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HeinBloed

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    Holland America, Princess, Cunard, Disney, Norwegian, Azamara
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    any - as there is a cruise ship call
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    http://www.heinbloed-onboard.de

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  1. The blog from our VEENDAM-Voyage from Lisbon, Portugal to Boston, MA is completed - the blog for my 100th cruise. So with a lot of look backs and comparisons with the other 99 cruises, with other cruise lines, with other sailings on HAL. Chapter 1-13 Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal - Boston, MA Chapter 14-18 POST-Cruise 5 more chapter PRE-Cruise Tag/Day 1 in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-1-auf-deron-veendam-in.html Actually, we should go on NIEUW STATENDAM, but we could not say no to the itinerary on the small HAL ship. The rebooked immediately. Mainly because we wanted to know what it was like to stay in a lanai cabin. It does not start off as ideally as I am used to from other sailings with HAL, but at the end of the voyage, it was a pleasant journey. We get to know a great cruise director: Tommy. But we miss a lot of items that Holland America did better than other companies and that no longer exist on board today. I am annoyed that we were allocated into the Canaletto on the day of embarkation and could not express any wish when we would like to dine here. But on the other hand, it is not that bad since the kitchen has become very tasty again and we enjoy excellent service. === Tag/Day 2 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-2-auf-deron-veendam.html I like VEENDAM - because of the size. But I do not really like everything that has changed since my last voyages with HAL. A lot has gotten worse. But some items have obtained better. So a little: 2 steps back and 1 step forward. At least we have two lovely cabin stewards Hartoyo and Ermawan: at least this service has remained from the previous trips. Life on the promenade in front of the lanai cabin is fraught with more problems than I expected: I am full of paint residues. Peter, from the front desk, stops the works for me. Cruisecritic.com's worst Meet & Greet took place on board: It is said that HAL has prohibited senior officers from participating. It is a shame. Fortunately, at least Tommy was there. Still very good: the editor programs for the destinations: Cisco presented this very well. In the main restaurant, we experience the old school service from HAL again: thanks to Yayah. Another step back: tea time. A final official meeting for the Friends of Dorothy on day 2. Here we get to know Yulia and also the bar pianist Barry from Boston. In the future, we should take care of ourselves! Shall we now pay for lobsters in the main restaurant? === Tag/Day 3 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-3-auf-deron-veendam.html Before Carnival starts doing something more for the environment for the entire group, we do it ourselves. We visit Caryl and Daryl (no - they are not a couple) from the Explorations Cafe with our own tray and do not take any disposable to-go cups. Otherwise, we enjoy the day with good food and do nothing. And we appreciate the service in the main dining room from Purwono, Dony, Eko, Oka, and Arturo. Today we finally manage to get a group picture of the Canaletto team: Dewi, Phoebe, Arsiandi, Adi, and Vladimir. We experience Captain Mark Trembling's first Captain's Toast. But still: in the past, it was somehow more beautiful, sophisticated, and elegant. === Tag/Day 4 in Ponta Delgada, Azores, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-4-auf-deron-veendam-in-ponta.html Sometimes you see something on TV, and you really want to go there. Unfortunately, the place is not around the corner. For us, it's the Azores islands of Portugal. Nadja and Rafael from Hungry Whales arranged a private tour for us. I made a colossal mistake: HUNGRY Whales. The name says it all: I have rarely eaten so much on a trip. Unfortunately, the weather does not play along, but since it is a private tour, we are flexible. Market hall (with the famous pineapple), Furnas, Terra Nostra (botanical garden - bath in volcanic water), tea plantation Cha Gorreana, Santa Iria, waterfall Salto do Cabrito and Ribiera Grande are some of the highlights of the tour, which ask for more. We have booked another cruise for 2021, which will even call two islands of the Azores. There would have been one with three calls, but the timing was not right. There is still a lot to discover next time. Back on board, I meet an old friend from the ZAANDAM reception: Ray. On the positive innovations: You can also transfer pictures directly to your smartphone digitally: without paper - without a USB stick. And finally back to the Pinnacle Grill. But unfortunately also here: A lot of items that I really liked: especially my skewers - do not exist anymore. === Tag/Day 5 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-5-auf-deron-veendam.html Another encounter from the past: I also know Chris from the reception of EURODAM 2014. Today she works in the excursion office. Finally, back to the Pinnacle Grill for lunch: The chef here, Jan Laurant, prepares my tartar for me as I know it from his home country, France: Fantastique! I get to know the super VIP of the trip: Joska - a service dog. Again, do not eat, do nothing, eat, and enjoy Troy's excellent service. I now love the sea days. Somehow I cannot do that much with the Orange Party. The others can really do better. === Tag/Day 6 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-6-auf-deron-veendam.html I am happy that I got my dragonfruit again: thanks to Koray. Mahmut, who we know from NCL and who now also works at HAL, guarantees with Turkish hospitality even from another ship that I will be as happy as I was at NCL and as if he would be on board himself. Today it is already time for