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About rjbean4

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Palm Harbor, FL

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  1. Just wanted to report that with the latest advisory that has just come out for Dorian and those involved with flights to Orlando that the airport will not be closing and operations will be as scheduled. But remember any changes to the projected track could reverse this. Good luck to everyone and hope you make it home safely.
  2. cat shepard, hope everything goes OK over on your side of the state. Were on the west coast north of Tampa and people here are taking the threat pretty seriously even though its starting to look like we will be spared from the worst. Schools in the Tampa/west central FL area counties have already been announced to be close for Tuesday. Almost everyone coming out of our Publix today had bottled water and its also being limited as to how much people can buy. Gas stations are running out of gas as people are filling up their cars. My mom tried to get some extra cash when we checked out at Publix and she couldn't do it as they were out. I said then we need to go to the bank. She then told me that she had plenty here at home but was just going to get a little more. Has been announced that the Orlando Airport (MCO) will close at 2am Monday. That could change as the weather changes. Sea ports along the east coast are getting ready to close via the Coat Guard. Port Tampa is fully operational for now trying to help distribute gas and some trucks are getting escorts. Tampa Airport (TPA) should be able to stay open as long as the weather doesn't get too bad. Any effected airports that become closed will also be without any airplanes on the ground as all the airlines will fly their planes out after they have disembarked their passengers and unloaded luggage.
  3. https://www.orlandosentinel.com/weather/hurricane/os-ne-hurricane-dorian-orlando-airport-20190830-7bmdjfoswrgebmegmajhlne6ai-story.html This link confirms the Orlando Airport (MCO) Closure at 2 am on Monday. No flights coming in or going out after the closure till the weather passes. Inspections will have to be done then to make sure the airport is clear from any debris before it can re open. Also Airlines will NOT leave their equipment (airplanes) on the ground at a airport that is going to be exposed to a threat of this nature and will fly them out after their inbound flight is unloaded. The closure is also subject to change as the forecast changes. I know as we have a very strong aviation background as my dad was a Northwest Airlines 747 Captain and flew for 31 years.
  4. Hate to be the bearer of bad news but the Orlando Airport is closing at 2AM Monday. Mom and I are on the West Coast and people here are taking it seriously stocking up on supplies. Schools in Pinellas, Pasco, Hillsborough counties are closed Tuesday. As much has you want to get back it will probably be better to wait till the weather passes. Hope everything ends up being OK.
  5. Just checked Marine Traffic. Empress of the Seas is en route to Tortola doing 6.6 knots so today turned into a sea day for them. Checking using Marine Traffic over the next few days will answer the question about other ships going in there. Doesn't sound like this is a very good time to visit and under the current conditions till things settle down I doubt the cruise lines would run the risk and go somewhere else.
  6. Wow! So the day we disembarked in 88 after the Christmas cruise you went out on her for New Years. Our first 8 HAL cruises were on her and the last was in April, 1995 which was her last cruise from Tampa before leaving for the summer at that time. I know I have pictures of her going under the Skyway Bridge for the last time and have found I also have a video of it on a VHS tape that I need to convert to digital. Our first ever cruise was on NCL's Sunward II in 1984 followed by our 2nd on the Norway in 85. Of course both of those ships have been scrapped and long gone but seeing this happening to our first HAL ship is much harder to take. We can sure get attached to them like those of us with aviation backgrounds get attached to the planes and see then retired from service to the desert.
  7. Earlier today I decided to see if I could find a more recent picture to see what Our beloved Nieuw Amsterdam III looks like as she is being scrapped. Se was our firs HAL ship back in December, 1988. We were on board for her 12 day Christmas Cruise when we did the partial canal transit on Christmas day with the Rotterdam V. We have been at sea for the Holidays every year ever since. I am actually currently working on digitizing the pictures from that cruise by using a negative scanner to scan the negatives and then some photo editing software to clean them up as much as I can. Yes I still have the negatives for the cruises we have done till going digital in 2004. When I found this picture I was speechless and thought about all the memories from the time we cruised on her. Till this day we have more days on her than any of the other Dam Ships we have been on at a total of 107 days (9 cruises) but our days on Nieuw Amsterdam IV are #2 (96 days & 13 cruises) so the next time we can get on her will hopefully be enough to take over the top spot for us.
  8. Checking back in on this before as mom and I say "Shutting down for the night" (due to our ties to aviation and my dad flying for NWA for 31 years its our way of saying going to bed) this is certainly not what I wanted to hear.
  9. Oh no this is not good. I have a way of knowing were all the HAL ships are every day and says that Volendam is in Ketchikan today. Just checked Marine Traffic and currently 3 ships are docked. Coral Princess, Royal Princess and yes the Volendam. Hope for a positive outcome.
