Essence & Perspective
Cruise Trek Family
CT Family member Brent Stein created this mosaic using
photos he took on the South American cruise in 2016. To see the details
of this mosaic, click on the image – a much larger version will open
in a new window. Interested in how Brent created the mosaic?
Find out more below.
Dated: Holidays 2009
Hello Everyone –
I hope this greeting finds you well!
As we near another year’s end, I wanted to
take a moment to reach out and extend Happy Holiday Wishes to the
entire Cruise Trek Family. Each of us have become part of a very unique
group and even though there is no ancestral bonds beyond our love
for Cruise Trek, we each have become members of a very special Cruise
I think that Rolf captured it ’spot-on‘
in his piece “Where no Travel Writer has Gone Before”,
. . . I’m impressed by the diversity of
the group that has assembled here: not just male and female, urban and
rural, black and white, but conservative and liberal, gay and straight,
introvert and extrovert, religious and athiest, healthy and handicapped.
Office workers rub shoulders with retired soldiers, shoe salesmen with
physicians, businessmen with the unemployed. The charm isn’t
that these people share a love of “Star Trek”, but that
– apart from “Trek” – they don’t
necessarily have all that much in common.
Sounds like a Family to me!
Through Rolf’s self-proclaimed glib (at
times) pronouncements about experiencing Cruise Trek as an
outsider – he did acknowledge how much of a family we had
all become – even though he never officially called it out in
My Mother used to tell me growing up that we could
never have enough Family – there were six of us kids in the
family – so I should have believed her then! Now, as I get older
(maybe it’s the 50’s-bug?) I find that my Cruise Trek
family has become just as important to me as my real family and I
wanted to acknowledge the group, and wish everyone good tidings,
safe travels, peace in your hearts, peace to those close to you, and
much love this Holiday Season!
Some of us have exchanged greetings already and
thanks to those of you that have sent cards – I didn’t
get around to it this year, so this is the card I would have liked to have
sent, had I taken the time!
May you all be safe and happy until we meet again
onboard at another Cruise Trek Event!
Happy Holiday’s and Season’s Greetings,
Dated September 2002
You didn’t mention which cruise you are
taking, but if you are going to Hawaii with us, I think there are a few
important things that you need to know:
1. The most important is that even if you
don’t know anyone, you will automatically have 300 or so
new friends! So it is good that you are getting on the list, because I
think it will just increase the excitement of meeting the faces behind
2. Fun is what you make it. . . Don’t
sit around waiting for people to entertain you. . . Cruise Treks are a
huge adventure, and there is so much to do or not do. . . just relax
and go with the flow. Enjoy the many fun Trek events, but also do
some excursions! It gives you something to talk about over dinner.
3. The actors are almost always sweet and
approachable. . . but just be yourself. . . talk about non-Trek things,
too. . . be fun and approachable too and I promise you they will come
to you too! . . . So make conversation! Have drinks! Have FUN! [And
besides the actors are just the proverbial “icing on the
cake” to everything else that happens]
4. Bring your dancing shoes and try to
stay up late. . . as Eric, Deb, Charlie, Caroline and others can attest,
the most interesting things happen at the disco! Take a nap during
the day if you have to and definitely get plenty of rest before you
5. As was mentioned before, collect
handshakes! Sure photos and autographs are cool momentos and I
hold nothing against anyone for collecting those, but handshakes can
never burn in a fire, get lost, or get ruined by airport x-ray machines.
And if you do like photos, the best ones are fun, relaxed candid photos.
6. Pack versatile clothes. . . if you can get
one, a sarong can be worn many ways as we learned in Tahiti. . . wear
comfortable shoes on the excursions, and even if they say one is
provided. . . take a travel iron! There was quite an iron famine on one
of the past cruises.
7. Remember tips #1 and #2 and you should
Good luck and welcome to the family!
7-time Cruise Trekker,
This is my first cruise, and therefore my first
CruiseTrek. . . What do I need to know? Thanks!
Dated October 2009
We have never before been negative nor do we try to hurt
anyone’s endeavors. However, we simply wanted to let our
friends know the below so that one could decide for oneself about
other cruises. And well – the below does help to form the
necessary questions for any and every cruise or vacations under
From anonymous CT family member
Yes, [companion] and I went on the Star Trek cruise
out of LA and we had a good time, mainly because we had each other
and it was to ports we had never visited before.
As for the other company, they were a disgrace!
[Producer] in Florida did a terrible job in planning the event. Most
people, including [companion] and me never received tickets or info
about the cruise or our rooms on Royal Caribbean till he emailed us
5 days before we sailed. Everyone called, e-mailed, etc. and if you
caught up with him, you got the run around. I was calling the Florida
BBB to report him, thinking the company was a fraud and had stolen
our money when I got his email with the correct registration number.
(He had given me the wrong number the previous day in a phone
conversation when I told him to give it to me and save an email, knowing
he never followed thru with emails.) Only when we all got together on
the ship, did I hear similar stories from the rest of the people.
There was only around 20 people who booked the
tour. [Companion] and I had decided to do the cruise because of the
ship, the ports, and the planned stars (Tim Russ, Alan Ruck, Marina
Sirtis) all stars we had never sailed with. Well, none of them went.
Also a mystery to solve was promised. The mystery we learned after
boarding was cancelled.
We had no planned itinerary when we got on board
and did not receive one till 2 days into the cruise, which was inaccurate.
We would go to an assigned place and the ship would have something
else going on and Sky Conway (the guy in charge of the group on the
ship) would have to reset up another place. We asked the front desk
about Star Trek Cruises when we boarded and they never heard of
them. (Learned later we were listed as Holiday Cruises).
[Companion] and I had decided before we went that
we were going to have a good time, even if no Star Trek stuff took
place. . .
Sky had told us the Stars would autograph our
photos, which they did, but never announced to everyone they would
charge us, so people got up there with no money and had to run back
to their cabin. (I had money because I had my doubts, but he should
have been up front about it so people were unhappy with that).
CT includes complimentary autographed photos.
Sky Conway, he just showed his movies every
night. Except he did have a copy of JJ’s Star Trek
so we watched it too on board and talked about it. Sky, by the end, I
felt tried to do his best with what he could do, but the thing was such
[Companion] and I told everyone when we could
if they wanted an organized, honest Star Trek themed cruise, they
should look up Cruise Trek. Some were very interested in the
Mediterranean cruise next year.
[Companion] and I had a blast at the ports, on our
own, and liked the Royal Caribbean ship. . .
Don’t worry, [companion] and I aren’t
looking to jump ship from Cruise Trek. You are our family and stuck
with us. We just wanted something to do between May ‘09 and
Oct ‘10 and this looked interesting.
Talk to you later,
Long Time CT Family Member
About the Mosaic ~
Of the 1,956 photos in the album of photos he took during
Cruise Trek 2016: “The
South America Passage” (March 20 to April 3, 2016),
Brent Stein used 1,770 images to create the Cruise Trek Family
mosaic above. Here, Brent describes the process.
“I will use this as the mosaic model – using my
entire catalog of photos from the South American cruise. Target
size is 48 x 32 for best image results. I also wanted to use a metal
medium for the final print.
“I wanted the group photo added just to make sure that
everyone was included whom were on the cruise, and I thought it
would make a nice touch (insert approx. 1/32 of total scale).
“Cut / trim for size / remove background and resample
using transparency layer / added feathering and added text.”
To see the individual images in the mosaic, click on
the mosaic above, and a larger
image will open in a new window. Then zoom in on the mosaic
– and prepare to be amazed!
Good job, Brent!