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RevNeal

RevNeal's LIVE Eurodam Report

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I had saved HAL's invitation to watch the streaming video in my inbox so not to forget. It was so amazing to see it especially knowing Greg, Brian, Jim and so many of our friends were there to enjoy.

 

Greg, can't wait to get your perceptions of the day from the "inside". You had such a glorious day .... HAL could not have asked for better!:)

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I had saved HAL's invitation to watch the streaming video in my inbox so not to forget. It was so amazing to see it especially knowing Greg, Brian, Jim and so many of our friends were there to enjoy.

 

Greg, can't wait to get your perceptions of the day from the "inside". You had such a glorious day .... HAL could not have asked for better!:)

 

It was beautiful, wash't it, Heather? The Ode to Joy at the end was spectacular...everything was...including the weather!

I can't wait for a 1st hand report either...it's 11 PM in the Netherlands...the group may be wrapping up their "after the festivities" group dinner about now!

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You sound so refreshed in your post! Glad to hear it. Now, if you can just do your best to keep Scotty and Brian out of trouble

(make them wait 'til I get there ;) ).

Looking forward to reading your report on the dedication. And the dinner! :D

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Greetings from Rotterdam -- Wednesday, July 2, 2008, 1 am.

 

We just got back from our post-Christening Dinner at the Euromast and, as the photos download from my camera, I thought I would take a few minutes to share a few thoughts from this day.

 

Christopher and I arrived at the Cruise Terminal at 2:15 pm (early, we thought) and were admitted after showing our ID and our voucher. They directed us up to a large chamber where the Champaign Reception was being held. Even though it wasn't supposed to begin until 2:30 pm, there were already a lot of people there. Indeed, we had only been in the room for about 15 minutes, and finished one glass of "champaign" when the drinks vanished and we were being ushered outside to the stands for the ceremonies. What they heck?? Most of our party wasn't even here yet. Brian and Scotty were there, for sure, belly-up to the bar and enjoying themselves -- Brian ... that jacket was incredible!!!!!! -- and Grumpy and Slinky came in right behind us; however, most of our CC group was not yet there! Christopher tried to get another glass of champaign and was told "no more booze for you." So ... that was that.

 

We proceeded outside and along the pier, where we had a wonderful view of the ship. HAL was clearly creating a festive occasion, with circus-type entertainment all around. Sever HAL staff members came up to me as we made our way along the length of the ship to where the grand stand and the ceremonies were going to be held. Steve (ShipCafe) said hello, as did Nathan and several others whom I have met and known over the years. We were directed to wonderful seats, in the lower half of the stands and took our places.

 

The day was marvelous. The sky was blue, there was a slight breeze, low humidity, and a bright sun. Indeed, there was a little too much sun, and as the afternoon wore on we were all happy for the big building to our west when it began to cast its shadow across us all. However, truth be told we could not ask for a more wonderful day.

 

John (Copper) and his lovely DW and several others came in and joined us in the stands, as did Jim H and Bill S and their wives. A few more staffers came by to introduce themselves to Brian, to myself, and to others of us as the time grew near for the celebration to begin. All, in all, it was pretty much what I had expected.

 

I'll not go into detail on the entertainment program ... it was excellent, but not quite what I had expected ... the "concert" we were told to expect really didn't come until after the ceremony was over. Nevertheless, the mens quartet was excellent and entertaining, and everybody seemed to enjoy them.

 

Then, with little fanfare, the Queen B came in escorted by Stein Kruse and Captain Jeroen van Donselaar. She was truly regal in her floral print top and skirt, with purple, green, and orange colors being the dominant theme. Christopher thinks the hat must be her signature touch, because so many of the photos of her have her wearing that same kind of hat. She looked very good. Everybody present stood, and immediately the orchestra played the National Anthem of the Netherlands and of the United States of America. It was very done, as was all the music in the program.

 

Setting aside the speeches, the pouring of the wine over the bless brought back memories of Judy (Sail7Seas) and her DH doing the honors for the Noordam. Wow, that was wonderful! Today I certainly recognized the Mariner Ambassadors from photographs and from 2 cruises on which they were passengers along with me. That was a nice surprise!

