Shiplife: First Day Working On A Cruise Ship

Today has been my first day working on a cruise ship.

m/s Amsterdam Holland America

Three words to describe my current state: Exhausted. Emotional. Overwhelmed.

To commence my new role with Holland America Line, I’ve joined m/s Amsterdam. To get here, I endured a 36 hour journey which involved 4 flight connections: This journey involved 4 flight connections: Hanoi – Incheon (Korea) – Los Angeles – Seattle – Ketchikan (Alaska). On arrival in Ketchikan, I discovered that my luggage hadn’t arrived with my final flight, and was then met by a port agent who took me to the nearest – possibly only – medical centre in the town. I was drug tested here before being taken to the ship, untoward and wearing only my now-scruffy Summer dress from which I had hoped I’d be able to change out of beforehand.

I signed all necessary documentation at the HR office before I was met by my “buddy” – the person who is training me for the week. For the next 10 hours I was shown around the ship, shown how the computer programs work, told about various events I would be planning & hosting, witnessed a Renewal of Vows ceremony, and I met important members of staff including Event Manager, Cruise Director, Captain, Hotel Director. This was embarrassing due to my current appearance so I was extremely thankful when my luggage finally arrived onboard! By 9pm, having been awake and on-the-go for over 50 hours now, I requested to be excused from the karaoke show as I was completely drained and emotional. I don’t think any of the information I’ve been given has actually sunk in.

Leaving Hanoi was an incredibly emotional experience for me. I wasn’t sure if I had made the right decision to take the job as I was given only a few days from being offered the job to flying out. I had left my previous employer in the lurch which I feel very guilty about. And of course I left my boyfriend behind which was the most painful thing to do, so as of right now, I can’t be too sure how this is all going to go.

It will be interesting to see how tomorrow goes. I’ll take this one day at a time..

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