the Mariners Lunch, but here again: in the past, everything was more elegant, sophisticated, and beautiful. There is no chef's table at VEENDAM, but there is a Cellar Master's Italian Dinner: a great event with great food directed by the Cellar Master Imre and chef at Canaletto Ronie. A new experience on the 100th cruise: a planned water shutdown. === Tag/Day 7 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/seetagday-at-sea-7-auf-deron-veendam.html Doing nothing, eating, doing nothing, eating - that is really good. The weather invites you to do so. Today is gala night again, and I am experiencing "Classic Afternoon Tea". Finally, a more delicate version. Housekeeping Executive Albert really has a great team. Nothing to complain about. You can tell him that too. We donate for "On Deck for a Cause", but we do not run anymore. But I am counting the rounds. I am happy about the letter from Captain Mark, who thanks me for some photos of me. My world is okay again: There are lobsters in the main restaurant without the need to pay extra. Excellent service from Surasit and Christopher. === Tag/Day 8 in St. John's, NL, Canada https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-8-auf-deron-veendam-in-st-johns.html The sea days were so beautiful: why are there really any cruises only with sea days that never dock in a port again? The sunrise this morning is fantastic. We reach shore: Newfoundland - St. John's, Canada. With Larry from Mc Carthy's Party, we do a tour with the highlights Cape Spear (the easternmost point of Canada), Petty Harbor, Signal Hill (such a beautiful view), Quidi Vidi. When we are here, we have to try the freshly caught cod from here. We can experience the set sail from the tip of the bow, which is open to passengers today. They are also lovingly cared for on the promenade deck: thanks to Ranti, Lany, and Putra. In the evening, we go to Rudi's Sel de Mer as a pop-up in the Pinnacle Grill. Mel is our wine steward here. He is Caryl's husband. But the others also offer us excellent service: Job, Yuni, Ahmad, and Troy. Bahadir ensures that we lack nothing and that it will be just as beautiful as it was at KONINGSDAM 2016. A perfect idea from HAL to introduce Rudi's Sel de Mer as a pop-up alternative. === Tag/Day 9 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/seetagday-at-sea-9-auf-deron-veendam.html An additional day at sea instead of "Living like God in France" - in the middle of the North Atlantic. Unfortunately, the weather does not allow a start in French Overseas Territory of St-Pierre. We simply take the time for a great breakfast with Rega and Yohannes. Too bad that the daily specials are no longer available. A little extra rest to refuel is good for us. === Tag/Day 10 in Sydney, NS, Canada https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-10-auf-deron-veendam-in-sydney.html Our first encounter with Nova Scotia in Sydney, Canada. Our German-born tour guide Joe shows us how to do it there: with a hug and a coffee at Tim Hortons. The perfect place for all lovers of string instruments. The most giant violin in the world is on the pier. It goes to the beautiful rocky coast to Louisbourg and then eating lobster !!! Finally, a lobster that you don't need a magnifying glass for, and that tastes juicy and delicious. A beautiful area to come back to. At the reception, you can always meet the friendly and helpful staff like Zenoby. Again to the Canaletto for dinner. Many thanks to Hotel Director Frank for allowing us the use of a voucher that was valid on NIEUW STATENDAM here on VEENDAM. === Tag/Day 11 in Halifax, NS, Canada https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-11-auf-der-veendam-in-halifax-ns.html Such a grand arrival in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Unfortunately, very few who enjoy the sight. Housekeeping Executive Albert also enjoys this unique valley. I booked a tour with Segway Nova Scotia. Unfortunately for the wrong day and today, everything is sold out. But they are spontaneous and flexible and still take us with them. Emma and Caley take us in the middle so that we can safely enjoy the tour. We see the public garden, cannon fire, and changing of the guard at the citadel. It is an excellent tour of the best weather. I finally manage to eat some poutines, and a lobster roll at McKelvie's is also a must. No chance for us to get lobsters that great in Germany. The set sail is as beautiful as the arrival. Bye-bye ANTHEM OF THE SEAS, NORWEGIAN DAWN, and SCENIC ECLIPSE. There is a small snack on board: Atjima also serves me drinks at the Lido Café. Here I also meet Douglas from the board security. We have often been together without knowing each other. In the evening there is my favorite HAL show: "Classique". The first beats of Coldplay's "Viva la Vida" lead me back on RYNDAM 2013. === Tag/Day 12 in Bar Harbor, ME https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-12-auf-deron-veendam-in-bar.html Welcome to the United States. Are we welcome at all? Especially in Bar Harbor, Maine? How many times have I read articles: "You cruisers are nice, and we like your money, but you are too many for us". Today it goes well: we are the only ship, and we are a small ship. There can be more cruise ship guests in the village than locals! We learn new things: we can enter as individuals, but are not allowed to take anything with us ashore! With the help of Fabiana, however, everything is performed correctly so that nobody gets into trouble when going ashore. We are lucky: through my work at my former company, I still know an enthusiastic fellow-cruise enthusiast, who is fortunately already retired, and usually, in summer, she is in Maine. So the perfect place and the ideal time to celebrate a reunion again: Sandie-Rose and her husband, Richard. They take us to Acadia National Park: Cadillac Mountain, Thunder Hole. And it goes to Bass Harbor to eat the locals: Another lobster roll in the Seafood Ketch Restaurant. On the last evening on board, we eat with July and Betki and the