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  #1 (permalink)  
Old December 12th, 2004, 04:47 PM
Jeff Coudriet
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Default Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requst DE

Hey folks...I'm writing live onboard the Holland America Line Zuiderdam. We are at sea today (having not been able to tender at Half Moon Cay).

This morning I wrote a nice note to the Cruise Director Pete (can't remember last name....) requesting a Friends of Dorothy party to be scheduled for tomorrow, which is also a sea day.

Pete was kind enough to leave me a voice mail letting me know that, per Holland America corporate policy in Seattle (my paraphrase) about 6-7 weeks ago they can no longer host and publicize such gatherings. He said he would be happy to put such a party together in a public room, but they could not put it in the daily bulletin!

At this moment....I am damn angry! Which I certainly don't need on my long awaited vacation. At great splurgy expense to myself I have booked as a solo in a Cat S suite....not exactly chump change! But this is absolutely my 2nd and last Holland America cruise unless this policy is changed asap! I can't believe in this day and age such a policy would exist. I think in today's program, for example, they've had meetings for people who like to play bridge, and for veterans. So what is the big deal -- we are but yet another group of people who have some common interests. Isn't the cruise line's job to bring people together for an enjoyable vacation experience?

I do want to be clear I do not harbor any ill will towards the CD...he was kind enough to respond to my note and was just relaying a corporate policy -- which he did not create -- to me.

In any case, Pete said I could call him at various times this evening, but really why bother? The whole point is to get a room and have it in the daily program....it's not like I have some magic ability to "spread this by word of mouth", using his words....to every gay and lesbian passenger on the ship. I don't want to go around making presumptions about people right?

Holland America -- wake up!!

Jeff Coudriet <-- taking my $$ back to Celebrity which has never turned down my request to host such a party.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old December 12th, 2004, 08:27 PM
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

I wonder if RSVP, whose next 2 cruises are aboard ,Holland America,ships knows about this policy. Maybe they should take their buisness to,Celebrity.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

when you say you are surprised that this could happen in this day and age, you shoudnt be. it's to be expected in this day and age with the people running this country. unfortunately, that anti gay attitude filters down into every level of society, sometimes subtly, sometimes not so. i think the only way to make our feelings kinown is to boycott these cruise lines with such policies. what i dont understand tho is holland america is owned by carnival who also wons cunard and seabourn, both of which couldnt be more gay friendly.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 02:17 PM
Brian and Tom
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

Sorry to hear they wont do it. I did a 10 day cruise in the spring on the Coral Princess and they were more than accomodating for a FOD meeting. The cruise director was happy to do it. Princess is such a better line anyway.

I have read this complaint before on these boards, usually on the ships owned by the Carnival Corportation. Maybe we should re think how to have these meetings. We should be more direct and request a Gay and Lesbien social meeting, instead of the closeted "Friend of Dorothy's " meetings. AA members call it a Friends of Bill to be anonymous. I not looking to be anonymous. The reality is that we are usually a minority traveling on these ships and all we want to be able to meet others with a common thread for a little socializing. Friends of Dorothy seems so sneeky and clandistine. If we start calling it what it is, maybe they wont be able to deny having a meeting so easily.
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Old December 13th, 2004, 03:04 PM
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

I just read here that that it's suggested to list it as GLBT meeting. I think that is a good middle ground.

And, oddly enough, Princess is owned by Carnival..


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Old December 13th, 2004, 08:35 PM
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

Harry, I wholehearted agree. Forget this FOD garbage. You aren't trying to secretly support each other to change how you are. Make it a G/L meeting or go to the singles mixer. Many are single so why not?

24 cruises and counting!
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Old December 20th, 2004, 11:13 PM
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Default Re: Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party r

I was on this cruise and totally agree with Jeff. I was shocked that HAL, which has always profitted by it's association with the gay community, has taken such a disrespectful, negative possition. The question is not whether gays should take a different approach in listing the event. The question is whether HAL is going to accommodate us. If they want to show us less respect than they do other groups (ie. religious, veterans, bridge players, alcoholics, etc.), then we should take our disposable income to cruise lines which are willing to do the right thing. Besides, the service, maintenance of the ship, schedule of activities and overall ambience on the Zuiderdam is of a lower caliber than I have experienced on other HAL ships in the past. Someone at HAL has dropped the ball.
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Old December 21st, 2004, 09:14 AM
Brian and Tom
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

When I originally suggested to change the FOD name it was for the reason of discrimination. It seems to me that it would be alot harded to say no to a Gay and Lesbien Social than a Friends of Dorothy meeting. If they say no to ta GLBT meeting when they are doing it for other groups, then it is discrimination and the Cruise Lines should be made aware of it.
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Old December 24th, 2004, 07:52 AM
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Default Re: Live onboard Zuiderdam -- Friends of Dorothy party requs

Jeff, just wondering if you or anyone has followed up with HAL on this matter. I am on the Westerdam for the annual RSVP cruise and while having a FOD party on this cruise would be like having open bar at a Friends of Bill W meeting I am real curious as to where HAL is coming from with this.

I sailed recently on the Princess Star and although the cruise itself (Food) was AWFUL they were very responsive to everything gay.. They posted a FOD party for the first day at sea and had over 200 people show up (There were two bear groups onboard)

Back to the subject though, please follow up on this and share it with us, I intend to book several cruises soon and as much as I LOVE HAL, will avoid them if they won't recognize me as being what I am.
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