Thursday, November 17, 2011

Cruise Control

Have you ever been on a cruise? Aren't they the worst?

I went on one to Alaska with my dad and my sisters not long after my mom died. I remember feeling like a hamster trapped in a cage. I was only let out for a few hours a day in some touristy city. Otherwise, it was rubbery chicken, machine-made strawberry margaritas, Taco Bell-style nachos, bad decor (lots of purple and gold), casino lighting and nowhere to go except the other end of the ship. I mean, the thing would dock each day, but always in a city or town that was chosen for you. And how much can you really explore a city in which you have limited transportation and time? I'd always end up returning to the ship way before they asked us to because I had this neurotic, debilitating fear that I'd be left behind, stranded alone in Sarah Palin land.)

The upside of the giant boat/cage was spending time with my family. And seeing and being exceptionally close to icebergs for the first time. They looked like these enormous, looming textured sculptures--almost like icing--that were bright turquoise in color. I couldn't decide if I wanted to climb them or lick them. You could watch them slowly break apart. Their pieces would float in different directions in the wide-open sea, where nothing else was visible except for the horizon line. It was as if someone had spilled a giant blue raspberry Slurpee into the never-ending ocean.

I've been thinking about that cruise, the good and the bad, because Kadin and I have been fantasizing about taking a trip somewhere. But, of course, it's not so easy with tiny monster, who hates airplanes, demands a bigger hotel room and, in general, makes things much more expensive. I saw some advertisement for a Mexico cruise and considered it for half a second before I realized that it would mean confetti-patterned carpet, more watered-down margaritas (that I can't even drink) and a constant frat party a la Papas & Beer/Rosarito Beach circa the early nineties.

I wouldn't go if it were free.

So I've downsized my travel dreams for now. I'm thinking maybe a quick trip to California's central coast or even Lake Arrowhead so Sabine can see snow for the first time.

But no cruise. Not ever again. Not even when I'm eighty.



Leslie said...

Maybe you're going on the wrong cruise. I've never been, but am DYING to go on one some day. But not the lame Carnival type cruise, because I think you're right they can be pretty lame and even gross. I think there's nicer ones these days where it's really like a resort on the water. With lots of different eating options and stuff to do on board. I don't know, maybe those are crazy expensive, but that's what I'm dreaming of anyway...One day.

Laura Mauk said...

we didn't actually do Carnival. It was some Scandinavian company. And maybe there are fantastic ones...I think it just frustrated me that I couldn't wander and explore without limits. But if you ever go, let me know...maybe I'd change my mind!

Miss A said...

Oh I'd love to go on a cruise, but I'm a cheesy girl. I love bad music, neon lighting, cramped spaces. Really I do. Somehow it's comforting. I've always dreamt of going on a cruise with my favorite people.
Anyway. I'm thinking the timing was the other reason you have bad cruise memories. Maybe it's time to claim back the cruise...

ginacorr said...

Lola, remember I use to sell cruises?!hahahaha.Although,there are some nice cruise lines out there-I feel the same as you. Cruising is not my cup of tea. This is the only way to travel by boat

and something you should do with your family one day for sure!!!!! xo

Laura Mauk said...

@MissA, I love that you love a cheesy cruise :). And I think that you might be right about the timing thing.

Laura Mauk said...

@Gina, I forgot! But how amazing does that yacht/sailing look? See, that I would LOVe. Because you're so close to the water and it's not so huge and limiting. You could get all Blue Lagoon--and they had even a baby to deal with!


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