Photo taken near Monument Valley, Utah

Sunday, July 26, 2015

At Sea

Aboard the Westerdam, Holland America Line, 300 n.m. southeast of Juneau...

Since we're not all that fond of cruises, we probably wouldn't have taken this one had it not been for several factors that made it seem like a good idea: 1) Seeing some of Alaska--even the tiny bit we'll see on this cruise--is a bucket list item, and we're trying to work on these while we're still able; 2) we don't want to drive there (we're not fearless like when we were young); and 3) most of our favorite gospel groups are providing the entertainment on this cruise. So, we thought cruising was the best alternative, since you can't see much from an airplane.

Besides, it's nice to be pampered, fed and entertained for a few days with no responsibilities. The Westerdam is not a large ship, nor is it very new (built in 2004), but it is very comfortable, and we don't have any real complaints. Fortunately, wi-fi is available throughout the ship--for a price--so we are not incommunicado. 

On this trip, the first leg from Seattle to Juneau spans 34 hours at sea. So far, the weather has been quite good, but it's too cold outside to sit on the balcony of our stateroom. It's not too cold to sit in the dining room and drink iced tea, though:

While we were eating breakfast today, we saw a couple of whales break the surface alongside the ship, and neither of us had seen that before. I didn't get a photo--they were too quick for me. 

For those of you who follow southern gospel music groups, we were shipmates with most of our favorites, hence a large motivator for our taking the cruise in the first place. Here are some photos of those groups:

The Collingsworth Family

Greater Vision

Mark Trammel Quartet

Mike Hanging Out with the Booth Brothers

It was a real thrill to meet these artists whose concerts we have attended for years. The intimate venue of the ship made this much easier and, to a person, they were just down-to-earth folks who love to sing and play gospel music. They gave performances every day, and it was a highlight of the cruise for sure.

Thank you, Lord, for this wonderful life; please forgive me if I do not appreciate it enough each day.

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