  10. My mom and I were on the Zuiderdam last late October, early November so we were on for Halloween. When we found that smoothies had become available we did have some of them. To me they were OK. But then again we had started going to a local Smoothie King so we do have a way to compare them. Of course the menu at a Smoothie King is considerably bigger. I decided that those form our Smoothie King were better and more flavorful. Better and more natural ingredients also. Then when we were on the Nieuw Statendam for 18 days over the Holidays I didn't have any and my mom didn't have as many. When we disembarked we found a Smoothie King and made a stop to get get a couple to have as we started our drive home. The smoothies on the ship could be better for sure. I noticed the yogurt being used was just one of the plain little cups from the lido. Hopefully they will get better as I am a picky eater and is a way to get more fruit in me.
  11. Wow. Hearing about this is really unfortunate and certainly not what people ever want to hear. I feel fortunate that after what my mom and I have been through losing may dad who was a commercial airline pilot and then my older brother coming up 2 years ago the end of May we have been able to support each other and move forward with our lives. Even my current Orthodontist said to me once to keep getting out with my mom to do as much as we can as long as she can. This is because there is a story as it relates to one of his offices that was a part of when my dad passed away and I was with a different Dr doing treatment at the time. This is also sad because a very dear close friend of ours who what would have been about 3 years ago moved to be closer to us because she she thought so much of our friendship that she wanted to be closer to us. About 3 weeks into last year's WC had to leave because of a problem and when trying to do this years had to leave again even earlier into the cruise still dealing with the problem that caused having to leave last years WC (2018) in addition to other issues and is also no longer with us. At least made it back and were together about 3 times before passing. I now that a lot of people on the WC knew our friend and I know that I am probably still showing my emotions way more than my mom over this loss. We first met while doing the Statendam 1999/2000 Millennium Holiday Cruise to Hawaii and back from San Diego as we were always at the bar in the Crows Nest to have some drinks before going to dinner at the same time. Our friendship was like we were family and when my mom experienced heart problems after our return from time with our friends in the Netherlands and a Koningsdam cruise from Amsterdam in 2016 our friend was with me to lean on. Everything worked out good with my mom and still going strong.
  12. Oh I hate hearing when someone passes as a very good long time friend of ours was on the Amsterdam WC but is one of the passengers that had to leave the ship due to health problems and is also no longer with us. At least made it back and we had a couple of visits before leaving us.
  13. Just a FYI that the Rotterdam trans Atlantic cruise started from Tampa not Ft. Lauderdale. The Rotterdam has been sailing from Tampa the last couple of Caribbean winter seasons and when she left last Sunday there are no plans for a HAL ship to return to sailing from Tampa at this time.
  14. I too remember finding out about what had happened to the Rotterdam the year before when you were on. But didn't find it till after we had returned home from our trip in 04. One event in our life that we have not forgotten. Yeah seeing how close the Viking ship was to going aground is pretty scary. Our situation was pretty scary cause we were so far from land and sure you were too in 03. We were back on the Rotterdam for the 04-05 Holiday cruise but it was a pretty bad trip cause so many things happened. We also were involved. When they realized they had made made a terrible mistake involving us they tried to make up for it but we had already been so hurt by it all we wanted to leave the ship on the last day when we were in Key West but of course we stuck it out. Because of this we just decided that we wouldn't cruise on the Rotterdam any more and till this day we haven't. Have been on the other Dam Ships as there are plenty to pick from. Most recently we were on the Nieuw Statendam over the Holidays for 18 days.
  15. Yeah we didn't have any complaints as to how this was all handled back in 04. When we reached Belfast as our last port before starting the crossing pretty much everyone knew that Karl was out there and wondered how it was going to effect our route. When we left Belfast we were supposed to go north and around Northern Ireland but was changed due to the poor weather conditions. I remember meeting up with people who had done the tour that included Giants Causeway and said the conditions were "not good". Instead we headed south along the East coast of Ireland and then started across the Atlantic in a way that was going to keep us out of harms way but despite the efforts we still ran into the problem we ended up with. No it wasn't fun and I have similar video of things moving across the floor and the sound of bottles and glasses falling and breaking. Along with the video showing the motion we were experiencing due to our sea conditions. Yeah we were back on the Rotterdam for Christmas and New Years that December as when we found out that our friend was there we changed ships. Unfortunately we had such a bad trip because so many things happened including a situation we were involved with, we decided we wouldn't cruise on the Rotterdam anymore and since then we haven't. We have still been cruising but just doing it on the other ships and this past Holiday for Christmas and New Years we were on the Nieuw Statendam.
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