maybe the problems will be resolved by then.

 

Nonetheless, I will keep abreast of how the cruise is going along by your posts as my parents aren't as technologically savvy as you two!

 

Thanks for taking the time to post.

Concerned Daughter in Denver

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Grumpy and Slinkie,

 

CHICKEN SOUP will cure you, especially if the waiter is about 70 years old and has his thumb in the bowl. Don't argue with him either.

 

Maybe you can send an e-mail to Katz' delicatessen here in New York and they can forward a jar to your next port. Howefver I suggest you ask the maire d' if there is an equivalent Filipino or Indonesian recipe.

 

Keep the postings comming; they help melt the snow.

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Hello Grumpy1

 

I note with interest your comment as follows:

 

"One interesting thing is that everytime the Prinsendam is in port, another unencrypted wireless network shows up. Called Tsunami, it's apparently used to link the laptops with the card readers at the top of the gangway with the mainframe in the purser's office. It's surprising that the hub and cards would not be encrypted."

 

This goes back to a thread where I commented on the security problems of unencrypted wireless communications. They can be intercepted by any device within the range of the transmitter, which you can think of as a sphere. It is a shame that a dedicated network is not encrypted as that technology is easily available.

 

I recognize that you are aware of the threat. So I hope that your cruisemates who are using their own laptops are also careful not to transmit their credit card and brokerage account numbers.

 

Thanks again for your very interesting comments as you go along on your world journey.

 

Ruffin

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Hello Grumpy1 again,

 

I also noted your comment regarding the elevators as follows:

 

"Earlier this afternoon, all elevators were out of service.There were quite a few people with a long walk up the stairs from deck 4, which is the tender deck."

 

Again, picking up on a message by another CC'er, I am curious if there are any handicapped people onboard. If so, have you noticed how they got about when all of the elevators where out of service? Did the crew help? People who use walkers and wheelchairs would be trapped under these circumstances without substantial assistance.

 

I know that those of us who enjoy mobility understand that those who are handicapped also want to enjoy some quality of life. While they may be limited in shore activities they still may be able to take tour bus rides. I realize that losing all of the elevators on a cruise ship is most unusual.

 

I am sure that your observations, if any, would be appreciated by readers who are handicapped, or who have loved ones with disabilities and would like to cruise.

 

Regards again, and keep your great reviews coming.

 

Ruffin

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Grumpy and Slinkie GET WELL FAST

 

Glad your cruise is going great Allways wanted to take a world cruise so I'm reading every word of yours.

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Grumpy and Slinkie,

 

Thanks for the info on the outlets and the wi-fi. Seems like they would be better at that. I've been on the Volendam and Noordam with my laptop and the system was working all the time except when the ship's connection to shore was down. Hope they get some parts and fix it in LA. Be seeing you soon.

 

Rod

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Hello Grumpy1 again,

 

I also noted your comment regarding the elevators as follows:

 

"Earlier this afternoon, all elevators were out of service.There were quite a few people with a long walk up the stairs from deck 4, which is the tender deck."

 

Again, picking up on a message by another CC'er, I am curious if there are any handicapped people onboard. If so, have you noticed how they got about when all of the elevators where out of service? Did the crew help? People who use walkers and wheelchairs would be trapped under these circumstances without substantial assistance.

Ruffin

 

(Hi Ruffin)

 

Wifely and I were discussing this earlier, as I am somewhat mobility challenged: and we surmised there are MANY service elevators to be brought into service when necessary. Does anybody know for sure?

 

Lane

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Hi Grumpy and Slinkie,

 

Hope you are both feeling better. We are cruise agents and have just received approval from HAL to tour the Prinsendam when she arrives in Los Angeles on Saturday the 29th. We are especially excited as we will be sailing on her August 23 and it will give us a chance to check things out.

 

We will board at 11:30 am, so if you are around we would love to say hi. We could meet at the Crow's Nest or wherever is convenient for the two of you. If you are going to be on an excursion then of course we understand.

 

Hope to see you soon!

 

Karen and Bob

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Prinsendam 2005, January 25

 

Hello again to our faithful readers. We're glad to report that Slinkie and Grumpy are feeling much better... Thanks to everyone for your good wishes.. Still a little cough, but nothing that's slowing them down... Lipopop, there is usually chicken soup in some form or another available, but the curative powers may not be the same as that prepared by a loving New York Jewish mama...