farewell parade: aren't they a few days early? The end is actually near. And so I get a little cake from HAL at the end of my 100th cruise. And she is as beautiful as everyone else. If not much nicer - or not. It does not matter either. Because a journey at sea is always lovely: the 99th just like the 101st. In this part, there is a small review of the 100 cruises, and especially the other trips with HAL. === Tag/Day 13 in Boston, MA https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-13-auf-deron-veendam-in-boston.html We get to Boston, MA, much earlier because we want to be in a safe port. That is why I still see the CARIBBEAN PRINCESS, which stays here in the safe harbor overnight. Now I also meet one of the best dancers in the dance troupe: Antonio. It was impressive to watch him performing. Say goodbye to chef Orly, Gregory, Aaron, Behadir, and Koray. At the airport, we meet Dorothy and Dennis, who are on their way to their transatlantic. But we have to take the opportunity to thank her for all the arrangements. She is a great travel agent who always works for her guests. Shortly we go shopping before we move into the hotel in Waltham in the Boston area. In the evening, we meet a former passenger from a transatlantic at QUEEN MARY 2 2017: David. We comply with him and his friend for dinner. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 14 in Boston, MA https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-14-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html After Cambridge in England, it is Cambridge in Massachusetts. Now I can also say: I was at Harvard. Let us see if that has a positive impact on my success in job applications. It is good to see you again and the hospitality of Larry, whom I've known since NORWEGIAN DREAM 2008. Efxaristo! Repeat offenders: Prudential Tower and Boston Duck Tours. Lionel and Jorge made this tour exceptional. "Cheers": "Where everybody knows your name - And they're always glad you came". They could sing that at HAL... repeat offenders here too. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 15 in Cape Cod, MA https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-15-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html Shopping in Wrentham and heading for Cape Cod. Enjoying the beauty of the landscape. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 16 in Newport, RI https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-16-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html "High Society" along Ocean Drive in Newport, Rhode Island, as well as the best New England clam chowder in the world in "The Black Pearl". We continue by ferry to Long Island, and the day ends again at Wahlburgers: another burger and the onion rings from Donnie Wahlberg. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 17 in New York, NY https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-17-nach-derafter-veendam-in-new.html We love Facebook for this: Friends react immediately to our postings and discover that we are on the way to New York. Actually to Carole King, Scott Conant, and Daniel Boulud. Scott Conant has to wait for the next time. For this, we visit someone from the family of Bruno: Kornelia and Wolfgang - right in the heart of the UN. "Beautiful" by Carole King is a 50+ party - we are lucky and get in for a total of 300 USD instead of 500 USD. In the evening again in Boulud Sud. A fantastic ending. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 18 auf dem Rückweg/on the way back home https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-18-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html Instead of going to Manhattan to Long Beach on Long Island. Looking for a beach with a view of Manhattan. Such a thing is only for the rich and the beautiful. I get to know the "hard way" what it means to drive too fast on a stop sign. Then take-off on a journey through time on the JFK: in the TWA Hotel at Jean-Georges in the Paris Café. With Austrian, it is time to get back home via Vienna in the Premium Economy. There is a deposit payment for the next HAL cruise. Now we have to find the right one. New England and St. Lawrence - or Alaska. There is still so much to discover. === Back to the beginning - very far at the beginning. Every cruise starts with the preparation. Vorfreude/Anticipation 1 in Hamburg, Germany https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/vorfreude-1-auf-dieanticipation-1-on.html It starts in the Elbphilharmonie Concert Hall Building Hamburg - the perfect place to prepare for the journey on the VEENDAM. With good food and with Bach. Of course, with shipspotting SEA CLOUD II. === Vorfreude/Anticipation 2.1 in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/vorfreude-21-auf-dieanticipation-21-on.html We have so many gifts for the crew, for friends, and our folding table for our lanai cabin. The fee for an additional piece of luggage costs just as much as a flight to Lisbon, Portugal. And I have the opportunity to prepare for Lisbon. Finally after Christo Rei. Finally, a loop by tram through the Lisbon old town without stress. === Vorfreude/Anticipation 2.2 in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/vorfreude-22-auf-dieanticipation-22-on.html Cristo Rei #2 and #3. What I do for friends from the USA who are in Lisbon, Portugal, for the first time on RIVIERA. "Dress rehearsal" yesterday and again today with Linda and Wayne. === Pre-Cruise Tag/Day 0A in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-0a-auf-dem-weg-zuon-way-to.html Arrival in Lisbon, Portugal - Cristo Rei for the 4th time. We live in the Inter-Continental. Wow. And a beautiful evening on the Tagus River at Ponto Final. === Pre-Cruise Tag/Day 0B in Sintra, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-0a-auf-dem-weg-zuon-way-to.html UNESCO World Heritage Sintra, Portugal, with our guide Luis, whom we know from our KONINGSDAM 2016 journey. Then back along the coast. In the evening tapas and shopping in the El Corte Ingles department store.
