Teaching on SQL Cruise – Day One, Seattle and the Sea
Last week my family and I took a cruise to Alaska. But even though I took vacation to do it, I worked during the cruise. I’ll explain what I did each day on the cruise, what I enjoyed about it, and give you a few cruising tips along the way.
A good friend, Brent Ozar, and his team run a "SQL Cruise". On this cruise, people learn about Microsoft’s SQL Server while we’re at sea. In the evenings and during shore excursions, you’re on a cruise. It’s a great way to learn, and many folks (myself included) bring their families. This cruise went to Alaska, all the way through the inside passage to Glacier Bay.
The first day we arrived early to the terminal in Seattle, because you can actually check your bags in before the check-in for the cruise. After dropping off the bags, we headed across the street for some good Seattle coffee. Of course – I brought a bag of my own for the cruise, since I’m kind of picky and drink a lot of coffee. There are small coffee-makers in the rooms, but the coffee itself is standard hotel fare.
Once we checked in to the Norwegian Pearl (NCL), we waited in one of the lounges to be able to go to our room. The ship is pretty new – I’ve been told less than five years old – and it was very spacious and clean. We got one of the balcony rooms, which had enough room to sleep four people. It had a TV running two news channels, several "ship" channels, and two movie channels. The bathroom was large, and had a hand-held shower mounted on the wall.
I highly recommend that you get a room with a view – it’s more expensive, but being able to have the views we had and be able to be together in the room was really helpful. There are a lot of people on a cruise ship, and sometimes it’s great to able to still have the nice views but be alone.
The ship has fifteen decks, the lower ones being mostly rooms. The upper decks have lots of recreation and lounging areas, and with the great weather we had throughout the trip, a good fleece with a light shell was all we needed to be comfortable. We had fantastic weather – something you rarely get in this part of the world – for the entire trip.
We used motion-sickness pills and never had any trouble, but the seas were relatively calm. Christina found the library to do a little schoolwork since school is still in for us. She had a pretty decent view.
To be able to post a lot of pictures here, I’ll break this post into multiple days. Check back tomorrow for the next one.