Friday, September 23, 2011

Hawaii Never disappoints

Well Back in Hawaii and I have to say I am glad I got to go back.

Now Granted I didnt really do much today...well I guess I did. I returned a lame External Hard drive. I got a new one. Hung out with my roomie. I normally dont hang out with peeps in Port, but it was good chilling with her for a bit. She really wanted to go to the beach but my tour kinda shut me down for that option. she made it there though! I would have if I didnt have a tour. Did some shopping. mailed out a pretty big package to my family, and than went on tour.

my tour was the Ali'i Kai dinner cruise. It was a fun time. I went on this one because I didnt go on it the last time I was here, and because I didnt get to see O'ahu from that perspective before.

of course the tour guides were awesome, very nice, and overly accommodating for me. it was pretty easy talking to everyone. I mentioned before how I hate bothering people to wear my mic and all that, no problems this time. The host was really nice.

I had nice things to shoot. Of course the really nice sunset! the coastline, Diamond Head, the night time coastline.

they had dancers...that had a number of different dances. they represented the different cultures in pacific Islands. It was a nice time. The food was .... ok. lol. Nothing to write home about.

I had the shorex manager on my tour as well. Not exactly comfy for me. Her dad talked to me a bit. he was cool. I just feel like I'll get some fucked up warning about something I did tonight. oi. She's really strict. I knew when the tour was over that I had to edit right away. I wasnt happy about it. When I got back though Nathan was editing. .... which I'm like now I gotta wait for this dude. I have a tour in the morning...blah blah blah. Because he told me the day prior " amber we need new footage up as fast as possible so you need to edit after your tour." ok than. Than while I'm dropping my equipment off he just tells me that we don't need to rush. I was kinda shocked. lol. Happy. I now have time to write this blog. lol.

Well right now I am having a draft beer. lol. A real drink! :-)

We are off to Lahaina Tomorrow. I am doing a hiking tour quite early in the morning. This tour is new as well. Hopefully going to get a haircut by my favorite hair stylist dude. Than we have 5 sea days to get to Tahiti.

I took a few pics. I hope they put some spice in my blog entry for the day. lol.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Time for the Crossing, and some changes….some not wanted.

Well we are done with Alaska. I do like Alaska, but I’m def excited to cover some land(..and tours for the matter) that I’ve never encountered! The crossing takes awhile. We hit up Hawaii. If you have read my blog since my first contract you know I did Hawaii for a few months. I am happy to go back. I begged Nate not to put me on an all day tour on Honolulu. Lol. And please for goodness sake not Diamond Head trek! I mean not only is it boring, but it just makes for a lack luster edit. The first two times I managed to make something of it, but I think it’s over-rated. Maybe I didn’t when I first did it. Maybe I should read if I wrote about it. lol. It was like one of my first tours. We are hitting up Lahaina again. The best haircut I ever got was in Lahaina! So, I might be getting one while we are there. It was always the same guy I got my haircut from there, it’s just him, so hopefully dudes still there.

We also go to French Polynesia. I am excited for that too. Than we head over to Fiji, than New Zealand to end our turnaround day in Sydney. Joe is excited to see Sydney. It’s cool when he get excited. I say that only because he’s done ships for 8 years, and he’s never been to Australia. I told him he’d like it. But you never know. I didn’t like Sydney the best out of all the things I did, and saw while I Lived there, but it is nice in Australia.

For this crazy crossing..people act like we’re never gonna see the light of day for a month of something. Its funny. Well 4 sea days…I’ve done that before. It not new to me, so maybe I’m more laid back about it…? I don’t know. Me, and Nate had to think about some ads to do for turnaround. We had to start from scratch really. I guess this ship hasn’t done that itinerary before. So there was no stock of NZ or anything. We wrote, and shot a simple commercial explaining who we are, and what we do. I liked it. Shooting it was fun that for sure. I should post some outtakes. Lol. I came up with a commercial that I finished a few days ago. I like it. Nate liked it. When we showed Joe, we took his reaction as a good one. Joe is good because if he doesn’t like it… he’ll for sure express it. So, he took his frst reaction as a good one. I liked it. I was thinking about it for some time. I thought of it while at the crew bar no less while joe was DJ-ing. Nate laughed at me because I had a piece of paper with me while at the crew bar. Than a few days later he told me how he had an idea while he and eve were chilling in the crew bar. See! Sometimes you get your best ideas in a bar. Well maybe not all the time. Lol. We are doing a spoof James Bond-esq type commercial too. We are also making an early bird Special Commercial. I liked the idea Nate had. It involves filming in the gallery while it’s insanely busy. The commercials are fun to do. Although mine was a bit frustrating to complete because I couldn’t find the right music! It was soo getting to me. I left it one night till the next day. It’s better to start fresh.

