As part of our trip to Paris, my mom and I decided to book a tour on one of those fancy river cruises that you often seen advertised during shows like, say, Downton Abbey. Well beyond my normal means of travel, I was afraid I would be the youngest person by a solid thirty years on the cruise. I was right.
We boarded yesterday and noticed that everyone seemed to know each other. It turns out that out of the 118 passengers on the boat, 98 of them are from the same large tour group, travelling from Illinois together. Alas, my hope that my mom might find a wealthy widower from NY went out the window with this realization, and who knows, perhaps she secretly had hoped the same for me.
After spending the afternoon in Paris, we boarded the ship around 3pm, were taken to our lovely room, shown all the amenities by Tarika; an Eastern European who, we were told, would basically be our servant for the next seven days. We unpacked, made our way to the Monet Lounge where mom had coffee, and I, two glasses of wine, and waited for the safety demonstration. As a I scanned the room, looking for someone, anyone, who might be relatively close to my age, I accepted the fact that if the boat did actually have an emergency, I would likely be called upon to help with the evacuation. This was quite upsetting, considering my plan for this vacation consists basically of reading, drinking, and eating.
Actually, I have to admit, these wealthy people do know how to enjoy life. Around 6:30 we made our way up the stairs to the sun deck to kick off the cruise with a toast near the Eiffel Tower and French Statue of Liberty.
After the toast, we headed down to the Van Gogh dining room for a delicous meal, where we met some of our fellow passengers, many of whom were not suprisingly, river cruise veterans. After drinking way too much wine (it's all included), we stumbled back to our room and passed out for the night.
Uncomfortable as I am in luxury settings, I can understand and appreciate some of the perks of traveling this way. Still, some things will always remain ridiculous to me.