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Prague, Copenhagen and Voyager Artic Cruise


Traveling Mike
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Reykjavik

our second day in Reykjavik we did a tour called the golden circle. I was expecting southern Iceland to be just like northern Iceland and all volcanic rock. It turned out the scenery was a lot nicer. It was rolling hills with some color from small vegetation. That don't get me wrong it still was all volcanic rock. Nice thing about doing this multiple days later is this I'm just telling you about what I can remember. Our first stop was a waterfall that went down the river it had this big gigantic waterfall nothing spectacular. Second stop was geysers; If you've been to Yellowstone you looked at these and said oh these aren't anything. If you haven't been to Yellowstone you looked at them and said oh man this is amazing. Our next stop was at a tomato farm and I'll get to into that in a minute in detail. And our last stop was actually a pretty cool volcanic area that this pathway was cut actually created down through the volcanic rock.

The actual highlight of the trip was the tomato farm which sounds strange. The people that own the farm came up with the idea when they were 17 years old. They ended up going to college and one of them studied to become a horse farmer and the other one studied to be a tomato farmer. When they graduated they found this farm that had been shut down for a few years and got it very cheap. Well they started raising Icelandic horses. And they also started growing tomatoes in greenhouses. Now years later they export 2000 pounds of tomatoes a day to the market and raise and train horses that are exported all over the world. The horses are special because they have two extra gates; Away they trot or run. They do it in a way that the rider does not go up or down he could stay steady. They showed us an example by the man carrying a beer in his hand while his horse trotted around the track. It was actually pretty impressive. The tomatoes are grown in a greenhouse and the base of the plant is in of barks that is like 6 inches by 6 inches right then the vines are trained to go over and then up to the ceiling. The last part of our tour was lunch. This was the best freshest tomato soup I've ever had. And they had tons of fresh baked bread to go with it. Needless to say my diet went out the door and I had seconds of everything.

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Greenland

We spent two days in Greenland. We were scheduled to go to 2 ports then the cruise one of the fjords but we were told because of the weather we had to skip Nuuk.  The first day we went to a small town of 300 people called Qaqortoq. We had to park out in the Bay and tender in to the town. It was very foggy and it took forever to get people off the ship. After I got off the tender I stopped and looked around.  Left was downhill and right was uphill.  I figured I was fresh and would go uphill.  Walking around the town I quickly figured out this was not your typical tourist stop.  There was not much for tourists other than their local museum.  At the top of the hill I ended up going through their local grocery store. The items in the store was Pretty much what You'd expect to see in the United states. It was also your small town typical store that had everything from hardware to groceries. I made my way down through the streets to the couple of shops that were down by the Bay. They had a fish market that was a little bit different. This fish market had well, seals, fish, and seagulls. Yes seagulls that they butcher for you. There was a little cafe that pretty much everybody of the ship was piled into to get sodas and beers. I read reviews that they had really good hamburgers and French fries but the line was so long I decided I'd just go back to the ship and eat.

The next day we spent the entire morning selling up one of the fiords. Of fiord is pretty much a big deep river that goes inland. At the very end of it was a very large iceberg that the melting feeds the water of the fiord. The night before I went to bed early so I got up about 5:00 in the morning and by 7:00 o'clock I had me in nice comfortable round bed in the adults area. I was able to stretch out lay down on the pillows play some music on my cell phone and watch the scenery go by. It was beautiful scenery but a little different than I expected. I expected a lot more snow and ice and icebergs than what we've seen. No don't get me wrong it's beautiful scenery just not what I expected. And along the way there was one village that housed 100 people. I kind of wondered how do they live there this seems strange that out in the middle of this nowhere these hundred people live.

Over all Greenland was a beautiful place but it's also one of those places that I've been there, seen that, been there... I am done

 

Long, deep fjords

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Sea days

Now I am in the last leg of my cruise.  This morning I got up, checked my cloths, and washed out a couple of shirts.  I bring Tide Pods with me to allow me to wash a few things if I need to.  Then I figured out what I needed for my last 4 days.  Then everything else got packed in the suitcase.  When Sunday morning comes there will be nothing to do but grab my bags and leave.  I am glad I have these sea days.  They should be relaxing but I am ready to go home.  These vacations are great but there is nothing like home.

 

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@Traveling MikeI was just thinking about you this morning.  So glad to hear from you.  I figured that there had been comm issues...but glad to know everything is good.

So many beautiful and unusual places to see and go.  Very glad that you were able to go and to tell us all about it.  Sad that we weren't able to make this trip, which we had been planning for so long....another time...

