Country: United States

State: Florida

Florida, June 18, 1977

Jay dropped us off at the Los Angeles airport at 12:01 AM for a chartered United Airlines flight at 2 AM. While waiting in the terminal we uncorked a bottle of champagne given to us by Bruce McGuire. The cork blew off, putting a dent in the ceiling and our trip was starting off with a real bang! Of course we were immediately observed by all of our fellow passengers. Seated nearby was the Martin family who later became our table companions aboard ship.

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At Sea to Miami, June 23, 1977

Two glorious days remaining on board. Expecting a big ocean appetite, we had an elegant breakfast in the main dining room, then another champagne party on deck in celebration of the Martin's anniversary. After a massage and a few purchases in the ship's gift shop, it was onto another great lunch in the dining room --- lest we get hungry! The afternoon was spent poolside and on the sundeck where games were in progress and we were entertained by the steel band.

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At Sea to Miami, June 24, 1977

Our last day. How could it be over so soon? We started out with another fantastic gourmet breakfast in the dining room -- smoked salmon, banana pancakes, fresh coconut pastries. My mouth was watering for the coconut Danish, but they'd all been taken by the time I was served. Tony obliged his “Flower” by swiping one off another plate. As he was passing out sweetrolls at the next table, Ed reached across the table to help himself. Tony promptly removed the basket from his reach, reprimanded him, rapped his knuckles, and told him to wait and be served properly.

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Florida, June 25, 1977

After only a couple hours of sleep it was cognac coffee on deck at 6 AM. A beautiful sunrise as we pulled into the port of Miami. While the ship was being cleared by customs we gathered in the dining room for the "Last Fabulous Meal." We had our sad farewells with friends and crew, and upon request Tony had left each of his “Flowers” his name tag by our plates. After checking our bags through customs we boarded a bus for the Miami airport where we waited two hours for our chartered United Airlines flight back to Los Angeles. After boarding it was announced there would be an open bar all the way (for those who could stay awake) and only one seating for lunch. The most popular area of the plane was the forward "john." Three toilets broke down on flight, and with an open bar the 280 passengers had a long continuous line down the aisle.

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Country: Dominican Republic

At Sea to D.R., June 19, 1977

After a fantastic breakfast in the main dining room, we strolled the deck and got acquainted with our ship. Next stop, massage parlor, then to My Fair Lady lounge for a talk on shopping. Sunbathing on the deck in the afternoon and a Father's Day lunch on the Veranda Cafe. A trip to the bridge to observe the captain and crew. In the late afternoon we enjoyed a wine and cheese party in the Lounge of the Midnight Sun. Then back on deck for tea and pastries. After a shower and donning formal attire, we attended the Captain's cocktail party. Following was the Captain's Gala French dinner, then an entertaining cruise staff show. At its close the cruise director ended the midnight show with “Ladies and gentlemen, I don't know how to tell you this, but it's time to eat again.” Irene ordered her very first escargots and I was crazy enough to be conned into eating one of them. Never again!

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Puerto Plata, June 20, 1977

Breakfast on the Veranda Cafe, daily massage, lunch in the main dining room where our excellent waiter, Emanuelle, and busboy, Tony, awaited us. By the end of the cruise we wanted to take them home with us. Tony called all of us ladies "Flower." At noon we left the ship for a city tour of Puerto Plata with the Gregorys and Martins. An uncommercial island still, it offered beautiful scenery around its poor inhabitants. Going into port we passed a sunken ship broken in half that cannot be removed because it rests on top of another ship.

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Country: Puerto Rico

San Juan, June 21, 1977

We breakfasted early on the Veranda Cafe and we sailed into San Juan, arriving about 10 AM. After massage appointment and an early buffet luncheon in the main dining room I walked into old San Juan to do some shopping. I purchased a lovely 18 karat gold dome ring. Jim stayed aboard ship until late in the afternoon when we took a taxi to Fort El Morro. After much picture taking of the beautiful old fort, and bumping into Mundays and Goalskys several times, we took a walking tour of the rest of the city. Along the way we toured the Governor's Palace and its gardens.