  2. The blog from our VEENDAM-Voyage from Lisbon, Portugal to Boston, MA is completed - the blog for my 100th cruise. So with a lot of look backs and comparisons with the other 99 cruises, with other cruise lines, with other sailings on HAL. Chapter 1-13 Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal - Boston, MA Chapter 14-18 POST-Cruise 5 more chapter PRE-Cruise Tag/Day 1 in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-1-auf-deron-veendam-in.html Actually, we should go on NIEUW STATENDAM, but we could not say no to the itinerary on the small HAL ship. The rebooked immediately. Mainly because we wanted to know what it was like to stay in a lanai cabin. It does not start off as ideally as I am used to from other sailings with HAL, but at the end of the voyage, it was a pleasant journey. We get to know a great cruise director: Tommy. But we miss a lot of items that Holland America did better than other companies and that no longer exist on board today. I am annoyed that we were allocated into the Canaletto on the day of embarkation and could not express any wish when we would like to dine here. But on the other hand, it is not that bad since the kitchen has become very tasty again and we enjoy excellent service. === Tag/Day 2 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-2-auf-deron-veendam.html I like VEENDAM - because of the size. But I do not really like everything that has changed since my last voyages with HAL. A lot has gotten worse. But some items have obtained better. So a little: 2 steps back and 1 step forward. At least we have two lovely cabin stewards Hartoyo and Ermawan: at least this service has remained from the previous trips. Life on the promenade in front of the lanai cabin is fraught with more problems than I expected: I am full of paint residues. Peter, from the front desk, stops the works for me. Cruisecritic.com's worst Meet & Greet took place on board: It is said that HAL has prohibited senior officers from participating. It is a shame. Fortunately, at least Tommy was there. Still very good: the editor programs for the destinations: Cisco presented this very well. In the main restaurant, we experience the old school service from HAL again: thanks to Yayah. Another step back: tea time. A final official meeting for the Friends of Dorothy on day 2. Here we get to know Yulia and also the bar pianist Barry from Boston. In the future, we should take care of ourselves! Shall we now pay for lobsters in the main restaurant? === Tag/Day 3 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-3-auf-deron-veendam.html Before Carnival starts doing something more for the environment for the entire group, we do it ourselves. We visit Caryl and Daryl (no - they are not a couple) from the Explorations Cafe with our own tray and do not take any disposable to-go cups. Otherwise, we enjoy the day with good food and do nothing. And we appreciate the service in the main dining room from Purwono, Dony, Eko, Oka, and Arturo. Today we finally manage to get a group picture of the Canaletto team: Dewi, Phoebe, Arsiandi, Adi, and Vladimir. We experience Captain Mark Trembling's first Captain's Toast. But still: in the past, it was somehow more beautiful, sophisticated, and elegant. === Tag/Day 4 in Ponta Delgada, Azores, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-4-auf-deron-veendam-in-ponta.html Sometimes you see something on TV, and you really want to go there. Unfortunately, the place is not around the corner. For us, it's the Azores islands of Portugal. Nadja and Rafael from Hungry Whales arranged a private tour for us. I made a colossal mistake: HUNGRY Whales. The name says it all: I have rarely eaten so much on a trip. Unfortunately, the weather does not play along, but since it is a private tour, we are flexible. Market hall (with the famous pineapple), Furnas, Terra Nostra (botanical garden - bath in volcanic water), tea plantation Cha Gorreana, Santa Iria, waterfall Salto do Cabrito and Ribiera Grande are some of the highlights of the tour, which ask for more. We have booked another cruise for 2021, which will even call two islands of the Azores. There would have been one with three calls, but the timing was not right. There is still a lot to discover next time. Back on board, I meet an old friend from the ZAANDAM reception: Ray. On the positive innovations: You can also transfer pictures directly to your smartphone digitally: without paper - without a USB stick. And finally back to the Pinnacle Grill. But unfortunately also here: A lot of items that I really liked: especially my skewers - do not exist anymore. === Tag/Day 5 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-5-auf-deron-veendam.html Another encounter from the past: I also know Chris from the reception of EURODAM 2014. Today she works in the excursion office. Finally, back to the Pinnacle Grill for lunch: The chef here, Jan Laurant, prepares my tartar for me as I know it from his home country, France: Fantastique! I get to know the super VIP of the trip: Joska - a service dog. Again, do not eat, do nothing, eat, and enjoy Troy's excellent service. I now love the sea days. Somehow I cannot do that much with the Orange Party. The others can really do better. === Tag/Day 6 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/seetagday-at-sea-6-auf-deron-veendam.html I am happy that I got my dragonfruit again: thanks to Koray. Mahmut, who we know from NCL and who now also works at HAL, guarantees with Turkish hospitality even from another ship that I will be as happy as I was at NCL and as if he would be on board himself. Today it is already time for the Mariners Lunch, but here again: in the past, everything was more elegant, sophisticated, and beautiful. There is no chef's table at VEENDAM, but there is a Cellar Master's Italian Dinner: a great event with great food directed by the Cellar Master Imre and chef at