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Exploring Juneau and Embarkation!
Birthday Alaska Cruise!

(Julia Kocubinski)
We woke this morning to a much quieter Juneau. There were no ships in port this morning, so we wandered the deserted streets and found a place to have breakfast. We dropped our bags off with the representatives from American Safari Cruises and contemplated our day. It was raining, but not terribly hard so we decided to go for a walk/hike up the hill behind Juneau to the tram station at the top of the hill. As we took off and started heading up, I quickly realized that the rain was much more significant than I had originally thought. The trail was really slippery and full of big muddy puddles. We were about halfway up when I realized we either had to turn back then to make our meeting time in town, or keep going to catch the tram. The trail was so slippery, I was more worried about the walk down than keeping up the steep trail to the top. It was not easy, and I think my mom was pretty annoyed with me making her hike to the top, but the tram ride down was definitely worth it, and we had plenty of time to relax in town and get cleaned up before meeting up with our fellow travelers. We all met in a room and were taken by Vanessa, our expedition leader, across the street to our home for the next week, the Safari Quest. We were welcomed onboard by the entire staff - all nine of them, and then had a few moments to see our cabin. It was small for the two of us, but very comfortable and nice. Besides, we were not there to hang out in our cabin, we were there to see Alaska up-close! We came back to the main bar/lounge/sitting area and began to meet the rest of the travelers on the cruise. They were almost all couples, with a few family/friend combinations. I was the youngest on the cruise, but everyone certainly seemed young at heart! After a safety briefing followed but appetizers and drinks, we set off motoring out of the port. I could already tell I was going to enjoy this group, both the fellow guests and the staff. There was an wonderful mix of people, ranging from 30 - 80, all wanting to see wildlife, glaciers, and all that Alaska has to offer!

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