 

After there ceremony and after the queen and other special guests left to tour the ship, etc., our group left and made its way over to the watertaxi stand and took a watertaxi across to the Euromast for our dinner together. It was about 6 pm when we got there and we were quickly seated for an hour of cocktails and conversation before everybody else showed up at 7 pm. Sadly, the Euromast Restaurant will receive among my lowest marks ever for a very expensive dinner (50 Euros per-person). It wasn't the food so much as it was the horrible service and the uncaring thought which went into where our tables were located. We were supposed to be given a view o the ship: we were placed on the other side of the restaurant where we couldn't see the ship at all. Additionally, this was on the west side of the restaurant and this meant that we had to sit in the roasting, sweltering hot son for the entire evening. Yes ... 4 hours of HORRIBLE sunlight (from 6 pm until the sun set at 10 pm). The views from the observation platform were wonderful, and we escaped the burning sun on several occasions to enjoy the cool breezes and the shade and the views of the ship from there. But, then, it was back into the oven, to temperatures that ranged in the upper 80s (or higher) with enough direct sunlight to give me something of a bad burn (my face and forehead are red). The butter melted in its dish on the table, and the water was warm (at best). We protested this situation on several occasions, but to no avail. It was miserable. However, the conversation of our CCer friends was, indeed, enjoyable. And, truly, that was the whole reason we were there ... to enjoy each other's company. And enjoy it we did.

 

After dinner, after the sun set, at about 11:15 pm the city of Rotterdam put on a wonderful 20 minute long fireworks show in the river beside the Eurodam. It was lovely and the perfect celebratory ending to a great day. Despite the horrible conditions at the Euromast, the Inagural day of the Eurodam will fondly remembered.

 

I hope to have pictures to upload in a few minutes. I need to review them and choose a very few of the "best" to shrink and then post. So ... be patient!

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Greg:

 

I paid bills here in my office and watched the ceremonies on the Computer. She is a mighty big ship. As you know I was on the Amsterdam last week and I rate it my favorite ship. I hope the Eurodam turns out to be a nice ship. Sorry about your restaurant problems. Have a great cruise! I look forward to your postings with bated breath.

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Greg, many of us watched the ceremony from home and were very moved by the blessing of the bell and the queen naming the ship. Sorry about your dinner, but I'm sure the good company was lots of fun. It sounds like all of you Ccers got to sit together for the ceremonies. How nice that must have been. Have a wonderful time. Can't wait to see your pictures.:D

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You sound so refreshed in your post! Glad to hear it. Now, if you can just do your best to keep Scotty and Brian out of trouble

(make them wait 'til I get there ;) ).

 

Looking forward to reading your report on the dedication. And the dinner! :D

 

 

Ruth, were you able to watch the dedication from home? It was very moving to see.

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Greg.....Thanks for your wonderful post.

I was able to fully enjoy watching the ceremony also. Sure brought back lots of memories including memories of the first time I met you and Brian....among others. :)

 

Continue to enjoy.

We'll look forward to whatever you care to share with us.

 

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Greg, I want to thank you again now, I too was also able to watch and can't believe I have been "getty as a school boy" all day anticipating your review, what you thought, and really just how your day went with all of our CC family members along for the ride.

Get some rest!! Thanks jim

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Thanks so much for your tale of the day. I loved reading it.

I hope to have pictures to upload in a few minutes. I need to review them and choose a very few of the "best" to shrink and then post. So ... be patient!

Er, friend, I don't do patience. You know that.

Ruth, were you able to watch the dedication from home? It was very moving to see.

No, unfortunately, I had a very full day, and didn't even get to CC until almost 5:00 PM. I hope to be able to watch the reruns---maybe tomorrow night.

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Greg, so excited to come on and see a post from you. I couldn't wait to read your impressions of the day. I was so sorry we couldn't see the crowds at all when we watched the ceremonies and I admit confusion toward the end because the music continued (and it was amazing music!) but all we saw was what looked like elevator doors with ms Eurodam across it. I was sorry they didn't at least keep the camera on the orchestra, and preferably on the people so we could have looked for you!

 

What a shame about the dinner ... no matter how wonderful something is, often there's that little fly in the ointment;) . Still it had to be wonderful getting together with everyone after such an amazing event.

 

Carol, yes ... Ode to Joy was one of my favorites today, among several others.

 

Again, Greg, you never disappoint. Can't wait for the pictures!

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Here are a few selected photos from the day's festivities:

 

edam01.jpg

My First close-up view of the Eurodam ... she is huge, but she is also lovely.

 

edam02.jpg

Christopher, Greg, Scotty, and Brian ... sitting together in the stands at the Inaugural. Get a load of Brian's jacket! Wow!

 

edam03.jpg

A close-up view of those cabins with the scalloped balconies. They look nice ... but not something I'm going to want to book (not anytime soon).

 

edam04.jpg

The Queen arrives

 

edam05.jpg

The singing of the national anthems.

 

 

 

Too be continued ....

