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zactak

The Twists and Turns of my Solo Experience on the Norwegian EPIC (Mar 2-9, 2013)

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I didn't go there. What is it? Worth me getting off the ship for? :)

 

Oh Andro's is a typical hole in the wall place that serves a lot of conch and other seafood. It was really good to me. If you like conch, you'd probably enjoy it. But if you've "been there, done that," then you might prefer to stay on the ship. There might be better places along that area, but it was good enough for me and the service was great.

 

Zac, thank you so much for posting your great review and pictures.

 

When I was in Nassau on another ship, I was not impressed. If I go back, maybe I'll look for the places you visited.

 

It seems difficult to avoid Nassau on a lot of caribbean cruises. The beach I went to was something bay.

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Thanks Zach for a great review! It seems to me that the Epic is the ship to cruise on if you are solo. Sounds like you had a great time (other than the 2 incidents..but you handled them well).

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Thanks so much for the candid review & great pictures! I look forward to reading your travel blog and learning about your other adventures.

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Nice review. Always great to see familiar places and live the dream again :)

Sorry you had some freaks to deal with. I have to disagree with the rationalization (that many posted here i.e. dementia, loneliness, etc) of the pervert. Maybe because of my police background but I dont believe the story of his wife in a nursing home or kids sending him off on a cruise. Perverts try and weaken their victims with false stories like that. Dont believe any of it. Old man pervert, plain and simple!

 

Although, there is nothing that NCL or any cruise ship could do about it. Just imagine what is said to women in the night club after the drunks drink too much. Unless there is inappropriate contact, you just tell them to drop dead and stay away.

 

There have been numerous reviews of single cruisers on Epic. And many times there are mini romances or party friends that do flock together. Many single cruises have hooked up in the single area on Epic. But that does not excuse the perverted old guy.

 

Nice review and hopfully you have not spooked anyone from the single cruiser area. But dont be bullied by perverts. Sometimes they still get their jollies knowing they upset you. Stand up for yourself and dont tolerate it.

 

Believe it or not but many people take cruises to hook up. My last Epic cruise had a singles group that sailed together for Valentines Day. Many single sites tell people to take cruises to meet people.

Edited by david_sobe

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Well, I finished the things around the house I wanted to and I need to try to stay awake for a few more hours, so I have decided to grace you all with yet another part of my review.

 

I actually forgot to mention that when I got into my room the first night, I had a really hard time breathing. At first I thought it was a panic attack, but I realized I was having an allergic reaction to something. My nose was stuffy, I was sneezing and my nose was running. I'm not sure what caused the reaction, but I took some Benadryl and went to sleep. Luckily I brought some with me! It didn't happen again the rest of the week.

 

On Sunday, day 2, I wasn't feeling too hot. I woke up around 8 in the morning and threw up. I thought it was seasickness, but I don't get seasick. Now that I look back I think it was probably a bit of a hangover. I set my alarm for about 10:30 so I could go to the Cruise Critic Meet and Greet, but I just wasn't feeling up to it... so if any of those people that were hoping to meet me on the cruise, that's why I wasn't there. I went back to sleep and ended up sleeping most of the day. I was just not feeling well at all. It was beyond just being hung over. I woke up around 5PM and ate dinner at the Garden Cafe by myself. I ran into a group of solos in the Lounge getting ready to head to dinner. I stayed and chatted for a few minutes before going back up to my cabin. They invited me to dinner, but I declined. I had Blue Man Group scheduled for tonight, but I ended up going back to sleep around 7 and slept through the night.

 

On Monday, I was feeling a lot better. It was another sea day. I got up and had a light breakfast at the Garden Cafe. I grabbed my iPad and found a lounger to sit back and read on. It was another windy day and kind of chilly... the weather was still nicer than what I would have been experiencing at home. I actually used my towel to cover up my legs. I spent a few hours finishing a book I had started a few weeks before. After I finished my book, I went and got the drink of the day... a pina colada. I love pina coladas.

