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Seek Timeless Treasures with Bill & Mary Ann - 2019 World Cruise -131 days


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Report # 136   Seattle, Washington   June 3, 2019  Monday   Overcast    Part # 1 of 1   30 Pictures


It’s a good thing we pretty much knew the drill for this morning, because none of us were given any heads up as to when to put our luggage outside the room last night, or when breakfast was being served in the Lido or dining room today.  Usually, we are given an amended end of the cruise flyer, outlining this important information, as well as the statistics for the 18 day Panama Cruise.  We did have a disembarkation schedule which had the list of colored tags and numbers and approximate times for getting off the ship today.  The most stressed thing was telling us not to congregate around the gangway or stairwells waiting your turn to debark.  Of course, that is what a whole lot of people did, getting the attention of the Captain, who came across with a strong message to wait comfortably in your stateroom or public areas.   And when he speaks….everyone listens.


Breakfast in the dining room was 6:30am, and we were about the first ones to arrive.  By not advertising a time, we think most folks went to the Lido, assuming this was not opened.  Better for us, our food arrived quickly.  We took our usual walk around the promenade deck to find it was closed off since the gangway was hooked up here to the terminal.  But we did watch the new supplies waiting to be loaded, and also the luggage being taken off.  What are the odds that we would see some of our duffels in one of those huge baskets?  A good sign that it might be ready for us when we get off.


The ship was cleared by 8am, and many of us wondered how the customs, immigrations, and border control would work here.  We had not been given the US form to fill out, so it was unclear as to the procedure today.  Was it possible that the terrible line we encountered in Vancouver yesterday would be all the clearance we needed?  That would be nice.  


With our President’s Club status, we could get off the ship anytime we chose.  However, arriving too soon, the six pieces of luggage might not be there yet.  Our color red 2 was called exactly at 8:15am, the promised time for us.  The latest the tags were called was 9:15am, but we had to remember that 500 people were getting off with just hand luggage or expedited.  That did help.


Once in the terminal, we found our stuff easily.  And the best news was that we did not have to haul it through customs, as there was none here.  We had completed the customs check for the US yesterday, even though we were technically in Canada.  No more forms to fill out, at least here as well as in Florida.  We did not even need the use of porters, because the officials said to leave it right where it was, and it would be collected for the Fed Ex pick up later in the day.  Perfect.


Since we had pre-purchased the transfer to the airport, all we had to do was find the right bus, and sit back and relax.  There were three types of transfers offered by shore excursions in Seattle.  The one we took was an airport transfer only.  The other two included a tour, but were for those with flights after 1:30 or 3:30pm.  So it was the Best of Seattle for 4 hours, or the Ho-ho bus with luggage service.  The four hour tour was $135 and the ho-ho was $59.  Ours was $59 for two, whether we had luggage or not.


It took the driver about 35 minutes to reach the airport.  And since we were flying with Delta, we were able to check in right there in the garage entrance.  One good reason to fly Delta.  We took our time walking to the terminal, because it was a long haul to find it.  You have to take a round- about way to get there, but along the way, we had people giving good directions.  They also took care of the new folks coming to board  the Amsterdam for her first 2 week trip to Alaska. 


Although our flight was after 1pm, it was on time.  That gave us plenty of time to catch up on photos and reports while we waited.  The flight was quick, only about 2 hours, so by the time you got comfortable, you were landing.  Again, getting off was easy because we had no luggage to pick up.


Having arranged a ride home, we met up with our driver at the baggage carousel, where we walked to the garage to begin our ride home.  Of course, it was right in the middle of commute time (4pm), and we knew no matter which way our driver took, we were in for a two hour ride.  One thing for sure, the weather was quite warm today.  Once we got across the Bay Bridge, the temps began to climb to well over 90 degrees.  Summer was here, but we were not complaining.


Home by 6pm, it seemed like we had been gone forever in some ways, and in other ways, it’s like we just left.  Go figure…..  And we had a surprise package waiting for us on the front door step.  It turned out to be a gift from HAL, sent by Orlando Ashford.  It was a commemorative Delft plate welcoming the newest ship to the fleet – the Nieuw Statendam.  That was a “first” receiving a gift like this.  Guessing it arrived around April 14th, we were lucky it was still there.  Never thought to ask anyone to check the front door, although had we known, we could have alerted our son.   All is well that ends well. 


Our work will be cut out for us for many weeks to come, but it will be nice to go to sleep in our own bed tonight with our comfortable pillows.  We will miss the “motion of the ocean” until our next trip.  Until then, thanks for following along once again.  It’s been a pleasure.


Bill & Mary Ann   


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Bill & Mary Ann,

I have once again enjoyed following your travels each day.  In fact they inspired me to book a cruise- our first in about 3 years.  We leave for a Baltic cruise on Saturday!  You are such a good writer and capture the essence of the places you visit for us!

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As Vancouverites thank you for the most positive report on your one day visit to Vancouver.  We love the city and surrounds, except the traffic.  We have thoroughly enjoyed your many 'Treasures' reports from your WC2019, and look forward to meeting you on our first WC2020. T&L.

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Hi neighbors!  Would you mind telling me the name of the car service you used to bring you home from SFO (if you had a good experience and would recommend them)?   I enjoy your reports and pictures so really appreciate your time and effort to share your journeys with us!   Until next cruise.................



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