CRUISE AWAY FROM YOUR CONCERNS
Cruise Away from Concerns
By Barb Hansen
I tell our chartering cruisers to leave laptops and cell phones behind. But last month, when Vic and I and friends left Florida for our Alaskan inside passage cruise, what did I do? Yep. I hauled my laptop, cell phone and concerns along with me.
The bad news was my laptop and cell phone couldn't find a signal most of the time. The good news was my laptop and cell phone couldn't find a signal most of the time.
I have figured out there's a reward to hauling these devices around. They make us feel important. Our inner voices tell us, "The people in the office need me. They really need me." But there is a big downside to it – stress.
But aren't vacations, you know, supposed to be stress relievers?
I was a little antsy at first, not being connected, but I started to accept the situation. So as our 65-foot Malahide trawler ambled comfortably all the long days past the glorious scenery of Southeast Alaska, little by little I focused my attention on the relaxing reality of the here and now, not the unreal worry of what might be happening back at the office.
Even though we're in the yacht chartering business, and even though Southwest Florida is one of the most beautiful cruising areas in the world, I'd forgotten how relaxing it was to just go cruising. Work and other daily concerns just get in the way of taking time to enjoy it. Work, family, pets and house projects seem to take priority over a weekend cruise.
That's why I think vacations, to really work, require us to get out of town and to leave the you-know-whats turned off.
In addition to the majestic mountains and gorgeous glaciers that make up this part of the U.S. coastline, the wildlife was up close and very photogenic. Whales, sea lions, otters, seals, eagles and bears seemed to greet us at each new cove or provide at-anchorage entertainment after dinner.
Ah . . . the blood pressure goes down.
We fished, set out shrimp and crab traps, and dined on our fresh catch nearly every day. While onboard, I read four books about Alaska. I napped and slept like a child.
We have cruised Alaska on board this vessel in the past. It’s a classic, comfortable and sturdy 65-footer built of wood with a warm and inviting interior. A full-time captain and chef take care of navigation and nutrition. So very well.
I did have one electronic device onboard, my camera, but it helped my mind stay focused on the present. We covered more than 400 spectacular, panoramic miles at just the right shutter speed. If you want to see some, let me know. I'll email them to you.
We'll be going again next year. If you ever get that feeling that you need to "get away from it all" then you are welcome to join us. But: Turn off the cell phone. Leave the laptop behind.
By the way, those cushioned lounges they put out on the upper deck are wonderful for naps.