2010-Panama Canal Transit

We have just returned from a 28 day wonderful cruise transiting the Panama Canal twice.

Travelling on the Holland America Line Maasdam we departed Fort laudedale and sailed through the Panama to San Diego then made the return trip back to Fort lauderdale, Florida.

Day 1 Maasdam.
Made it to the ship and all that I was hoping for has come true. Small ship of 1250 passengers and 500 crew. Very comfortable and not at all glitzy. Very sedate and classy. All the people we have met so far are friendly and ready to have a good time like going to the beauty treatment every day, the hair dresser etc. No, not the gym. We did go to the gym earlier today and it was crowded but that was because they were drawing the raffles for the spa treatments. As soon as the drawings were over it was back to the bars etc.
Plenty of nooks and crannies on board. Very extensive library, internet cafe, sitting areas and of course the bars and casino.
The Rotterdam restaurant, a two tier elegant dining room is open for dinner so its off for our first experience.
Have just had dinner. Five courses to choose from and all very tasty and well presented. I had mussels in white wine then grilled salmon with artichokes followed by mango in mango syrup and coffee.
Even with the three small serves, it is far more food than we normally eat so the stomach feels stretched.
Apparently there is 24 hr coffee at the romantically named Lido restaurant as well as late night snacks from 9:00pm. Snacks, by American standards signifies a full meal. Pasta with you name it sauce, hamburgers, etc etc. Will try it out later for hot chocolate.
The night-time show starts at 9.00 so will see what the feathers and glitz looks like.

Ship starting to roll a bit. At least the weather has improved,it has stopped raining but the seas haven’t been informed to calm yet. I guess it takes longer on this side of the world.
At sea all day tomorrow so will hit the gym 7.00am for stretching then 7.30 total body conditioning followed by breakfast then at 10am spa secrets to a flatter stomach. If you could see the shapes on board you would roll around laughing. We have quite a few guests in the ‘Madam high maintenance category’,about 100 or so the likes of me,and the rest are XXL at the smallest. Funny sight in gym gear! Wait till they hit the swimming pool!

Next day Sunday,I have booked us in for a Metabolism test. Using the state of the art Biodynamic machine to find out what is really happening inside the body and from the results be advised on the correct exercise program, Nutrition and detoxification. All food for thought. They will probably try to have us join, at some expense, a program that will make us look like the spunks we think we are. Good luck, program!
Till tomorrow!

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