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RedneckBob

A Tale of Two Cruises by RedneckBob (Oosterdam review)

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It was the best of cruises, it was the ...... best of cruises.

 

A little take off from that famous author Charley Dickens, At least no one lost their heads over this cruise.

 

Hi y'all. RedneckBob hear. Me and the Misses just completed one of those back to back cruises on the beautiful and elegant Oosterdam, 12/8/18 to 12/22/18, Caribbean cruise. The story I'm about to tell is true, the names were changed to protect the innocent and me. my writing is based on my observations only and may not reflect the observations of fellow cruisers, since everyone may have different views and I guess it's time to begin.

 

Overall this was a great cruise!. Excellent food, great service, generally great weather and ok entertainment. Hear's what happened.

 

Embarkation: It was a breeze. Got to port at 11:20 AM, checked in, walked on board and was stuffing my face at the Lido by 11:35 AM.

 

Cabin: We had one of those semi-sweet cabins, what y'all call Signature Suites. It was cabin 6066; thank goodness there was a zero between all those sixes! HUGE flat screen TV where we viewed many movies. Once again we had no "Do not Disturb: signs on the door so once again I borrowed that sign at the Lincoln Center to put outside our cabin door that read, "Quiet Please, Performance in Progress" :classic_biggrin:. Had great cabin stewards but the guys worked to hard. Had 28 cabins to clean each day that included 7 verandahs, 3 Neptune Suites and 18 Signature Suites. Me and the Misses tried to help. Each morning she made that point on the toilet tissue and I guess I cabin steward got concerned because instead of leaving chocolates on the pillows he left prunes. (I know an old joke)

 

Captain Rens van Eerten: Our favorite Captain. Great guy and very funny. At the first Mariner award ceremony no awards were earned but they did recognize me and the Misses for our level plus a couple who had plus 1700 days. The couple were not very tall so van Eerten being a tall gentlemen got on his knees to make sure his head was in the picture and then proceeded to walk out of the area on his knees. Very funny. I asked the Captain later it that was first or last time he was brought to his knees. It was for the first time he was speechless. Also talked with him at a cocktail party. I told him that you had a following on the Cruise Critic and you were the Master of Toots. Actually someone called you the "Queen of Toots" but I did not know you that well :classic_huh:

 

Entertainment: Was just ok in the Theater. Lincoln Center was excellent. Billboard had best two singers I ever saw but as in the past kept repeating same songs for same shows, like Top 100 songs, sang same 14 songs at same show; there are 100 to chose from! When HAL had piano bar very rarely repeated songs. BB King, great musicians and singers but also sang same songs over and over again and were load. By day 6 & 7 of cruise the BB King lounge became half full. I do not know how long it will work.

 

Crows Nest: Though I know this had been discussed on prior thread, the Crows have flown the coop. No entertainment, no happy hour cause the bar is nothing, exploration cafe is nothing and no activities at all held at CN. Way to go HAL on making one of my favorite areas useless. Oh by the way, no more coffee cup covers for your specialty coffee. If HAL stops using straws, that will be the last straw !

 

Port of call were all good; only missed HMC on 2nd b2b due to high swells.

 

Otherwise another great HAL cruise.

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8 minutes ago, RedneckBob said:

"Quiet Please, Performance in Progress:classic_biggrin:.

Love it! 😄😄

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Thanks for the review. DH and I are sailing on the Oosterdam for the first time in February. Our 47th cruise and 8th on HAL. We have another Neptune Suite (our 5th in a row) and looking forward to it. We'll be sure to try the Lincoln Center and Billboard.

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28 minutes ago, RedneckBob said:

 

 

Captain Rens van Eerten: Our favorite Captain. Great guy and very funny. At the first Mariner award ceremony no awards were earned but they did recognize me and the Misses for our level plus a couple who had plus 1700 days. The couple were not very tall so van Eerten being a tall gentlemen got on his knees to make sure his head was in the picture and then proceeded to walk out of the area on his knees. Very funny. I asked the Captain later it that was first or last time he was brought to his knees. It was for the first time he was speechless. Also talked with him at a cocktail party. I told him that you had a following on the Cruise Critic and you were the Master of Toots. Actually someone called you the "Queen of Toots" but I did not know you that well :classic_huh:

 

.

