Posted by: Leap of Faith | November 28, 2009

The Aquamarine


Ever since I can remember, I have always wanted to ride a cruise ship and travel around the Mediterranean Sea.  I don’t know why but the thought of just going on a cruise, and in Europe for that matter, just sounded like something that was out of our league and only other more senior people (i.e. our parents) can do.  

Fortunately, living here in the Mid-East has its perks specially when it comes to traveling.  For one, the geographic location of this place is very close to Europe making the cost of flying there more affordable than if we flew directly from the far east.  Another plus is the fact that the cost of living relative to one’s earning capacity here in Saudi Arabia is comparatively better than in other countries allowing one to save more or, in our case, set aside extra funds for family trips like this one.

The major deciding factor, though, which pushed us to finally decide on taking this trip was the free mileage tickets we got from Gulf Air’s frequent flyer program! Yup, we felt our family deserved the reward that Gulf Air was willing to give us for being loyal to their airline.  After all, even though we encountered several unpleasant incidents with them in the past, they have always been our airline of choice whenever we take our annual home leave to the Philippines. So with this in mind, Pinky and I decided to plan our trip even as early as the first quarter of this year.

Going to Delphi and Meteora were definitely great experiences.  However, I must say that our trip to the islands of Greece was one of the more memorable vacations we had as a family. Here are some of the pictures we took from The Aquamarine, our marine vessel for Louise Cruise Line’s 4-day Jewel of the Aegean cruise package.

The 7-storey Aquamarine, docked and ready to take on its eager passengers (hehehe… that’s us!).

Our room was small but could surprisingly fit three people in it!  Aside from the two single beds you see there, there is also one other bed that is folded against the wall (on top of the bed where our little girl is sleeping).

I was expecting a more luxurious accommodation.  However, how can I complain when we were located in Deck B?  Just to give you an idea – Deck B is equivalent to the place where the peasants in the movie Titanic were locked up and left to drown – if you know what I mean… hehehe!

Even though our room was fairly small, I was impressed at how our cleaning lady regularly kept this tidy – definitely hotel quality service as far as I am concerned.

In case you are curious – the lavatory uses the same technology as in the airplane (i.e. that loud vacuum sucking sound when you flush).

Before the ship sailed, all the passengers were required to go to the upper deck to attend the safety drill – similar to those done in an airplane. 

I guess you are curious to know where I am, right? 

Well, like the Titanic, all the able men (like me, ahem) were asked not to ride the safety boats in case of emergency.  Instead, the crew told us to grab on to one of these life savers scattered all over the ship – hehehe!

 

The upper deck is where most of the fun is located.  It is here where we…

… sun bathed in true Asian fashion (i.e. fully clothed with extra shawls to keep us from getting burned)!

The boys tried their hands on this game, which I don’t even know the name of…  Aside from this, we also did table tennis, basketball, Latin and Greek dancing and paper flower making, amongst others.

Food was abundant in this ship!  There were several buffet areas to choose from – this one is by the pool. 

The poolside was great but we decided not to swim anymore since we were so conscious baring all to this crowd… actually, it was a bit windy too but that’s not the real reason why we decided to keep our Speedos in the luggage.

Entertainment was all over the place.

But what brought out all these smiles was the entertainment provided by our home-grown (Pinoy) talents like Mikey (bartender) and Aries (waiter) … 

… who showed their skills to everyone…

… even on a very personal level. 

Even though the Captain’s Night threw us all out of our comfort zones, the Pinoy crew still made every effort to make all of us feel at home. 

To the crew of the Aquamarine, especially the hard-working Filipinos, we thank you for making this a very memorable experience for all of us. 

Cheers to all of you! 

Until we meet again in our next journey.

 

  

 

 

 

  

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Responses

  1. marga is soooo pretty with her pink 1920’s dress! 🙂

    inggit ako!!!

    • Hi Gracita! Yup, I must say so too (without any biases – hahaha!). Pinky saw that dress in one of the shops. They say its a typical Greek design daw – come to think of it, it looks like a dress from one of the godesses.

      We love the color but Marga made a big fuss when we bought it since she said she only wanted the “baby pink” shade. Arte talaga ng anak namin…heheheh!

  2. Motion sickness notwithstanding, I sure am glad we took the cruise with the kids… it is truly an experience we will all remember with fondness (I hope!) for a long time.

    • Oh, I’m sure I’ll remember it! It was a great experience – even though there were moments when the ship caused us to be sea sick. Next cruise we will be taking (assuming!), I’ll make sure to bring those patches!


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