Day 24: Thursday, September 28, 2006
We slept in a
little and started the day with another great buffet breakfast
at the hotel. Ken was finally able to connect to his
online banking again. We toured the area around our hotel
for awhile and then packed up to go to the cruise ship.
Boarding was supposed to start at 1:00 pm but thought we should
get there earlier so we ordered three cabs for 11:00 pm.
The Port of Piraeus is about 10 km from the city centre
but the traffic was horrendous and so we didn't arrive until
just before 12:00 noon. To our surprise, they let us begin
the boarding process immediately. The line-up was not very
long and we were soon ready to board the ship about 12:20 pm.
We had heard from several sources that cruise ships did no let
you bring your own booze aboard the ship, that they even scanned
your hand luggage like airports. However, there was a duty
free ship between where we cleared the boarding procedures and
the dock so Ken decided to give it a try. He bought a
bottle of Bacardi rum for $11 and walked on board with it with
Ken ready to
board the ship.
Because we had boarded so early, our staterooms weren't ready
yet so we went to the Lido Deck and had lunch with our friends
by the indoor pool which has a retractable roof. Kathryn
and I then took the elevator to the top of the ship and walked
our way down exploring everything as we had never been on the
MS Rotterdam before. At the very top of the ship on
the Sky Deck, they had a fake volcanic jungle with a waterfall
and hammocks called the Oasis. The sign said it was for
teens only but judging by the people who were already on
Kathryn by the
indoor pool on the Lido Deck
the ship, there weren't going to be a lot of teenagers on board.
This was going to be a
different cruise for us because we had always done the Caribbean
at Spring Break and there were people of all ages. We were
probably in the youngest 10 % of the geezers on this ship.
Things were pretty dead after 11:00 pm on most nights. We
eventually made it back to our cabin and unpacked our clothes.
then went out on the back of the Lido Deck for the "Sail Away"
party at 6:00 pm and watched Athens disappear as we set out to
sea. It had been overcast earlier but the sun came out as
we set sail.
The eight of us were supposed to be at the same table but when
we went for dinner, they had four of us at each of two different
tables that weren't next to each other. We put Kathryn on
it and she went after the head maitre d'. Soon an
assistant came by a couple of times to assure us that if we
stayed at our current tables for the night, they would put us
all together at a large table for the rest of the cruise.
After dinner we had a nightcap and then crawled into bed for a
Al Russell, Al
MacDonald, Arlene MacDonald, Carol Lunn, Donna Russell, Dave
Lunn and Ken having a "Sail-away" cocktail on the Lido
Click here for a
slide show of a few more Day 24 photos.