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Country: Virgin Islands

St. Thomas, June 22, 1977

After an early breakfast of sweetrolls at the Veranda Cafe, we left the ship at 8 AM for a city tour. We took a beautiful drive up the mountain stopping at Bluebeards Castle which is now used for honeymooning couples. Everything is "in the round", rooms, beds, etc., symbolizing the round wedding band. By 9 AM we were sipping banana daiquiris at the Mt. Top Hotel 1,400 feet above sea level. The views of Magen's Bay were breathtaking. At the conclusion of our tour at 10 AM, Jim returned to the ship for sunning. I stayed downtown until 4:30 for all the bargain shopping. Except for a brief stop for a cake with Kay and Ed in an outside café, I walked all day to the point of exhaustion. Carrying all my packages, except for the liqueurs, which Ed helped me select and the shop sent to our ship.

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Country: United States

State: Hawaii

Oahu, August 24, 1978

9 AM Continental flight from LA to Honolulu, arriving 11:30 AM. Before takeoff I was about to change seats, having been placed in the wrong section where there was no meal service. I was placed in the first seat behind first class where no movie is shown and smoking is permitted. The seat next to me was vacant and it turned out to be an excellent window seat with no seats in front and more legroom. Al, the in-flight supervisor, buckled up in the vacant seat on takeoff and offered me free drinks because of the seat change.

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Oahu, August 25, 1978

Our complete tour group of 47 got together for the first time for an orientation at a complimentary breakfast held on the floating restaurant Oceania. We met our tour guide, Lani, who was to travel with us from island to island and take care of any problems we might have. The oldest member of our group (around 80) had an early sinking spell and fell asleep during breakfast. Since he was traveling alone, we took him under our wing, calling his room when he forgot to show up for tours he'd paid for. After signing up for a dinner cruise on Kona, he forgot and ate dinner before we cruised. He was a very interesting fellow to talk to, and had led an active life including several inventions and patents along with working as a film technologist with old stars like Mae West and Gary Cooper.

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Kauai, August 26, 1978

Bags were packed this morning for our 2 PM flight to Kauai on Aloha Airlines. Before leaving Oahu I spent a couple of hours shopping at the marketplace and located pendants with coral stones for the girls. I purchased a teriyaki burger which I took back to my balcony, and enjoyed the last views of Waikiki before boarding our airport bus at 12:30.

A short wait for our flight out of Honolulu allowed us time for a piña colada at the airport bar, and we were off for our second island.

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Kauai, August 27, 1978

Kauai, known as the quiet isle, was the perfect place for a “day of rest.” Passing up the canyon tour for the day (later regretted) it was like being on an island all alone. Except for a couple of notes written, the entire day was spent lying in a secluded area and taking in the beauty all around. Paper bags and magazines remained unopened, and paradise was spoiled only once when the nearby active surf washed up a “Big Mac” carton right beneath my feet --- how tacky!

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Kauai, August 28, 1978

After my day of rest I awoke early but confused as the Good Morning America Show was forecasting the weekend weather. It took a while before I realized that this quiet little island got their Friday news on Monday. The late late show also starts at 10 PM. Having no dinner that evening before, I had a ravishing appetite and put away a big breakfast at the hotel. Afterward, a more thorough shopping spree in the nearby shopping mall and the purchase of a gold charm holder for my own remembrance.

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Hawaii, August 29, 1978

Bags were due out early for our longest flight between the islands, 50 minutes, from Kauai to Hawaii. A temporary moment of concern hit when I heard an unnatural sound in my room and realized I packed my alarm before it went off --- which of course was now in full voice all locked up in my case. Breakfast in the hotel and our bus whisked us off to the airport where the x-ray machine showed my fold-up umbrellas as a possible machine gun and had to be examined. Once in the terminal, I saw Marilyn and Cheryl waiting also. It was a beautiful day and a smooth flight to the coast of Kona, and the many pictures taken of the islands from the plane were very clear.

