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kmerlin14

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About kmerlin14

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    New Brunswick
  • Interests
    dancing, reading, writing, hiking, nature, history

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  1. I don't see how it could continue because both Sydney and Quebec City are Canadian ports and then it goes to another Quebec port and then Halifax before it goes back to New York. We are on the October version and our final payment is due next week as well so my travel agent is emailing Cunard to find out. She said all her work right now is helping clients get refunds for cancelled cruises or helping them cancel cruises they dont' want to take. We'd planned to take the train home from Quebec city and it has already been cancelled and I even got our money back from that one, but I suspect the airfare to New York will just be a flight credit.
  2. For those of you who are wondering about the Eastern seaboard cruise that has the payment due date coming up, this has just been announced https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/cruise-ship-october-1.5589821 No cruise ships visits has been extended to October 31st.
  3. Here in New Brunswick, Canada, we went into social-distancing mode early about a week and a half ago. (Our province had only 2 cases, but they closed down schools and encouraged social distancing and everyone coming from out of the country were asked to get into self-isolation for two weeks.) We can still go for walks, but we limit trips to the grocery store and they have special hours for the vulnerable. Most people are trying to do their part to plank the curve so that we don't overwhelm the health care system. I have resolved not to complain about any restrictions because I truly feel they will help save the lives of our healthcare professionals. I miss my dance classes, but some of my classmates are attending classes over facebook and keeping each others spirits up. We are a friendly bunch so we manage to check on one another from six feet away so everything is working so far. I haven't been to a grocery store in a week, but I do need to do post-office runs and the local drug store has areas swaddled in shrink wrap and lines on the floor telling you where to stand at the cash. My husband retires in three weeks so he is working at home until then and will probably never go back to work. my three kids are working at home and the one that works close by has decided that she will see us when all this is over because she is scared of passing anything on to us. I run a small publishing house from home so I basically leave the house to do a safe drop or postoffice run since the bookstores are all closed and I feel that books will help people cope with self-isolation. I'm also restocking an independent bookstore that is doing safe drops in her local area. People are being kind to one another and I'm sure we'll have a great party when all this is over. We do have a cruise booked for the fall, but to tell you the truth, I think we will be too nervous to go. My heart breaks for the people of New York and what they will go through and some of the tales about people on the ships not being able to find a safe port are freaking me out. Our travel agent has been laid off at the moment, but she said she'd get back to us closer to our final payment date so we will decide then. Stay safe everyone.
  4. Are you going to Saint John, New Brunswick or St. John's, Newfoundland? If it is Saint John, NB, here is a list of the New Brunswick lighthouses. https://www.lighthousefriends.com/pull-state.asp?state=NB Make sure you locate them on the map first though because some of them are listed as in Saint John, but the Swallowtail lighthouse is actually on Grand Manan which is a drive and a long ferry ride away. Anything on Campobello Island would be impossible to get to while you are in port because that would involve a drive to Letete (which does have a lighthouse), a ferry ride to Deer Island, and then a seasonal ferry to Campobello Island which may or may not be operating at that time of year. The only other way to get to Campobello from Saint John would be to drive to St. Stephens, cross into the US, and then drive down to the International Bridge to cross back over to Campobello in Canada--something I definitely would not want to do on a shore excursion because it would involve four border crossings. However, there is a lighthouse on Partridge Island and there are some towards the St. Martins area which you should be able to get to while you are in port and you may even find a shore excursion that will take you there. I also think the tiny one in the port of Saint John is still there and there are others they are trying to restore.
  5. I'm not sure how long you have there or if you are driving, but I've been to the area about three times and haven't even bothered going in the caves. I usually go to hike and explore on the trails along the Fundy Parkway. (It does have a charge to get in). I will paste the link here so you can see if it is something that you would like. http://fundytrailparkway.com/
  6. Your welcome. It was our first time with Cunard too and we loved it. And I was trying to return the favour for all the advice I got when I was planning.
