B. J. and I love to cruise. If you count all the river cruises, the lake cruises, the fjord cruises along with the ocean cruises, we have been on quite a number of cruises. It is wonderful and right now, there is another cruise in the planning stage for the spring.
Cruises, like life, should never be humdrum. You should never go on a cruise for “just somewhere to go and something to do.” With such an outlook, the enjoyment of your cruise is negated at the outset. Jesus said that he came that we might have life and have it more abundantly. Following Jesus’ teaching, we should awake every morning with the attitude, today is another great day, everything is shaping up and I am going to live life to the fullest. Take this approach on board your cruise ship and you will have a memorable time.
Several years ago, B. J. and I embarked on a Caribbean Cruise with our long-time dear friends and neighbors, Cardy and Dottie Edmundson. Our primary destination on this cruise was both the British Virgin Islands and the U. S. Virgin Islands.
The weather was magnificent when we cruised out of the lovely harbor at Port Canaveral, Florida on the majestic Holland America cruise ship, the Zaandam. We would be blest to have great weather for the entire trip. There was a lot of cruising ahead. We would travel over one thousand miles on our way to the Virgin Islands.
There are lots of exciting things to do on a cruise. There is never a dull moment. There is something going on 24/7. There is an abundance of delicious food around the clock. Live bands provide delightful music for dancing on deck in the moonlight or for just easy listening if you just want to kick back in an easy chair and be lulled to sleep by the caressing breeze, the moonlight and the rapture of the sea. The “Love Boat” atmosphere comes alive under the full moon.
We had left the Bahamas and were well into the Caribbean. B. J. and I had eaten a delicious meal and plopped down in one of those comfortable deck chairs to listen to the band and watch the dancers as they embraced fondly and waltzed to the slow music. Then the beat would change into a jig and swing and fling and calypso and sometimes a downright hoedown. There was something for everybody.
As the night wore on, some of the dancers began moving away from the dance deck and heading arm in arm to the promenade deck, a favorite place for lovers at night on a cruise.
One of our favorite things to do on a cruise is prowl the decks at night, especially if there is a full moon. B. J. and I made our way to the grand promenade deck of the Zaandam. Probably by the design of cruise masters who are experts at creating the appropriate atmosphere for every occasion, the deck was lighted brightly along some sections, not so brightly along others, and there were parts where there was no light except for reflections from other lights on the ship. Lovers often pause in the dark spots of the promenade deck.
On this night however, a full moon over the blue Caribbean dispelled the darkness and overspread sea and ocean liner with a radiant magical glow. It seemed as if the sea was awash in millions of tiny mirrors.
We slowed our pace and joined other couples that were holding each other close at the ship’s rail. The slow music from the band drifted along the deck and added to the spell under the glowing moon. The weather was sublime and the night was young and enchanting. It was a night to curl up in a deck lounger and be whisked away by the ecstasy.
Dawn broke over the sea and revealed lovely tropical islands on both sides of the Zaandam. The liner had drifted almost to a stop. When we went for breakfast at the awesome buffet, we learned that we were in the harbor of Tortola in the British Virgin Islands. While under the magic charm of the full moon, we had crossed into English territory and one of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean.
B. J. and I would spend the day touring Tortola, eating with the locals and shopping in the adorable shops. The great music from the band enhanced by the Caribbean full moon had put us in a spirit to really get into this cruise.
It was another great day and everything was shaping up.