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Hawaii, August 30, 1978

At 9 AM a group of us walked a short distance to the Kona docks where we boarded a boat and took a cruise to Captain Cook's monument. It was a beautiful day and a scenic coastline cruise. The highlight of my entire trip was the half hour stop over at the cove of Cook's monument. Snorkeling gear and masks were provided for those who wished to “jump overboard” and see the underwater sites. A diver was sent down to put out bait, and this drew many beautiful fish into view. Combined with the awesome coral formation it was an unforgettable experience! On the return trip hotdogs and wine tasted great after our half hour swim, and we returned to shore at noon.

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Maui, August 31, 1978

Our day started early with our group boarding a tour bus which would take us from Kona to Hilo. Our driver, Danny, had been driving that route for 10 years and made the day a great experience. He made a hit with me right away when he said he enjoyed his job because the people were always different - “Like you, wow” he grinned. Naturally he got a good tip.

As we toured along the coast and across the island, he stopped and broke off branches of Macadamia trees, coffee trees etc. to pass around so we could see how they grew. We also saw sugar cane, bananas, papaya, guava, coconuts, and others. We passed by Jimmy Stewart's macadamia ranch and his ranch sign was out near the highway.

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Maui, September 1, 1978

Another early start at 7:30 AM, and I caught a bus in front of my hotel for an 8 AM sailing out of Lahaina Harbor to the privately owned pineapple island of Lanai. In fact, we heard that Dole has the island up for sale, and several of us pretended we were land speculators and prospective buyers. Our labels definitely spelled out lookie-loos however!

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Maui, September 2, 1978

After taking a few pictures around the hotel, I headed to the beach for my last day of Hawaiian sun. About 11 AM, a girl was out rounding up a group for a catamaran sail at noon, next door at the Sheraton. Not being able to resist a boat ride, off I went forty minutes later. It was a beautiful sail along the Maui coast on a brand new vessel that was really comfortable - and no splashes. I met a couple from Hong Kong who were visiting California and Hawaii for the first time. He was originally from Sweden and she was from Florence. I couldn't keep from admiring her beautiful figure. She was mid fifties with a golden tan and trim body sporting a brief white bikini. I asked her secret, but wasn't surprised to find out she's a rich lady of leisure who plays tennis daily and has massages regularly.

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Maui, September 3, 1978

We breakfasted early at the hotel and boarded a bus for the Maui airport, where we went through a customs search of all our luggage. On the way to the airport, I finally saw one of those beautiful Hawaiian rainbows arched over the sugarcane fields. A short Aloha flight to Honolulu where we used our 1 1/2 hour layover to purchase fresh leies to take home. It was the first time since Los Angeles that I had to present a ticket to the ticket agent for a boarding pass. All that had been done for us by our agent. I requested the same seat I had on my trip over and was delighted to find it was available.

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Country: United Kingdom

Enroute to London, August 4, 1982

Jay drove us to LA airport. We checked in at 4:30 PM then the three of us went up to the Host International Restaurant for a glass of wine. Our British Airways flight number 282M left at 6:30 PM enroute to Heathrow airport in London. Lucky to have our tickets for plane and cruise after our travel agency closed its doors without notifying us. Fortunately I called Royal Cruise Line in San Francisco just before they mailed our “paid in full documents” to the agency. Guess he would have had a fine time on our vacation.

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Hampton Court, August 5, 1982

We arrived in London at 12:30 PM and we met at the gate by cruise representatives. Because of a five hour layover, we boarded buses and we're driven to Hampton Court. Our guide related a comment made by one of her “charges” from the past. After having flown over the lovely Windsor Castle, built 900 years ago, it was asked why it was built so near the airport.