Canaletto Ronie. A new experience on the 100th cruise: a planned water shutdown. === Tag/Day 7 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/seetagday-at-sea-7-auf-deron-veendam.html Doing nothing, eating, doing nothing, eating - that is really good. The weather invites you to do so. Today is gala night again, and I am experiencing "Classic Afternoon Tea". Finally, a more delicate version. Housekeeping Executive Albert really has a great team. Nothing to complain about. You can tell him that too. We donate for "On Deck for a Cause", but we do not run anymore. But I am counting the rounds. I am happy about the letter from Captain Mark, who thanks me for some photos of me. My world is okay again: There are lobsters in the main restaurant without the need to pay extra. Excellent service from Surasit and Christopher. === Tag/Day 8 in St. John's, NL, Canada https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-8-auf-deron-veendam-in-st-johns.html The sea days were so beautiful: why are there really any cruises only with sea days that never dock in a port again? The sunrise this morning is fantastic. We reach shore: Newfoundland - St. John's, Canada. With Larry from Mc Carthy's Party, we do a tour with the highlights Cape Spear (the easternmost point of Canada), Petty Harbor, Signal Hill (such a beautiful view), Quidi Vidi. When we are here, we have to try the freshly caught cod from here. We can experience the set sail from the tip of the bow, which is open to passengers today. They are also lovingly cared for on the promenade deck: thanks to Ranti, Lany, and Putra. In the evening, we go to Rudi's Sel de Mer as a pop-up in the Pinnacle Grill. Mel is our wine steward here. He is Caryl's husband. But the others also offer us excellent service: Job, Yuni, Ahmad, and Troy. Bahadir ensures that we lack nothing and that it will be just as beautiful as it was at KONINGSDAM 2016. A perfect idea from HAL to introduce Rudi's Sel de Mer as a pop-up alternative. === Tag/Day 9 (Seetag/Day at Sea) https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/seetagday-at-sea-9-auf-deron-veendam.html An additional day at sea instead of "Living like God in France" - in the middle of the North Atlantic. Unfortunately, the weather does not allow a start in French Overseas Territory of St-Pierre. We simply take the time for a great breakfast with Rega and Yohannes. Too bad that the daily specials are no longer available. A little extra rest to refuel is good for us. === Tag/Day 10 in Sydney, NS, Canada https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-10-auf-deron-veendam-in-sydney.html Our first encounter with Nova Scotia in Sydney, Canada. Our German-born tour guide Joe shows us how to do it there: with a hug and a coffee at Tim Hortons. The perfect place for all lovers of string instruments. The most giant violin in the world is on the pier. It goes to the beautiful rocky coast to Louisbourg and then eating lobster !!! Finally, a lobster that you don't need a magnifying glass for, and that tastes juicy and delicious. A beautiful area to come back to. At the reception, you can always meet the friendly and helpful staff like Zenoby. Again to the Canaletto for dinner. Many thanks to Hotel Director Frank for allowing us the use of a voucher that was valid on NIEUW STATENDAM here on VEENDAM. === Tag/Day 11 in Halifax, NS, Canada https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-11-auf-der-veendam-in-halifax-ns.html Such a grand arrival in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Unfortunately, very few who enjoy the sight. Housekeeping Executive Albert also enjoys this unique valley. I booked a tour with Segway Nova Scotia. Unfortunately for the wrong day and today, everything is sold out. But they are spontaneous and flexible and still take us with them. Emma and Caley take us in the middle so that we can safely enjoy the tour. We see the public garden, cannon fire, and changing of the guard at the citadel. It is an excellent tour of the best weather. I finally manage to eat some poutines, and a lobster roll at McKelvie's is also a must. No chance for us to get lobsters that great in Germany. The set sail is as beautiful as the arrival. Bye-bye ANTHEM OF THE SEAS, NORWEGIAN DAWN, and SCENIC ECLIPSE. There is a small snack on board: Atjima also serves me drinks at the Lido Café. Here I also meet Douglas from the board security. We have often been together without knowing each other. In the evening there is my favorite HAL show: "Classique". The first beats of Coldplay's "Viva la Vida" lead me back on RYNDAM 2013. === Tag/Day 12 in Bar Harbor, ME https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-12-auf-deron-veendam-in-bar.html Welcome to the United States. Are we welcome at all? Especially in Bar Harbor, Maine? How many times have I read articles: "You cruisers are nice, and we like your money, but you are too many for us". Today it goes well: we are the only ship, and we are a small ship. There can be more cruise ship guests in the village than locals! We learn new things: we can enter as individuals, but are not allowed to take anything with us ashore! With the help of Fabiana, however, everything is performed correctly so that nobody gets into trouble when going ashore. We are lucky: through my work at my former company, I still know an enthusiastic fellow-cruise enthusiast, who is fortunately already retired, and usually, in summer, she is in Maine. So the perfect place and the ideal time to celebrate a reunion again: Sandie-Rose and her husband, Richard. They take us to Acadia National Park: Cadillac Mountain, Thunder Hole. And it goes to Bass Harbor to eat the locals: Another lobster roll in the Seafood Ketch Restaurant. On the last evening on board, we eat with July and Betki and the farewell parade: aren't they a few days early? The end is actually near. And so I get a little cake from HAL