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About Catlover54

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
  • Interests
    science, history, oceans, wine, fine dining, people-watching, politics, plinking
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Seabourn, Hapag-Lloyd

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  1. First choice is the first SB cruise Next is the next SB cruise Not that anyone on this board would be biased! 🙂
  2. Happy upcoming birthday, Jackie! August 15 is special to me, as it was also my deceased mother’s birthday, and is Assumption day. I think of her and all the unpleasant things she went through in her days, especially before coming to U.S., and how she made it possible for me to live a much better life. Now that I know it is also the birthday of a vocal CC contributor, I will also have to think of Cruise Critic and luxury cruising! I had almost booked a Scenic cruise for a celebration, but would have been very disappointed, given all was cancelled and massively delayed, and from what I have read, the disappointed customers were not handled very nicely. But once it has settled in and if there are good reviews, I may reconsider sailing her ( even if I never make it onto their submarine).
  3. As with other medical problems that come up on cruises, the cruise doctor would contact a dentist in the next port for you, if not an emergency. Of course, you never know where you will be or the quality of the dentists there, especially on a weekend ( just like the quality of doctors on a ship varies). Prevention is best: fix anything you can fix while still home, and use discretion chewing nuts while on the cruise. My dentist knows I cruise and has been pushing for me to replace a half split crown prophylactically because it could split all the way through any time. But she has been saying this for years. Meanwhile, I chew nuts on the other side. Now that I am retired, it is on my “to do” list, as I want to do longer voyages.
  4. I had to look up what a “singlet” is, after I stopped laughing, although I had guessed it was something bad and un-TK. Your dress code recollection sounds correct. I also don’t think I have seen people other than children wearing shorts or cutoffs to the evening shows, on any night, with or without singlets, but I am usually on colder weather cruises. I saw a few backwards and also forwards baseball caps at dinner in Colonnade on a Christmas cruise in the Caribbean, and though I do not know official SB policy on caps, they stood out because they were not what the western world considers “elegant”, especially if they say Mariners on them.
  5. Lois: welcome to SB! I have enjoyed your Silversea posts and it is quite clear to me you are a glass 3/4 full type of gal, life-loving and enthusiastic, so I am confident you will enjoy yourself. Just a little thread drift on the social security issue. I also considered retiring and taking Social Security at 62, but I hope you are aware that if you start drawing it then and not at full retirement age just a few years later, there is a significant cut in the permanent monthly annuity. Assuming you paid in SS at max most of your working life, that is several hundred $ a month. I just retired, but will not request SS until age 66, my full retirement age, so the pension will be several hundred a month higher. Even with all my health problems, the math and odds calculations would not make sense for me to start at 62 unless I had an illness ready to kill me quite soon. As long as a person has enough other funds to do fine financially if retired, for a few more years after 62 , without depending on the relatively small amount base SS pays at 62 (and taking luxury cruises would presume one does), AND at least 10 years best guess life expectancy, almost all retirement financial advisors recommend waiting until full retirement age to start drawing, as this can yield tens of thousands of extra dollars long term, even adjusted for lost interest, inflation, and opportunity costs. There is also the third option, not pulling until age 70, for another few hundred a month gain, but then one has to live until 84 to recoup the lost income, and I do not like those odds on the life expectancy charts despite seeing nonogenarians on cruises. Just a thought, to potentially save money ( even luxury cruisers like to save), and not meaning to pry or be presumptuous. You likely already know all this but I did not until a few months ago! Have a wonderful trip, and I hope our paths cross at some point on SB or SS!
  6. Music in the Thomas Keller grill specialty restaurant was usually too loud for me and DH , six cruises for me ( DH is an audiophile and I do not like that background style) and we find it intrusive as opposed to its intended “hip,” especially coupled with therefore louder voices ( with alcohol) in a small space. We joked that we should text each other.That is the only thing I dislike about the TK grill and there is no authority to turn it down much, if at all, allegedly per TK directives. Others, including people with hearing problems anyway, do not mind it or even like it as it seems like a “happening” place to them. Dining room noise is ok. as is Colonnade. Pool is not too bad or silent, depending. SB Square also played constant overhead music, even late at night when no one is there, which broadcasts out to the sofas outside, so no quiet or calm there even when empty. However, it can be turned down, unlike in TK. I have only been on Quest and Odyssey, however, no live music ar there at TK If you go early, it is a bit quieter as less people to shout over, and might be able to talk them into lowering volume. Also can bring ear plugs.
