DAY 1: BARCELONA, SPAIN                     Journey2009 057

Wednesday, August 12, 2009. Today’s Forecast: Sunny 27 degrees C/80 degrees F, depart: 4:00 p.m.        Tonight’s dress: formal                             HOLLAND AMERICA LINE INFO


Look at the slide show “OOSTERDAM INTERIORS”

Barcelona is one of the busiest ports in the Mediterranean and the capital of Catalonia. In culture, commerce, and sports, it not only rivals Madrid but also considers itself on par with the greatest European cities. The success of the 1992 Olympic Games, staged in the Parc de Montjuic, confirmed this to the world. Although there are plenty of historical monuments in the Old Town ( Ciutat Vella), Barcelona is best known for the scores of buildings in the Example left by the artistic explosion of Modernism in the decades around 1900. Always open to outside influence because of its location on the coast, not too far from the French border, Barcelona continues to sizzle with creativity. Its public bars and parks speak more of bold contemporary design than of tradition. This is a bustling, lively cosmopolitan city full of energy and life.


Born in Nieuwer-Amstel, a village wedged between Amsterdam and Schiphol Amsterdam International Airport, Arjen saw for the first time, ships sailing through the harbor. His father took him regularly to the sea-locks near Ijmuiden, where the large ships transit from the salty North Sea to the fresh water harbor of Amsterdam. He was often looking at the horizon and wondering what was behind it. Following four years of nautical college in Vissingen, the Netherlands,  Arjen first set out on board an expedition vessel, exploring the west coast of Africa and Orinoco River delta in Venezuela.

After return he joined HOLLAND AMERICA LINE as 4th officer. Climbing up the ranks rapidly, he was promoted to Captain in 2003. Arjen especially enjoyed sailing on many of the longer grand voyages, including six world cruises on board the s.s. Rotterdam, m.s. Rotterdam and m.s. Amsterdam. When not sailing the seven seas, he loves to read books, meet with friends, cook delicious meals, train for marathons, master his P.C. and new apple computer and enjoy wine tasting at the vineyards surrounding his house in Santa Rosa, California.

OUR INTERVIEW WITH CAPTAIN ARJEN                                                                      Captainandme

1: Dear Captain, what is your freshest impression of the work day?

2: Safe disembarking and the beautiful Mediterranean weather.

1: We know that your interests in life are very broad and it helps you to excel at work.

What is the info from the Navigation Officers of the ms OOSTERDAM?

2: The OOSTERDAM is docked in Barcelona. This port is the second largest city and most important manufacturing and trading city for Spain, lying in the northeastern coast of the Iberian Peninsula. Barcelona is also famous because Christopher Columbus arrived here in 1493, after his discovery of America the year before. Columbus was presumably born in Genoa, Italy. He first moved to Portugal and later settled in Spain.

1: Thank you very much for a wonderful information you shared with us and we wish you good luck in your life.

Anecdote # 2.

3: 15 p.m.- Promenade Deck, 3.

Lifeboat Drill is announced as a mandatory exercise for all guests. A safety video is now being shown on the stateroom TV with the important safety information. Everybody is rushing to Deck 3 dressed in awkward yellow safety costumes. We lined up on the deck listening to the instructions of the staff and all of a sudden we noticed one fat old guy’s head stuck in the costume, he was really fat and was released from his attempts because of no costume was fit for him.

But seriously speaking, it is a pleasure to see precautions are being made for life safety. Big lessons are taught from the ‘TITANIK” sinking accident since 1912.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.