Shopping in Ketchikan, World’s Salmon Capital
July 28- August 6, 2008
By LEWIS NOLAN
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Monday, Aug. 4, 2008 –
The ship docked in
The weather was a most welcome and pleasant change from the last few days when it looked as though rain was imminent most of the day even though it never did fall. We heard some griping about the near-constant rain of a group of the ship’s passengers who boarded at Skagway after spending most of a week touring Denali Park and other inland attractions by bus.
Betty and I were up shortly before 7 a.m. I enjoyed a room service-delivered and excellent breakfast of bacon, scrambled eggs, wedge of hash brown potatoes, two pieces of whole wheat toast, slice of freshly cut orange, small glass of tomato juice, Diet Coke and a glass of ice water. Betty went upstairs a little later to enjoy her usual light morning meal in the Lido Restaurant buffet.
The forecast high temperature today is 69 degrees, which
will be the warmest day yet of our trip. It feels especially warm and wonderful
compared to the temperatures of 100 we left behind us in
The Creek Street Historic District near the pier was home to
Because of its popularity for visiting cruise ships, the town has 42 jewelry shops which seem to emphasize precious gems set in gold.
Shortly after the ship docked at 10 a.m., Betty and I
disembarked and walked a few yards to one of the town’s three outlets of
Tongass Trading Co. The name Tongass comes from a huge, national forest that is
nearby. We purchased a few discounted and free souvenirs including a deck of
playing cards, Ulu Knives used for chopping vegetables, calendars with scenic
We poked around the area near the pier and took photos of several gorgeous totem poles that had been erected in honor of a person or event. We stopped at the Crazy Wolf Studio to look over the displayed Indian crafts and Betty purchased from a Native American clerk a small totem pole carved out of native wood by Indian artist Russel Swift of Juneau. It is about the size of an adult frog and will fit perfectly in a bookcase in our home’s sunroom.
We also stopped at the Del Sol Shop where Betty purchased a long-sleeved tee shirt impregnated with a chemical that makes part of the artwork on it turn blue when hit by rays of the sun. She was given a free tote bag that also changes colors in the direct sunshine.
It was back to the ship for the good lunch prepared for
passengers. I went for the grilled cheeseburger served with French fries while
Betty went for the Lido Restaurant buffet and was served a slice of ham and a
plate of salad. Later, Betty returned to poke around
In one section of town we saw from a boardwalk a beautiful,
clear stream 15-to-20 feet wide that was cascading down a hillside of rocks.
Such an idyllic setting gave me a feel for why some Americans will trade their
comfort of living in cities for the wilds of sparsely populated
Betty and I enjoyed sitting in the sun on the port side of Promenade Deck with Susie Brown. We walked our daily mile around the boat and enjoyed watching the passengers come and go in the shopping area beneath our ship.
That evening, the ship put on a fancy dinner in the Rotterdam Restaurant. The staff put on a good show by parading around the room with members of the entertainment cast. Dinner was excellent as usual. Betty and I both had pate appetizers in a “vertical” salad arrangement. I went for sliced duck l’orange for the main course while Betty had sautéed shrimp. For dessert, we were served a sculptured, white chocolate figure stuffed with a “surprise” filling of cake and chocolate mousse. We purchased a bottle of California Chardonnay to share with our dinner companions, the Bauers and Hernandez couples. Ulrich reciprocated with wine he purchased.
During dinner conversation we learned that Shelly had served
two years in the Israeli Army, a surprise since she is so feminine and petite.
She had emigrated to Israeli from her home country of
All of us then went upstairs to the Lido Deck to have a look at the huge display of chocolate yummies prepared by the ship’s kitchen staff. It was an extravagant and impressive show of cakes, pies, carvings and small servings of imagination and scrumptious-looking desserts. Some of our fellow passengers seemed to have gargantuan appetites and sampled nearly everything. Betty and I passed on taking in additional calories from the mountains of chocolate cakes, pastries and candy sweets so late and retired for the night.