Sunday, October 31, 2010

Whale watching in St. Lucia!!?

My first stop in St. Lucia and I got put on a tour to go whale watching. Yes, whale watching for the 18th time. Lol

I was talking to a musician, he's from St. Lucia and we got to go home for a few hours. And he asked me what I was doing in port. I told him I was on tour to do whale watching. He laughed, looked at me and asked "whale watching?" Yeah whale watching. Lol "whale watching st. Lucia? Where are there whales??" Lol

I went on tour....very small boat. I was very hesitate about it...sea sickness does not make anyone a happy camper. I did okay though.

We saw ZERO whales, and ZERO dolphins. Lol

I thought that was funny. Hey I got some sun. And when I did my edit...which was a total was 3 minutes long. Lol I couldn't call it whale and dolphin watching. I had to title it: coastal St. Lucia. Lol that's pretty much all that was seen. Lol

Saturday, October 30, 2010

leaving New England behind.

The ship is in the Caribbean now, and I miss New England already :-(

When I got what ship I was working on next- the deciding factor was the fact that it did the New England run. Four months in the Caribbean...not that appealing to me to be honest. I've never been, so I don't know why I'm so negative about coming here. I was excited to get here last week. The hot weather makes me not that excited anymore. Lol

New places are always good. I'll welcome it. Because we are here sooooooo long I have that mind set of "oh, I'll get to it" today I didn't even go choice. No work, free day really and I chose to chill out. Weird how that works. But there is also a small factor influencing that too. I won't get into details about it. ;-)

So, I'm here in the Caribbean, should be fun. I'll make the most of if.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Hopewell Rocks Tour

It was my last stop in Saint John, Canada. I did the Hopewell Rocks tour. I kept putting in the request to get this tour week after week, once I was aware the place existed. I honestly gave up asking for it, cause it was always canceled, or another escort got to do the tour. Which is shit...videographers come first yo! Lol

It was worth the wait. I was so excited to do the tour. Don't ask me why I was excited to see some giant rocks, with a huge tidal difference. Lol

It was about an hour and a half drive to get there. Now from what I learned today its usually crazy in this park. We were the only group! The park was closed, but they were letting cruise ship groups have tours. We got some extra time as well! We got the top guy...Paul, the supervisor of the tour guides of the park to guide our tour. He was a great speaker! He is gonna make my editing process easier. :-).
It looked like he enjoyed what he was doing. It made the tour better.

The tour was pretty fast least for me because I have to hike with the group try and squeeze in somewhere and get good shots of the scenery. The passengers, and the guide talking. Than the group leaves...I try and squeeze in more shots...than I have to play catch up to the group...uphill. Lol I wasn't expecting a workout today. Lol

The first thing we checked out was the flower pots at high tide. I was bummed out. All the pictures you see of the flower pots are at low tide with people walking on the beach. We were on this observation deck. Not to mention the sun was as the worst angle for shooting :-(

Paul was explaining how tides work, and he used the passengers as the sun, moon and earth. Lol it was cool. I know how tides work, but some people don't get it. The way he explained it made it very easy to understand.

Than we hiked up to the next lookout, Diamond rock. Nice views.

The water has such a weird color. Its red. Its from the debris and silt from the type of rock that surrounds the Bay of Fundy.

I forgot to get into the whole Bay of Fundy. This Bay has the biggest change from low to high tide. Its actually in the running for being one of the top 7 natural wonders of the world. its 28 right now. It use to be like 138 on a list of like 500 sites around the world.

We made one more stop before lunch at another lookout. We than headed to the visitor center. Paul showed us a time lapse video of a full cycle of the tides. I Wish I had that kind of time to capture that. It was really cool to see.

Than I'm thinking we were done after lunch. I kept thinking wow that was a reaaaally quick tour. Than I began to worry about how many shots I got. Paul was just flying through shit. Lol its okay I got what I could.

Than we head back to the first lookout. The guides told us about heading down. Totally forgetting they were referring to the beach that didn't exist two hours ago when we looked at the flower pots, I head down the stairs. Than I stop at the first landing, and I'm amazed. The water was all gone, and the beach is there. Of course I got the video shots I needed, but than quickly headed down to take stills! I was so excited. It was the coolest thing to "walk on the ocean floor" as it says in every Hopewell Rocks ad. Lol

I took some cool pics! Glad all the excitement I had didn't turn out to be a giant disappointment.