 

Heather, I'm with you... good Scotch is to be consumed, not gargled... there's a couple of mini bottles of Johnny Walker Red in the fridge, maybe Grumpy will try that if the chicken soup and rum treatments are insufficient... He can report with a pretty good degree of certainty that the farmacias in mexico do not carry Nyquil... and that's been his old standby treatment for years. Might pick some up in LA or Hawaii... then it certainly wouldn't be needed again.

 

Ruffin The elevator problem was apparently corrected pretty quickly... There are quite a few mobility challenged pax on board...Grumpy included after too many of those rum and cokes... We see several pax that use scooters, wheelchairs, walkers and canes. I don't recall seeing any of the wheelchair or scooter pax on shore, but there are quite a few that have some difficulity with the steps on the gangway. The Prinsendam has 2 elevators forward and two aft, and the wait is normally pretty short. There are service elevators midship and I'm sure that they get used in an emergency to help avoid a crisis. Today, all elevators and both of the problem doors seem to be behaving... I keep recalling that "Shame on HAL" thread from a few weeks ago where the OP insisted that everything would have been perfect for her Holiday cruise if they had put this old tub in drydock before her cruise instead of after... and berated Grumpy for stating that there would likely still would have been problems... I think Ol' Grumpy was right on that one...

 

This morning we docked in Manzanillo. It's a huge commercial shipping port and there are huge stacks of freight containers and lots of cranes there. We docked on one side of an L-shaped pier and shortly after, the Carnival Spirit docked on the other leg of the pier. We had a good view of her from the verandah. The Mercury was at another pier about a half mile away. There was a free shuttle bus from the pier to the center of town, and most of the shopping is close to that point. The shops didn't seem as nice as the ones in some of the other towns and there didn't seem to be much in the way of quality jewelry. It's really more of a shipping town instead of a tourist town. Slinkie found a few things for souvenirs... Grumpy's wallet didn't get hit too hard at all.

 

Grumpy glanced at the Daily Program and realized that they hadn't been to afternoon tea yet. Off to the Crow's Nest they went. After selecting a tea from the many choices and being served with a teapot of hot water, it was time for the "light refresments". First was a tray of cookies... same ones that are served daily at the Lido ice cream bar...OK, is that all there is? Not on your life! Next came the tray with the Chocolate covered strawberries and various little desserts... followed by another tray with shrimp on crackers and other appetizers... could have made a meal right there... and all to the music provided by Rosario Strings (piano, violin and string bass) Grumpy made a note to try to get to one of the high teas, or Tea Dansant as it is called. Along toward sunset they set sail up the cost toward Puerto Vallarta.

 

Well, Grumpy, the great detective, finally got some good solid information about cabins 196 and 197. At dinner tonight, Grumpy had a chance to talk to the tablemate that was missing for the first 4 days... he mentioned being on Deck 8 and it clicked in grumpy's brain that there are only 10 cabins on 8... all of them aft. Grumpy asked "is that one of one ninty series cabins?" Evan said "yes, it's the corner cabin at the end of the hallway on the casino side." Voila! that's 196! So Grumpy explained that there have been questions about the configuration of that cabin and wanted to know about the rear curved wall. It is floor to ceiling glass, it has a sheer curtain that can be pulled across as well as a full drapery. The aft deck stays lit, so the one way treatment on the windows is pretty effective even after dark, if they drapes haven't been drawn. Grumpy has been invited to stop by and take some pictures... He 's still working on an invite to the Neptune, though...

 

 

 

Prinsendam 2005, January 26

 

Slinkie and Grumpy were awake before sunrise this morning, just as the Prinsendam was sliding into her berth in Puerto Vallarta. Their starboard side cabin was facing west, looking out of the port toward the ocean. There was a nice view of the yacht harbor to the north and the mountain range beyond was catching the first light of dawn. Heading on up to the Lido for breakfast, it seemed that the best plan was to watch the sun come up over the mountains to the east from the port side. And what a glorious sight... the sun peeking through the clouds above the mountain tops... illuminating the splendor and beauty of...Walmart and Sam's Club... across the way from the ship... that's progress for you...

 

Looking out across the harbor, they watched as the Carnival Pride turned around and backed into a berth that formed an L with our berth. Dayum, that is a BIG boat! No sooner was the Pride in the harbor but another ship came in. With no more berths available she anchored out. Grumpy could see it was HAL, but could't read the name until he grabbed his field glasses. It was the Oosterdam.

