No, I don't know how she does it.
My parents joined us; other family members were either not able to change plans, or, in the case of many of Mrs. Drang's family, have bad memories of previous cruises, which typically involved 14 hour days of chipping paint and "hot-bunking" with some guy from Alabama...
- Board San Francisco
- Four days at sea
- Hawai'i, AKA "The Big Island"/Hilo
- Four days at sea
- One day at sea
- Disembark San Francisco
*Stop in Ensenada mandated by US Government regulations intended to favor US flag carriers, requiring that non-US flagged passenger vessels make at least one stop in a foreign port on any voyage. Other US Government regulations make it prohibitive to flag cruise ships in the US, so there are none. This makes Seattle an attractive port for cruises, since Vancouver and Victoria are so convenient; Ensenada gets the love from Los Angeles and San Francisco. Alas, Alaska is the only cruise destination convenient to Seattle, and that's not a year-round trip like Hawai'i and Mexico/Central America. (There are rumors of Pacific Rim and round-the-world cruises starting in Seattle Any Year Now...)Right now the consensus is that a 15 day cruise is at least 3 days too long, maybe 5. (How long a vacation is too long? When you get tired of fine dining and having someone else do your housekeeping...)
Maybe if the consecutive days at sea were fewer, and there were more port calls, we would not have felt this way. I don't know. Maybe we need to look into that 19 day L.A. to Ft. Lauderdale cruise, with Panama Canal transit and a stop in Mexico, Central America, and various Caribbean Islands to say for sure.
Anyway, I'll be posting some pics and videos here, although many of the videos need editing.
Here's a taste:
Briefly made us wonder why we paid money for a separate whale watching cruise, if I could watch one from the buffet line...
(It was totally worth it, BTW.)