It was a good tour, quick, but it could have been crowded, we could of had less time, and our guide could have been horrible. If I went back a few weeks ago I wouldn't have been able to walk on the beach!!! And that would have been lame!

The guide that was with us the whole time was pretty cool. We kept talking photo/video with me. I get that a lot. Lol. But he kept saying 'oh I'm not much of a photography...." Than he shows these slide shows of the bay, (hate slide shows-theres a reason I'm in video) but keeps looking to me for like feedback kind of. Lol than he says again "oh, like I said I'm not much of a photographer, I just wanted to show differences from low to high tide" I don't really know what to say to those types of things. Lol I mean he was clearly proud of his work....he gave us all a dvd of it. I hated how in front of me he kept putting his work down. I guess it can be nerve racking having ...I guess "competition" around. But fuck that..I got over that awhile ago. I'm use to showing my front of artists as well. If I know it does, but if I know its the is no matter who's watching!! Lol confidence my friends!!!

I would def say go to saint john, and check out the Hopewell Rocks! ... Well when its warmer...twas a bit cold today. Lol

Sunday, October 17, 2010

roommate drama

Well I'm in a new cabin. This is the first time I switched cabin during a contract. Which.... Its a little bit of an inconvenience, but in this case it kinda needed to happen.
Its important who your roommate is cause if there stress in the cabin between the two makes the time on the ship even more so a tough time.

My last roommate and I ....just... I think were too similar. I mean when I get mixed with someone that is very high strung, stressed out, anal, and too neurotic about just about everything, it makes me more that way, and it takes me back to an Amber that I learned to get rid of years ago. Although I have to say that I resisted being as miserable and negative as she was....or is. She says she not, but its all about the vibe someone gives off.

So, the skinny on the room change.

One lovely boston morning a great videographer makes her way off the gangway to shoot a really awesome tour. She was going to that mysterious place called Salem for the first time. The excited videographer stops to say hi to her photographer friend. Than all of a sudden the mean, grumpy photographer gets in the happy videographers face to say "we've had a rough morning, keep going"

Ok enough with fairy tale portion. I talked to my friend for two seconds. Passengers were getting off for only twenty minutes, and she's freaking the fuck out cause they haven't had a good roll count so far.

So first thing, be positive, and don't stress out over things like that. Yes, its your job and important, but stressing out doesn't help anything.

Two: anyone that takes themselves too seriously .... That's just not fun for anyone.

Three: do not...I repeat do NOT get in Amber's face...EVER.

Four: don't ....after I leave tell one of my closest friends on the ship that I need to move out and that you don't like my attitude. Yes, obviously I'll hear about it.

So, she was lucky I can control my temper. I just told to get out of my face, and to calm down. I mean who do you think you are talking to ANYONE like that.

The whole me moving out starts there like 5 weeks ago, I think. Me moving out was never mentioned to me from her. I kept hearing it through the grapevine.

Two weeks ago, I heard it again. I said to my manager when she asked me " are you moving cabins? Are you okay with this?" I said "didn't no one say anything to me about moving anywhere." Yes with the american attitude and everything. Lol

At this point I'm starting to get pissed.

How it works on ships...whoever is in the cabin first has priority. In this case the say so person was me. The whole ME moving out wasn't supposed to happen.

We were getting a new photog and my roommate was close friends with her, and they wanted to move in together. But they needed ME to move.

Well I was never asked to move. It was just assumed that I would. I was the one that was going to be inconvenienced and no one bothered to ask me. My roommate should have talked to me about moving. I shouldn't hear it through the team. I mean c'mon now ya know.

I was pretty pissed. I'm thinking who the hell does she think she is?? I mean, I accommodated her while being her roommate. She is very difficult to live with, not to mention the lightest sleeper in the world. Makes for a not so fun time in the cabin. But I made sure to try and be courteous to her and make sure I didn't disturb her. I tried, but its one of those things where no matter how much you try its just not good enough.

After my manager talked to me, I'm thinking ok this is getting ridiculous, if she won't talk to me about it, I'm gonna bring it up. I wrote a note about it. I told her I thought this whole thing was very rude on her part.

She than wrote me back talking about "oh don't forget the new photog" is What's that got to do with anything. Did you even ask me or the other person she would have moved in with if we were NOT okay with it? No she didn't. She was using the whole no one is comfy with a gay roommate as a selfish cover. Than she said I was rude for pre-judging her. What?? What the hell does that have to do with ANYTHING if I did or not???

