Land of 1,000 Ships

          I don’t like cruises. Growing up, we never booked a family trip on a cruise because my mom worried that someone on board would get sick and then we’d all get sick and then our whole vacation would be ruined. So now I have this deep-seated inclination that I’ll board a ship and be stuck with someone carrying a life threatening illness like say, the Ebola virus, and we won’t be able to leave the ship and we’ll all contract said disease and die. And if you thought that was the only irrational fear I had about cruises, you are wrong my friend. I also have read one too many crime articles and watched a few too many 48 Hours episodes to not also fear that we’ll be trapped on the cruise ship with a murderer. It can happen. 

      So I was a little apprehensive when I saw on the itinerary that we would be cruising from Oslo to Copenhagen. Then we got on the boat and entered our little cabin meant to house four overpacked girls and I just felt more annoyed than anything else, let alone fearful of any potential dangers lurking on this ship. Then the front desk called and told us our plumbing was out but the ship was booked so we wouldn’t the able to move rooms. At that point I was just plain angry. But I stopped for a moment and thought back to the preparation for this trip.

       We had to take an assessment on how we placed on the Intercultural Effecetiveness Scale and my result came back as ‘extrovert.’ This means I’m someone who enjoys being with people and creating new relationships (so far so good) but avoid challenging experiences due to a low emotional resilience.  I should just say upfront that I tend to trust aptitude tests so this last bit of the definition for extrovert was a true hit to the ego. When I took this test my freshman year, I would actually have agreed. I did have a low emotional resilience. I would get frazzled and panicky when plans changed or I lost my way, but two years in college have taught me to relax and adapt in challenging situations. When reviewing my results before going on this trip, I resolved to say yes to every experience–no matter how challenging–and try to approach difficult situations with a more positive and relaxed mindset.

      Well, I took a deep breath and decided I could let the plumbing issue go for the next 12 hours and set aside my issues with the cruiseship institution. And it turned out the ‘front lobby’ was just Jacob pranking us and our plumbing was fine. Still not sold on cruises but if we hadn’t been on this boat then how would I have gotten a stellar view like this? 

Can’t wait to explore Copenhagen and report back.

-Babs

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