Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Trip of a lifetime

This first post is not about death at all. It is about living life. That, is what a brighter side of the grave is. Life. And how we live.

I just returned home from an amazing adventure. Many people have gone on Carribbean cruises before. I wonder how many were like ours.

My husband and I decided to take our aging parents on a cruise of a lifetime. My mother has been sickly for some 30 years and is now 76 years old. My father is 86 and my father-in-law is 91! None of them have ever been on such an excursion. Both our fathers were in WWII. My father in the Navy and his an MP. Thier image of a ship would be a WWII aircraft carrier.

We flew to Miami where we boarded the Navigator of the Sea's from Royal Carribbean. The look on thier faces when they saw this "boat" for the first time was priceless. I'm glad that we chose such a large boat. However, it may have been a little too much for them to take in on a 4 day cruise.

It was difficult to have to help them with everything, all the time. These are the people that raised me and taught me right from wrong and now they can't even read a menu or decide what to get from the buffet. The Navigator crew was very helpful in making sure that we all ate well.

They were like lost little puppies. They didn't know what to do or how to get there. On a 14 story boat that's over a thousand feet long, it's difficult to tell even what floor you are on or if you want to go up or down in the elevator. So, we planned everything the best we could and took them to the shows and tried to get them to enjoy a little early sunshine. Back home in Michigan, we are just now starting to see 50 and 60 degree temps. So 80's felt pretty good to me. But the old ones thought it to be a little too warm. We went to Cozumel, Mexico and my Native American mother didn't even get a tan. My poor father wore a jacket to keep warm from all the air conditioning on board.

Old 91, as I call him, decided he was tired during the day and took a "knapp". Thus was up all night bumbling around with the light on all night. The man is leagally blind but insist on trying to see. So there he is at 3am looking out the window of the room, with the light on behind him, through his binocculars. Wondering what that light is out there on the ocean. I'll say it again, with the light on behind him. I have to wonder if it was the light of the room reflecting in the window or was he seeing something like a refuge boat from Cuba.

My parents were the lucky old saps that had a leaky water pipe in thier room. They got moved from the port-hole window room to a suite 5 floors up with a nice balcony. It was funny to watch them close the drape so no one could see them change.

I can't even come to close to describing everything that we went though. I can however recommend for anyone traveling, to use a walker or wheel chair. We're talking front of the line for check-in. Front of the line for security. Front of the line for boarding and disembarking. People move out of your way and even hold doors. It's amazing.


Jabacue said...

This was delightful to read! What a treat for your parents. And how lucky are they for your patience.

My Dad is 94 and it is getting very difficult to even get him out of the house....let alone onto a cruise ship! He loves his house!

Stew said...

Wouldn't a cruise of the N/E Coast be wonderful.