  7. After disembarkation, be sure and follow-up with a reminder to yourself to make sure you got the appropriate credit to your card, sometimes they forget, or it is the wrong amount, or they refund one and not the other and you have to chase it down. I do not like this system, also used on HAL. I prefer paying close to the time of the excursion unless it is a special nonrefundable excursion, with OBC if there is any, like on SS and Hapag Lloyd, easier to track that way.
  8. Unless it has recently changed, we could get coffee and juice and pastries and croissants in the Observation Lounge after 6 am or 6:15 am on both the Quest and Odyssey. Hardly anyone is up there ( one attendant) and it was one of my favorite times. You can also carry stuff back to your suite to sip there, but you should save a paper cup with lid from SB Square, or BYO mug, if you want a large amount, and use it there.
  9. TravelCat2 wrote about Europa 2 (E2) “ Also consider the differences in food and culture. Europa 2 encourages children being onboard (this may or may not be something that you enjoy - we do not). I love German food but would not like it all of the time. ” TC, maybe you forgot, but English Voyager and I have repeatedly pointed out that the dining experience on the E2 in the main and specialty dining rooms is primarily focussed on international luxury cuisine, not on German food, like you get on SB or SS, though better, IMHO. Yes, you will see a Wienerschnitzel regularly offered in the MDR for traditionalists, and many German selections are available in their casual venue amongst many international selections, but Tarragon is French food, Serenissima Italian, Elements Asian, Sakura Japanese, and the MDR offerings, include filet, lobster lamb, fish, beef etc are not at all German. Yes, there are definitely issues of being a minority English speaker on a bilingual ship and in German personalities, and during summer and holidays there will likely be some children of well-to-do Germans on board, ( limited in number per cruise by the line) who have their separate dining area, with nannies, separate family excursions, and assigned pool times. But let’s not muddle the criticism of the Hapag Lloyd E2 luxury ship with inaccuracies about it having a focus on German food. It does not ( the Europa, its sister, German only, does have more both luxury and more basic German food available than the E2).
  10. Carambola Beach event is not to be missed, followed by buffet quality lunch, clean restrooms at the site. Go early for best shade loungers. We also had a caviar in surf event scheduled for Mayreau on the second week but weather was too rough to tender, so they did caviar in the pool, and a MDR/ galley lunch spread instead that was nicely done. Remember you can also order a nice caviar plate with trimmings any time you want on boars with no upcharge ( for now, anyway), even to room service, with champagne or vodka or anything else.
  11. Well, I do have a collection of cruise catalogues, so Autocorrect is quite insightful!
  12. Maybe she should ask her stewardess? I think there is a switch but forgot where
  13. I prefer female stewardesses, so am absolutely not bothered by them, but like it better that way than on SS where most butlers are male ( though I had one butler from India there who was absolutely fantastic). I think it is because in general I experience less condescension with females in the cruise and hospitality industry, if there is a problem that needs to be dealt with when I travel. I also would rather have women dealing with my personal things in my suite than men. At home, I also prefer female house cleaners, a female hair dresser, female doctors ( if I can find ones that are well-qualified in the field where I have a problem), female nurses, female dentists, a female house painter, female landscaper, female auto service rep, female insurance agent, and female ( at least formerly female) cats. However, I prefer a male husband. So it all balances out.
  14. Water varies from municipality to municipality in U.S., and most are not a health care “disgrace” ( Flint, Michigan is an example of an exception). We drink and cook with tap water, unless it is sparkling.:)
  15. When you read the excursion description they warn you if it is not exclusive to SS pax, most are. Ketchikan has a Misty Fjiords National Monument boat excursion that is not exclusive but is well done, highly recommended, run by a family, is also available for independent booking.
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