- Posted August 4, 2008 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Stuck on a cruise? My vacation was worse
A Three Hour Tour...a three hour tour...
It was supposed to be easy, leave the port of NY, cruise past Florida and have umbrella'd drinks on a Bahama beach for the remainder of the week, leave the driving to the friendly folks on the Norwegian Dawn.
Right out of the gate, the captain (who we'd hear from alot) announces we are down a propulsion system, we'll leave a little late, fix it over night and continue on our way. The Norwegian Spirit in the slip next to us leaves on time for St. Thomas, we wave bye-bye from the deck of the Dawn.
Day 1, still down a propulsion system and no way to out run the ocean storm coming our way, we putt-putted into Norfolk VA, docked museum-side to wait out the storm, fix that lil nagging propulsion issue and then we'd be on our way.
Day 2, there's no fixing that propulsion system and our safe harbor is hit hard by the storm. From our balcony overlooking a parking garage construction site, metal ladders fly by, an ambulance arrives and plucks a passenger off the ship. We can't get to our rental car that would take us to visit relatives in Richmond - the city of Norfolk is flooded and the Norwegian Dawn is on the news.
Day 3, still down a propeller apparently. The bars are open on the ship (thank God), not much else. The captain announces we will not make it to the Bahamas, the natives are now restless, fed up and angry. And then over the PA the Captain issues a warning - we get a mutiny speech - yep - a mutiny speech. "We are under maritime law, any aggression toward crew or staff will be considered mutiny and it would be dealt with accordingly". Local law enforcement was dispatched.
Day 4. It's announced no Florida, no Bahamas, no fixed propeller, we will hobble back out into the ocean with our broken ship and return home with no tans. That night , we are rescued by relatives who manage to make it through the flooding and we spend Thanksgiving at a Chili's, rent a car and drive home.
Norwegian, citing weather as the culprit, (not the broken propulsion system), declined to reimburse its' passengers. They relented however, seeing as how the Spirit made it to its' destination of St. Thomas, despite the storm, full speed ahead on both propulsion systems.
Norwegian reps contacted us once in awhile after we returned home, to see if they could book another cruise for us (NOT) and they even sent us a postcard , a postcard from the Spirit - you know the ship that made it vs. the ship we were on? Open wound, pour salt.
I understand the Dawn has had its problems in recent years, worse than ours - a tidal wave and the passenger who fell overboard, so we count our blessings and we eventually did find our sense of humor about it. I'd love to send some pictures of our time spent with Captain Gilligan on our three hour tour, but we stopped taking them on Day 1.