Saturday, August 16, 2014

From Pike Place Market to Open Waters!

The first good thing that happened was we had a message from Larry saying he and Michelle HAD arrived in Seattle!  They were messaging us lots last night about their flight being cancelled and which new flight they would be on getting in LATE!  They were lucky enough to have some super nice friends on this west coast end who picked them up and then delivered them to the cruise ship port this morning!  Josh and I went off to do some geocaching around downtown Seattle, but we met back up with Mom and Dad to pack our bags back into another cab and go down to the cruise ship terminal!!!  We had planned to just check our bags to be held, but Norwegian already had their staff ready to accept bags to be taken straight on board!  Score!  That took out one more step for later in the day.  We left our bags and walked the short walk to Pike Place Market.
I LOVE this market!!!  Mom was super excited to see the fish throwing, so we made sure to see that.  We also randomly ran into Larry and Michelle as they were between meeting different sets of friends!  
And, of course, we got a photo in front of the original Starbucks.
We grabbed some small bites to eat, lots of samples, and some fun goodies to take home.   
 This was a lovely photo shot set up for us :)  
Our ship is in the background: The Norwegian Jewel

 We headed back to the ship to get on board!  By the time we checked in, got our on board account set up, took our initial photo, and actually walked onto the ship, it was probably 1:30.  We headed straight to lunch, of course!  We ate at the huge buffet at Garden Café.  We got a great table on the outdoor deck and watched Seattle and people.  

We toured the ship, and there was SO much to see!  The lower levels were mostly staterooms.  Level 6 has Tsars Palace, the casino, several bar areas, great window seats and balcony access to Stardust Theater.  The reception area is on Level 7 and that has the restaurant reservation desk, the Duty Free shop, a lounge with music, the excursion desk, and Stardust Theater (where the nightly shows are).  Level 12 had the pools, library, card room, fitness center, several restaurants, Garden Café, the spa, and the kids’ programs area.  Level 13 had one of our favorite spots: Spinnaker Lounge.  It  was right above the wheelhouse, and there were just walls of windows with all sorts of comfy seats.  The views as we sailed were magnificent.  The only tricky thing was this room was rarely quiet.  There were dance parties, Bingo, and other on-board activities constantly hosted in this room.  But, it was worth tuning out whatever was going on to enjoy the views!  There were also a couple of restaurants, bars, and lounge areas outside.  We also were able to visit The Bridge, which was an enclosed room looking right into the wheelhouse!  There were all kinds of plaques relating to The Jewel.  We could also watch the progress the ship was making en route and check out some nautical tools.  It was really neat!  

We eventually decided to go check our our state rooms.  While we were doing this, we found out there was a mandatory lifeboat drill.  Our room was just a few down from Larry and Michelle’s, so they were at the same area for the drill.  We saw them, and then we all met up for drinks to watch the boat leave the dock.  We hung out, split back up to get ready for dinner, and then we had dinner all together at Tsars Palace, one of the main dining rooms.  There are two main dining rooms on board (Azura is the second).  There is a grill-type restaurant open all the time called O’Sheehans as well as several other snack areas.  It felt so good to collapse in our room with just ourselves to get ready for bed and get excited for our first whole day on board!!!

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