November 1, 2012

Cruise passengers who survived Sandy say they could kiss the ground

The Associated Press

BOSTON – Some spent the time gambling or drinking, but others were vomiting in halls.

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Passengers walk toward the Black Falcon Cruise Terminal in Boston, where they docked on Wednesday.

The Associated Press

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Scores of cruise ship passengers who were stuck riding out the superstorm at sea docked in Boston on Wednesday because of a New York port closure.

Many shared stories of 40- to 50-foot waves rocking cruise ship Norwegian Gem and trying to make the best of being stuck on the water for two extra days.

Boston has turned into a safe haven for New York-bound cruise ships because of the storm. Massachusetts Port Authority officials said Wednesday that two cruise ships have diverted to the New England location since Sunday and another two are expected by Friday.

It's the first time since the Sept. 11th attacks that multiple cruise ships that should have gone to New York instead have come to Boston.

"I want to get down and kiss it," Norwegian Gem passenger Chrissy Cole said Wednesday after reaching land.

The 33-year-old resident of Scranton, Pa., lined up to catch a bus home after the trip she took with eight relatives turned into a different adventure than they'd expected.

Norwegian Cruise Line officials gave passengers the choice of ending their trip in Boston or getting back on the ship until the vessel can return to New York.

Many left on buses or in rental cars, including some New York City residents who worried they still wouldn't make it home.

"Everyone's on a wing and a prayer, hoping every highway is open," said 32-year-old Brian Moreland of Astoria, Queens.

Honeymooning couple Nicole and Brad Dooley from Santa Rosa, Calif., said they could watch waves coming over the ship's bow during the storm's height from their berth.

"I was seasick the whole time," she said.

"We're glad to be here and on land," he said.


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