Morne is leaving the team. His time is up, and he’ll be heading home. New manager is the same one we had before Morne came. I am looking forward to him coming, just not the half that comes with him. Oi. Tracey was really cool, she left like two cruises ago. She was an awesome Asst Manager. Too bad. I hope these next two months go ok. So, far the roommate situation is going good. Seems I sized this girl up on my last contract fairly wrong. It happens. I have done it before. Yssa will be happy to hear that. Lol. My last roommate…oh lord. All I will say is I’m glad she’s gone. Lol. Savio is leaving. Dino is too fairly soon. The team will be sooo different. With Emily, Morne, Tracey, Savio, and Dino going…makes me sad. They are awesome peeps.

I posted some pics from this contract this far. Not too many. I haven’t really partied much this cruise that’s for sure. It’s better that way. Spending less money, less hangovers, and proper sleep. Lol. Trust me I’ve had my night though. Oi. Some crazy cabin parties …that happen to go down randomly…when I least expect to party. Lol. I dressed up for trailer trash disco that we hosted. Really good party. Joe DJ’d. It was a good night!

My contract has been good so far, I enjoyed Alaska, I hope the rest of the contract gets even better.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Great Alaska Lumberjack Show….Again

Well it was my last Ketchikan. Sad to leave Alaska, but gotta move on… straight to NEW ZEALAND!!

So excited.

Anyway back to my last day.

I had the day off again. I only did one tour while in port this cruise. Glacier bay really made things weird since it was the day after Juneau. We also got there a bit later than we normally do, Nate knew what I was in for so he decided to take it easy on me.

Joe wanted to see the lumberjack show. I liked it so, I had no problem seeing it again. Its free for crew, so, why not right?

I am not sure if I wrote about this before, because I lost my pics due to the snorkel incident. lol. I have pictures now! It was good that I went back, because I wanted to get pics again. I think these are better too because I didn’t have to shoot/work. I got better action shots with my own camera.

It was what I expected. Joe liked it. He missed some of the humor…only because you have to be from this area, and by that I mean Canada or America to sometimes know what they are referring to. He didn’t miss it all though. I was glad he enjoyed the show.

It was a good show. Our side of the audience won…I was on the American side not the Canadian side. Booo Canada…sorry all my Canadian friends. Lol. The two guys on the American team really were tearing it up. They almost won just about everything.

My favorite event is the tree climbing one. I like it, but it goes so fast! Like in 10 seconds it’s done! A lot of the events are fast. Anything with chopping wood was a bit longer for obvious reasons.

They did this one event where they hulled this log up to hit the two standing logs. The first log to hit won. I didn’t get any pics because I was kinda like “what the hell are they doing?” lol They didn’t do it last time.

The American Team won over all. I was happy. Joe and I got to do something in port, me not working, not arguing with each other, no rushing-A great time in port. We don’t get to do much with each other in port…tourist-y wise. It was nice to finally have time to do something like that for once.

We even got a picture with the lumberjack dudes. Lol. See, I am making a liar out of myself. I never do the picture tourist thing, but this contract I find myself more and more doing the pictures with me in them. Lol. I think that’s three so far. I hate getting my pic taken, but I like having them in the end. lol. Joe wanted it because we never get to do stuff like this together. Joe though loves getting his picture taken though. He’s all for doing touristy stuff. Maybe some of it is rubbing off on me. Lol.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Good Bye Skagway

My last Skagway and it was spent….in the early morning editing…than trying to nap around 10am. Than once I realized I needed to go to the store I got up at noon to spend like two hours on my phone getting fresh air.

