(Continued from Embarkation Day Pt. 2) … Dessert came, which was a Vanilla Frozen Yogurt and an Earl Grey Pot de Crème. These were both a hit with the teens. They enjoyed their desserts, even though I was rushing them. I promised them that between the buffet, dinners, and the room service, this would definitely not be their last dessert of the three days… Heck, not even their last dessert of the lunch hour if they’d like… It’s vacation.
We headed off to the muster drill and arrived at our station with a little time to spare. We were checked in and listened as they told us the siren patterns that should guide us to the station if necessary. Honestly, I have to admit that I have no idea what series of siren or horn blasts indicates what we should be doing, in spite of the fact that I was not looking at and discussing the spa menu like the people next to us.
After muster, DW and I headed on another journey throughout the ship, checking out all the areas while they were quiet and empty. At the same time, the teens headed up to the tennis court and basketball area, as well as to check out “The Loft” which is the teen area onboard the ship. The Loft has several XBOX stations, and a few scheduled events for the teens. As it turns out, both of these adventures for the teens were a no-go. The temperature and wind throughout the trip prohibited them from playing tennis, and the XBOX game that the middle teen (14 y.o boy) attempted to play required an update, which required the Xbox to have Internet… which it did not.
The ships we had sailed previously were much larger than the MS Amsterdam, so it didn’t take nearly as long to explore as we had experienced on other ships. One wonderful side effect of this is that the ship NEVER felt crowded or busy, with the exception of breakfast at the buffet sometimes, and the Mongolian BBQ on the last full day. It was a great opportunity to relax and enjoy some quiet time with the kiddos.
Next on the agenda was sail away on the aft deck. DW and I went and staked out a spot in the middle of the Lido deck where the flag is located at the aft. We ordered a pair of Rum Punch drinks to enjoy during sail away, and sipped those. Using a Gorillapod, I attached the GoPro securely to the rail, and started a time lapse video of the San Diego harbor as we sailed away. A Gorillapod (check it out here, they’re awesome!) is a nifty little adjustable tripod that will grip things and hold your camera in position on a rail or a fence, or can be used as a small tripod that can adapt to uneven surfaces. Not to mention it looks like something from War of the Worlds. Until we arrived in Vancouver, sail away was the last time we would see the sun, and that was only for a short time while pulling out of the Harbor. The skies were overcast and the weather was cold all the way up the West Coast of the U.S. We were escorted out of the harbor by two Coast Guard boats with machine guns on the front, and Navy Helicopters flew past. Check out the sail away time lapse video HERE. Coronado Island, which we passed on the way out of the Harbor, is where Navy Seals train. Lots of Bad-Assery takes place there.
After sail away, we all met up in the Adult (Balcony) room to hang out and enjoy looking out on the seas for a little while. I gave the teens a stack of $1 bills to put in their room, such that they could tip room service when they decided they needed chocolate cake or steak sandwiches, or whatever other crazy craving they may have. The stack of money came with a warning that dinners would be large and they should plan their cake eating adventures accordingly… With great freedom comes great responsibility… or something like that… After relaxing in the room a little bit, we all explored independently for a little while before getting back together for dinner in the main dining room. (Continue to Embarkation Day Pt.4)