Sunday, July 14, 2013

Wonders from the Sea

When we stepped aboard our ship, the overwhelming feeling was one of expectation and delight. Minutes before we had given our grandsons the news that shortly we were to sail on a Disney cruise. Two totally different reactions: D, ten years old, responded with his entire body. He jumped, pumped the air with his fist, exclamations and queries spilling from his heart to his lips. "Really?! You're not joking?! Right now?! On that ship out there ... the Disney one?! Really? Right now!" He hugged us, perpetual motion, joy on every line of his body.

M, who is seven years and three months old, stood still, quiet, solemn, his eyes huge with disbelief. He needed time to assimilate the news as his brother tried to explain, as did we, in merry words that took several minutes to penetrate his shock. After some silent minutes, he pointed towards the ship, "Are Chip and Dale on there?", he asked. The reactions were a mirror of their personalities; the gregarious, outgoing boy, the quiet, thoughtful boy.

My first impression was of dazzling blues and whites. Everything shone in the sun, reflecting a great surge of humanity, an aura of universality, an ingathering of energy, action and happiness.

                            (The Launch - Sail Away Party.)

Thus began a ceaseless exploration of our ship.The Disney Wonder is a marvel of steel and glass, of polished wood and shining marble, of beautiful art work and vivid patinas.

                            (One of the glowing marble hallways, along Deck 5.)

                                             (A view of the Grand Lobby.)

The boys explore their bunks in our stateroom:

During the day, the upper bunk folded discreetly against the wall while the lower converted into a comfortable couch.

Our seven days cruise was a whirlwind of multiple activities, of fabulous food, of rainy shore excursions, of spectacular views, of wonderful stage shows and family dances, of late night walks on the deck, of joyous meetings with fabled Disney characters, of ocean dreaming from endless portholes.

    (The magnificent glacier at Tracy Arm, Alaska, as seen from the upper deck of our ship.)

These tales will unfold individually with time, but for now, it is enough to say that we engaged in adventures of the body and spirit with people from many countries, who as varied as they were, all shared one thing in common, the love of family.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Cruising to Alaska!

For the next eight days, Gem and I, and our ten and seven year old grandsons, will be aboard this ship:
We will be cruising to Alaska for an adventure packed week exploring several ports of call, going on a whale watching expedition, panning for gold and hiking one of the most beautiful natural areas in the world. There will be glacier watching and star gazing. We shall cavort with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. There will be swimming aboard ship:
There will be dining and dancing, and part of the time there will be multiple supervised, fun activities for the boys while Nana and Papa relax.
You could say that the first of our holiday tales occurred yesterday when a ten year old boy constructed a big jump from discarded planks of wood, bricks and old tires, over which he successfully navigated his mountain bike about a dozen times. However, the last jump resulted in a three hour visit to the ER yesterday afternoon, where said boy had bits of gravel and rubber picked out of his leg. He has a full skin thickness abrasion about four inches square on his right calf which is covered with an antibiotic dressing and wrapped in gauze. This morning we purchased a waterproof sleeve to wear over it. The boy is limping, but none-the-worse for wear. In fact, he has been heard bragging about his little exploit, although he certainly wasn't immediately afterwards!
So, tomorrow we sail ...a surprise for the boys who don't have a clue. They think we are going to spend a couple days in Vancouver. We don't plan on telling them until just before we board ship.
When I return there will be stories to be told and pictures to share. Meanwhile, wishing all ye whose words dwell in Blogdom, a lovely, life-giving week!