 

Vacation2013064.jpg

 

While I was drinking my pina colada at the bar in Spice H2O, I ran into Ed from the other night. He and I talked for a little bit and once I finished my drink, I left Ed behind in search of some lunch at the Garden Cafe.

 

Vacation2013065.jpg

 

This is where I have the first twist in my week on the EPIC. I wanted to make sure that since my vacation was so long that I documented what I did and any thoughts I may have had. I was using this vacation not just as a time to relax, but as a time to grow as a person and to challenge myself. My goal was to write in the journal everyday, but that didn't happen. I did review each day, but sometimes a few days would pass before I had time to write. I hadn't written at all since being on the cruise, so I decided to take some time out in the Studio Lounge to write. When I came in, I was the only person in the Lounge. I found a seat, sat down and started writing. A solo traveler I had met on the first night came in, sat next to me and we talked for a little bit. He departed after a little bit in search of lunch. I continued my writing.

 

I was sitting under the walkway for the 2nd level of the Lounge when I heard the door to the Lounge upstairs open. There was some "breaking news" on the TV about a plane in Cahokia, Illinois having landing gear troubles. An older man in his 70's or 80's stopped up there to watch the TV. He saw me and waved.

 

Around the same time, a woman had also walked in. She asked if I had an extra pen. I told her I had one in my cabin and could get it for her. She declined and looked around the bar area for one. I told her it wouldn't be a problem because my room was right at the top of the stairs. She said OK and I ran up the stairs to get my pen.

 

On the way back down, the older man who had a cane and glasses started a conversation with me. Something was off about this guy, but I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was. I was getting a vibe from him and I was very uncomfortable. I worked with juvenile delinquents and psychiatric patients, so I have a pretty good feel on body language.

 

The old man told me that he lived in Cahokia, IL. I told him I was originally from St. Louis, which isn't too far from Cahokia. He continued on telling me about how his wife was in a nursing home and his children had encouraged him to take a vacation, which is why he was on the cruise by himself. He then said something kind of quietly. I heard what he said, but I wasn't 100% sure I heard it right. I said, "excuse me?" and he repeated himself. He was asking for a sexual favor. I was beside myself and just told him I wasn't interested and walked off. Even as I was walking away he was still trying to talk me into it. I handed the woman her pen, told her what just happened and went back to my writing. I saw the man one other time on the cruise, but that was it.

 

I grappled with myself on whether to report him or not. My main concern was that he could be asking children or teenagers to do things with him and it made me uncomfortable. I didn't necessarily want to report him because I wanted to get him in trouble, but I wanted Norwegian to be aware that it was happening. Some other people I told had encouraged me to report him, but I ended up just letting it go. One of the fellow solo travelers I told actually told me that the same man had asked him for a favor too! I don't know if he asked anyone else besides the two of us.

 

After I finished my writing, I went back up to the pool deck and walked around. They were having salsa lessons on the top deck and I ran into another solo person. She asked me why I wasn't up there dancing and I told her I'm not a big dancer. She said that when she has enough to drink, she doesn't care what she does. I laughed and moved on. I walked back to Spice H20 and ran into Susan. She was one of the people I had dinner with on the first night. We talked for about an hour or so about anything and everything before walking back down to our cabins to get ready for the solo gathering.

 

I had met ms7901 (Mike) earlier in the day when I was walking back to my cabin. He was walking back to his and called out my name. He said he could recognize me from my picture on here. At the solo gathering, he introduced me to a couple other people that were on Cruise Critic and in the solo cabins. They told me a couple of guys from here wanted to talk to me about an excursion I had booked. They couldn't remember which cabin was theirs though, so sorry to those guys if they are reading! That's why I never got to you guys.

 

Our large solo group decided to go to Taste for dinner. A woman by the name of Lilly joined us for dinner tonight. She was from Springfield, Missouri. Springfield is where I went to college and up until a year and a half ago lived in for just over seven years. She actually worked with and was friends with a psychiatrist I worked with while I worked with juvenile delinquents. What a small world it was!

