Avast ye Maties

Monday, July 14, 2014

We are out at sea right now heading to Juneau, Alaska!

Yesterday, we started in Seattle.

All 17 of us and Harold Fujii lead the way...he and Lorene

were the second couple to board the Holland America


By the time we got on board the Captain to the Steward

knew Mr. Fuji. We corrected them...Mr. Fujii.


First thing we did was reserve, for every night, two large tables at the Vista dining room.

                                                      After dinner we went to the Vista lounge to see a variety show. After

                                                      the show, the casino was right outside the lounge and some of us tried

                                                      our luck! Ipo was the only one walking away with $300.

                                                      Oops...Donna Miller just told me she also walked away a winner! She

                                                      played the penny slot and won $1.52!!!!                                                      

                                                      By this time most of us felt the jet lag...even Harold retired to his cabin.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

This morning I woke when I wanted to, how wonderful.

We met Alan and Sandy Nishimoto for breakfast at 9:00. The minute we sat they served the coffee and our choice of freshly baked puff pastries. The ladies had eggs benedict, Alan had short stake pancake and I my omelet the way I like it... ham, avocado, mushroom and jack cheese.

Right after breakfast we went to a Windows 8.1 computers class. The

instructor show us how to navigate our Window and all the new updates.

Right after we went to another class on how to grade diamonds. Yet another

class on how to edit your photos.

For lunch we went to the Lido restaurant. All buffet and over 100 varieties

to choose from. I could not resist a scoop of rum raisin ice cream in a waffle

cone. Then I had a pasta bolognaise and ended with a chef salad.

I was not hungry but too much good food to choose from!

Believe it or not, after lunch we went to a cooking class. Halibut on

mayonnaise and Ketchikan Jack (whiskey) bread pudding.

To top off the day, we went to a I-don't-care-to-know-as-long-it tastes-good, wine tasting seminar. Cheese, bread and fruit included. All this schooling by 3:30. Why didn't we have these kinds of classes in high school? I won't have cut out as often!

Now we are back at our cabin resting up for a formal night of dining.

Not easy to make the most of your day on a cruise!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

We are having coffee at the Lido Restaurant, waiting for Alan and Sandy Nishimoto. This morning at 6:45, our ship entered Glacier Bay. We will be cruising the bay with a national park ranger narrating to all of us what glaciers we are seeing, this will start at 9:00 am.

Now where did I last leave you...oh yeah, two nights ago,the formal dinner. Everyone did dress up and looked fabulous. Contrary to what we all say, Harold Fujii looks handsome in a suit and tie. I even notice that he became a gentleman with it on. Maybe because he knew with a tie on it made it easy for Lorene to grab it and yank it when he misbehaving!

During dinner I sat with Ipo (Lavern Yam). She told me that her father could not speak and the immigration office misunderstood him when he gave them his sur as YIM. Realizing this, I jumped up and hug Ipo and said Cuz long time no see!  

After dinner we went to the show, Ever After. It was a musical about fairy tail stories with recent rock songs. Like Snow White singing a Lady Gaga hit or the wolf singing a Duran Duran song to Little Red Riding Hood. Pretty cool!

Monday, July 14, 2014

After breakfast we all went to bingo...yes, yes where all the old folks go when we don't know what to do. Most of us bought the four rounds package.  

For the last bingo, they will call out 46 numbers and if you got all your numbers covered, a blackout, you win $10,000. Russell Shiroma got all his numbers covered except for one on the 47th number called. Three numbers later Russell got the blackout...he won $622. Not bad for an old man! I told everyone, Russell is buying dinner tonight at the Lido Restaurant, all you can eat!

Right now we have been cruising in Glacier Bay for 4 hours. This morning was very foggy and you could not see anything. We all thought it was going to be a whiteout day. After breakfast it started to clear up and suddenly a snow cap mountain peak appeared over the clouds.

Only Mother nature can start the show by opening the fog  curtains to present Alaska, in all it's wonders!

Majestic mountain ranges, over leaping each other.

The range on the water's edge was emerald green with occasional waterfalls cascading into the bay. While the ranges in the back were much taller, barren and snow capped. What a picture of contrast! There were no bad views throughout the ship.  