 

 

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More Internet Issues

I will be so glad when all the RCL Ships are upgraded to SpaceX Starlink.  I was going to update and finish my blog on my flight home but there were so many issues I did not feel like messing with it.  For some reason setting in an airport for 6 hours two different times make you want to do nothing. 

Flight Home

I walked off the ship with my bags and figured out it would take me 1 hour to get off the ship and through customs.  Then I figured it would take me 1 hour to get to the airport.  My flight was at 11:50 am so I needed to be at the airport by 10:00 am.  With those calculations I had to be out of my cabin no later than 8:00 am.  Well.... I left the cabin at 7:00 am because I was awake.  I went to the cafe and ask if I could get a egg and bacon muffin without the muffin.  They brought me the most beautiful over medium eggs with 3 slices of bacon.  Best breakfast I had in 3 weeks.  I was heading off the ship by 7:15 am.  I did not stop much on the way out.  Customs took about 45 seconds.  I was in my Uber by 7:30 am.  There was no traffic and I was at the airport by 7:50 am.  So... I got to set 4 hours for my flight.

My flight from Boston to Phoenix was uneventful except for the fact the person in a full plane did not show up.  We got to spread out and watch movies.  When we landed in Phoenix I found out my 3 hour layover was delayed by 2 hours because there was not flight staff.   Then the plane coming in for us was delayed and my 5:45 pm flight soon became a 8:20 pm flight.  Not fun waiting almost 6 hours for your connection.

I did eventually get to Fresno by 10:00 pm.  I was setting outside the Fresno Air Terminal (FAT)  when my son pulled up with our two dogs in the car.  Those two dogs made me feel loved.  They were running in circles in the car and barking up a storm.  Once I got in the car they were not sure if they should continue to run in circles or jump on my lap.  It is true, Man's Best Friend....

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Traveling Solo

There are lots of people that wonder what is like traveling solo.  This was a different trip so I thought I would share some of my thoughts. 

  • Planning:  It was really nice to be able to pick what I want to do and not worry about what anyone else wants to do.  When I got to Prague and Copenhagen I changed my plans while out on the town because how I felt changed.  Things I wanted to do changed.  I did not have to compromise with anyone, I was traveling solo.
  • Flying into a strange country alone:  This was a challenge.  I had no one to ask what they thought.  I had to trust my own judgment and figure it out on my own.  I also had to be secure enough to ask other people for directions or how things worked.
  • Traveling on an European Train for the first time:  This was a challenge even if there was someone.  This was a very uncomfortable adventure and I am not sure if it would have been better or worse with someone else with me.  Not speaking the language and the process was so different I was uncomfortable for most of the adventure.  Now that it is done it would be much easier the next time.  The biggest issue with being solo is you have strangers setting next or right in front of you.
  • On the ship:  my favorite saying is a solo traveler is only alone if they want to be.  This cruise I was getting tired of people and wanted more alone time.  Now to be fair with you I need to remind you I was in charge of some of the Cruise Critic / Face Book activities.  That is over 600 people.  I did the Sail-a-Way Meet and Greet, the Group Dinners at Chops, Giovanni and Izumi, and the Poker Pub Crawl on three different days.  On top of that I helped on two different private shore excursions that was 100 people and 80 people.  With all this organizing I meet lots of people and was never alone.  I had to find time for "Me Time".
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On 9/15/2022 at 4:39 AM, Traveling Mike said:

The horses are special because they have two extra gates; Away they trot or run. They do it in a way that the rider does not go up or down he could stay steady. They showed us an example by the man carrying a beer in his hand while his horse trotted around the track. It was actually pretty impressive. 

 

 

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Gaited horses are the bomb.  I love me some Icelandic Horses!  I have a Paso Fino (she's 31 years old). If I wasn't so old I'd get me an Icelandic to ride as well.

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One last thing I want to leave you with. 

The only real issue I had on the trip was I got real tired of hearing people complain.  Our cruise has over 300 Pinnacle cruisers and the most of the rest was Diamond and Diamond plus.  The ship had a couple of meetings with the staff warning them how picky the cruisers on this cruise were going to be.  Most of the people on the cruise were great but there was enough that were not that you got tired of hearing it.  I was told that the ship had to leave about 350 staff in Copenhagen because the USA would not give them a work visa.  All the ships are short staffed to start with.  All the staff was working their hardest to make a great cruise for us.  I seen the glass half full and appreciate everything they did.  Please, going forward do not be the glass half empty person and only see what you did not get on your cruise.

Thank you for following,
Mike

 

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