 

Susan and Lilly mentioned they were going to watch Blue Man Group tonight. I asked if they cared if I tagged along. They were more than happy to let me go along with them. Since I didn't have a reservation for tonight, I knew I would have to wait in the queue to see if there was room to let me in. When we met, one of the ladies that was letting people into the theater said I would have to wait until 10 minutes before the show to see if there was enough room. I asked her where I can stand to wait. She asked for my card and scanned it in. She told me I could just go ahead in with Susan and Lilly. I was surprised she did this and very thankful.

 

Sundried Tomato Quiche

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I think this was the pot roast.

Vacation2013067.jpg

 

One of my favorite desserts, Tiramisu. I could have eaten five of these!

Vacation2013068.jpg

 

Where to start with Blue Man... I hated it. I was actually going to walk out I was so grossed out and bored, but Lilly beat me to it. She asked Susan if this was how it was the entire time and Susan said, "pretty much." After that Lilly got up and left. I didn't want to leave Susan there alone - although she probably wouldn't have minded.

 

Vacation2013070.jpg

 

It's sort of weird that I didn't like Blue Man Group, because I always love that drawn out awkward humor. I found their skits to be too long and drawn out and boring. As I mentioned earlier, I am neurotic. There are some things that I just believe and there's no changing my mind about it... one of those things is that I find spitting to be absolutely disgusting. When they were spitting paint onto canvases I wanted to throw up. I was literally gagging at times. When they were throwing the marshmallows into each other's mouths, I was disgusted when that guy put his marshmallow mountain on the canvas. Ugh... I hate to even think about it now. My other issue is that as I said before, I have a fear of not being able to escape situations. Every time the Blue Man Group were choosing people from the audience, I got very anxious that I would be chosen. I kept thinking about what I would tell them if I did get chosen. I wouldn't have gone up there and wouldn't want to make a scene. Finally, the show ended and I couldn't have been more relieved.

 

I ran into a group of solo travelers in the Bliss Lounge after the show. We hung out up there for a while before going up to Spice H20. After a while, we went back down to Bliss and ended up calling it a night. We were starting to see a theme though. The same people were showing up for the late night activities.

 

The group went back to the Studio Lounge. Some of us got some coffee, while others got some water. We ended up hanging out down there for a while. A couple of guys that didn't go to any of the solo gatherings walked by and started talking to us. This ended up turning into a late night discussion. We were learning more about each other and some of it got down right philosophical. I swore to myself earlier in the evening that I would go to bed at a decent hour. It was after three again when I finally headed back to my stateroom. I was exhausted, but it was yet another great day.

 

All right folks, I think that's it for now. I killed an hour or so and it's closer to a time I think I could safely go to sleep. Stay tuned, because these weren't the first twists and turns in my time on the EPIC.

I haven't finished reading but wanted to make two comments:

 

1) I am horrified some pervert propositioned you like that! Hopefully he did not go after any minors!

 

2) If you do not like spitting, don't ever go to a crew talent show where they do a skit called "Fountains." It is all about spitting. Everyone laughs but all I could think of was germ city spewing everywhere....

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I haven't finished reading but wanted to make two comments:

 

1) I am horrified some pervert propositioned you like that! Hopefully he did not go after any minors!

 

 

 

Irritating! Those who pursue minors are NOT usually the same people who would approach someone 'of age'.

 

 

 

 

.

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Great review. I love your courage in being so open about your differences here on the boards ans in taking the leap and going solo.

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Come on people - give Zac a break. He handled the situations they way he felt they should be handled and he should be commended for that.

 

Zac - you are a talented writer. Many, many of us are enjoying your review and pictures immensely. Thank you for taking so much of your time and being so open with all of us. I would like to meet you sometime on a cruise.

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Great review. I love your courage in being so open about your differences here on the boards ans in taking the leap and going solo.

 

Thank you very much :)

 

 

 

Come on people - give Zac a break. He handled the situations they way he felt they should be handled and he should be commended for that.

 

Zac - you are a talented writer. Many, many of us are enjoying your review and pictures immensely. Thank you for taking so much of your time and being so open with all of us. I would like to meet you sometime on a cruise.