at the end of my 100th cruise. And she is as beautiful as everyone else. If not much nicer - or not. It does not matter either. Because a journey at sea is always lovely: the 99th just like the 101st. In this part, there is a small review of the 100 cruises, and especially the other trips with HAL. === Tag/Day 13 in Boston, MA https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-13-auf-deron-veendam-in-boston.html We get to Boston, MA, much earlier because we want to be in a safe port. That is why I still see the CARIBBEAN PRINCESS, which stays here in the safe harbor overnight. Now I also meet one of the best dancers in the dance troupe: Antonio. It was impressive to watch him performing. Say goodbye to chef Orly, Gregory, Aaron, Behadir, and Koray. At the airport, we meet Dorothy and Dennis, who are on their way to their transatlantic. But we have to take the opportunity to thank her for all the arrangements. She is a great travel agent who always works for her guests. Shortly we go shopping before we move into the hotel in Waltham in the Boston area. In the evening, we meet a former passenger from a transatlantic at QUEEN MARY 2 2017: David. We comply with him and his friend for dinner. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 14 in Boston, MA https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-14-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html After Cambridge in England, it is Cambridge in Massachusetts. Now I can also say: I was at Harvard. Let us see if that has a positive impact on my success in job applications. It is good to see you again and the hospitality of Larry, whom I've known since NORWEGIAN DREAM 2008. Efxaristo! Repeat offenders: Prudential Tower and Boston Duck Tours. Lionel and Jorge made this tour exceptional. "Cheers": "Where everybody knows your name - And they're always glad you came". They could sing that at HAL... repeat offenders here too. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 15 in Cape Cod, MA https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-15-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html Shopping in Wrentham and heading for Cape Cod. Enjoying the beauty of the landscape. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 16 in Newport, RI https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-16-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html "High Society" along Ocean Drive in Newport, Rhode Island, as well as the best New England clam chowder in the world in "The Black Pearl". We continue by ferry to Long Island, and the day ends again at Wahlburgers: another burger and the onion rings from Donnie Wahlberg. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 17 in New York, NY https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-17-nach-derafter-veendam-in-new.html We love Facebook for this: Friends react immediately to our postings and discover that we are on the way to New York. Actually to Carole King, Scott Conant, and Daniel Boulud. Scott Conant has to wait for the next time. For this, we visit someone from the family of Bruno: Kornelia and Wolfgang - right in the heart of the UN. "Beautiful" by Carole King is a 50+ party - we are lucky and get in for a total of 300 USD instead of 500 USD. In the evening again in Boulud Sud. A fantastic ending. === Post-Cruise Tag/Day 18 auf dem Rückweg/on the way back home https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/09/tagday-18-nach-derafter-veendam-in.html Instead of going to Manhattan to Long Beach on Long Island. Looking for a beach with a view of Manhattan. Such a thing is only for the rich and the beautiful. I get to know the "hard way" what it means to drive too fast on a stop sign. Then take-off on a journey through time on the JFK: in the TWA Hotel at Jean-Georges in the Paris Café. With Austrian, it is time to get back home via Vienna in the Premium Economy. There is a deposit payment for the next HAL cruise. Now we have to find the right one. New England and St. Lawrence - or Alaska. There is still so much to discover. === Back to the beginning - very far at the beginning. Every cruise starts with the preparation. Vorfreude/Anticipation 1 in Hamburg, Germany https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/vorfreude-1-auf-dieanticipation-1-on.html It starts in the Elbphilharmonie Concert Hall Building Hamburg - the perfect place to prepare for the journey on the VEENDAM. With good food and with Bach. Of course, with shipspotting SEA CLOUD II. === Vorfreude/Anticipation 2.1 in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/vorfreude-21-auf-dieanticipation-21-on.html We have so many gifts for the crew, for friends, and our folding table for our lanai cabin. The fee for an additional piece of luggage costs just as much as a flight to Lisbon, Portugal. And I have the opportunity to prepare for Lisbon. Finally after Christo Rei. Finally, a loop by tram through the Lisbon old town without stress. === Vorfreude/Anticipation 2.2 in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/vorfreude-22-auf-dieanticipation-22-on.html Cristo Rei #2 and #3. What I do for friends from the USA who are in Lisbon, Portugal, for the first time on RIVIERA. "Dress rehearsal" yesterday and again today with Linda and Wayne. === Pre-Cruise Tag/Day 0A in Lissabon/Lisbon, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-0a-auf-dem-weg-zuon-way-to.html Arrival in Lisbon, Portugal - Cristo Rei for the 4th time. We live in the Inter-Continental. Wow. And a beautiful evening on the Tagus River at Ponto Final. === Pre-Cruise Tag/Day 0B in Sintra, Portugal https://heinbloed-hal.blogspot.com/2019/08/tagday-0a-auf-dem-weg-zuon-way-to.html UNESCO World Heritage Sintra, Portugal, with our guide Luis, whom we know from our KONINGSDAM 2016 journey. Then back along the coast. In the evening tapas and shopping in the El Corte Ingles department store.