I was so ready to have a full on all out argument over this. I was prepared. Fuck these notes, I'm saying anything further to her face.

She saw me in the gallery comes up to me and asks me to see ME in MY video office!! Are you fucking kidding me??? Lol hilarious!! I def told her that too. I asked her "wait, you want to speak to me in my video office?? She said "yes" I laughed at her and said "no". Lol you're not a manager, and you are not above me in anyway. I gotta give it to her tho she's got balls. Lol.

I waited to talk to her. I was working and I'm not going to have an argument when I'm trying to get shit done.

I saw her back at the cabin later that night. I was seriously ready to go. Than she said. "I'm sorry about all of this, I should have spoken with you and asked you, and I was wrong." HO-LY SHIT. I was dumbfounded at this point. I was surprised that was coming from her.

At that point I was like damn, now I can't argue and all that like I was prepared to do. Lol

I accepted her apology. And we made amends. We kinda had a heart to heart. We discussed everything.

I told her I never had a problem with moving, I just wanted to be asked first before ppl were planning things when it only involved me doing anything. A simple, small, but very important thing.

I guess our relationship is better, but the new photog came, and I was getting the hell out of that cabin. Lol I'm happier, less worried, and I feel more free in this cabin with my new cabinmate.

All is well. people are happy. It could have been a disaster. But it worked out well, all because she admitted she was a bit wrong in the situation. Amazing. :-)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

journey to Salem!

This past boston I headed to Salem, Massachusetts! Not on a tour, a journey on my own.

I loved it!! It made me think I wasn't working and living on a ship. It was weird, I was just being me, no camera, tripod, or worries about getting the right shot. It was kinda weird not having my video camera though, I'm not gonna lie to you.

Salem, is about 16 miles away from where the ship docks in Boston. So, the first thing I needed to do was find a map, and find out just how I'd get myself there AND Back in time.

I love taking the train. I figured it out quick. I had to get to south station. Got there, than I had to figure out how to get to north station. So from south station I had to get the red line, than get to the orange line to north station. From there I had to catch the train to get to salem. Worked out quite well. The ride was only like half hour. Really quick.

I had about two and half hours to roam around. I still feel like I didn't see all I wanted. I went into a lot of shops. Lots of gifts shops, and pagan good shops. I got this really magnet, and a magnet for my mom. I wanted a shirt, but I don't really get into location wear really. Although I did really think twice about getting a hoody that had salem on it. Lol I did get my usual post cards. I sent one out straight away to a good friend. I needed this person to get one from here! I got these cool glittery ones. Lol hey they looked cool. Don't make fun of how girlie it is. Hahaha.

I got a psychic reading too. It was quite scary-dead on! . Lol she was really cool. My family was talked about a lot. Of course my family was really curious about the reading too. Lol

I got ice cream there! I haven't had ice cream in ages! Coffee ice cream!!! :-D

There was this really cool, really tall witch statue chick. She scared the crap outta kids. Lol.

The place is cool, probably a lot cooler at night. They have ghost tours, haunted houses and parties every where. Sadly living and working on a ship hinder my ability to join in on any night events in port. :-(

I want to go back for sure! Maybe next October.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Wind in my sails!

I'm in newport, RI and I did the American cup sailing tour. It was really a good time.

Normally I am weary of any type of boat tour I have to do. This sailing tour though did not get me the slightest sea sick. That made this tour that much better.

It was a small group of passengers, which usually I sell more DVDs from the intimate tours. Plus I didn't have to worry about getting interviews because I didn't have to shoot this for shorex.

It was a bit chilly, but I always welcome that. I didn't really know what I was in for. I got to see how sailing actually works. It was really cool to see. The crew was really cool too. Very personable. I guess they had a videographer from the Crown Princess yesterday.

Shooting wasn't hard either. I guess whale watching boats are the most difficult to handle physically and camera wise.

It was a pretty rough day as far as seas go. Beautiful out though. Nice chilly breeze, with the nice warm sun! Sailing feels different than other boats. Idk why.

