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Here We Go...

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“Boarding has now begun for all first class passengers heading to Seattle.”

I looked again at my boarding pass which clearly still read, “Coach.” I honestly kept expecting to see it magically change to “First Class,” but alas, it never did. Oh well, a girl can dream.

I’d never imagined myself taking a cruise, much less planning for one. Yet here I was, waiting for our group to be called to board the flight which will take us to Seattle. The past six weeks have been a blur. Between the researching, the Google-ing, booking excursions, buying two different “for Dummies” books and four cruising the Inside Passage books, and then reading said books, shopping…sigh. And that was on top of all of the preparing and stressing that went in to leaving our business and our two year old son for 8 days. Shockingly, I actually feel quite prepared, especially since I packed according to a really great list I found online…but I still don’t understand why we need a string of Christmas lights or a roll of duct tape.

At our travel agents urging, we decided to fly into Seattle the day prior to our cruise, as we had never visited the city before. I was looking forward to strolling around Pike Market, window shopping downtown, finding a great local place to eat dinner…pretty much do anything and everything to distract me from my mounting anxiety of actually boarding the ship. Double checking for what must have been the hundredth time, I made sure my bottle of meclizine was safely inside my carry-on bag. Of course it was there, snuggled beside my candied ginger, my Noro virus-fighting hand sanitizer, and these cute little lollipops I found that advertise banishing morning sickness for pregnant women. Hey, I figured if they can tackle morning sickness, they can tackle the looming seasickness that I was positive was going to cripple me. Of course my husband thought this was all ridiculous and completely unnecessary, but inside I know I’ll delight in hearing his apology when he begs me for a cherry maternity sucker.

We landed in Seattle right on time and quickly catch the shuttle to our hotel. After dropping our bags and getting checked in, it was off to explore Seattle. We spent a gloriously sunny day wandering Pike Market and doing all things tourists visiting Seattle do, but for dinner we wanted to try something more local. We asked the hotel for a suggestion and we were told very enthusiastically to eat at Elliott’s. I can say that Elliott’s was quite possibly one of the best meals we’ve ever enjoyed. Everything about that restaurant was outstanding. The only disappointment was having to push my plate of fresh salmon away because I just couldn’t eat any more.

Riding quietly in the back of the cab next to the hunky hubster, I realized that the butterflies that were flying around weren’t due to eating entirely too much crab fondue, they were from excitement. This is really happening, ya‘ll!! Tomorrow is the big day. Tomorrow we are sailing to Alaska! I’M sailing to ALASKA!!! We plan to arrive at the port around 11 in the morning and I’m really looking forward to my first glimpse of the Diamond Princess. Will she look as enormous as I think she will? Am I still having my initial worries of boredom, of feeling trapped, of certain and crippling seasickness, of how in the world I’ll swim in freezing water after the ships hull bashes into an iceberg? Maybe a tiny bit. I mean, hey, it’s happened before. But honestly, I really am getting excited. I believe my anxiety has finally flown out the port hole.

Who’d have thought? Tomorrow…we’re going on a cruise, baby!

To be cont'd...

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Great job, Stacey. I guess a lot of us had the same thoughts with our first, the worries about seasickness, claustrophobia, etc. It's nice to see those thoughts expressed by someone else.

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Fabulous! And very easy to relate to since we have felt all of those same emotions. The butterflies never go away, but it is from pure joy and excitement to be off on another cruise!

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I totally agree about arriving at least a day early. Cuts down on the stress...or at least spreads it out a little more. I have had a suitcase arrive a day later than I did, and was glad we scheduled the layover.

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