Back in the USA – Ketchikan, Alaska Tuesday 7-19-2016

Low clouds this morning. Misty. Alison and I got up and went out on Deck 7 for almost 2 miles to get warmed up for the day. As usual, she runs on the hot side, and I’m on the cool side. We laughed at the thought of people trying to guess what to wear by watching us!

We hooked up with Marion and Barry and went up to Deck 12 for breakfast – reasonably healthy – at least for breakfast.

The ship “docked” in Ketchikan just before 8AM. There are two other ships, one much larger and one about the same size as us. In total, the population of the 3 ships is far greater than the Ketchikan population. AT&T wireless popped up, so we took advantage – for a bit, at least.

We meet in the Galaxy Lounge at 8:30 for our excursion, “Wild life sanctuary, Eagles and Totems”, which will last about 2-1/2 hours and involve walking, which is great! KET-D, follow “Bob”, the magician, down to Deck 4 and your bus… We had an amusing 20 minute bus ride up to the Rain Forest tour starting point. The driver, one of many summer student hires, was hilarious.

Our tour guide was, we believe, a high school senior, who grew up in Ketchikan, Alaska, and is soon off to college for a degree in Journalism. She was quite knowledgeable and funny. This is a rainforest with annual rainfall placed at between 13 and 14 FEET, and it rains some 240 days/year. She said that all 8th graders take a mandatory 2 month survial course, which ends with them being put on an island for a week or two to – well, survive. She pointed out the various items that were edible and those that were poisonous. She introduced us to “banana slugs”, deer and wolves, types of trees, etc. At one point, someone spotted a bear down by the creek, and that stirred some radio traffic among the guides.

We actually all saw the bear a little while later – a 2 to 3 year old, who, at that age, was already sent out on his own. We also saw adult and adolescent bald eagles, in their element, which was very cool. I had my binoculars with me, so we all had an up close visual experience with these guys. As the salmon capital of the world, we got to see some of them – not the teaming streams of salmon swimming up-stream or anything. And, we saw a native American Totem Pole carver doing his thing near the beginning stages of making a new totem pole. The bus ride back to town was with another kid from Northern Las Vegas Community College, who was extremely funny, too. We wandered around town for about an hour before returning to the ship for lunch.

Seaplanes EVERYWHERE – taking off and landing every couple minutes, ALL THE TIME. It’s loud and it’s amazing.

We had lunch in the Main Dining Room, and had a blast. Wine, shepard’s pie, salad, and a sundae for dessert.

A little update of the blog and I’m ready to join Alison for a nap. I love it!

Formal Tea up in the lounge is always a nice event, and this day, all the servers were dressed in dress costumes, and the string quartet from St. Petersburg were dressed and playing beautiful music.

From Tea, we walked down to Hollywood Theater on Deck 6 to listen to the second presentation – this one on Glaciers; specifically the glacial formations that we were coming upon. While interested, I have now fallen asleep in my second lecture! Argh.

We had our first dinner in the Main Dining room tonight. The food, as always, was good, although it was a long, drawn out meal for whatever reason. It didn’t really matter, since we didn’t have any plans for the evening.

26 Feet of annual rainfall will do this to you
26 Feet of annual rainfall will do this to you
Some of these trees are over 500 years old
Some of these trees are over 500 years old
Our guide is a local high school student - going into journalism
Our guide is a local high school student – going into journalism


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