Seabourn Quest
Fort Lauderdale to Fort Lauderdale
December 2012
December 14, 2012        We departed for Fort Lauderdale on Friday morning.  The flight we were on had
live TV coverage and we watched in horror as the event that occurred at the Elementary School in the
Sandy Hook section of Newtown, CT unfolded. Suffice it to say we were heartbroken over this unimaginable
tragedy and we could think of little else for the next week or so.  

Our cruise did not depart from Fort Lauderdale until December 19th.  We stayed at a Weston and Eleanor
was a good sport as I enjoyed some bird photography at nearby reserves.  I purchased a new camera just
prior to our trip and was anxious to learn the ins and outs of the controls before we began our 90 day
cruise experience - the first 18 days around the Caribbean on the Seabourn Quest, immediately followed by
a 72 day cruise around South America on the Regent Mariner.  Here is a
LINK to an updated gallery of birds
I have photographed in Florida over the past three years.

December 19, 2012        The Quest is the newest of Seabourn's ships and is for the most part identical to
the Sojourn and Odyssey which we cruised on over the Holidays in
2010 and 2011.  Our previous two
Holiday Cruises were from Fort Lauderdale to Los Angeles via the Panama Canal, whereas this one was
limited to the Caribbean.

Our primary objective for this cruise was to read, relax and enjoy the warm weather.  We had previously
vacationed on a number of the Caribbean Islands we would be visiting and we had just returned from a
5 week stay on St Barts.

We recognized several of the crew members, but not as many as on our prior Seabourn cruises.  Our first
three days were at sea before reaching Aruba on Sunday.  We walked about the area and were pleased to
find it very clean with lots of high end shopping, etc.  

On Monday we were on the Island of Bonaire.  We vacationed here a number of times about 25 years ago
and it is still quiet and for the most part undeveloped.  It is very clean.  Eleanor walked about the town and I
participated in two tours, the first to a butterfly garden which was just so-so and in the afternoon on a bus
tour around the southern part of the island which offered a couple of photo opportunities including one of
an osprey
desperately trying to haul a large fish out of the surf.  It finally had to give up.

We enjoyed the cruise but decided against going ashore at most of the islands on the itinerary which we
had visited before.  Exceptions were St Barts on New Year's Eve where we walked through Gustavia in the
late afternoon and wished several restaurant and shop owners we know a Happy New Year; and Old San
Juan which we found to be very clean and attractive.  We really enjoy the ship when most of the other
passengers are ashore and we pretty much have the pool area to ourselves.

This cruise was in preparation for an extensive 72 day cruise around South America which we will begin at
the conclusion of this one on January 7th.