RMW: the blog

Roslyn's photography, art, cats, exploring, writing, life

All hands on deck for RMS Queen Mary

18 Comments

queen mary

It must have been 1962 or 1963 when my parents decided to return to England after a few years living in the US (Florida, Texas, back to Florida, then to California). We had initially traveled to the US on the RMS Queen Elizabeth. The return trip was on the Queen Mary.

queen mary

queen mary

To be honest, my memories of crossing the Atlantic are mostly of the Queen Elizabeth, not Mary. By then my brain was shutting down from the trauma of moving around so much and a lot of my teenage years are a total blank.

queen mary

So as much as I love visiting the ship and am really happy that she is living a second life docked in Long Beach, it is certainly a two-edged sword for me.

queen mary

Last weekend several friends and I made the pilgrimage to visit the The Queen. Coming from various parts of LA as we do, some of us met downtown at the 7th Metro station and continued on the Blue Line to downtown Long Beach. From there we took the free Passport Shuttle that stops at all of the tourist locations in that city. A good way to get around if you are visiting Long Beach or are on one of the cruise ships docking at the port.

queen mary

In order to qualify for the AAA (American Automobile Association) discount you need to buy the ticket in person at the ticket booth, not online. And it turns out if one person in your party is a AAA member, everybody gets the discount. Way to go!

(And in my previous post about the Queen, when I drove my car there, my AAA card was invaluable.) 

queen mary

There are several tours available. We chose the Glory Days Historical Tour which is the basic tour of the ship. I’ve done this tour more than once but it is still enjoyable.

queen mary

We ate lunch in the Chelsea Chowder House as the Promenade Cafe was closed for construction. Several of us ordered the fish tacos which turned out to be pretty decent. Not exactly the traditional fish ‘n chips, but hey, this is Southern California!

After that we wandered around the ship with me snapping photos here and there.

queen mary

The photo above is an array of the many kinds of wood used on the ship, about thirty eight in all, with such exotic names as Sapeli Mahogany, Birds Eye Maple, Silky Oak, Pacific Myrtle, et al.

queen mary

Photos of illustrious travelers such as Fred Astaire (above) and Liberace (top of page) are displayed on the Promenade Deck. Didn’t see my photo, though. Oh well, I’m not famous enough yet.

queen mary

You need a long extension cord to vacuum this corridor… you can barely see the end of it! The handrails were installed after the maiden voyage when they discovered the ship wasn’t as stable as advertised.

queen mary

Just seeing this lookout post extending off the bridge was making me seasick. The view, of course, is of the Long Beach mainland.

queen mary

The geodesic dome in this photo was originally built as the home of the Spruce Goose, Howard Hughes’ infamous wooden airplane (built on the outskirts of Culver City, now Playa Vista) that flew a few yards before diving into the Pacific Ocean. I was fortunate enough to visit it and sit in the cockpit before it was moved to Oregon. I only wish it was still here. The dome now serves as the cruise center for ships arriving at the Port of Long Beach.

queen mary

Replica of the children’s play room. I think the artwork is from The Arabian Nights and Rudyard Kipling. Today it would be Disney and Star Wars… or all replaced with video games. Yes, I feel old!

queen mary

I believe this cabinet contains the different flags flown for various situations but I didn’t see a sign. At first I thought it was beach towels…

queen mary

During World War II the Queen became a troop carrier. This is one of the guns she had to be outfitted with.

queen mary

This was so cool… the Queen Mary made out of Legos.

queen mary

There was supposed to be a Lego cat on board. I thought for sure if anybody could find it, it would be me… but no luck.

queen mary

However, I did find Winston Churchill looking very Lego-ish.

We had decided to depart at 3:00pm as we all had a long trip home with combinations of train, bus, car and foot travel. And some of our group had to go to work Monday morning. Yes, I remember those days! On my walk from the Culver City station I made a quick stop at Trader Joe’s which is conveniently on my route home. I was opening my front door at 6:00pm.

Another good day in LA… and now I am craving another cruise!

Click an image to start the slide show:

All photos and content copyright roslyn m wilkins unless otherwise noted. No commercial usage without express permission. Please feel free to pass along this post via email or social media, but if you wish to use some of our images or text outside of the context of this blog, either give full credit to myself and link to One Good Life in Los Angeles, or contact us for proper usage. Thanks!

 

 

 

Advertisements

Author: RMW

I am an explorer and creative person. I've had many jobs, careers and interests... everything in life and the universe fascinates me. Born in Brighton, England, I've lived my entire adult life in Los Angeles, California. A few years ago I rediscovered photography which is a great excuse to get outside and look. I'm also in the process of re-writing some of my unpublished short stories and possibly a novel. .

18 thoughts on “All hands on deck for RMS Queen Mary

  1. Wow! That was fabulous:)

    Like

  2. I remember I went to Long Beach and visited RMS QUEEN MARY in 1975 … many thanks for this new visit !!!

    Like

  3. Wow, thanks for wonderful tour!

    Like

  4. Love that you shared all those photos … it is quite grand and formidable, but there is also the echo of worn and tired surfacing here and there. Have never had the opportunity to be on such a large ship, so truly enjoyed the mini-tour. Can’t even wrap my head around that grand hallway shot (what a great photo capture!), and loved the various photos of the minute details such as the anchor chain and various pulley systems. Thanks, as always, for sharing the fabulous photos. 🙂

    Like

    • I am happy you enjoyed it. Several years ago the new Queen Mary came to Long Beach and the two ships met for the first time. I was lucky to be there and it was quite spine tingling! Although the old Mary was twice the size of the Titanic, the new Mary seemed twice the size as the old girl. Cruise ships now are truly floating cities.

      Like

  5. I really enjoyed this tour of the Queen Mary, Roslyn. I have never been in it, but felt like I was there with the comprehensive gallery of photos here. Such an elegant oceanliner.

    Like

  6. Nice tour. Those lifeboats look pretty uncomfortable, I wonder if they’ve removed parts of them.
    For what it’s worth, I saw the Spruce Goose in its Oregon digs a few years ago, that was pretty cool too.

    Like

    • Thank you. I don’t remember what the lifeboats looked like originally. I’m sure if they were needed comfort would not be an issue! Of course, after the Titanic (where they truly believed lifeboats weren’t needed) there were at least enough boats for everybody!

      Like

  7. What wonderful memories! Your photos are outstanding. Husband and I toured the ship several years ago when we visited LA. I could certainly feel the spirit of the past there. I don’t want a Fun Cruise, I want a Queen Mary Cruise! Great slide show!

    Like

    • I wouldn’t mind a cruise on the newest Queen Mary. In the 60s when we were on board in the economy seats it was a form of transportation only. Lovely surroundings nevertheless. For us it was mostly a place to sleep, a movie and meals. At the time it all seemed very ordinary to me but now I realize I was living a part of history!

      Like

  8. I had missed it Roslyn.Captivating post with a touch of nostalgia.Queen Mary is powerful and beautiful at the same time.I virtually visited all her spaces through your wonderful slide-show display.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s