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More UK entries coming soon

Country: Greece

Piraeus, August 5, 1982

We arrived in Athens, Greece at 11:30 PM (a ten hour time difference from LA), and were taken by bus to the ship, arriving about midnight. On the drive, I noticed that amusement parks were popular. After boarding the Odyssey, we picked up our shore excursion tickets from the Purser. He would not issue a safe deposit box until the following morning. The passengers, fatigued from the long travel hours, were not treated courteously by this man and he spoke very rudely to some.

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Athens, August 6, 1982

Our tour started at 9 AM. As we boarded our bus, four black women traveling together were a bit confused about where they were going. One had boarded and taken a seat but the others kept asking the driver if that was the bus to Turkey. Finally, the one on board yelled and said, just tear out a coupon and get on the bus. Just like Disneyland, I thought.

As we started our drive, the local guide informed us that only 300 of the 1,400 islands in Greece are inhabited. There are no automobiles manufactured there, and the least expensive is $10,000. The average wage is $400 a month.

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Mykonos, August 9, 1982

Awaking at 9 AM, I found a note that Jim was already sunning by the pool. I went to breakfast, then to a briefing on Mykonos and Rhodes. Afterwards, I stayed in the lounge and played bingo with Rusty and Bill --- unsuccessfully, of course. After lunch in the dining room we boarded tender boats to tour the Greek isle that is quaint, all whitewashed, and clean. A local bus took us from the pier to the downtown shopping area. We walked the maze of little lanes with boutiques and waterfront cafés. At one point, it was like being in the house of mirrors and we couldn't find our way back. I bought a pair of cotton slacks and hand crocheted blouse --- white of course. I had not taken long pants, and a woman who worked in the gift shop said I would need them when I rode the camel in Egypt. I told her I had shorts to wear under a dress, but she said I would need the protection of slacks because the camels were covered in fleas.

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Rhodes, August 10, 1982

Jim had his usual early coffee on deck and I had room service breakfast as we pulled into the Port of Rhodes about 8 AM. The old city of Rhodes has a 30 foot high wall around it and makes a great camera shot. Our tour bus left about 9 AM and we drove past the area where the film “Greens of Navarone” was filmed. Our destination was the Acropolis of Lindos which we finally reached by foot. Along the rocky path app, there were Greek women sitting along the walls doing beautiful crocheting work, in particular: tablecloths of which I would have loved to have purchased. I saw others later in Rhodes and finally got a reduced price of $77, but couldn't talk James Paul into it. The women in Greece crochet during the winter months then sell during the tourist season.

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At Sea to Greece, August 15, 1982

Jim was poolside when I awoke feeling much worse. Was so glad we had no tours for the day. I dressed and went to the ship's doctor. He gave me antibiotics for my throat infection and a blank bill to sign (which I thought was very unethical) that was charged to our cabin. Two women told me they had to buy tampons from the doctors office and they were $9.00! Everything we purchased on board and lounges, gift shop, etc. was signed for and paid at the end of the cruise. The exception was the pursers office where travel books, stamps, and film were sold. Also the casino and bingo.

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Hydra & Athens, August 16, 1982

The water was a little rough overnight. We had breakfast, socialized on deck, and watched as we drew closer to Hydra. The views were beautiful from the ship. Jean had a bad cough and I suggested she stop by to get something from the ship's doctor. I saw her again later, on the island, and she had taken my suggestion, she got the same medication as I did and only paid $21. My bill turned out to be $25, but I was thankful it wasn't more. The Jenkins were staying in Athens a few days.

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Athens, August 17, 1982

Got up at 5:30 AM and had breakfast with Bev. Norm was sick all night and I gave her some Pepto pills for him. At the beginning of the cruise, I gave a woman passenger some milk of magnesia tablets for her problem. I saw her the day we left and her problem was the reverse.