 

Slinkie must be fully recovered as she was in high gear shopping mode. She drug poor Grumpy off the ship and over to the shops along the pier before they were even open! That was probably part of her plan because by the time the stores opened she knew right where the good stuff was hiding... she's sporting a new Tanzanite ring, earrings, pendant and bracelet, now, after some haggling over the prices... also found a nice 2ct fire Opal ring... beautiful shades of red green and blue, that was pretty reasonable... Got to keep the economy going, you know...and keep our Slinkie Girl happy....

 

After lunch, the non stop shopping duo set off to explore the underbelly of society... yep, they went to Sam's club and Walmart... found a couple of bottles of Chilean Merlot... Concha y Toro reservado, 2004... Slinkie proclaims it to be good... Grumpy's staying with his Bacardi and Coke. They are inspecting bags, but not very carefully, when returning to the ship. They spot the bottles in the Xray scanner, peek in and ask if it's wine, but don't dig deep. There were some bottles of liquer being held for final debarkation, but probably some getting through.

 

Sailaway was interesting. It seemed to take a long time to manuver away from the dock, get clear of the Pride and head out to sea past the anchored Oosterdam. Slinkie and Grumpy headed up to Deck 12 forward where they had a good view in all directions. They suddenly realized that the ship was turning hard to port just after passing the Oosterdam on the port side. Captain Gundersen was at the controls on the port wing of the bridge and proceeded to run a full circle around the Oosterdam, just a hundred yards or so away. As Prinsendam crossed the O's bow, we could see the officers on their bridge looking across at us. Then began the "dueling foghorns". Three long blasts form P answered by 3 from O.. a long and short blast, answered the same, a couple of other exchanges and we continued on out. Maybe the captain was telling them that we will not only circle the globe, but we can run circles around them, too. Grumpy didn't have his camera with him so missed an opportunity to get some fantastic pictures of the O.

 

We have been informed that Homeland security is requiring ALL passengers to disembark for passport inspection at the Long Beach terminal. No one will be allowed to reboard until the clearance procedures have been completed. Also the majority of the Indonesian crew members will have to meet with Homeland Security as part of the entry/exit regulation system, which may slow down the cleaning of the cabins. Priority will be given to cleaning the cabins needed for the new arriving passengers, then the rest of us will get cabins cleaned. It will be interesting to see if we sail ontime Saturday.

 

Txcomo, I don't think you parents will have anything to worry about on main deck. The hot water problems were solved by the end of the third day and the airconditioning has been fine from all reports that I've heard.

 

Elevators and Lido doors continue working fine today.

 

WCB, CruisinTexans, Alsas and PaDutchman... we're on our way up the coast. See you in a few days.

 

Slinkie and Grumpy

 

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AtSeaDaze, I'm not sure you will be able to board that early with the Homeland Security stuff that we were just informed about. I'll have my cell phone on. I'll pass on the number later.

Grumpy

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Dear Grumpy and Slinkie: I have been following your cruise and want to thank you SO much for your daily posts. DH has been hearing about your trip for days now; the other night he said "hmm, maybe when we retire we could do something like that"...

 

Thank you again for sharing your trip with those of us who are currently NOT on a ship. I look forward to each and everyone of your posts.

 

Lin

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Slinkie and Grumpy,

 

I look forward each day to reading your daily summary on board the Prinsendam. I feel as though I am on board with you and of course I can imagine exactly where you are describing. Captain Gundersen did a similar thing with the Prinsendam when we were in Santorini last year. The horns of both ships were blowing and it was quite fun.

 

Please make sure that Slinkie leaves some room for the wonderful Opals that you can buy in Sydney. Especially the Black and the lovely Boulder Opals. Also our beautiful pink Argyl diamonds.

 

Jennie

Jennie

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DW & I will be occupying #196 for 2 weeks on our June 16 sailing from Rome to Amsterdam and judging from the huge verandah and extra bathroom space shown on the brochure, no wonder your dining guests can hide-out there for so long. Glad to hear you both are back in shape. But for pre-caution, we find the "Airbourne" do work well on us. (Louis)

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Thank you on behalf of all your readers for allowing your journey to be shared. Sandra and I are also thankful that you allowed to start our journey early.We would love to meet you in the crows nest to buy you both drinks. (WE know you have spent way to much already.) How about after life boat drill or if you have time you could change the time via e mail when.I feel very brave that I am even attempting to scribe any words.Your skills are fantastic.We look forward to meeting you.Allan......Alsas Happy Sailing

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Grumpy/Slinkie

 

Thank you for answering about the dining rooms. We're following along, enjoying every moment.

 

Friends who have been in both say their preference was for the smaller, as long as you were not too close to the staircase up to the Explorers Lounge.

 

I'd just love to be on board.