  3. Meanwhile I requested another one and it was delivered to my room and NOW after talking with Guest Services they have some of the forms on their desk when they are present. So no need to speak with them anymore. But still none is in the rack to help yourself and drop into the box when they are not present.
  4. I am not drinking alcohol and in my surrounding I do not know ACTIVELY one who is impacted of alcohol problems. So I am not familiar. When I did the very first cruise on an American cruise ship in 2007, I found on the daily program Friends of Dorothy Friends of Bill W (and there was third one, which I did not see again or very rarely on a few cruise ships). I asked someone from the front desk and was told Gays Anonymous Alcohol (and the third group, I forgot) As said: since I was not impacted of Alcohol-problems, I did not follow up what is behind Bill W. Just here onboard, I was wondering that after two meetings, Bill W. continued to be shown on the When and Where and LGBTQ not anymore and asking. But as said: guideline from Seattle
  5. LGBTQ-Meetings are normally not set up in a meeting room like the Bill W.-Meetings. From Cunard: You have this sign in the corner of the Commodore Club (similar to Crow's nest) in one corner (similar to Captain's Corner) and if none is showing up, they just remove the sign and open it to the public for other guests... But other guests who are sitting here before the meeting starts should not wonder if it become very male, gay and you can direct their attention to this sign, if they ask you to move away because they were already here all day... Here, onboard of VEENDAM, it worked with the very first two days only and to my surprise: somebody of the Entertainment Department showed up and hosted. We had this only before on NORWEGIAN JADE and the host was gay himself and we got a lot of giveaways etc. But after the two days, I was only surprised that it did not show anymore on the When and Where and the Hotel Director told me "Guideline from Seattle" - and all I was asking here was: does somebody know why there is a guideline like this. They set it up again on my request but the new time and place was not convenient for everyone since it was squeezed between set-sail, event in the bar, trivia etc. On the first day, it was great since we could sit up in the bar and wait "neutrally" (since there was no sign). The first time I had my rainbow lanyard around me and other men just showed up around me... and next time I would discretely put this sign on: The second I was wondering and try to find out here: Again: according to guideline to HAL Seattle: no officer should show up for Meet & Greet of cruisecritic.com, and I was wondering on other HAL-cruises they did or on any other cruise lines they are doing more for US cruisecritic.com-members? And all I was interested to know: did cruisecritic.com becomes an "enemy" of HAL or what for would be the guideline for officers to attend to a meeting. I met here a lot of nice fellow-cruisers, but I also like to meet the senior officers around like I used from previous meetings or with other cruise lines. I did what I usually did: speaking with the Hotel Director and there were too many guidelines... no more peppermill no more snacks etc. etc. But after the talk, I got at least a few items back: so there is now a pepper mill around me... and I must not ask for peanuts anymore when I am buying a drink... and my favorite bar has now cucumber around that I can order "Cool as a Cucumber" immediately. I suggested the Hotel Director to mark his box "Dear Hotel Director" appropriately and to be more "open" and "inviting" guests to contact him and they did promptly: So far, I am still "complaining" that I cannot buy a Future Cruise Deposit, without having an appointment: a box to dispose but no blank forms. For me, I do not see a need to show up at their opening hours and to ask for something which should be in a rack on most ships (no matter which cruise line) and you can order at any time a Future Cruise Deposit.
  6. 1. It was a kind of "weak" communication. The toilets in the public area were not impacted by the maintenance and you could use them - they only forget to tell. But since everyone has different need and I need to see frequently the toilets due to medication. The situation ashore when you have buckets and preparing something at home AND NO vacuum toilet might be different from a situation on a ship at high sea. 2. LGBT-Meeting was listed again - but still unsatisfied answer why only two meetings are listed. Understood that Billy W.-meetings follow a different structure. Thanks to everyone who explained me the difference of the two meetings. 3. They improved the security measurements by setting barriers of "closed" areas impacted by works so nothing could move anymore from above to the lower promenade deck. By this way: thanks to everyone who were explaining the different areas. Had a chance in St. John's to see it from the pier. But (although port call in St-Pierre et Miquelon was canceled) could see that our section under liferafts are "safe" to use if there is tender operation in port, while other sections were closed in preparation of tendering. So disadvantage of less sunshine vs. potential use during tender operation was one more aspect to double check for next booking. I value all inputs which helps me to make the right decision which ship and which cabin. Regarding the Bahamas: sorry for the loss of lifes. But I feel free to ask. I did not complain but asking how other cruisers handle this situation and regarding to Billy W./LGBT I was wondering why it is so differently handled by HAL compared to other cruise lines. It was the first time I had a Lenai cabin, it was the first time I had problems with the works around my personal space, it was the first time I had such a water-supply-suspension. Sorry to bother everyone who felt the need to answer without helpful answers and thanks to everyone who gave me good answers to estimate the situation and telling what would be the best way to prepare.
