Departure – and a night over in Miami

It begins.

I left London this morning at 10am via Robert Q airbus to Toronto International.

And a funny thing happened – probably similar to most people who’ve travelled or started a new chapter in life.

It hit me…

I mean, of course I was excited from the very moment I received word of the job offer. And these four months of waiting for my work/cruise adventure to begin have been filled with excitement. But, nothing compared to the excitement/anxiety/REALIZATION of actually setting out to do it.

Then I said bye to mom, dad and Babcia, and boarded the Robert Q van. And I thought “dear God!” An almost indescribable mixture of butterflies in the stomach (maybe a hint of wishing to stop the train before it gets going) and a new level of happiness.

Anyways, honestly, the whole thing hasn’t been perfectly smooth sailing (um, pun…) so far. The “getting there” part of traveling to any destination always has elements that are less than perfect. From the horribly long security-check lines and boring waits for delayed planes (mine was one hour late leaving Toronto)…it’s just not that much fun. I also have terrible ear pains during airplane decent.

I must say Toronto’s new airport is pretty amazing, though, and certainly adds a little to the task of traveling. Take, for example this picture:

You get the end of the U.S. customs check, and boom – suddenly this burst of colour breaks forth and jolts you from the monotony of it all.

The flight to Miami was also pretty amazing in that already I learned how great some people in the world are. I sat beside a young couple who will be moving to Canada in February from Miami…they had so much anticipation of their upcoming move to the country and we talked the entire trip.

Arriving in Miami, however, I found that there wasn’t anyone to greet me since the plane was so late! I took a taxi to the hotel I knew I was booked into for the night… to await joining the ship when it pulls into port tomorrow morning from wherever it happens to be coming from. So I was at a hotel I didn’t know in a city I didn’t know not even sure where I was supposed to go in the morning!

Fortunately the guy in the hotel line before me happened to be joining Crystal too, himself as a Sommelier. We stuck together, figured it all out, and finally met a bunch of other crew who will be joining tomorrow morning.

So, in one day (and I’m not even on board yet!) a little taste of what traveling and breaking from the “comfortable” is all about. It’s amazing how all of the uncertainty, twists and turns, and anxiety is completely washed away by the amazement of discovering new experiences at every turn.

(my next post will be a little shorter and less insightful so that I don’t turn you off this blog before the journey really even begins!)
-Andrew

P.S. Photos of the trip are on the “photos” page.

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