Disney Wish is floating

posted by Jeff | Saturday, February 12, 2022, 11:20 PM | comments: 0

We recently found out that the inaugural sailing of the Disney Wish got moved back a few weeks. We're going to be on that sailing, which is kind of neat, but the construction has been delayed because of the omicron surge in Germany.

We finally had our 20th cruise in December on the Disney Dream. We've been on all four of the existing ships, but the Dream was the first. Prior to having any interest in cruising, and my step-mother-in-law's plan to do our first one to surprise my father-in-law, Disney released some videos about the construction of the Dream. I was completely fascinated by the idea that humans could build something so enormous, that floated in the water and moved around the world. Not only that, but these vessels are like completely self-sufficient cities that need their own utilities and ability to feed thousands of people everyday. Oh, and they're made with mostly non-flammable things, so the nicer places are filled with materials like marble and granite and such. They have the excess of Vegas, but they float.

Being the environmentalist that I am, yes, I acknowledge that these aren't the most eco-friendly machines in the world. Most of the new ships being built now, including the Wish, are running on liquified natural gas. LNG still produces carbon dioxide, but it's anywhere from a third less to half compared to diesel or coal, and none of the toxic substances that come from diesel. So it's better, at least. And the cool thing about these ship systems is that there's less waste, since the excess heat is what purifies the sea water, heats water and can be used for a number of things.

One of the things that make cruising so wonderful is that it allows us to completely disconnect, and even better, we can let Simon do his thing. He can wander the ship, and at his age, go to both the kids' club as well as the tween club, independently. He can't get off the ship without us. That's a big deal, because it's like going on vacation but only having your child some of the time. In general though, cruises are great because they're the kind of vacation that allows you to turn off your brain. There is always food available, someone makes your bed and you aren't accountable for anything. When you go to familiar ports, there's no adventure there, everything is taken care of for you. That's why we keep doing them. Even when we eventually do European cruises, there's no real logistics to work with. You sleep in the same "hotel" every night.

The fact that I can be a quasi-involved parent has a lot to do with why I love cruising, and there are a great many itineraries that are appealing in that sense:

  • Anything from New York: One of my friends has some amazing photos aboard the Disney Magic departing New York Harbor. That's amazing. I love New York as a visitor but would never want to live there. I love Broadway. I want Simon to see New York and all of its enormous city chaos. I imagine that visiting New York with a cruise in the middle would be the ideal way of visiting with him.
  • Panama Canal: Every year, the Wonder traverses the Panama Canal so it can do itineraries in the Pacific going to Alaska and/or Hawaii. It's a long cruise, and mostly full of old people. But I want to see one of the greatest engineering marvels ever created by man.
  • Northern Europe: I'm actually embarrassed that in middle age I've never been to Europe. What the fuck is wrong with me? The longer European itineraries often include everything from Iceland to St. Petersburg, Russia, and that would be awesome. My thinking is that it starts in the UK, so we could start visiting there, and then sample all of the places in between so we know what we like enough to come back to for extended stays.
  • The Mediterranean: This is more obvious, because it includes many of the places already obvious for this body of water, including France, Italy, Greece and Turkey. Again, it's not so much that I want to cruise to these places, but it makes up for lost time by seeing many places I might not get to see in any specific trip.
  • Hawaii: They used to do a trip from California to Oahu, and then back, but haven't lately because of the pandemic and requirements for a certain number of Polynesian folks onboard (so other crew have told me). But I think that doing some island hopping followed by a long Pacific cruise would be fantastic.
  • Alaska: My favorite cruise to date was to Alaska, originating from Vancouver. We had one booked for Alaska for 2020, but Simon was going to stay with his cousins in Seattle. It would have been the longest vacation that Diana and I had without him. I still want to do this.

The fun thing with cruise #20 was that it was a fairly standard 4-night affair from Port Canaveral, but because we used credit from a cancelled Covid cruise, we decided to go big and do it in concierge. It's an awful lot extra, but we did enjoy the private hot tub once, the "free" drinks about twice a day, and a fairly elaborate scheme that one of the concierge hosts executed to make Simon feel like he bought Diana something for Christmas. I don't mind paying for VIP treatment now and then.

Disney cruises have become an integral part of how we vacation, and it's crazy convenient when you live in Orlando. I would say that the only other line that has attracted my attention is Celebrity, but if we do that, it will be without Simon. Those aren't really kid-friendly cruises. Me and the sea, we are definitely connected. I love being near and on the ocean. It's the place that I find the most peace.


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