 

 

 

He is a great captain.

 

And his toots yesterday -- outstanding!!

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Thanks y'all.

 

Forgot to mention;

 

Disembarkation. Had a 10:15 am flight out of Ft Lauderdale. There were eight cruise ships in port. It was Christmas travel weekend. I arrived at departure gate at 8:15 am. I guess it can be done or maybe I was lucky ?

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1 hour ago, RedneckBob said:

Thanks y'all.

 

Forgot to mention;

 

Disembarkation. Had a 10:15 am flight out of Ft Lauderdale. There were eight cruise ships in port. It was Christmas travel weekend. I arrived at departure gate at 8:15 am. I guess it can be done or maybe I was lucky ?

 

Sounds like you were lucky!  I have done it as early as 8:30 am, but thats when everything went right.

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5 hours ago, Krazy Kruizers said:

 

He is a great captain.

 

And his toots yesterday -- outstanding!!

 

We have been known to call him "Captain Hornblower"!!

 

Great review, Redneck Bob.  We always enjoy your witty observations.:classic_biggrin:

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Enjoyed your review and look forward to Meeting you on the Eurodam in March.  While I certainly agree on what you wrote about the Captain, I am wondering about your assessment of the Oosterdam - elegant?   Miracles must have been worked on the ship during drydock!

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3 hours ago, a.madruga said:

Bob, hope you got a b2b on your performance 😂😂😂

 

The Misses said I got a standing ovation.

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13 hours ago, gigianne said:

Enjoyed your review and look forward to Meeting you on the Eurodam in March.  While I certainly agree on what you wrote about the Captain, I am wondering about your assessment of the Oosterdam - elegant?   Miracles must have been worked on the ship during drydock!

 

See you in March. The word elegant is a catch phase HAL uses to describe their ships. The Oosterdam was in pretty good shape except for normal wear.

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Another great review, RedneckBob, I hope everything is fine back at the double-wide.

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49 minutes ago, whogo said:

Another great review, RedneckBob, I hope everything is fine back at the double-wide.

 

Thanks. After spending 35 days in the Caribbean on the Celebrity Reflection and Oosterdam, the only thing that is double wide is my ........... !

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37 minutes ago, RedneckBob said:

 

Thanks. After spending 35 days in the Caribbean on the Celebrity Reflection and Oosterdam, the only thing that is double wide is my ........... !

I guess that means you got your moneys worth!

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Always enjoy reading your reviews. Looking forward to cruising with you on the Eurodam in Mar.

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Another classic review. Captain Eerten is also our favorite Captain.

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Redneck Bob.... Hope to meet up with you on the Eurodam in March.   I agree with you on the selections in the Billboard Onboard venue.  They advertise "Top 100 from the 60's and 70's".   There are hundreds of great songs from that era.  But what do they play ???   Beatles, same 3 or 4 songs over and over, Sweet Caroline (so good...so good...so good), and Billy Joel's Piano Man.   Same songs, every set.  I offered suggestions, and "Sorry we are not allowed to play that song".   The problem is that the musicians that Billboard hires for the Billboard Onboard venue were just a twinkle in their parents eye back in the 60's-70's.   They have not "lived" that music, so all they know is the very limited standards that Billboard approves.  We were on the Rotterdam last March and they still have the traditional single piano bar and entertainer.  The guy was great, never duplicated any of his sets for the entire 21 days.  We got talking during one of his breaks, and I asked if he would be on one of HAL's larger ships.  He said he applied to Billboard for a gig on a larger ship as part of the Dueling Pianos.   He  said that Billboard liked his talent, but he was just too old for a venue like Billboard on HAL ships.  This great talent was 57 years old.  Enough said !!!!

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RedneckBob..... Which cruise did you like better, the Reflection or the Oosterdam? We're going on both ourselves and would like your point of view....... Thanks

    Phil....floridacruisers

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25 minutes ago, floridacruisers said:

RedneckBob..... Which cruise did you like better, the Reflection or the Oosterdam? We're going on both ourselves and would like your point of view....... Thanks

    Phil....floridacruisers

Yes we just went on Osty in November and are booked on Reflection in a few months.   Many of us alternate so looking forward to RNR's response.

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