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French Polynesia on Windstar’s Star Breeze (January 2022) – Part IV – Oh! What I Will Endure for My Clients?!

You know I will try anything and report back to you honestly regardless of how it comes out. Well…

Someone (not a guest, crew or officer) came aboard the Windstar Star Breeze with Covid-19 and I was in close contact with that person. So I am in isolation in my suite and it looks like I will be here for the next five days.  What a (sort of) great opportunity to explain the whole process to you.  (Oh, how a travel agent’s job is never done!)

Windstar has been fantastic with its handling of this. The same “Nice. Easy.” that the cruise has been up until now.  

I received a very calm call from Reception to please stay in my suite, so I knew what was up.  Shortly thereafter the ship’s doctor arrived and swabbed me for a PCR test.  In an hour I had the Negative result.  A bit later I was told that I would have to isolate for five days with a new PCR test on Day 4 and another one on Day 5.  (I’ve brought some antigen tests with me, so I will self-test in a couple of days just to keep the mystery of whether I am infected from lingering too long.)

Fortunately, I have been extremely good about wearing my mask indoors and where social distancing isn’t possible.  As such, when I was in close contact with this person I was always wearing my KN95 mask and that person was double-masked. 

Regardless of the extremely low chance of my being infected based on that alone, and even though I am vaxed, boosted, recovered and tested a ridiculous number of times, as things are now, I know I have to be treated as if I am infected until it is certain that I am not. 

I don’t think it makes scientific sense, but this is not really about science – as much about Covid is no longer. There are practical, political and emotional realities that we all have to deal with if we choose to leave our homes or even invite someone in.   As such, I refused to be righteous, but rather pragmatic. Insisting on being “right” isn’t going to help anyone and will, in fact, make the jobs of those trying to assist – and keep all of the guests safe (including emotionally) – more difficult and with no practical positive effect.

As today – Day One – was really a work day (especially with Crystal ceasing operations and Seabourn coming out with its offensive marketing) I really wasn’t going to be doing much. Afternoon cocktails at Josephine’s in Rangiroa with a view of the ocean will be substituted with this “terrible” view along with free cocktails, wine and fantastic food.

Speaking of which, Room Service has been very proactive (as has the Hotel Director and Captain).  Lunch was – as I requested – from the Star Grill: Amazing Smoked Turkey and Greek Lamb (delicious spicy yogurt sauce) along with a bottle of Albarino.

Tomorrow – Day 2 – is a Sea Day so basically less hot tub time is my “big” sacrifice.

However on Day 3 there is the big Beach BBQ on Motu Mahaea, Taha’a and that will be a disappointment for sure. Not exactly a physical or culturally enlightening day, but it sure would have been fun.

Day 4 I was supposed to go kayaking in Raiatea.  I was also really looking forward to that. But, in reality, I will be in Antarctica in a few weeks and that is were the kayaking that touches my soul happens, so I must keep it in perspective.

Next up is overnighting in Bora Bora. Hopefully I will be out of isolation by then.  Oh how I have such fond memories of Bora Bora…NOT!  I remember it was a warm evening, sitting on the aft deck of the Paul Gauguin, with my ex and a really nice bottle of wine. It was a full moon. All of a sudden it became, unbeknownst me, a total lunar eclipse.  That is when my ex turned to me with all sincerity and said, “You’re just not romantic enough.”  

Ya know what? Isolation in my Star Breeze suite seems a whole lot better…and it is a full moon tonight!  (I hope my side of the ship can see it!)

So for now, here I am and where I will be. Time to sink back in a comfortable chair with my balcony doors open, sip some wine, watch and listen to the ocean and realize that sometimes what seems like a terrible disappointment is actually a sincere opportunity to remember how fortunate one actually is.  

Heck, I am in French Polynesia on a luxury ship with fantastic crew, cuisine and wine. 

Nice.  Easy.

Part V: First 24hrs of Isolation

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Waves We’ve Made

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