Monday, July 21, 2008


After a full day at sea, Josh and I were excited to get out and see some stuff. So, this morning came just in time.

I was told in a lecture yesterday that if we woke up really early in the morning (like 5am), we would see some beautiful sights as we headed in toward Juneau. So, after dinner and a show, we went to bed to make sure we could wake up at 5. He was right.

It was a beautiful sight! We ran into a grand total of 3 other people on the ship at 5 am, and everything was this beautiful color of morning blue. If I ever work for Crayola, it will be my personal mission to make something (a crayon) this color. It is truly breathtaking. Since the internet connection is so slow out in the middle of nowhere, I’m not posting any photos until after we’re home….but watch for the “morning blue” photos, I’m sure they won’t even come close to doing it justice, but hopefully caught some of it.
After wandering all over the ship, watching the water, and enjoying the peace and calm, we decided to enjoy sleep a little longer. It’s strange to wake up twice a day (so far this is the routine: wake up so early in the morning it’s almost still the middle of the night, then go back to sleep and wake up at a far more reasonable hour) and almost makes it feel like 2 different days – so maybe we’re on a 14 day cruise.

At a “more reasonable hour” we got off the ship and headed into town. First order of business: the tram. It heads straight up the mountain, and at the top is a short little hike, a gift shop, a restaurant and a raptor center. The ride up the tram is breathtaking, and although everything was foggy today, we were still able to see a couple of bald eagles. Which is exciting!

On the hike, there was a tree that had a totem pole-like design carved into it – random! Turns out we’re hiking in a rainforest. Everything is beautiful, lush, and green. Just as we were coming down, someone announced spotting a bear, so we followed the ranger up to try to find it – only we didn’t see it. We just wound up doing the loop again. Good thing it was so beautiful!

Next stop: Mendenhall Glacier. The most visited glacier in the world. And man can I see why! We rode a bus up to it, and bus driver Don told us all about his 41 years in Alaska. He was a real funny man and made the 20 minute drive seem just a little too short. At the glacier, we only had 45 minutes to look, take pictures, view the visitors center and the video, and get back on the bus. Not nearly as long as we otherwise would have spent.

This glacier was huge, seriously huge. And beautiful, and blue, and stunning, and breathtaking, and photo-worth, and I wish I had a better camera – and I wish I knew how to use a better camera! It was incredible.....

We learned all about the glacier, global warming, the life cycle of salmon (our funny bus driver told us a wicked poem that I don’t dare publish because it has a bad word in it….but it’s funny.), we saw people hiking, down at the base of the waterfall, and of course the throngs of people like us who were only there for a short time. It was a fantastic 45 minutes though.

After enjoying the ‘real Juneau’ we opted for some shopping – and shop we did!

On our last cruise, I was eyeing the tanzanite jewelry, and coveting it, and wishing we were filthy stinkin’ rich so I could drop hundreds on jewelry I had no place to wear. This time, we went into Tanzanite International (a section of Diamonds International) which was highly recommended by the ships shopping specialist. Seriously, this boat has a shopping specialist on board. Anybody else want that job? I do.

When we went in, I found a tanzanite necklace that I immediately fell in love with. They offered a super-cool you’re on a cruise and it’s your anniversary discount, and Josh just plain bought it for me. That man is amazing.

For the most part he is very responsible with money, and even concerned about spending too much, but it seems like at exactly the right moment, he throws all that out the window, looks me in the eyes, tells me he loves me and makes me feel like a million bucks.

I’m not really a “gifts” person, but he has the ability to pick up subtle hints (maybe I’m not as subtle as I think I am) and make me feel like I’m worth all the presents and prizes on the planet. I love it! I feel like we’re rich, we’re being pampered, we’re enjoying each other, and this beautiful place. And now, when we dress up for our next formal night, I’ll be sporting my new necklace and earrings. And I’m hoping that we’ll have plenty of excuses to wear them in the future too! (More pictures to watch for.)

In return, he’s getting a ridiculously fancy massage (they use heated stones to work on your back….) and I’m sure he’s in heaven. So, those are our anniversary presents to each other (apparently the cruise wasn’t quite enough, ha!) I get fine jewelry that I don’t deserve, and he gets a massage that he definitely earned. How’s that for fair?


  1. uh hum... we need pictures.. LOT'S OF PICTURES.

  2. LUCKY!!!!! You wanna watch our kids while we go on vacation!?!? lol


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