Day Six: Friday, July 15
Today marked the final port of call for the Norwegian Dawn: Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.
Zeke, my friend who is sharing this week of adventures with me, and I made our way to the beautiful island around 11 AM on a tender packed with families of various kinds, but all with smiling faces. After exploring a few of the many gift shops, we decided to take a tour of the area on an old-fashioned trolley. The sun was shining brightly as we traveled for about an hour before stopping in the picturesque town of Edgarton, where we had lunch at the terrific Seafood Shanty, which overlooked Nantucket Sound. The trolley then brought us back to the central part of town, where we again boarded one of the tenders and returned to the enormous cruise ship.
We swam, ran on the treadmill, lifted a few weights, chatted with a few gay dads and then got ourselves ready for the evening's entertainment, which began at 8 PM in the Spinnaker Lounge. Orfeh, best known to Broadway audiences for her performance in the musical version of Saturday Night Fever, was the featured entertainer. Backed by a four-piece band -- under the musical direction of Jesse Vargas -- and an all-girl trio, the one-name singer rocked the room with her deep, powerful voice. In fact, words like smoky, dark and rich seem to have been created to describe Orfeh's unique sound. The singer began her set with "Look at Me Now," which was followed by the Britney Spears chart-topper "Hit Me Baby One More Time," which she said she performed since there were kids in the audience. She followed with "If I Were Your Woman," which was partly sung to Rosie O'Donnell, who was seated in the audience with her partner Kelli and singer-songwriter Melissa Etheridge. "You Don't Know," a song penned by Orfeh, followed. The singer explained that she wrote the tune when she was a lovelorn teenager, but she later met and married her husband (Altar Boyz' Andy Karl), which, she joked, "ruined my songwriting career." The concert also included powerful versions of Carole King and Maria Carey's "If It's Over" and Saturday Night Fever's "If I Can't Have You" and a show-stopping version of the Janis Joplin classic "Piece of My Heart."
At 9 PM in the Stardust Theatre, we were treated to a documentary, which the writers on board have been asked not to discuss for the time being, so I'll move on. . .
If you've been enjoying these daily columns, I thought you'd be interested to learn that the next RFamily Vacations cruise -- which will also boast a slew of Broadway performers -- has been announced. The seven-day adventure to Alaska will depart from Seattle on July 2, 2006, making stops in Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan and Victoria. The cruise will be held on the Norwegian Dawn's sister ship, The Norwegian Star. For more information visit www.rfamilyvacations.com.
Tomorrow will sadly be the last full day aboard this wonderful cruise ship. I'm most looking forward to the final evening of entertainment, which includes a "Broadway Belters" concert assembled by Seth Rudetsky. . . more to come. . .
Happy sailing, and, of course, happy diva-watching!