Big confession time: I’m pretty good about starting these posts during the day, shortly after “experiencing” the activities. But I find that the afternoons, evenings, mornings get pretty busy—
- all the new friends to talk with/compare notes
- things to see along the river (castles, anyone?)
- tours to enjoy
- feet to pamper after three hours of strolling across cobblestone walkways
- nifty coffee drinks to make with the nifty coffee machine at the entrance to the lounge
- photos to transfer to the iPad
You get the picture. I have my priorities, you know!
So I do the majority of the techy prep on these (sure wish I could nail that photo gallery function…sigh) while I’m supposed to be sleeping. So far, Mom’s usually in the lounge, enjoying the live music and the dancing (“I like the rock and roll the best,” she asserts) until midnight or so (“Oh, Tonya,” I’ve been told by many. “Everyone knows your mom here. I wish I could adopt her as my mom”) and I’m here in good ‘ole stateroom 329, typing away.
Lest I make it seem a chore, let me clue you in a bit: these rooms are just wonderful and the experience is delightful. I type away, perched against the headboard. The sliding door is shut but I’ve pulled the drapes back, exposing the ripples in the river with reflecting moonlight, the dark, mossy walls of the locks when the Atla enters one to be lifted up to the next level of the Main River—and, until darkness falls, snowy swans, campers along the riverbanks and activities of the small (and big) cities our ship passes beside.
Alongside me on the little table between our beds is one of those nifty coffee drinks (no, not to keep me awake–coffee doesn’t really do that to me, knock on wood), a glass of mineral water (thank you, Rica, for always bringing new ones to us before bedtime) and an oatmeal raisin cookie purloined from the coffee area this morning.
The Atla is a smooth-running thing, but there’s a pleasant, soft vibration to it as we glide through the darkness. It’s not a side-to-side motion (that only happens when entering a dock and we nudge a walled edge gently) and it doesn’t feel like acceleration in a land vehicle, it’s just rather soothing. Maybe it’s more like those 25-cent “magic fingers” machines under mattresses in motel rooms in days of old (geesh, I’m really dating myself, huh?). No quarters needed here, though (or even euros); the Atla just carries us along effortlessly. And we sleep.