A couple of postings back I mentioned how I met a guy who drives the boat in the gift shop at the boat depot in Bellingham. I thought it might be cool to go up and say "hi" and see what they do up there on the bridge. A boyscout troop also on board apparently managed to get an escort up there, so I figured perhaps a few from our group could finagle this too. While wandering the halls one evening with a couple bottles of wine (there's a blog about this to come shortly) we got to talking to the ship's security manager and asked him about possibly visiting the bridge. He said it shouldn't be an issue, but that he would make a note of it and we should ask the purser in the morning. When I thought about it that next day, Nikki and I walked over to the purser and asked the person sitting behind the desk about visiting the bridge. The purser is not a single person, but rather a group of folks who work in the office and you're pretty much stuck with whomever is sitting there at the time. I've had really great experiences with this person, and in this instance, not so great experiences.
So Nikki and I approach the counter and tell the lady we are interested in visiting the bridge. She immediately shakes her head no and starts in to this lengthy explanation of how they don't generally allow this and it would be difficult to do and there's this process and so on and so forth, all the while shaking her head no. I was a bit confused cause this was opposite of the information I received earlier from the security guy. I mention to her that the security guy said it shouldn't be problem and she all but snaps at me, "you've heard our policies and procedures, so that's what you need to do." "Okaaaaaaay...," was all we had to say and we walked away. She was clearly disgruntled, and even though she did outline a process in which we would have to gather our group, have each of them produce their boarding pass, picture ID and a written statement noting their reasons for wanting to visit the bridge before we would even be considered, she shook her head in a "no" manner the entire time. Nikki and I relayed this info to the other folks who were interested, and decided perhaps we'd try for it a bit later in the day.
Later in the day I was in the hall reading a bulletin board about the Alaska Gold Rush when the guy from the gift shop happened by. I say "hi," and he stopped to chat for a moment. I mentioned that we wanted to come up and see him, but that the lady downstairs was less than friendly about it. He said, "oh, that must be Mary," and noted that she's often unfriendly and less than helpful. We discussed possible times to visit, but it wasn't looking good as the afternoon and evening held some tricky maneuvers. We decided it probably wouldn't happen, but it was much better coming from him in a reasonable manner instead of the stupid lady who just didn't want to let us through. We probably would've been able to go up, had she not been so contrary in the morning.
Anyway, that was by far the most disgruntling experience of the entire trip, so I can't really complain. There's always next time :)