CRUISE TO ALASKA--April 30-May 12, 2000
By Grant Vogel
Celebrity Cruise line, Mercury ship. Los Angeles to Vancouver.
Donna took us to the LA cruise terminal about 5 p.m. We were expecting no
loading was scheduled to start at 4 P.M. But because the ship was late
getting to Los
Angeles, they were not ready to start loading on time. They started
loading about 5:45.
What a mob of people, all wanting to get aboard, about 2000 I expect.
Once they got
started it did not take long,. We were in our room by about 6 P.M. and we
sure did like
our room. Plenty of room and a window facing forward. We were on the
eighth floor in
the right front cabin.
After washing our hands we went to the dining room. Tonight was open
times you have your assigned table at an assigned time. We were escorted
to a small table
for four. The couple that joined us were Marvin and Hazel from Hemet,
CA. They were
quite nice, but on such a large ship, as we finished dinner we said,
wonder if we’ll see
you again. We saw them several times the next day or two, and then we
asked them if
they played pinochle. Sure, they said, so from then on we got together
with them to play
Monday, May 1. San Francisco. We were scheduled to get there about 3:30
we left L.A. late we did not get to S.F. until after five. Dinner is at
6:15 until about 7:30
and we were at a table for six. One couple, Jack and Marty from Los
Alamitos, the other
couple from Salt Lake City, Blaine and Nelda. They were friends, in fact
Nelda’s uncle. They were all quite nice.
After dinner we decided not to go out because it was quite late and it
was quite cool out.
Tuesday, 2nd. Ship left San Francisco at 2 A.M. for Seattle. All day at
sea. Formal dress
up and captain’s party tonight.
Wednesday, 3rd. Still all day at sea, relaxed, ate, played pinochle, got
acquainted with the
ship. It sure is nice. It is big, only about three years old.
Thursday, 4th. Got to Seattle about 8 A.M. Had not made any tour
reservations. About ten
A.M. we got off the ship and walked to the Edgewater Hotel and signed up
for a four and a
half hour city tour starting at noon. We had a nice five-hour tour,
eight people on a small
bus. Got back to the ship just in time for dinner.
The ship left about 8 P.M. for Victoria, British Columbia.
Friday, 5th. Got to Victoria at 8 A.M. About nine o’clock we got off the
ship and took a
shuttle bus downtown, walked around a bit, not much to see, just stores,
like any city. So
we signed up for a tour of the Butchart Gardens. I think this is the
greatest flower garden
in the world. On our way back to the ship we had a city tour and got
back to the ship
about 4:30 P.M. and the ship leaves at 5 P.M. for Sitka.
Saturday, 6th. We will be at sea all day,
Sunday, 7th. We got to Sitka about 9 A.M., had to anchor away from the
harbor and take a
tender (lifeboat) to the dock. About ten A.M. we went ashore and wandered
We were told that in the rear part of the post office there were
computers you could rent
to get and send email. So we went there. For five dollars half an hour
we could use a
computer. This we did. We read the letters from David and Donna and some
Then sent short letters to them and to Trudy, Harry and Lefty. We went
back to the ship
near noon and lunch time. We sure don’t want to miss lunch.
After lunch we rested and did some reading. I went back to town. I went
to the museum.
It was very interesting, Tools, furnishings, some Russian goods. I got
back to the ship
about 4 and the ship sailed at 5 for Hubbard glacier.
Monday, 8th. Got to Hubbard glacier about 8 this morning. Weather was
quite cool but
no wind and not a cloud in the sky. The ship anchored in the bay near
There are two big and several small glaciers in this area. Then they
turned the ship around
slowly like a rotating restaurant. It was great. About eleven thirty we
left the area, it was
time to go for lunch and we were on our way to Juneau. Should be there
Tuesday, 9th. Juneau, the capital of Alaska, the third largest city in
Alaska. The weather
was quite nice. We had been there twice before so we did not go on any
tours, just walked
around town, did stop at McDonalds for a cup of coffee. I like their
coffee better than the
coffee on the ship or at most restaurants. We tried to go to the library
but it did not open
until 1 P.M. so we did a little shopping and back to the ship at noon for
lunch and resting a while Nancy went to a show and I went back downtown.
a two or three block walk. After window shopping I went to the library
and checked our
email I was not sure I could do it as I never had used email except with
computer at home. Well it worked and we had no new mail, but read the old
David and Donna, and I sent each of them a short note,. Back on the
ship, had a nice
dinner at 6 P.M. just as the ship was leaving, heading for Ketchikan.
Should be there
about 8 A.M. tomorrow morning.
Wednesday, 10th. Got to Ketchikan early about 7 A.M. The place has
grown, has a nice
new dock for cruise ships, and the weather was just perfect, not a cloud
in the sky, very
unusual as it rains here 250 days a year. The average rainfall is 150
inches a year. Last
year they had over 15 feet of rain. This is a city of about 18,000
people with lots of nice
shops. Bought a few things and visited a great museum. This is our last
Thursday, 11th. At sea all day, just relaxing, reading and eating. Have
to pack tonight
and put out our luggage by midnight, Should get to Vancouver in the
morning about 7
A.M. to the airport and leave for Los Angeles about 3:30, get to L.A.
Friday, 12. Vancouver. Got up at 6, had breakfast at 6:30, had to pack a
few last things in
our carry-on luggage. About 10 A.M. got off the ship, and a bus took us
airport. Got there at 10:30. Our plane did not leave until 3:30. We had
a good three-hour
flight on Alaska air. Donna was at the L.A. airport to pick us up. Went
to her place and
we got home about 8:30. Had a real good cruise, all good except the last
Nancy had a cold and did not feel very well.