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My Cruising Experiences—Breadcrumbs and All

Posted by Julie on January 26, 2015 in Julie Arduini, Life Lessons |

It’s here!

It’s time to introduce you all to Brent Teague and his stint as The Love Boat Bachelor. Monday through Friday this week and next at Write Integrity Press we’re releasing a chapter where each heroine Brent meets during this two week Caribbean cruise.

Then, on the afternoon of February 4, we’ll open voting for readers. YOU get to choose the one heroine you think makes the perfect fit for Brent. Your votes will decide the final chapter of the book.

Voting will take place Feb 4-7. Then, on Saturday, February 14, The Love Boat Bachelor will be made available on Kindle FOR FREE for FOUR days – Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday.

I think readers are going to have a hard time because I loved all the heroines.

Before you head over to board ship with Brent, I thought I’d share my own cruise experience. I’ve been on three, and they were all different. Some of the destinations overlapped but that was about all they had in common.

  • The first cruise I went on was 1995. It’s a line that’s still in business and I hear good things about. My sister and I went and we had never traveled before, not on that scale. It was top notch, the ship, food, everything. The stand outs I can recall are that back in the day, the stewards would take your nightwear and make them into animals. I’m not kidding. I was having none of that, so we hid our pajamas. One day we were walking by and we could hear them talking about us. I was pretty sure they were wondering about those crazy sisters who didn’t have pajamas!

Sadly, it was also during our cruise that the bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal Building happened. Our head waiter came to our table to inform us. We were stunned, I mean back then, those things didn’t happen. And by our own? It was unthinkable. But our waiter explained that our cabin televisions all had CNN and if we wished, President Lincoln would address the nation. It took everything I had not to laugh because he was trying so hard to be a comfort, but his English wasn’t great. Clearly he meant President Clinton.

  • The second cruise was to celebrate our 15th anniversary. We decided to go a little later than the actual day so we would be cold and actually happy to get out of town. We went in January and although it wasn’t hot, it was certainly better than winter in Ohio. What I remember most was the passengers. I was heartbroken at what I saw. So much self entitlement and selfishness. I was pushed out of the way for the restroom. I watched  people ahead of us in line pile so much on their plates during the chocolate buffet that they would never be able to eat that it left nothing for us. The people seated next to us at dinner were racists and their ignorant comments hurt my heart. When I started to wipe my bread crumbs up, our waiter ran over with his bread crumb instrument and started cleaning. I shook my head. “No, I can do that.” He kept cleaning my mess. “No, it is my job, and an honor and a pleasure to do this for you.”
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During our second cruise. The waiter on the right was the one who cleaned my bread crumbs.

I cried myself to sleep. I learned he got the job and sends money home to support his family. His story, up against the passengers and their attitudes, I still think about the waiter. What an example of servanthood.

  • The last cruise was two years ago and it was a family vacation with Disney. I can’t say enough about our experience. It was a bit more in finances, but worth our saving for. Throughout the week I marveled at how Disney plans, thinks and goes out of their way to provide the best experience for their passengers. There was something for us together, for each kid, and for us as adults. I trusted the staff with my kids. We saw movies that were brand new. There were workshops on how to make towel animals (apparently what happened to us in 1995 was as icky for everyone else as us and now cruise lines do this.) The Disney characters are around the ship to greet those that want to meet them. Disney had their own island, another fun adventure. If you follow me on Instagram you’ll see those pictures pop up thanks to Timehop.

I didn’t name the first two lines because I don’t know if the first line is one I’d recommend since it’s been so long, and the second we’ll never cruise with again. Sadly it’s because the passengers were so awful. We’ve been told that we encountered a rarity with all the selfish people deciding to cruise that week on that line, but we’ll never know.

So, that’s our cruising experience.

Now, make sure you read about Brent’s!

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