We left the ship at 6:30 AM and boarded the bus for the airport. What a sight to see Jeff and Joy sitting in the front seat grinning from ear to ear, and “Fancy Lady” was in the middle of the bus. How degrading! Jeff said later that they were bound and determined that she would not get the seat her last time out.

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Country: Turkey

Ephesus, August 7, 1982

We approached the Port of Kusadasi at 7:30 AM. Most of Turkey is part of the continent of Asia. We boarded our Turkish bus at 8:30 and found the ship's photographer had gotten up early to snap our photographs as we left the dock. He also got us later leaving the ancient city of Ephesus. On our drive to Ephesus, our local guide pointed out the vacation bargains along the beautiful coastline, where two people can stay overnight for only $20 including meals. It is a poor country where Paul incited a riot in the first century A.D. in the city of Ephesus, which was the Rome, Paris, and New York of today. We toured on foot the ancient marble streets where the last restoration took place in 300 BC. As of today, only 20% has been restored and uncovered. Of particular interest were the Turkish baths and lavatories (much superior to our outhouses before the 20th century), and indoor plumbing!

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Istanbul, August 8, 1982

After eight hours of sleep (Jim was already on deck for early morning coffee), and breakfast in the dining room, went on deck to take pictures of the ships pulled into Istanbul. The skyline views of many old spiral mosques were beautiful.

We had to obtain landing cards in the lounge before being allowed to leave the ship. These were to be turned in on reboarding, and the ship was not allowed to leave port until all were returned to the Turkish agents. This was to be repeated in Egypt and Israel.

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Country: Egypt

At Sea to Egypt, August 11, 1982

Slept till 11 AM and dashed out on deck to join Jim. Couldn't miss the Captain's bloody-mary and pizza pool party. Just so we wouldn't starve before the poolside buffet at noon. It was a great day for sunning and poolside games. During “famous couples” game, women were given famous women's names and the mates of these women were pinned on men. The object was to meet people by looking for your mate. I did feel sorry for Liz Taylor! My tag said Grace Kelly, and a woman came up and grabbed my arm and said “Come with me, I have a man for you.” Of course she took me to the Prince, and we hugged and I asked him where he'd been; that I hadn't seen him since the wedding.

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Cairo, August 12, 1982

The ship pulled into Port Said early, and we were docked when we awoke at 5:30 AM. We had been warned not to take pictures going into Egypt or Israel ports because gun boats escort the ship, and the countries do not want it publicized. There are also underwater charges in these ports and we were advised not to get alarmed if we heard boom-boom in the night. Being on the bottom deck, I was surprised we only felt one charge and it wasn't too bad.

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Country: Israel

Galilee, August 13, 1982

We had breakfast at 7:30 then went poolside and chatted with passengers. There was a briefing on Israel at 11 AM in the lounge, then our lunch was served half an hour early at 11:30 in the dining room. While we were eating, we approached the port of Haifa, Israel, and the gunboats came out to the ship to collect passports and give clearance to dock. I just had to take another forbidden snapshot through the port hall in our cabin. Of course, not brave enough to take one of the police boat with armed men.

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Jerusalem & Bethlehem, August 14, 1982

Up at 6 AM, our ship stayed in the Port of Haifa overnight. Jim went up for breakfast, and I had room service so I could get ready for our long 10 hour tour. The bus left at 7:30 and our “front seat lady” was in place when we boarded. As I passed by her, she scolded me for having on a sleeveless dress when our bulletin said our arms had to be covered to enter the temple. I should have asked her why she wore high heeled shoes walking up to the Acropolis, when the bulletin said to wear sensible shoes. Anyway, she broiled through the day in her long sleeves while most of us enjoyed our cool frocks and used shawls when necessary.

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United Kingdom
Hope's Bay
Hong Kong
North Dakota
South Dakota
Virgin Islands
Puerto Rico
Dominican Republic