Good News Today!!

Another day spent trying to tie up loose ends before we depart. I had a very frustrating experience which was entirely my fault. I placed an order with Amazon last weekend for a star chart for the Southern Hemisphere. The only chart I have for this region is a Tirion Sky Atlas which is much too large to carry on our cruise.

Realizing that the order would be delayed if shipped to my residence, because I have a temporary forwarding address in place, I meant to have it shipped to my work address. Instead I changed the billing address to my work address and the chart shipped to my home. I became aware of this when I received the shipping confirmation from Amazon. I called Amazon, and received great help from Amanda. She called three different post offices trying to redirect the package, but it was not possible.

I received notification from the Canton P.O. last night that delivery had been “attempted” and I could arrange for delivery or pickup. After contacting the P.O., I found out this really meant it had been sent back to Atlanta for forwarding, rather than being sent the 6 miles to the Waleska P.O. where our box is. With the holiday, there is no way it will be received at our P.O. Box by Monday. I decided to reorder the chart today with next day shipping. Shipping cost more than the chart….. Oh well, at least we will be able to identify those southern constellations, and we will have an extra star chart for the southern hemisphere.

I also learned yesterday that Holland America has changed our itinerary AGAIN. First they deleted our stop at the scenic island of Fernando de Noronha, Brazil,

one of my most anticipated stops. In its place was substituted Maceio, Brazil. Yesterday HAL deleted our stop at Recife, Brazil and added the port of Ilheus. I am sure these ports are well worth seeing. But what’s so frustrating is you study, plan and anticipate these ports, make plans for excursions and then they are changed. In my case I had actually collected information in preparation of my blog post. I guess these changes are due to unforeseen complications, but it is still aggravating.

Now for the GOOD news. Actually there are two pieces of news, one good the other great. The first is we received confirmation that our luggage reached the port in Fort Lauderdale this morning. That’s one less thing to worry about. The great news is, we received an email this evening from our travel agent Cruise Specialist in Seattle. Holland America gave us a complimentary upgrade to our cabin. We booked a cabin with an ocean view window on the lowest deck. We have been upgraded to a veranda (balcony) cabin on the upper promenade deck! This is a move up of four decks!

We are thrilled.
I can have my morning coffee on the private balcony and it will be a great place to read and compose the blog posts. It will allow me to do photography in Antarctica and the Chilean fjords without having to be on deck the entire time. If only I had known of the upgrade earlier, I would not have shipped as many cold weather clothesJ.

I guess I better sign off for tonight and see what else needs to be done; until next time…..

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10 Responses to Good News Today!!

  1. Brian ;ory says:

    You haven’t even departed your home and is already an adventure! Sound like the upgrade will make the trip so much more enjoyable.

    • skywizzard says:

      Brian, actually the entire year of planning has been an adventure, but I can’t tell you how excited we are about the upgrade. We really were not expecting any upgrades since we had a guaranteed cabin and not just a guaranteed category. This news put the finishing touches on the year 2010 for us!

      I wish you and yours a happy and prosperous New Year.

  2. Chuck Ellis says:

    Believe it or not, likely the itinerary probably got changes because of congestion at those ports… the ports in that part of Brazil can get totally congested and ships can’t get in or out… I once had 7 containers of plywood out of that part of BR…. don’t remember the exact port, but had to change my shipping port 3 or 4 times before I actually got the containers on a ship and out of Brazil… took about 4 weeks to get on a ship…

    Have a wonderful trip… envy colors me green.

  3. fred mabry says:

    Wendell, looks as if you’re set for a great trip. We’ll check on you from time to time.

    Happy New Year and Bon Voyage!

    • skywizzard says:

      Thanks Fred, Happy New Year to you too. We would love to here from you during your trip. You can get my email from Becky if you would like to exchange updates. Wendell

  4. Patricia says:

    Congratulations on the upgrade! Very nice.
    Did you book a HH Guarentee or a specific cabin?
    We loved the Amazon and the Antarctic: hope you do as well!

    • skywizzard says:

      Thanks Patricia, surprisingly we did book a specific cabin, but we made our reservation over 12 months ago. Perhaps booking that early helped, but it’s a mystery how upgrades are made anyway! Wendell

      • Patricia says:

        Booking a specific cabin doesn’t usually get you an upgrade of any sort, so you have really hit the jackpot with a balcony!
        Looking forward to your reports and photos. Would love to see some shots of the interior of the Prinsendam, too.
        Thanks for doing this blog!

  5. I’ve been following your blog since you started. You have made amazing progress. This site is an inspiration for all pursuing a long transition versus the big chop.

    – Rob

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