  7. We went east of Vancouver Island after we left Vancouver on the June cruise, but the sea day was quite foggy so we didn't see much. On the way back we went to the west of Vancouver Island, probably because we were stopping in Victoria. I did post a trip report on the Alaska board if that is of any help.
  8. I suspect the Queen Elizabeth is more stable than other ships. The two places the sea was rough were in areas than many on the Alaska board say are rough and it wasn't during the inside passage itself. The captain was also able to get us extremely close to the Hubbard glacier. The naturalist on board was quite surprised at how close she got. We've only ever done a Caribbean cruise on the Allure, so I don't have a lot of experience, but we did prefer the Queen Elizabeth because it suited us better, but that is partly because of our interests. We much preferred the dancing on the Queen Elizabeth. On the Allure, they just had a tiny dance floor and the main area was often booked for a private function. The one time it was open, there was a toddler playing in the middle of the dance floor so it was hard to figure out where the toddler would move next when you did a shoulder check. The line dance and ballroom dance lessons were better as well. The Allure didn't actually have any line dance lessons on sea days--only on port days. The Allure was also too big for us. It was almost impossible to find a seat anywhere near the pool on sea days. I usually went late at night instead. Note: there are no indoor pools on the Queen Elizabeth so you probably wont' be swimming in Alaska on that one. I found the crowds overwhelming especially when it came time to leave the ship because we had to stand in a long line up for over an hour. We like to read and the Queen Elizabeth has a lovely library. The Allure has a room with some books on the shelves, but not really anything interesting to read. The theatre shows are better on the Allure, but we enjoyed the ones on the Queen Elizabeth. I was going to try to go to some lectures, but I fell asleep. Both ships had a nice deck to walk around. We had traditional dining on the Queen Elizabeth and my time on the Allure. This meant we were at a table for 8 and got to meet other passengers on the Queen Elizabeth. On the Allure, we had the same waiter every night, but we were at a table for 2, so there wasn't much mingling because everyone seemed to be in their own little bubble. Even up in the buffet, there seemed to be more inter-passenger interaction on the Queen Elizabeth's. The Allure had more stuff to do with the climbing wall, boardwalk, fancy theatres etc., but we weren't interested in doing a lot of that stuff, so it was wasted on us. I did enjoy Central Park and we had a Central Park balcony, but it got very hot out there during the day. It was lovely at night though with all the light shows. We had an ocean view on the Queen Elizabeth and I much preferred that. The food was great on both ships. With all of this, I still think you should chose your Alaskan ship for the ports and how long you are in port, rather than the ship facilities. Most of our time in Alaska was spent off the ship and not on it. And I will always get the meclazine capsules for seasickness even though they have those lovely ginger candies in the dining room and lemon ginger tea in the lido. Sorry I can't be any more help and remember it is coming from someone who likes to dance, read, go to the theatre, walk around the deck, meet other people, explore ports, eat, and relax. If you are cruising with kids or have other interests, you'll probably would have preferred the Allure or another ship. I did like the Vancouver to Vancouver 10-day itinerary though because it let us see more ports and stay in Canada for our flights.
  9. We enjoyed 5067 which was directly across from the laundromat. I'm attaching a picture of the cabin and some views from the balcony. Some of them were deliberately shot to include the lifeboats etc for framing. For those I would have had to turned and faced the balcony beside me to get the lifeboats in the picture. Most of the time we could see straight out and we could also see straight out and through the clear glass while we were sitting on the loveseat by the balcony door. That let us enjoy the scenery from the comfort of the cabin and we could make a cup of tea. the balcony was shelter from the wind etc so it was comfortable to sit or stand on when the weather was less pleasant. They opened the forward deck on deck five for scenic viewing so we went there sometimes. The hallway was slightly cooler on those days, but just enough to give us a clue that the deck was open for viewing. From Deck five we could take the stairs everywhere and I'm pretty sure we only took the elevator when we first got on and they sent us directly to the lido restaurant by elevator. I posted a review of our Alaskan cruise on the Alaskan board if you are interested for planning purposes and I'd be happy to answer any questions. And FYI, I loved having the balcony for that cruise.
