Once we got onto the ship, we immediately made our way to the elevators where we headed up to our stateroom on Deck 7, the Rotterdam. Even though I had seen the panaroma photos on the Holland America website, I really had no idea what to expect when we opened the door to our room. At first glance, it is sized a little like an RV, with a narrow hallway, and carefully planned storage. We had a room with a balcony. Our larger bags had not made it to our room yet, so we took the opportunity to step out onto the balcony and take in the view in port.
We happened to be docked next to The Allure of the Seas, which is reportedly the largest cruise ship in existence. But. who cares about that ship, when we were aboard a chartered Gaither cruise?!
We left the room and started to explore the ship. We made it up to the 10th deck and found the Explorations Cafe, which adjoins the internet cafe. You can see a couple of folks who had already stacked out a reclining chair to enjoy the view. Hubby and I separated as we looked out at the different views. When I looked back around the room to find him, I saw that he was chatting with someone in the library section. Tori Taff was up there selecting a book to read and she and my hubby were having a lively conversation! I walked over, let my husband know that he was talking to one of the artist’s wives, and told her how much I enjoyed reading her blog. Once we left her to continue her search for a good book, I told him how hilarious she is! If you have never read her blog, check out her out at http://www.babybloomr.com/about/
We checked out the view from the top deck and found ourselves looking down onto the Skyview Pool, which is on the Lido Deck (9). The Lido restaurant is sandwiched between this Skyview Pool area and the other pool which has a retractable ceiling that can be opened when the weather is right.
Yep, there is a basketball court on Deck 10!
On our stateroom key was a code which told us which lifeboat we were assigned to, in case that were to be needed. I was comforted to know that Buddy Greene and his wife would be in our boat. I’m sure he would bring his harmonica and we would sing our way to safety.
They take this safety drill seriously, though. As soon as we all congregated in our various areas (artists included), they read off the stateroom number and had us indicate that we were present. Those that were not present had their names called out over the loud speaker and asked to report or face removal from the ship. (Several names/stateroom numbers were called, but I believe that all were eventually accounted for.) Departure time was at 5 p.m. and this mandatory safety briefing was held promptly at 3:45 p.m.
We made it back to our stateroom to put away our belongings. Here are a few photos of our room before we messed it all up with our junk.
This one is blurry, but maybe it will give you an idea of the desk size. There is a little mini-bar stocked with “stuff.” We emptied it and filled it with Diet Coke. 🙂