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Photos Continued:

 

edam06.jpg

Stein Kruse addresses those in attendance

 

edam07.jpg

The blessing of the bell.

 

edam08.jpg

The Queen names the ship. Notice how all humans are dwarfed by this fantastically huge ship!

 

edam09.jpg

The Queen orders the bottle of champaign to be smashed against the name as the ship is "baptized." I wonder what parents would say if I started smashing their darling little babies over the head with bottles of bubbly during their baptisms?????? <evil grin>

 

edam10.jpg

"The Ode to Joy" begins as the Queen and the executives stand for photographs and applause.

 

 

 

To be continued ....

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Photos continued:

 

edam11.jpg

The Eurodam as viewed from atop the Euromast at about 6:30 pm.

 

edam12.jpg

The Eurodam at about 9:30 pm.

 

edam13.jpg

The Eurodam after nightfall, just before the fireworks show at 11:15 pm.

 

edam14.jpg

Rotterdam celebrating the christening of the Eurodam with a fireworks show!!

 

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And there you have it ... a few photos from the Inaugural Ceremonies of the ms Eurodam! It was, indeed, a special event, and one that I will long remember. Already the ordeal at dinner is fading fast as the joy of the day, the wonderful company of my friends, and the coming 23 days aboard a glorious ship looms ahead of me. Tomorrow we head down to the ship to check-in and aboard around noon. Then, tomorrow, sail-away will be at 4 pm, Rotterdam time. :)

 

See 'ya aboard ship!

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Greg, fantastic pictures:) Did you by chance get any pictures from this evenings dinner at the Euromast with your fellow CCer's?

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No, unfortunately, I had a very full day, and didn't even get to CC until almost 5:00 PM. I hope to be able to watch the reruns---maybe tomorrow night.

Don't feel bad. Despite my best intentions, I didn't get to watch either. I was at work, planning to enjoy the live feed on my T3 line, but then all you know what broke loose and, since I was on the "clock," so to speak ... and overtime at that ... it was so much for the Eurodam dedication. By the time I got the "fire" put out, the dedication was long over. I can't wait until they put up the "rerun."

 

Blue skies ...

 

--rita

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Greg, fantastic pictures:) Did you by chance get any pictures from this evenings dinner at the Euromast with your fleoow CCer's?

 

My camera was running low on juice (that's what I get for not charging the battery last night) so I saved it for the later-night fireworks show. However, Jim H got a few shots of us, as did Bill S. I'll get at least a couple of those for display later.

 

As a side note, it was very nice getting to meet John (Copper). He seems to be a prince of a man, if you catch my meaning. :D Seriously, though ... I look forward to getting to know him better as the days press on aboard the Eurodam.

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And there you have it ... a few photos from the Inaugural Ceremonies of the ms Eurodam! It was, indeed, a special event, and one that I will long remember. Already the ordeal at dinner is fading fast as the joy of the day, the wonderful company of my friends, and the coming 23 days aboard a glorious ship looms ahead of me. Tomorrow we head down to the ship to check-in and aboard around noon. Then, tomorrow, sail-away will be at 4 pm, Rotterdam time. :)

 

See 'ya aboard ship!

 

The joy of your 23 days onboard will overshadow the bad experience tonight, I am certain! It's disappointing, for sure, when something doesn't meet your expectations, though.

 

I enjoyed watching all of you from my computer...a wonderful ceremony.

Get a good night's rest...you have a busy, busy day tomorrow!

Thanks so much for reporting in...we've all been waiting for your take on the festivities.

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:D Bravo, Greg! Bravo! Well worth waiting for. Those pictures sure do whet my appetite for more. More pics, more E-dam, more, more, more!

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Ruth! I thought you left today! I'm so mixed up with everyone's schedules.

 

Greg, what wonderful pictures! Thank you so much for taking the time to post them. I just can't tell you how nice it is of you to do this. I'm sure you know how we all love and appreciate it, but with all the excitement of the moment for you to take the time is just extraordinary. Thank you.:)

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Great photos Greg. I'm so excited and your not even on the ship yet!

Looking forward to pictures of the other CC'ers as time goes on. It must be great to be there with all those people.

Love Brian's jacket - very festive!!!

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Greg, thank you so much for your post and the great photos!

I was up at 6:15 to watch and saw the quartet performing and then the entire ceremony. What a beautiful day! It must have been so exciting to be there and be a part of this event!

Then tomorrow you all get to board this beautiful ship for 23 days... Best wishes to all of you ... have a glorious cruise!

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Wonderful pictures Greg. I especially liked the nighttime ones of Rotterdam & the ship. Rest well and enjoy your sail away tomorrow......Michael

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