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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Sunrise 3:04 am, Sunset 11:45 pm

Aloha Everyone,

We attended 3 destination presentations this morning in the Princess Theatre. 

Tromso our first of the next three successive stops is most promising. J.J. and I have been here when we first traveled to Europe using Eurail passes. We plan to walk out of the ship and explore the harbor area.

Alta requires that we take tender and shuttle to go downtown. 

Honningsvag, our 3rd stop has a winter population of 700 which expands to 3,000 in the summer months.  One could go through a tunnel to the northern end of the Arctic.

Experiencing midnight sun means we will not witness any Northern Lights on this voyage.

We accessed WiFi and wished our son in La Jolla, Happy Birthday and Happy Father’s Day. Not as successful trying to reach Jeff in Hawaii. Maybe due to the distance or foggy weather conditions, 5 attempts were choppy and unsuccessful. 

Too much lights. I woke up several times but as a result, able to capture sunset at 11:45 pm.

Aloha -- Cathi

Monday, June 17, 2024

Olden, Norway

Aloha Everyone,

Olden is a small, picturesque village located at the end of the Nordfijord. A population of approximately 1500, today passengers from Caribbean Princess overwhelmed locals.

Turquoise lakes, turbulent river, churches, farmhouses and gushing waterfalls attracts backpackers and RV campers. 

Olden Sightseeing Train was well worth the time and price we paid.

Tonight we are in the Coral Dining Room. We shared our dinner table with a husband and wife who are both nurses and another couple, wife retired from the US Army after working as a nurse in the anastolo. Our conversation inevitably centered around healthcare and what happens if you get sick while traveling.

Aloha -- Cathi

Sunday, June 16, 2024

Stavanger, Norway

Aloha Everyone,

Happy Father’s Day! Our first port of call in Norway, Stavanger is absolutely beautiful! Having traveled from California and England J.J. and I are impressed that there is no litter on streets.

Perfect walking weather for our first port in Norway, the two of us walked towards the town square. At the Sunday open air market, I bought an Alpaca hat. The vendors were from Pakistan, Peru and China all working together selling locally produced goods. I wondered whether the businesses are owned by Norwegians.

Last night’s dinner tablemates were another representation of the United Nations. We had a history professor affiliated with UNH (University of New Hampshire) and his wife. A Sociologist from Australia who volunteers for the state medical research team and his wife. The last couple were most interesting. The husband, originally from India works in IT. His wife is from Serbia working as a CPA. They have two daughters, 4 &  6.  Her family lives in Serbia where the wife spends time visiting while her husband attends meetings in UK. Our guess is that they are in their late 30’s to early 40’s as they’re fit and enjoy extreme physical activities such as hiking, climbing and paragliding.

J.J. and I were astonished when they each ordered and consumed 4 desserts.

Aloha -- Cathi

Saturday, June 15, 2024

Caribbean Princess

Aloha Everyone,

Caribbean Princess is one of the oldest ships among the fleet of Princess. From the design of the Fresh Market place on the 15th floor, it appears to have undergone recent refurbishment. 

The ship clock was advanced by an hour. After a leisurely breakfast, J.J. and I attended destination presentations on Stavanger and Olden in the Princess Theatre. The “expert” presenter, Kevin from Florida gave overviews of these two ports. If the weather is good, the two of us will walk around both towns and perhaps assist with the local economy. 

Olden has a population of 659. Our ship including passengers and crews has over 4,000. Kevin reminded everyone that while the town need visitors, to be considerate if services are slow. One interesting activities I noted was to take the Old train for US $20 each. Unlike Hop-on-Hop-off you just stay on the entire 45 minutes duration.

So far we’ve been having breakfast at World Market Place on the Lido Deck, lunch and dinner in one of the dining rooms. Met some interesting fellow travelers from Australia, Canada, California, Arizona, Washington state and Texas. When they learned of our current lifestyle, one question they always ask is what do you do when you get sick. 

Aloha -- Cathi