  7. Check on the deck plan of VEENDAM 366 is a non-Lanai cabin but regular oceanview with a railing in front of us like us: while (estimated 380 and higher) the other have a sheltered promenade in front of their cabin: Maybe this make the difference of the obstruction. H/HH at the aft or in the front had always the sheltered "wall/railing"
  8. Thanks. But as said before: never had the situation before. So no chance to say how other cruise lines handled a similar situation.
  9. Obstruction with HAL: Also rooms you are watching on railings etc. Our cabins in front and aft were formal obstructed view!
  10. Most time: better than on any other cruise ships before... Just now between the coverages between Europe and Canada it is is weaker like before but most of the time 90%, you could even upload pictures without any problems. Even movies are possible.
  11. Well... out of my 27 times with NCL, it was 3 times in The Haven/Courtyard. But anyhow: no matter if I am staying in an inside stateroom or in the Courtyard Villa: if I am dialing on EVERY NCL SHIP FLEETWIDE 8888 I have the Hotel Director right on his phone or if he is not able to attend, I have his secretary. By the way: it was you who started to compare NCL / HAL: My observations right now from VEENDAM: You get the same empty bread plate and butter knife like with NCL and bread only on request for lunch: Both removed the tray service for Danish and you have to asked for it... and while NCL has peppermills on every table of the MDR... You have this here on VEENDAM and none is showing up anymore with a peppermill unless you are asking for. But as said: It was a different HAL in 2016 when I had my last sailing with. Too many changes. Before many things were offered with out the need to ask for and many nice things were just withdrawn without replacement like I had a long list what made HAL better than any other. But this list getting smaller and smaller compared to others... and the first time: MSC and Costa are appearing on my list what they are doing better than HAL... As said: this is my list - and what is important to me and what I am willing to pay to get MY outstanding unforgettable experience and making me coming back to HAL. Normally the first action before I am moving to my cabin: grabbing a form for the FCD. This time I might need to wait until the end of the cruise.
  12. Well - there are different philosophies: Like NCL: You get a list of the phone number of the Senior Officers and they present themselves to say hello and offer you to get in touch with them and to hear from ASAP if something on your cruise does not go well. They want to hear it from you and take immediate action to make your holidays perfect. They want you to leave the ship and share with all your friends how good it was. Like RCI: All "partners" are present and they not just offer some cookies and water, juice, coffee and tea: they had a buffet and many gifts. It is also a way for the cruise lines to "communicate" via satisfied and appreciated customers and I think a friend is telling how good something is counts more than the opinion of any travel agent. Therefore I was only wondering how today HAL handled cruisecritic.com-Members while others are pampering us. But as said before I made the same experience also with HAL before. But not today and just want to find out, if on other ship or other itinararies it was the same "new policy" observed or maybe there was only one here onboard who did not give a certain attention to this event.
  13. And how serious the malfunction that they cannot wait another 36 hours until we arrive in St. John's? There most guests would be on shore excursions and must not use water onboard. And the others who are onboard may use the washrooms in the cruise terminal. And what if they would not complete the work at 06:00 hrs and everyone wakes up... and... need toilet and coffee and no water available...
  14. Well... since this is my cruise no. 100 (and not all of them with HAL) and HAL changed a lot since my last on HAL 2016 and become in some parts level like MSC and Costa... everything good on HAL which made them better, more exclusive than others are removed. By the way: I asked for background information on the changes - so EXPERIENCED cruisers would know what I am talking about. In 99 cruises before, I never had a total suspension of water supply for 6 1/2 hours - and I was just wondering how other cruiser handled the situation. But with 330 postings right now, I do not expect that you can add something informative for me.
  15. Well - to "warn" your son: Have a box for money with you (like in Churches) to collect money for your provided show. Although they tell you it is "mirrored": when outside is dark and inside is illuminated, you could see every little details of your life in your cabin... So be sure to have the right "costumes" for a show with you. There are many people who are looking inside when you have the door open... And it is quite "noisy": from 04:30 hrs they start to clean the deck and to set up the chairs... LAST NOT LEAST: Check if you have the Galley above you: we have this part... it is like a New York Metro is above you when they move their trolleys with food around... it starts at 04:00 hrs and ends around 01:00 hrs. It is also important to know: do you have a life boat above you or a tender boat? Life boats like with us have a ceiling between boat and our "private area". If you have a tender boat you look always on the bottom of a tender boat: when they clean them with water from the top to the bottom: this gives you an extra feeling of sitting in a rain forest since all the drops will fall down on you sooner or later... AND the part under a tender boat has more sun since the ceiling between life boat and lower promenade deck exceed over the line of the railing and it is more shady. BUT ONE UNBEATABLE ADVANTAGE: no need to wait for an elevator after the life drill!
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