It is navigational dawn. That means I can just make out the horizon. It’s 6:14 AM and I am too excited to sleep. I am watching a parade of Cruise Ships entering Port Everglades. Right now, I’m watching a Celebrity Ship pass by. It is one of 7 that will discharge and then take on more than a total of 18,000 passengers today. (When Suzi woke up she said I was remembering sitting on the fire escape in Jersey City watching the ships come and go with my grandfather, who ran away from Ireland to sea as a teenager and ended up years later in New York, asking me “Richard, will this be the ship that carries you away?”
It’s Saturday and we arrived in Fort Lauderdale on Thursday evening. Yesterday we took on provisions for our 128-day cruise around the world on MS Amsterdam that we didn’t want to haul from Alaska or couldn’t get in Alaska, like biodegradable reef friendly sunscreen. I also picked up a pair of water shoes that will allow me to walk more comfortable on crushed coral beaches. I plan to spend time on a few, as well as watch ice bergs calve in Antarctica and listen to Jazz in Rio.
I am starting this cruise somewhat more stressed and less prepared than I usually start a vacation. We had a lot of travel in November and December to visit family around the country. We had some last-minute health issues before sailing, not serious but time consuming with appointments with Doctors, Dentists and imaging folks. The morning we flew out I could not see the runway from my house, not a good one. We took off from Sitka late in a snow squall, late but we allowed time for that. I pulled my back in Seattle moving luggage. But after 6 hours in coach Seattle to Ft. Lauderdale we arrived on time.
A couple of days munching Prednisone and Naproxen and with a chance to walk it out I am doing much better, a nice train ride to Miami also helped improve my spirits. I am still a little stiff but doing ok. This morning before we head for the ships I’ll a few more laps in the hotel pool. That always helps. (note, and it did.).
I haven’t had the time to plan for this trip that I have had for past ones. I’ve not read all the books I wanted to read or poured over all the maps, but that’s OK. I am following the advice of some well-known writers and travelers
The traveler sees what he sees. The tourist sees what he has come to see. –G.K. Chesterton.
Tourists don’t know where they’ve been, travelers don’t know where they’re going. –Paul Theroux.
But right now, it’s past civil dawn heading for sunrise. The dawn’s glow has highlighted more ships coming into Port Everglades.
And now the ships are all in, it’s 7 AM, just before sunrise. I can’t see Amsterdam from my window, it is smaller than the rest and it is behind a building, but I can see the others. Small groups of people are gathering on the beach to watch the sun rise.