 

 

Looking forward to all your future posts. :)

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Glumpy1-

Thank you for your absolutely fantabulous sleuthing Grumpy1!!:D Does your dinner mate in Rm. 196, appear to enjoy the extra space or are their down sides? Thank you for an explanation, it makes sense now! Any pictures would be above and beyond the call of duty! Have fun port-side in the San Pedro area. All of the coast really doesn't look like that:eek:

Glad to hear you 2 are feeling better, now you can relax and feel better as you settle in to the rhythm of the "at sea" days in the Pacific!

Safe seas and blue skies. :cool:

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AtSeaDaze, I'm not sure you will be able to board that early with the Homeland Security stuff that we were just informed about. I'll have my cell phone on. I'll pass on the number later.

Grumpy

 

Hi Grumpy,

 

If you do not want to post your cell phone on Cruise Critic, please send it to me at karenjburnham@hotmail.com Hope to see you Saturday. Oh, by the way, with all of those new gorgeous jewels Slinkie has, in case you want to share, Bob said to tell you I am up for adoption....Slinkie, wear everything in the very best of health. If you are gong to Mazatlan, have lunch at the Shrimp Factory. Order #1 and it will be enough for the two of you. Six different type of shrimp and all delicious.

 

Thanks!

 

Karen

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Glad to hear you all are feeling better. I shipped a whole box of over-the-counter medicines to the ship, just in case. As a matter of fact, I shipped so much stuff (10 boxes), Handler is worried there won't be enough room in the cabin for all the "stuff" and us too. We did the transatlantic in November to check to ship out and it looked like there was quite a bit of storage. We were in a regular cabin though and only looked at the SS cabin of a couple we met at the bar. It looked so good we upgraded. We may be storing stuff on the balcony.

 

Our flight gets to LA at 8:00 something in the morning Saturday, so it sounds like we will have a long wait before boarding.

 

Looking forward to joining you.

 

Leslie & Handler

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On a side note ... I find it quite amazing that they inspect for bottles of liquor on re-boarding. After paying tens of thousands of dollars for such a wonderful cruise, I expetcted HAL to be more lenient. :cool:

 

Thanks Grumpy and Slinkie for your posts! :)

 

AC

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Grumpy, there shouldn't be a problem to have a look at the Neptune's Lounge. They ususally don't mind non-suite guest for a quick look-around...

 

In case Rich is the concierge, say Hi from Marc and Walter from Switzerland.

 

Marc

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Hi Grumpy and Slinkie,

 

What a fantastic account of your trip so far. I was with you all the way up the west coast. Knew where you docked or anchored etc. Brought back lots of memories from several cruises going that way. In the Fall we were docked in Puerto Vallarta with the Diamond Princess beside us and we (the Statendam) looked like a toy ship.

 

 

Sounds like there will be some delays in LA., but maybe things will go smoothly.

I eagerly await your posts as you make everyone feel they are on board with you. Don't I wish! Take care.

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Great review, Grumpy and Slinkie - it's seems like we are all there sailing with you.

 

"As Prinsendam crossed the O's bow, we could see the officers on their bridge looking across at us. Then began the "dueling foghorns". Three long blasts form P answered by 3 from O.. a long and short blast, answered the same, a couple of other exchanges"

 

They do have their fun don't they. This happened when we were leaving Nassau with one of the Disney ships. Their "song" is "When you Wish upon a Star" and the Officers on their Bridge would play their tune, then we would come back with a couple of blasts, and on it went. It was a lot of fun. :D

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"Sailaway was interesting. It seemed to take a long time to manuver away from the dock, get clear of the Pride and head out to sea past the anchored Oosterdam. Slinkie and Grumpy headed up to Deck 12 forward where they had a good view in all directions. They suddenly realized that the ship was turning hard to port just after passing the Oosterdam on the port side. Captain Gundersen was at the controls on the port wing of the bridge and proceeded to run a full circle around the Oosterdam, just a hundred yards or so away. As Prinsendam crossed the O's bow, we could see the officers on their bridge looking across at us. Then began the "dueling foghorns". Three long blasts form P answered by 3 from O.. a long and short blast, answered the same, a couple of other exchanges and we continued on out. Maybe the captain was telling them that we will not only circle the globe, but we can run circles around them, too. Grumpy didn't have his camera with him so missed an opportunity to get some fantastic pictures of the O."

This sounds like so much fun. We live near the water and we like to cruise beside the big freighters in smaller boats. Sometimes they wave at us, but I have never heard them blow their horn.

Thank you again for sharing your journey with us.

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