Last Skagway I was on the Skagway streetcar Tour. This tour guide was awesome. She knew how to tell a story. I loved the tour just for that. It was about the gold rush of course.

There was this part of the tour where we go in and they start the show (while I fiddle with my tripod because it was being stupid) but the show was lame. Lol. They made the biggest deal about me not filming and it was lame anyway. Lol.

The best part of the tour was when we went to the cemetery and Mariah our tour guide told the story of Soapy Smith. I liked her rendition so I put it in the edit. I wish I had more visuals. I got what I could for b-roll. I downloaded some pics to kinda kill some of the lame visuals I had. When she told some of the story on the streetcar I got noting but the back of her head. Lol.

My last Skagway was…uneventful unfortunately. I did get a last minute gift for my dad though. He’s hella hard to get a gift for. Oh! And I got my Triscuits! Lol. As well as a coffee, and coffee cake. But me being sleep deprived, I was more concerned with grabbing a napkin for my condensating drink , and I left my coffee cake on the counter! Well I saved myself from eating junk. I would have liked it though! I blame me being tired, and delirious. Lol. My sister called me stupid. Lol which….I was haha.

I don’t have many pics from the tour of the street car, so I added a few I took while in port. ☺

Friday, September 16, 2011

My Best Glacier Bay!

I have had such bad luck with the big events of Alaska. Those being Glacier Bay, and the Tracey Arm DVD. They have to be longer, and a bit better in quality than an average tour Edit. Ya know you have the ranger, or naturalist commentary, with the scenics, and all that jazz.

Every cruise me, and Nate would alternate the big edit. Well I was doing good with the wildlife, but Nate- every time he would have the big edit he had the best freakin weather! He got one flawless Glacier Bay, and one really nice Tracey arm, and the ship was able to get even closer to the south sawyer Glacier! A really great edit! I always get up hella early and you can’t see anything! Even when I shoot sailaway…you couldn’t even see the Golden Gate Bridge until the ship was right underneath it!!

The nice day I was supposed to have Glacier Bay I was sick, so Nate got the great weather again!

Well, this time it finally happened! I had a great day to shoot in Glacier Bay. Nate got up early to get the rangers onboard, and he got some beautiful morning scenic shots!! Really nice colors, and everything.

I really enjoyed the day. It’s a long shoot day, but worth it. We got there later than normal. I had Ranger Emily for my commentary again. She does good commentary. It was nice to work with someone that I worked with before. You usually have a different ranger onboard doing the commentary each cruise. She is good with doing the intros, makes it easier on me. Lol.

All the footage didn’t get done capturing till like 9pm. I didn’t start editing till 10pm. Of course I napped, when I got to editing I didn’t feel all disorganized like I did my first Glacier Bay which was good. I wasn’t getting tired, and it was around 3:30am. I just kept going, it ended up being 6:30am. That’s when I started to get tired. I just decided to finish it. I was up till like 8am editing.

It ended up being like a half hour. I think it’s alright. I like it. My last Glacier Bay even though it was gloom, and doom out I thought the edit was alright, too short though. I really condensed things too much. I just didn’t have enough scenic shots. You couldn’t see anything. Lol. This edit was better, for sure.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Finally My last whale watch for the season!!

My only tour for the cruise, and it was whale watching. Booooo. Nate did whale watching last cruise, so I was stuck on lame whale watching for the last cruise in Alaska.

It was evening whale watching, which meant I got a full on meal.

It was nice in Juneau. Which doesn’t always happen. The sun was starting to go down, it made for some nice scenic shots.

When I got on board there was a big table set up with food. I hadn’t eaten yet so I was happy. Lol. The whale watching was a bit different though. We went out, but than we kina just chilled in the same spot. When you go on the regular whale watching they travel a bit further down the channel…or fiord or whatever. Lol.

We didn’t see much. That nice scenery was about it. We saw some humpbacks that were “napping” apparently. It was hard to get in front, But than again I didn’t try that hard either. It was cold as hell out even though it was nice-“looking” out.

