Home Away From Home by Maggie Gunia, OCC/GSM, Wind Star
After 11 years of work with a large cruise company, which made me grow professionally, I started to feel burned out. I knew that the time for a change had arrived. I loved to share my knowledge and travel experiences with the people but the passion was not the same as before.
A new job search was not easy, interviews with HR’ representing different work environments confirmed only how different in its specific was my seafarer life, how unconventional was my previous lifestyle. I had no time to read books when I was onboard but the world surrounding me was like an open book. From guests onboard I learned many interesting lessons too. The knowledge gained during years of traveling was an additional advantage.
After a few months home, I realized that my small carry-on was ready for pick up, somewhere in the corner waiting for next travel, and often I was looking for pictures from previous assignments with eyes full of melancholy. I was reading information about ports and observed movements of different vessels around the globe via internet.
It became obvious to me that whoever has been touched by the freedom of the sea once, who saw the green light behind the horizon, remains addicted to the sea forever.
One day, the phone rang and…
Just a few days later, on a tropical island, I was greeted by the ship’s crew with banners that read: “Welcome home, Welcome to our family.”
Amazing and unique experience!
I have worked for Windstar for two years now.
From a professional point of view, I observed the Windstar crew on a daily basis. Everybody is polite, smiling and happy, even after spending so many months onboard. All the crew is genuine in their interactions with guests onboard. They anticipate requests and needs, they greet the guests by their names, and very quickly learn your particular preferences. I observed how quickly the crew engages with the guests through their friendliness. They are ready to share information not only about the ports of call experience but also about their own families. Sometimes I see heart-warming responses between guests and crew, a fellowship that creates the vacation of a lifetime. The same joy and attention that the Windstar crew share with their colleagues. Every morning somebody onboard greets me with a smile, jokes in genuine way, asks how is my day, and I often wonder where this phenomena is coming from. I am proud to be part of that dream team.
In this particular time, far away from our families, the crew of Windstar shares a great affinity; a close-knit friendship and a supportive environment that makes us feel like this “Home away from home” protects us from the current sorrows of the land.
And while we wait for you to come back, we paint, clean, refurbish and look forward to share our home with you again. Soon we hope!