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kazu

Live from the Westerdam-Join the "Pearls of the Pacific" gang's South Pacific Cruise

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I've really enjoyed all the posts from everyone and I'm another one who'll miss the daily updates. Safe travels to home for those still in transit.

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Chiming in to say I've followed this thread from the beginning and have enjoyed everyone's reports. Despite the crap weather and Internet you guys all did a great job reporting and looking at the good side of things. ;)

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With only 1200 passengers on the ship it feels rather empty! The MDR had many empty tables and some of the stewards have time to make origami animals and birds to give out. It is always a sad time when we have to say goodbye to the crew who have taken such good care of us and to the friends we have met along the way. Thank goodness for CC and FB we can keep in touch. We are taking home many wonderful memories and even though the weather was not cooperative this cruise was still great. Captain Van Eerten is one of the best we have ever sailed with - his leadership is reflected on his crew and it is indeed a very well run and happy ship. It indeed the elegant and beautiful Westerdam!

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Thank you for the kind words all.

 

The cruise isn't over yet so with Internet permitting I will be posting some pics that I wasn't able to before. Gigianne and I did air drop (thanks to MsABGilroy for the tip) and I will be able to post some of her marvellous pictures for you all.

 

While it is our last full day at sea, we don't get off the ship until after 10:00 a.m. Tomorrow.

 

Yesterday we had a lovely lunch in the Pinnacle. I didn't take food porn pics of everything since most things had been done before but we did try a couple of new things so I will post those pics a bit later.

 

Then it was time for the surprise birthday party...

 

One of our roll call members joined us in San Diego. She had planned a birthday surprise for her friend who DIDN't know that they were cruising. Not only was the cruise a surprise so was the stateroom. They had the Penthouse (oops Pinnacle).

 

Yesterday, a group of us added to the surprise by showing up for a surprise birthday party. We had all kinds of yummy munchies with appropriate beverages.

 

In fact, we had so much fun that Kazu missed Bingo. What? no Bingo? LOL, never fear I will play today.

 

KJW - the couch in the PS7045 was brownish.

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One of our roll call members joined us in San Diego. She had planned a birthday surprise for her friend who DIDN't know that they were cruising. Not only was the cruise a surprise so was the stateroom. They had the Penthouse (oops Pinnacle).

 

What a wonderful way to celebrate a birthday !

 

Smooth Sailing ! :) :) :)

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Before I forget,here are the On Locations and Menu for yesterday...

 

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Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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Thank you for the kind words all.

 

KJW - the couch in the PS7045 was brownish.

 

Thanks Jacqui. That big brown chair in PS7045 I've seen on another website (you know the one!) looks intriguing. I thought there would be the same furniture in PS7046, but that's not the case after seeing KK's pictures.

 

At least its not that uncomfortable upholstered red-maroon couch in 7045 on the Zuiderdam. Our last four cruises on that ship have been in that cabin and I was hoping they'd had made a change. Nope.

 

Thanks for checking. Sorry we missed you again! :(

 

Safe travels back home! :)

Edited by kjw869

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And here is today's On Location and Menu

 

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Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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There a more then a few passengers who boarded in SD that are on the ship strictly to be able to bird, whale and dolphin watch. Dressed for the weather, and with binoculars and cameras they position themselves on the promenade deck at 7 in the morning until 7 at night. They will have to find another viewing area today as access to the promenade deck is closed due to the high winds and seas. A three day cruise in an inside cabin cost $149 + taxes. One man that I spoke with did a similar cruise last week - he thinks it was the Zaandam. Now that's dedication to his hobby!

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We board the westerdam this saturday. In the past, a simple, plain baked potato was always available at dinner in the mdr. Is this still true?

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Thanks Jacqui. That big brown chair in PS7045 I've seen on another website (you know the one!) looks intriguing. I thought there would be the same furniture in PS7046, but that's not the case after seeing KK's pictures.

 

At least its not that uncomfortable upholstered red-maroon couch in 7045 on the Zuiderdam. Our last four cruises on that ship have been in that cabin and I was hoping they'd had made a change. Nope.

 

Thanks for checking. Sorry we missed you again! :(

 

Safe travels back home! :)

Sorry Ken, I don't think I was clear. It was the couch/love seat that was beigey/brownish. I didn't see a brown chair at all. Should have taken a pic for you. Never thought of it. Apologies.

 

For some reason, the living room area seemed smaller to me than when I was in it on the Zuiderdam. I'm sure that is not the case and it is just my poor memory. LOL.