When we were heading back it was pretty scary. Lol I had fun, but the boat was pretty much on its side. Just as far as it could without me being in the water. I was glued to this one spot. I guess the fright was plastered all over my face because the one guy that was part of the crew asked me with much concern if I was alright. Lol I loved it. I was laughing with the passengers. I would not move from my spot. being terrified with as smile is weird combo but that's what happened. Also while trying shoot. Lol It def was a thrill ride! The people on the boa-god bless em! Lol because I wouldn't have been alright with that much of a rough ride. Lol they were laughing, and everyone had such a great time.

I loved this tour. I never thought I would have liked sailing, but it was so exciting and fun!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A lone wanderer

At the moment I am chilling in Bar Harbor, Maine. The photo team is doing a team hike in Acadia park, while I'm sitting here relaxing with my coffee.

Yeah yeah yeah, I know, I'm doing the isolating myself thing. I will say I just do what I want, not because I'm told I should.

There is more to why I didn't go along. I've been to Acadia park many times before. It's beautiful, but this morning I did a small ocean trail hike. My tour got back at noon. The team was set to leave at 1230. I had to drop a few things off back at the ship. I got back to the pier at 1. I didn't wanna hold them up for one. I also really needed to make it to a post office to mail some things out to the family. Plus, I really can't be bothered to go hiking twice in one day, when I know I have a workout waiting for me later tonight as well.

This is time off in port I don't normally get, and I'd rather spend it my way. Selfish I know. I also might add I get to do that stuff all the time. Its my job. The photogs don't see and do what I get to all the time, so its new for them. I've hiked and seen the park many times already. Probably a couple more times before we make our way to the caribbean. I hope they have fun though. :-)

The ocean trail walk was short and sweet. The views were really great. There was some pretty good swells going on too. I enjoyed it. VERY slow pace. When the symbol on my ticket says "should be physically fit" I often go oh no, only cause when that phrased appeared on the hawaii tour ticket they were not joking! Lol. But this one was fun, and easy. I took a really cool panoramic seam together later. I look forward to seaming all these panoramics I shot. Should be a challenge, but really fun, and useful for me.

Monday, October 4, 2010

America, American....

So, I know, I know, I have fallen behind on the blog front. My deepest apologies, for those who kept checking back.

My title... Well I recently have become sick of how my country is constantly ...made fun of, or put down...whatever you want to call far as my interactions with other crew go.

Now, I am aware of what my country does, and all that jazz. Yes, I am aware of globalization, and the affects my country has had, and still has on the world. Good, and the very bad.

Now to get into my issues.

I'm out of 5 or 6 americans that work on the caribbean princess. With that being said...there are almost always 90% of the passengers that are american. So, a lot of frustration that my co-workers feel come from my fellow americans. And I somehow always get the backlash of the shitty things they have to say about americans.

Now, I'm pretty easy going when it comes to the slack I have to take for being american. I have learned to deal with it and laugh it off every since I became an international traveler. I let a lot of messed up comments slide. I laugh at the stupid jokes, the stabs about how stupid we are, how rude, money hungry, very hard to please, type of people Americans are. Now, there is some truth to those things. I expects to hear comments to be honest.

My issue is people I call my friends, and people I work with everyday don't even have the common courtesy to just keep it to a minimum amount of rudeness when they feel like sharing their comments about Americans around me. I mean c'mon I don't hate my own country. Yes, I disagree with a lot of things, but I don't hate where I come from.

My co-workers don't have an once of respect for me and the fact that I'm American. Their response is always " well Amber, I don't put you in that same category, your a different type of American." What the fuck does that even mean???? I'm still American assholes!

This past turn around was really ...well this one comment just pissed me off. I made my feelings known. We had to make new signs for times that the gallery is open. Well one person was like "well I wasn't sure if I should have put military time" than my manager goes " well their American" so, I chimed in "what's that supposed to mean!?" Everyone that was around kinda walked away. My manager was left dumbfounded for a few seconds, then saying "well different countries don't understand different things. Its not in your culture to know military time." I said to her... "Americans aren't as stupid as you think, and yes, we do understand military time." Yes, granted not every single one but fuck sake man!!

I just hate how they have no respect for me in that regard. I mean you don't see me walking around saying oh romania has some ugly people, or man those philipnoes sure are greedy, or oh hey those mexicans sure know how to drink and nothing else. I mean c'mon. Most of that I just pulled out of my ass. If my friend/co-worker were from such and such a country, I'm not gonna just fucking talk shit every chance I get day in and day out about where their from. I'm sure they'd feel the same as I do now.

Well, my efforts are lost energy, everyone always hates on the americans.