Like mother nature had us in her palms of her hand with her finger jutting

upwards representing her mountains. The captain stopped the ship right in

front of Margerie Glacier. He has been rotating the ship for over an hour to

give everyone a front row view.

It seems every 10 minutes a section would breakup and fall into the bay. You

can hear the whole ship ooh and ahh!  

Nature moves ever so slowly, cruising helps us to slow down...beautiful

and wonderful.

Join us tomorrow as the adventure continues.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Just got back on board the ship from touring Ketchikan.

Holland America docked 6:30 this morning and we were on the bus at 7:20

heading out on a 40 minute tour of the island.  We arrived at George Inlet

Lodge where half the group went out to the boat to catch Dungeness crab

and our half went into the lodge.

                                                           They gave us a 5 minute intro about the crabbing industry and then we got down

                                                           to eating fresh steamed Dungeness crab... all you can eat.

                                                           Most everyone ate 1 or crabs, I had 3.  


                                                           Juicy, sweet and cooked to order…the best that Alaska has to offer.  

After the feast we went out to the boat to haul in some crab.  The captain selected

Harold to pull in the basket and everyone got to hold some crab.

On our way back to the Lodge a bald eagle flew toward us and plucked a fish

out of the water, which the guide had thrown in front of us.

The ship is now pulling away from the dock, leaving Ketchikan behind.

WOW! A seaplane just flew between us and landed in the water, about 100 yards

from us!  You can see the pilot looking at us!

Alaska the last frontier!

Alan Nishimoto and I are waiting for our wine tasting seminar II.  Then tonight is formal night and on the menu is lobster, I had three.  We are talking about where can we go and have a culinary day like today…crab in the morning, grilled salmon for lunch, wine tasting in the afternoon and lobster for dinner.

Only on a cruise!

                                                                       The shows on this ship are the best I have seen on all the cruises I have

                                                                       been on.  Last night the act was call Recycle Percussion. A hard rock

                                                                       guitar player, an organ player and two guys playing 2 drum sets, that

                                                                       were assembled with recycled materials on a platform that tilts.

                                                                       Like the show Ka, in Las Vegas.

                                                                       When entering, everyone got a pair of drum sticks and before the show

                                                                       started everyone was banging away and by now we all knew we were

                                                                       part of the show.  They got everyone going.  

                                                                       Both Harold and I got pulled up on stage with 5 other guys and we made

                                                                       a monkey of ourselves.  Everyone said we were funny.  

The other night's show was called “Play Back”.  They danced and sang, kind of like Jersey Boys. The oldies of the 60s, 70s and 80s.

Fabulous, they brought back a lot of fond memories.

Our group has been doing very well and lucky, at the casino and bingo!

Big winners:  

Russell Shiroma, bingo - $622

Ipo Cullen slots - $900

Vincent Yim Key Hole - $50

Ipo Cullen Key Hole - $400

Russell Shiroma Key Hole - $500

Leo Cullen slots - $1,000

Wendy Yim bingo - $468

Alan Nishimoto Blackjack - $240

Vincent Yim Blackjack - $190

Sandy Nishimoto slots - $200,

Charlene Shiroma 4 of a Kind - $62.50

Wendy Yim 4 of a Kind - $125

and Harold Fujii allowance from Lorene - $20!

All our excursions were pricey but we all agree worth it!

The Zip line was fun and there were 9 lines, the longest was over 1,000 feet. I got Sandy Nishimoto to scream all the way down, it took her three big breaths to cover the length. Allan was too wide eyed to let loose, no screaming from him. There were two suspended bridges, we all jumped up and down and swung side to side.  

The next excursion was the Eagles, Bears and Salmon, very educational.  The Eagle rehabilitation center had 8 eagles recovering from various injuries.  Once their injury heals the are released back into the wild.

The bear sanctuary are cubs that lost their mother and could not survive in the wild.  Normally most would be killed by the Rangers, but in 1994, a retired Ranger started this sanctuary to save the cubs. The disappointing situation is that Alaska law will not allow them to release the cubs when they are fully grown.

The salmon hatchery has been around a long time and it has it down on how to extract the eggs out of the female salmon. Then the sperm from the males to fertilize the eggs in a bucket…all you need is water…that is not fun!

Next stop, off to Victoria.


Vincent and 18 other RHS'69 alumni brave seasickness and Orcas to sail to Alaska.