Life Aboard the Stranded Westerdam, part 3

February 11, 2020

This entire experience is just like preparing for a high school prom.

You have an idea of who you want to ask to the big dance, you get up the nerve and ask, and luckily, he says yes! You buy a dress and find fun shoes you can dance in that don’t make your ankles look fat. Then, just before the big day, he changes his mind. Heartbroken, but determined to soldier through, you move onto the next candidate, he says yes, and then later changes his mind because the first guy said something that didn’t sit well with the second, about you! I don’t have cooties, I swear! So, you move onto a third, fourth, and fifth possible date and they just outright say NO. They are NOT going to prom with you. Then, you change your approach, and throw a little cash into the deal, and now you have two possibilities, but no final answer. Not yet. They need to think it over. They need to verify if you are cootie-free. It takes several days to check references, travel information, and a medical test, but….


We were approved for disembarkation in Bangkok, Thailand, yesterday and will dock at their port city of Laem Chabang, just south of the city, on February 13th. Kapun kha, Thailand. Kapun kha. Thank you!

From Deck 3 looking down to Deck 1 where Guest Services is located

I am absolutely in LOVE with this ship and their crew! Again, anyone who is grumpy… CAME on vacation that way, and they may never understand how the rest of us feel on an average day. I am personally THRILLED to be treated so well and have zero cases of this terrible flu onboard. Also, so thankful to NOT be on that poor Princess ship that is still quarantined outside Tokyo and now has 135 people infected with the coronavirus. I feel for them.

Back to work. Again, my office was phenomenal in changing all of our flights out of Bangkok. Some guests will head east through Dubai. The rest of us, including myself, will head to Taipei first and then to Seattle or SFO. New itineraries were sent the guests and off to breakfast. I say good morning to Obi, find a table in his section, and then head to Oscar for my eggs Benedict with spinach, a warm croissant, and great coffee. I don’t want to go home! I never have warm croissants at home!

Now, it’s 10:00 am, and it’s time for my office hours. I have a new Ship BFF, Judy Barr, from Ontario, Canada, and the two of us sit here all day, for the last 11 days, just living the dream…If that dream entailed watching and listening to people speculate the inner workings of an 83 ton ship searching for a country that wants us! Margaret Meade would be proud of my cultural anthropological studies in the last week and a half.

WAIT, DID I JUST GET DITCHED AT PROM? Just shortly after I arrived at my little office, guests onboard the ship, and friends back home, started sending me articles saying that Thailand’s Minister of Health had denied the Westerdam entrance in their country. He apparently posted something on a Facebook page. Stupid Troublemaker Facebook. People started going nuts again at the ‘water cooler’ map speculating once again saying we were going somewhere else, probably Singapore. THEN the Captain gets on the sound system, which makes everyone tense now, and says there are a lot of rumors going around about this statement and Holland America is looking into its validity.

This ship has a florist! We have been at sea 11 days and look how beautiful this new arrangement is!

It is now 6:00 pm, and we have not heard a peep. Meanwhile, it seems like every media outlet in the world has chimed in and stated the exact same gossip as our ‘water cooler’ map. Have we been denied entry to Thailand? Will we go to Singapore? Will there be watermelon at breakfast tomorrow?


… More to come.

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