It’s high time that I shared an update on my exhilarating journey! The last time I connected with all of you was during my office training, an experience that left me utterly amazed. I had the privilege of rubbing shoulders with inspiring individuals and delving deep into self-discovery.
While I did post a picture or two, offering glimpses of the breathtaking views I was treated to, I didn’t quite delve into the nitty-gritty of my role as a Cruise Director. Well, the wait is over!
Meet my trainer, Hannah (top left) – a name that already held high expectations for me. Coincidentally, she shares her name with my best friend, so I sensed good vibes from the get-go. They say instincts rarely lead you astray, and this time, they certainly didn’t. I consider myself exceptionally fortunate to have undergone such a transformative training experience.
In week one, Hannah had me shadowing her every move, encouraging me to ask questions and even entrusted me with working on the “Ship To Shore” document, a daily guest itinerary filled with highlights, weather updates, and more.
to week two, and Hannah had me donning the full mantle of Cruise Director, leading the charge. Her presence was reassuring, always there when I needed guidance, and quick to offer reminders when I slipped up. What’s incredible is that she never made me feel inept or infringed upon my responsibilities. Hannah’s unwavering confidence in both me and the Excursions Director was contagious, igniting a burning desire within me to excel at this job. Now, I must admit, I’m a bit of a perfectionist, and I can be quite hard on myself when I make mistakes. But with Hannah’s constructive feedback, I found my bearings.
But it wasn’t just Hannah who made this journey remarkable. The entire team I worked with was nothing short of phenomenal. They gelled seamlessly, possessed an infectious sense of humor, radiated incredible personalities, and displayed unwavering support for one another. Of course, every team faces its fair share of ups and downs, but it’s how we tackle those challenges that define us. And in our case, it’s safe to say we’re a fantastic team. I hope our paths cross again in the future.
Now, amidst the many fantastic days, there were a couple of trying ones. This job demands unconventional hours, and it took a toll on my body. Being somewhat of a homebody, reminiscent of my first semester in college, being away from home was no cakewalk. Criticism started getting under my skin, and I found myself getting emotional over sentimental or vexing topics. Naturally, I never showed this side of me in front of strangers, but the moment I could escape to my room for a breather, I’d let it all out. Hannah, with her keen sense, sensed something amiss and, on the second day of my struggle, insisted that I take a break (a notion I had been resisting). She even suggested I leave the ship for a walk. During that walk, I called my Grandma, tears streaming down my face, and then dialed my mom, shedding a few more tears. As you can tell, I was on an emotional rollercoaster.
Towards the end of my conversation with my mom, Hannah approached me, and I introduced her to my mother. To my surprise, she took my phone and expressed how proud she was of me and the hard work I was putting in. I swear, I think she had my mom in tears too! That was the moment it dawned on me that Hannah wasn’t just a trainer; she was a great friend and an exceptionally compassionate individual.
This journey has been nothing short of an eye-opener. I acquired bartending skills, learned to handle high-stress situations, mastered the art of entertaining the older generation, and gained insights into the unique challenges they face. I’ve explored the world and had an unforgettable encounter with the Mississippi River (a story best shared in person!).
I consider myself incredibly fortunate to have this job opportunity and take immense pride in being a Cruise Director for American Cruise Lines.
Speaking of American Cruise Lines, my training took an unexpected turn. I was initially scheduled to join The Queen of The Mississippi after my training, but due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, plans were altered. While it’s undoubtedly a challenging circumstance, I’m grateful to be back home before embarking on my next adventure. I look forward to some much-needed rest, time to reflect on my newfound knowledge, and reuniting with my parents. As I always say, in every situation, we must find the silver lining to lead a fulfilling, happy life. Yes, this virus is daunting, but it’s also an opportunity to cultivate selflessness, discover more about ourselves, cherish moments with loved ones, and prioritize our health. So, let’s celebrate the good that’s emerging from this crisis, stay safe, and hunker down indoors away from the chaos out there!
I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has reached out, expressing their confidence and excitement throughout this journey. Your unwavering support has a profound impact on my life, and I genuinely can’t thank you enough.
Stay tuned for more updates on life’s surprises and what lies ahead! And who knows, maybe we’ll even find some elusive toilet paper along the way 😉
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