Hello, it has been a while since I've updated here!
I just got back from a very eventful vacation. Me and my family went on a cruise! An Alaskan Cruise. On a cruise ship. With a pool and dancing hall and lounges and all that. Very posh, very fun.
Alaska - or at least the tiny sliver of it that we saw - was gorgeous. Very green and overgrown, with amazing glaciers and mountains. And we saw an impressive amount of wildlife - salmon, bears, whales, porpoises, seals, and more. It was really, really neat.
I learned, on this cruise, that I really want to marry a millionaire. Apparently, I have expensive tastes. I loved being waited on. I loved going to tea every day. I loved eating things like lobster tail and souffles. I absolutely adored dressing up. xD I think I have a problem, guys.
Now for the really fun story. My sister was a part of the ship's youth group, and her leader was looking for someone who knew how to play the piano. Now, my sister could play piano, but didn't feel like she had a piece committed to memory confidently enough, so she suggested my name. As it turns out, one of the performers on the cruise, a violinist, had an act where he came up with a duet based on a piece that someone in the audience could play on the piano - and I got the part.
So at 5:00 that afternoon, I walked into the room where they were practising, expecting to see some tall, severe guy in tuxedo. Much to my surprise, though... it was a young guy, probably no more than 5 years older than me. And rather cute, if I'm any judge. ^_~ Anyway, he was super polite, and the practice went exceptionally well - I know how to play a really gorgeous piece, and he loved it.
And after, we talked about college stuff, and it was great - he actually pulled out a friend of his to meet me, too. Who turned out to be another performer - the magician.
Too bad I screwed up the performance. xD I recovered, but I lost it somewhere in the middle, and ended up hitting a measure full of sour notes. Oh, well! I was still highly praised for it all, and for the rest of the cruise, people would stop me in the halls of the ship, and ask if I was that girl who played the piano, and it was really, really nice. The cruise comedian actually sought me out to shake my hand afterwards, which was really cool. And the violinist and the magician would greet me in the halls and make smalltalk and stuff, which was also really cool.
Anyway, that's the story of how I met some kinda famous people, and sorta flirted with a guy with a wikipedia page. ;D
And now for the less cool part of the vacation. The waiting staff on the cruise were fantastic - friendly, helpful, and very professional. We were very fond of one waiter, in particular, who hailed from the Philippines. Anyway, yesterday we talked to him about the working situation... and found out that it wasn't so great. They were working twelve hour shifts, seven days a week. That's... hard. And then this morning we were talking to our waiter, right before we left, and he mentioned a family back home. Which was a bit of a shock to us - he looked, like, 21, and we just sort of figured that most of the staff were young single guys. But, this was not the case, it turns out. And we asked him when he'd get to go home to see his kids - and it turns out, they were working 10 month contracts. 10 months of solid work, 12 hours a day, with no days off. All far away from their families. Holy crap.
And the worst part is, the jobs, apparently, are competed for. What must the alternatives be like, when jobs like that are the most desirable? A lot of the workers were from eastern Europe and Pacific countries. :\ I felt horrible. Still do, really.
Anyway. That was a depressing note to end the cruise on, and a depressing note to end this journal on. So 'll just say that I've never been on a cruise before, but I had a wonderful time. I probably won't be going on any more, but I'm glad of the experience. Heaven knows, it gave me many new perspectives, if nothing else. : )