There was one cool thing that happened though. Everyone was looking off the port side of the boat, I was in the back, so, I was just chilling. No whale was coming up anytime soon. I was chilling near the back, I was looking toward the sunset, and I just happen to see a whale just poke its head out of the water. Not a sound was heard, but it was massive close to the boat. I pointed to show a passenger, but slow reaction- she missed it. I was amazed. That never happened to me. The naturalist was kinda … well not the best. Lol. She was nice and corporative, but not the best for good sound bites.

I did eat. My cool whale encounter, and the food was the highlight. Pretty sad. Lol They had blueberries. I noticed no one really liked the blueberries. What is wrong with these people!? I love em. We never get them on the ship…well at least they aren’t readily available to crew.

After I had my fair share of food, some more solitary whales not doing much. Than we made our way back. The sun was setting- very beautiful. On the other side of the sky the moon was rising. I liked all the colors. Oranges, greens, blue, purple. Just great.

It wasn’t a bad day in Juneau. The good thing about Alaska in the last days of the season-SALES! All the stores close pretty much when the ships aren’t there...which is all winter. So they try to get rid of as much as possible. So, if you are planning a cruise, the last few weeks of the season aren’t to bad to go. I got some last minutes gifts for my niece, and nephews, and small things for someone I might forget once I’m home. Lol. It happens.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Haines-My first Live Bear Encounter!

For a very Small town I actually like Haines. The wildlife cant get any better besides actually being in the middle of some random woods. Lol. All the best tours are there.

When I did the Wildlife Kroschel Films center other ppl that were on the ferry raved about seeing these bears. So, I decided to take that tour and try my luck.

It was the Nature Hike, and wildlife expedition tour.

Our two guides were these enthusiastic chicks. Very cool. Very laid back. Made you feel comfortable. Straight away they said “Our goal is to look for bears. Is that okay with you guys?” of course that’s okay. That’s what we came for!! Although I want to see a wild moose really bad. :-/

We headed north along the river. Nice views. This tour happened in mid August If I remember correctly. They said that is perfect time for seeing bears because the salmon are coming in at this time.

At our first stop for sure the bears were there. Brown bears, a mother and three cubs. I was … on awe really. Finally a really bear …in the wild!

I got really good footage of the bear going along the river looking for salmon. Than the mother bear went swimming. Very cool. The cubs were two are first, than the third appeared. We stayed there for a few minutes. It was raining, but it wasn’t freezing. I got some nice shots of an eagle, and the scenery! Very nice!!

Than we moved on further along the river to the lake. One thing I love about Alaska is the color of the water. The glacial silt of course makes it that way. But it never gets old to me. The lake had a nice view for sure. I did a 180 pan of still to seem together later.

We were about to leave. We all got on the bus, than this lady like damn near screamed “ ooooh there’s a bear. Look!!” There was this massive bear on the road, just coming from the forest!! They crossed the road to get to the river, and lake.

They were scary close! Very awesome shots of the bears just chilling in the water, and swimming. This mother had two cubs, and she also had a fishing rod in its mouth ☹

We were right above them!! So close. We stayed to take a look for a few minutes. We went back to the first set of bears to see what they were doing, to see if they were still there.

They were! This time on the dam type thingy catching fish! Saw them really jacking fish up. Lol

We eventually had to leave there, but headed back to the lake to check the 2nd set of bears out, and to take this joke of a hike. Lol I took some footage of it, but never used it. the bears were still chilling in the river, but we checked them out from down the road. Hey I was okay with it gave me a different shot.

We were pretty much done with the bears. But we headed to this old bakery, well it used to be a bakery, until all the woman’s kids went to college and that. The property was on some awesome land. Very nice. Harbor seals, eagles, nice scenic views! Than the ladies showed us were this eagles nest was, and it actually had some baby eagles in it! Usually you seem the nests, but nothing is going on. You had to look through the hole of trees just to get the right view of it. Had to be at the right angle, and position to see it. I thought it was cool. I managed to get a shot of it with my camera, but they had this scope to see the nest up close. Amazing these scopes! So clear, I could see everything!!

After that we ate, num-num. Always a good ending to a tour. Lol.

Great tour, my first Bear sightings, and such a good one! I never got lucky on the ship and never saw one on shore or anything. Well I’m glad these were my first bears!

I also in my magnet collecting made my Haines magnet be a brown bear to represent my first time seeing brown bears! Yes, Dork, I know. Lol.