The Cruise

Fifteen days is a long time to be locked aboard a cruise ship, especially if ten of those days are at sea.

The cruise ship is a carefully crafted experience. Designer food crafted by invisible chef Rudy, bland music, and activities. There are also plenty of opportunities for the cruise line to engage in 'adding value', and 'up selling'.

The overall effect is summer camp for seniors with a hint of carnival midway. More mall boat than love boat.

The crew that interact with passengers are extremely polite, friendly, and apparently happy to be there. The passengers are also very nice to the crew.

There are also the rarely seen crew who keep the ship running and on course. Captain Jan Smit (John Smith in Dutch) is a voice on the intercom, giving us the ship's daily progress. We are denied access to the ships bowels due to security concerns, but we glimpse the occasional khaki clad painter or technician on their maintenance rounds.

The ship itself is decorated in contemporary hotel lobby, the kind with stars that is.

The passengers appear to be enjoyoying themselves, but this passenger is putting in time until the ship docks, finding the confinement added to the stress of being with family claustrophobic


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