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Interesting change in disembarkation that I thought I would share with anyone interested.

 

We did not receive any questionnaire as usual. They just took it off our on line booking I assume.

 

We are black - can get off anytime.

 

fb5a2796902ccbd88695e5df55449345.jpg

 

 

Our CC friends who are 4 and 5* mariner's also received black luggage tags, but there was nothing on their form for black!

 

Their envelope said Suites and high star mariner's. Our envelope said Suite - Independent.

 

So, it appears that high star mariner's have a type of priority disembarkation where they can get off whenever it suits!

 

This is the first time I have seen this so I thought I would share - not sure if this is now standard procedure or something that the Westerdam is doing,

 

 

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Brandon....has anyone heard from Brandon????

 

No wonder the Internet doesn't work well - the Internet Manager Brandon doesn't know how to communicate.

 

This is Kazu's one BIG complaint on this cruise. Internet has been iffy at best and days without any access.

 

Despite the "Let us Know What You Think" cards completed and the promise that the elusive Brandon would be in touch with me, nothing.

 

Apparently they are going to refund a portion of the Internet cost but if the amount is accurate, the same for everyone or only those that complained is another question in itself. From the little I have discerned different people are receiving different amounts?????

 

Here's my suggestion, with all the issues we have had, why wasn't a letter sent out to EVERYONE who had paid for Internet apologizing for the poor service and advising they were doing something? Or, just apologize.

 

Instead I have had to follow up day after day after day.

 

I have never heard so many "lines" about why the Internet isn't working - "doesn't work with IPad", "time is wrong on IPad so Internet doesn't work" - just a bunch of hogwash. Then there was the bull*** baffles brains attempt - "the earth is round & satellite only goes one way, etc., etc., etc." I am no techie, but I have used the IPad for several years now on TA's, distant cruises and a CC friend was in the South Pacific last year with her IPad and didn't have these issues, so something is very wrong in Denmark IMO.

 

I was on the ship last year and Internet was good. I get a couple hours here and there but days without Internet?? Or some people on and others not able to get on?? Didn't we all pay for it???

 

It's a shame the Internet Manager wasn't more knowledgeable and more proactive. I think it would have been appreciated by many.

 

Kazu's one big complaint and JMVHO

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Kazu, I love nothing better than curling up with a cup of coffee or my best Irish friend and reading these awesome threads so I can plan my own cruises and live vicariously while doing so. That said, breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Brandon is probably hiding because there is nothing he can do. He probably wants to throttle someone in Seattle. Don't let our needs put a tarnish on your cruise. You know how to get your money back or at least part of it so go to it but have a drink and forget about us. If we have to wait til you're home, then so be it! Ugh. Can't believe I just said that. Go shake them til they fix the problem!

 

 

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I was on the 30 day and happy to have the middle internet package. Much prefer a flat rate than paying for minutes. I used it every day on my iphone and sometimes on a pc in the EC. Yes, it was slow, but I was always able to use it when I wanted for CC, fb, and email primarily. Wouldn't say no to a partial refund though, especially since I think I paid the same for 30 as what others paid for the longer cruise.

 

Mom and I are 4* and got questionnaire for disembarking in SD. More colors and numbers than in Vancouver but we were called within the time frame indicated on the letter. Pleased with the pace they called so lines weren't too long.

 

It's good to be home alone with peace and quiet and nice weather.

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Very good. One request. Will you keep your eyes peeled for anything from the Future Cruise Consultant on the Grand Asia which says something about segments?

 

Roy

 

After a few days in San Diego enjoying some lovely sunny dry weather we are now waiting at LAX to board our big 'flying kangaroo' - 14 hours in the air then another one after picking up the car and we'll be home. This was an unusual cruise to say the least - more reason to get down to the business of planning our next cruise asap :) :)

 

Ray, half way through April Ashira (the onboard FCC) let me know the Grand Asia had finally been approved but not released yet. Right up to SD disembarkation she had no information on segments. She did provide me with the itinerary though - it included several overnights which could be a clue as to where segments possibly could start/end. We are only interested in Hong Kong to Sydney or depending on price Tokyo to Sydney

 

I'll post them when we get home, unpacked and thinking straight :)

 

Cathy

Edited by cranethie

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Just want to say "safe travels" to all who were on for the long haul. Yes, there were some big disappointments on this cruise, missing the 2 most exotic islands and the weather, and the 2 days we bought internet for $50 were terrible and we were not offered any compensation--just a shrug and informed the signal is poor and the laundry ruined my new pants and was compensated for 1/2 of purchase price.