 

Thanks! That means a lot. Maybe one day we will be able to meet on a cruise... ya never know! lol

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Really good review Zac , I sailed on the same itinerary about three weeks ago , and loved it too , cant wait to do another one maybe I'll try the Mediterranean on Epic.

I found your review to be absolutely true to the facts and couldn't have done a better job myself.Look forward to more from you.:)

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Hey everyone!

 

I got a nice surprise in my email inbox today and I felt it is very important to add to my review on here. I received an email from Norwegian Cruise Lines apologizing for the experience I had with those two men. They assured me they would keep it on file and try to find solutions to the incident if it occurs in the future. They also said to inform them the next time I go on a Norwegian cruise to let them know so they can provide me with onboard amenities. I was not expecting that or even asking for it. I felt it was important to point out that they do have great customer service. Honestly, a simple email letting me know they had my report on file would have sufficed.

 

Really good review Zac , I sailed on the same itinerary about three weeks ago , and loved it too , cant wait to do another one maybe I'll try the Mediterranean on Epic.

I found your review to be absolutely true to the facts and couldn't have done a better job myself.Look forward to more from you.:)

 

I'm glad you had a great time on the EPIC and thank you for your compliments :)

 

I think the Mediterranean would be great to see on the EPIC. A group I met on board may go on one for a reunion cruise.

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That is great Zac!

 

I keep noticing over and over that Norwegian cruise lines is very good at followups on problems, and give great customer service. Here is another case where it shows that it is always best to voice your concern, or report your problem asap to a crew member when you encounter them, and it will be noted and dealt with.

 

Thanks for the update.

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Great informative read! I've just signed up for a solo cruise on the Epic in July. I'm female, but it's always awkward when people proposition you. I used to avoid situations as it used to really bother me. Now I just laugh, brush it off or come up with a silly comment to diffuse the situation. As long as you don't let anyone in your cabin or go to theirs you're safe. Plenty of video surveillance on the ship-it's just something that you don't need as it always makes a situation awkward. :)

 

I also relate to your eating in Asia problems. After my Easter holiday of finding practically nothing I enjoyed eating, I decided I'd rather visit non Western places on a cruise so I can return each night to the hygiene and food on a cruise boat. So cruising it is for me!

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Hey everyone!

 

I got a nice surprise in my email inbox today and I felt it is very important to add to my review on here. I received an email from Norwegian Cruise Lines apologizing for the experience I had with those two men. They assured me they would keep it on file and try to find solutions to the incident if it occurs in the future. They also said to inform them the next time I go on a Norwegian cruise to let them know so they can provide me with onboard amenities. I was not expecting that or even asking for it. I felt it was important to point out that they do have great customer service. Honestly, a simple email letting me know they had my report on file would have sufficed.

 

 

 

I'm glad you had a great time on the EPIC and thank you for your compliments :)

 

I think the Mediterranean would be great to see on the EPIC. A group I met on board may go on one for a reunion cruise.

Thanks for the update! NCL does have great customer service.

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for your very detailed review Zac. Enjoyed the read and the pictures. It was unfortunate you had that very negative experience, but it sounds like NCL has acknowledged it. Yay for NCL's customer service. I commend you on traveling alone ... it's not for everyone ... but look at the wonderful places you've seen.

 

Again, thanks for sharing your trip with us ......

 

Cdn in KS

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Hey Zac! Thanks for the update from NCL Customer Service. Very nice, take advantage of the ammenties they have planned for you on your next cruise. ;) I know you are in college, however, is the Breakaway next up for? I am looking forward to reading a great Breakaway review. :cool:

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for your very detailed review Zac. Enjoyed the read and the pictures. It was unfortunate you had that very negative experience, but it sounds like NCL has acknowledged it. Yay for NCL's customer service. I commend you on traveling alone ... it's not for everyone ... but look at the wonderful places you've seen.

 

Again, thanks for sharing your trip with us ......

 

Cdn in KS

 

Thank you :) I am very impressed with NCL getting back to me about the two instances I had. I wouldn't say the experiences were very negative... they did make the cruise a little more "interesting." I'm just glad to see my statement didn't go on deaf ears.

