I had the good fortune to travel to Hawaii last month and cruise around the beautiful islands on the Norwegian Cruise Line’s Pride of America with my good friend Bogi Lateiner.
Bogi owns a shop in Phoenix AZ, and is an ASE Master Technician. She is also one of the co-stars on the TV show ‘All Girls Garage’ on the Velocity channel.
Somehow the two of us always get into trouble when we get together and on this trip we almost bit off more then we could chew.
We decided that we should get a tour of the ship’s engine. Heck, we were both AutoGirls, love engines and Bogi is a TV star. We thought maybe we could leverage all this and get a tour. Every day we asked a different crew member about it, and started leaving letters requesting a tour in the suggestion box at the front desk.
We were pleasantly surprised when returning to our room one night, and found the red light was flashing indicating a voice mail that said to report to the front desk the next day at 11 am if we wanted our tour. We were thrilled to meet Chief Engineer John Cullan . He and his office assistant ‘our female escort’ spent the next two hours taking us on a detailed tour of the engines.
We were taken to the deep bowels of the ship, where small armies of engineers (and an awful lot of computers) were working to keep the lights on, the air conditioning cooling, the toilets flushing and the propellers turning. Yes it was hot, stuffy and loud down below. BUT it was soooo cool.
Afterwards, we were shown the laundry room, the main kitchen and other back-end departments…. All the way up to the Bridge. Lucky for us the Captain showed up and he explained even more about how, where, when and why about the ship. It was an awesome tour and we were very grateful that we got such special treatment.
OK….now on to the trouble we caused…
On the last day of the cruise we got up early, got our rental car and headed to a beautiful beach. We both would swear that we were told to be back on the ship by 2:00. But no…. We were suppose to be back by 1:30. There is a reason they have you swipe your ship ID card on the way out of the ship and back into the ship. At 1:45 we get a call on Bogi’s cell phone while sitting on the shuttle van back to the ship. The ship people told Bogi we were late and would probably be left behind.
LUCKY for us, the Chief Engineer is THE guy that decides when the ship leaves the pier and somehow he got word that it was us standing on the pier with no way to get back on the ship.
The crew was NOT HAPPY but they did as they were told and got the forklift to put the gangplank back out again just for us. – BIG Thank-you to our good friend Chief Engineer John!