 

BUT, overall, I loved the cruise and met and shared experiences with wonderful people onboard and onshore. Revisiting Hawaii was nostalgic and beautiful as was the luau, shopping and snorkeling. We had fabulous snorkeling experiences in Bora Bora and Moorea, and the fish, sharks and rays didn't seem to mind the rain! Tours to the interiors of Raitea, Tahiti and Nuku Hiva (where we had our quintessential day of perfect weather and sunshine to enhance the glorias vistas) provided unparalleled natural beauty and I learned a LOT about tahitian pearls and purchased a "few"!! On Raitea, I purchased a piece of fabric from a local seamstress and she presented me with a gorgeous, unique head lei that I had admired as a gift! Unforgettable. The Hawaiians onboard made the cruise for me, but I love learning and experiencing local cultures via dance, music, dress and lectures as it enhances the experience for me. Of course, we'll never forget Szaba and his vast knowledge and dramatic presentation of wines as well as the other staff and captain already mentioned many times, who made us smile again and again. In short, I fell in love with the South Pacific and hope to return someday.

Thanks to all of my fellow cc members who provided smiling faces, companionship, words of wisdom, laughs and encouragement and support for all of my "cultural" endeavors. I view my photos and videos and have a permanent grin on my face, so I guess the trip was a success!

Hope to see you again in future travels! Aloha O'e and maruru!

Edited by sherifa

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Sheri what a lovely post! It was great cruising with you and Terry and hopefully we will meet again on the high seas!

 

VictOriann, Sapper1, Kazu and Taxmantoo - it was great spending the final evening of the cruise with you. Gerry and I are taking home many wonderful memories of the times we spent together!

 

To the other CC members we met - it was wonderful meeting all of you - safe travels home.

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Maybe I missed it somewhere, but were there any VIP, 4 and 5 Star Mariner or Exculsive Officers Reception cocktail parties?

 

Yes, KK, there were two Exlusive Officers Recpetions that we were invited to on this cruise.

 

both gatherings were small and intimate. And both were very nice. I have no idea why we were invited but we enjoyed them both. Did take a couple of pics and when we have good internet, will try to post them.

 

I don't think our sea days equaled the others but we had a great time. First time we met a couple from Spain so DH was happily chatting in Spanish.

 

Second time roll call members which was very nice as we hadn't seen them before.

 

We were well taken care of. Both receptions were 1/2 hour long.

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Sheri what a lovely post! It was great cruising with you and Terry and hopefully we will meet again on the high seas!

 

VictOriann, Sapper1, Kazu and Taxmantoo - it was great spending the final evening of the cruise with you. Gerry and I are taking home many wonderful memories of the times we spent together!

 

To the other CC members we met - it was wonderful meeting all of you - safe travels home.

 

++1 :). Well said and totally agree. You said it better than I could have Georgina.

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Kazu, I love nothing better than curling up with a cup of coffee or my best Irish friend and reading these awesome threads so I can plan my own cruises and live vicariously while doing so. That said, breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Brandon is probably hiding because there is nothing he can do. He probably wants to throttle someone in Seattle. Don't let our needs put a tarnish on your cruise. You know how to get your money back or at least part of it so go to it but have a drink and forget about us. If we have to wait til you're home, then so be it! Ugh. Can't believe I just said that. Go shake them til they fix the problem!

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums mobile app

 

Thanks :)

 

Internet has not been working well today (again) bumping me out , but I do want to report that Brandon did call.

 

Apparently I was supposed to get a letter. Told him never got it.

 

Isn't it amazing how all the junk can get in your mail box, every invitation,every PG reservation, etc. But this didn't? My stewards are fabulous so I don't think it is their fault.

 

Taxmantoo told me tonight he got a letter. I still haven't received one.

 

I guess I will see what is what when I get off tomorrow.

 

I just hate inconsistency, but it's bump I'll post pics tomorrow if Internet works or when I am at the hotel waiting to check in.

 

All my bags are out - I'm ready to go [sigh]. Not the same as when you are ready to go on the cruise.

 

Cheers.

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I can't believe that this cruise is almost over. I enjoyed meeting so many roll call members as well as re-connecting with past cruise mates. Despite the weather and the inconsistencies of the Internet, I had a wonderful time. I hope everyone has a safe trip home.

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