 

I've actually been to Overland Park before. My best friend lives in Excelsior Springs, MO.. so I visit them every so often.

 

Hey Zac! Thanks for the update from NCL Customer Service. Very nice, take advantage of the ammenties they have planned for you on your next cruise. ;) I know you are in college, however, is the Breakaway next up for? I am looking forward to reading a great Breakaway review. :cool:

 

I definitely will take advantage and be appreciative of whatever they decide to give me, even though I really don't deserve anything. I mean, it was these men that made me uncomfortable, not Norwegian.

 

I actually just paid the deposit to go on the Breakaway in October for my 30th birthday. I got a great deal and I just couldn't pass it up... hopefully my professors will let me do my work before I go on my trip.

 

I look forward to writing a review of the Breakaway :)

Edited by zactak

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I definitely will take advantage and be appreciative of whatever they decide to give me, even though I really don't deserve anything. I mean, it was these men that made me uncomfortable, not Norwegian.

 

That's a great attitude. Some people always have their hand out. If it rains on their cruise, they want compensation. Give me a bottle of wine or chocolate covered strawberries. You reported it so they could be aware of a potential predator. You did your duty.

 

If this happened on the airplane or in the airport, would the airline or airport authority be responsible?

 

Enjoy your future adventures.

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Hi Zac! This was a GREAT review! I also enjoy traveling and cruising solo. I would love to try the Epic or Breakaway in a studio cabin one day, but I don't really care for the Epic's itineraries, and the Breakaway's prices are :eek:! Hopefully one day though. I'm going to bookmark your blog so I can read about the rest of your trip to Asia. Thanks for posting! :)

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Hey Zac just went and checked out your blog and notice nothing new since april 10. Hoping you have time to update soon.

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That's a great attitude. Some people always have their hand out. If it rains on their cruise, they want compensation. Give me a bottle of wine or chocolate covered strawberries. You reported it so they could be aware of a potential predator. You did your duty.

 

If this happened on the airplane or in the airport, would the airline or airport authority be responsible?

 

Enjoy your future adventures.

 

They absolutely would not be! I really hate how people always want to have their hands held out expecting something. After I read that Norwegian was planning to give me something, I debated whether or not to contact them after booking my cruise. I still haven't, and it's still in the back of my mind. I really don't feel like I deserve anything.

 

Hi Zac! This was a GREAT review! I also enjoy traveling and cruising solo. I would love to try the Epic or Breakaway in a studio cabin one day, but I don't really care for the Epic's itineraries, and the Breakaway's prices are :eek:! Hopefully one day though. I'm going to bookmark your blog so I can read about the rest of your trip to Asia. Thanks for posting! :)

 

I hear ya! I put a deposit down on the Breakaway, but it's still hard to justify spending $1,300+ just for the cruise. I think in a year or so the Breakaway's prices will go down to more reasonable prices.

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Hey Zac just went and checked out your blog and notice nothing new since april 10. Hoping you have time to update soon.

 

Hey, sorry! I've been slacking... lol. I bought a new computer and my photos of my trip are on the other old antiquated computer. I need to bite the bullet and just get on that computer to get them uploaded. I'm close to editing my latest blog entry, so expect it on or before Tuesday.... I need to be more diligent because I have a lot of people interested in my other travels.. and not just on Cruise Critic, but family and friends too.

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It was great to read your Epic review. I am debating putting down a deposit for the Med 7 day from Barcelona in October 2014. I would also be traveling solo - for the first time... :eek: The studios look amazing for a solo traveler!

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It was great to read your Epic review. I am debating putting down a deposit for the Med 7 day from Barcelona in October 2014. I would also be traveling solo - for the first time... :eek: The studios look amazing for a solo traveler!

 

I would HIGHLY recommend it! I looked at the various places you have been and I'm jealous of the experiences you have had. Before the end of the cruise, some of us solo travelers talked about a reunion cruise and the Med cruise was mentioned. I would definitely recommend going on a European cruise on the EPIC. I can be more jealous of you... lol

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