  10. We just test drove the new tuxedo at a Christmas dance. He thought he'd be able to dance in the tuxedo shoes because the bottoms were slippery, but his feet kept sliding more than he wanted, so I think he's going to wear his sueded dance shoes instead. And he doesn't mind dressing up because we like to dance when we go on a cruise. (But it took me 30 years to get him to dance, so that was actually the harder part.)
  11. There was a kettle and a selection of teas and instant coffee for sure. I think there were packages of cookies or something too, but I have to watch my sugar intake, so I avoided them. We were in the Brittania balcony cabins (ie not a suite or Brittania club) We often brought the lemon ginger tea down form the buffet so that we could make it whenever we wanted. I can't remember if we made coffee or not because we found we enjoyed having our morning coffee in the Lido buffet because we were usually able to get a table that looked out over the water and I liked the coffee up there. It was all very civilized.
  12. Tell your friend the late night buffet opens at 10:30. I have to avoid sugar, so I tried not to look at the sweets, but I'm pretty sure they at least had cookies. they had crackers and cheese for sure and I think they had scones too. There was always lots to eat. I fall else fails there is the turn down chocolate.
  13. It was our first time on a Cunard ship, so I was nervous too. We did stick to the dress code because I loved the food in the dining room. Our original plan had been for my husband to wear his kilt for the formal nights and a jacket and chinos for the other kind (?smart attire). Then on the day we started packing he changed his mind and decided to bring his suit instead and we just brought his tuxedo shirts and bowties to go with it. He was fine in that--No one drummed him out of the dining room or kicked him off the dance floor, but he did say he felt underdressed. I did drag him out to get a tuxedo this summer, so he'll wear that on the next cruise because it is easier to pack. For $6-7, they will launder the tuxedo shirts, so we will probably just bring one and I've started sending them out to the laundry here so I don't have to press them. For the formal nights, I wore a long black skirt with gold trim and paired it with dressy tops (go shopping after Christmas). I made sure the skirt wasn't so long that I would trip over it on the dance floor though. For the smart attire nights, I usually wore dress pants and a tunic on port days because I could change into them quickly. For shoes, I just wore my dance sandles. If I had a bit more time to change, I wore a dress or skirt and top. Some of the women in the dining room were still dressed to the nines on those nights too, but I contented myself with admiring their finery. I might bring a pant suit and fancy dress pants next time, but I was okay with my standard black dresspants/dressy flowing tunic combo. We had a twenties ball, so we dressed to the them for that because it is fun. I wore the long skirt on the evening we visited the Hubbard Glacier even though it wasn't a formal night. I do have a review with some pics over on the Alaska board that could give you some ideas. Usually we were back in time to change for dinner, but we didn't even try the day we went to Juneau because we didn't get to port until 2 pm and we left about 8 pm, so we had dinner in port that night. If you really like the itinerary, go with Cunard and don't let the dress code prevent you. I felt that the ten day itinerary, put us slightly out of step with some of the seven day cruises, so our port load was lighter (not as many ships in port). Juneau and Ketchikan had about 3 ships, but other days they have 6. Above all, enjoy your cruise.
  14. Hadn't really thought of the anagram. And enjoy your cruise. We really enjoyed ours.
  15. We were on the early seating and it took about an hour for dinner. (We didn't pay attention to how long it took because we were usually enjoying the socialization time with our table mates.) There was often recorded ballroom music about 4:45, so you could go dancing before dinner if you'd like and just join the dancing when you were finished your dinner. We also never got to a sailaway party because of our dinner time, so I don't know what they would be like. friends of Bill would be another name for AA meetings.
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