The Southern California sun is streaming through the portholes as my mother and I awaken in our cabin on the Hotel Queen Mary in early November. I am delving back into the recesses of my mind for details from our last visit — in 1965.
At that time, it was a tropical sun that shone through the very same portholes. We woke up in this exact cabin, five mornings in a row, sailing on a Thanksgiving cruise between New York and Nassau. By the mid 1960s, the legendary Queen Mary was mixing in tropical itineraries with her transatlantic runs; demand for the glamorous but lengthy crossings had dropped with the advent of air travel.
Why we are able to make this nostalgic visit and sleep surrounded by the same wood veneer walls comes down to this: a case of deliberate déjà vu.
My parent’s attic is stuffed with memorabilia from a century of travel dating back to my great grandfather who started a travel agency in 1902.
Continuing the family tradition, I now stand guard over the Queen Mary mementos and add to the collection with memorabilia from her successor, the Queen Mary 2. As Cunard continues its legacy, so does my family. Read more of Valarie D’Elia’s story Cabin A112 on Family Cruise Advisor.