Friday, August 8, 2014

Part 3: Operation Survive the Portland Winter

Girl’s Night Cruise
At some point during the winter flight prices went down quite a bit and I told my sisters that I could afford to come to Utah another time for a sister’s weekend.  Andra and Laila decided very quickly that we should go on a short cruise from Los Angeles to Ensenada instead.  We went the last weekend in April.
Russ & I took a weekend cruise when the triplets were about 2 and I really needed a break.  We weren’t too thrilled with it (other than the snorkeling) and some of those original feelings surfaced again on this cruise.  The weather wasn’t great (we really were only warm in Ensenada and once we were back in Los Angeles), the food wasn’t great, and the ocean was rough enough that I had dizziness for about a month after we got back.  (You know, 2 days of cruising, 31 days of dizziness.)

But the truth is, wherever I am with my sisters we have a great time.  We had fun from the moment we met in the airport and Margaret and I had fun in the airport for hours after we sent Andra and Laila home on their flight.
We laughed and laughed that we had the most fun sitting beside a wall.  On the first night we were all so tired and just wanted to go to bed.  (Well other than Margaret who just wanted to go exercise, which she did.)  But our cabin didn’t have the bunks lowered yet and the beds made up so we had to wait.  And wait.  And wait.  We ended up going out into the area with the elevators and sitting down by the stairs.  We sat there for long enough that we had several people come through and make comments about it.  One group even called us their landmark.  After that we made a point of coming back and sitting by our wall regularly.

(I should point out that here we are wearing our “isleepy: there’s a nap for that” shirts, except that I totally had a mental lapse and forgot mine so I’m wearing Margaret’s.)
Cindys 4-27-14 059Here we are in our formal night clothes.  We walked around and had our picture taken at several of the picture places but we really thought their poses for 4 women together were ridiculous.  Cindys 4-27-14 043
This picture is after we went into Ensenada where we skipped the higher priced vanilla and went to a regular grocery store and bought all that they had.  Mostly Margaret who took some back for everyone she knew in New York.  Ensenada was one of the most stressful parts of the cruise experience for me—walking down that main street with all of the vendors calling to us to look at their thing was my definition of a nightmare.  In retrospect I would have been happier to buy the more expensive vanilla by the ship and spend the day sitting in the sun.  On the other hand I did buy a really terrific pair of earrings in Ensenada.
Cindys 4-27-14 069After we disembarked we found ourselves a new wall and basked happily in the sun while we waited for our airport shuttle to arrive.
Here are some other random pictures and happenings from our trip.
The first thing I had to do on the ship was get some protein.  I was desperate by this point.  (And no, I didn’t even get a plate.  Just a fork!)
10172819_10202874787343590_9016156068079450597_nWe did put on our swimsuits, find a semi-sheltered place, and buy a (non-alcoholic) drink.  Brrrrr.  We were all happy to wrap up again after the picture was taken!Cindys 4-27-14 041We had an interesting experience on formal night.  There was a group of 20-something guys who always stopped to talk to us when the saw us anywhere on the ship.  We were perplexed by it, because although Laila (who is much younger than the rest of us) is young and cute, the rest of us look like what we are—middle aged moms.  Nevertheless these guys always stopped to talk.  On the formal night when we were sitting by our wall they came through that area.  When they saw us they came over and one of them said, “We don’t know what it is, but we love your vibe.”  Now we didn’t always want their attention (especially when they had been drinking a lot), but it was interesting to see that there was something about us that they found appealing.  We, of course, would say it is the light of Christ.
Cindys 4-27-14 047Here is a shot of our room with the bunks out.  They were very comfortable and we all slept great!
IMG_9659You know this water slide looks so awesome but it’s just not that great when it’s so cold and windy up there that you would need a wetsuit to go on it.  And we did see several wetsuit clad children who still looked like they were freezing.
Cindys 4-27-14 062This is our “we survived Ensenada” picture. 
Cindys 4-27-14 067We ate breakfast every day out on the deck.  One morning we saw dolphins and it was magical.  (As dolphins almost always are.)  We decided that our mom had sent them for us to see and be delighted by.  Other mornings we tried to keep the seagulls from taking off with our breakfasts.
Home again—I don’t think I’ve flown in before where I had a view like this down the Wilamette River.  So pretty.

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