Saturday, June 14, 2014

Alaska Journal #2: Passing Through Customs & Approaching the Cruise Ship

On Sunday, June 1st, mid-morning, we traveled by shuttle from our hotel in Vancouver, B.C. to the customs office.  After standing in a long line, we showed our passports and then got a glimpse of our cruise ship through the glass wall.  I'll be sharing pictures later that reveal more accurately how big the ship really is.

These are the waters of Vancouver, B.C. from the customs building.

Oh, geez!!  Is that our cruise ship?

Look at the back end of that thing!!!

Alice is in awe as well.  You can tell Lynnette and I are related as she aims to get our first sight of the ship recorded on her camera.  

I bet Lon isn't thinking about painting and decorating at this moment.
It says "Statendam" on the side.  Hot damn!  That's definitely the ship we're going to be cruising on for the next 7 days.

Don't wake me up...I'm loving this dream.

The view of downtown Vancouver ain't too shabby either.  Look at those beautiful towers.

Hey, they're letting other folks board ahead of us!!  That doesn't seem right.  Does it???  We came all the way from Wisconsin and Ohio; doesn't that make us extra special???  (That's my immature side revealing it's silly head).

I do and I don't like the looks of those life boats.  Ya know?

We're officially world travelers with passports to prove it.  We had to show them at the airport in Vancouver in order to enter Canada.  Here at ship side, we are using them to get back into the United States.

Yupper...that's me with the glasses.

The stamp placed by the customs official is faint but it's there.  What if he'd thought we looked shady and denied us passage?  I suspect I'd have thrown myself down, sobbing uncontrollably and pounding the floor with my fists.  That usually works for me.  


Cheryl aka Shaddy said...

Visitors: If you should want to leave a comment, you can click on anonymous and sign your name at the end of the comment. That makes it pretty easy. Thanks.

Gullible said...

Doesn't that lone stamp make you want to fill up your brand new passport with stamps from around the world? My passport, issued in 2007, has five empty pages and lots of countries stamped on pages with stamps already there.

Looks like you had an easier time boarding than I did. We had a loooong wait in a cold, damp parking garage, a long wait in a line checking for bird or swine flu, and a long wait to get our boarding papers. Nightmare. FOUR ships were boarding at the same time from the same terminal on the first day of the season.

Okay, now onto yoour ship, your room, etc. Never been on a Holland ship before. Let's float this boat!

Cheryl aka Shaddy said...

What trip are you referring to, Gully, when you had the tough time boarding?

Ours was a piece of cake compared to yours. Yikes! You're one tough cookie, Gully.

Gullible said...

My cruise to Alaska, of course. It was several years ago. We left from Vancouver, went to Ketchikan, Juneau, Tracy Arm, Skagway, and back to Seattle. The cruise ships have to leave from or arrive in a port not in the US if they are not US-owned, under the provisions of the Jones Act. That's why you had to go to Vancouver.

Yes, that was a horrible start to my first cruise. Seems to me, it took about 8 hours just to get on the ship. Awful. I was booked on a Caribbean cruise because there was a writer's workshop being held on board. I figured I wouldn't be bored to tears with that to keep me occupied, and I wasn't.

I've cruised on small ships since--Russian waterways, Yangtze River to Three Gorges Dam. And to the Falklands, South Georgia Island, and Antarctica. I cannot imagine cruising around Hawaii or the Caribbean, or the Greek Islands, etc. I would be bored silly.

Cap Chastain said...

There comes the day when you have to have PAGES ADDED to your Passport .. the added pages are lettered (A, B, C etc) as opposed to numbered (1, 2, 3 etc) in the original document. What silliness it is this Passport Control thing between the U.S. and Canada .. but .. it-is-what-it-is .. Smiles .. Cap and Patti ..

Cheryl aka Shaddy said...

CAP: It was a lot of extra work and expense to get a passport in our situation. But, like you wrote, it is what it is!!!