FRAZIER: Cold hands led to a warmed heart
Published 4:00 am Saturday, February 18, 2023
It was cold on Friday. Just ask all the volunteers who were at the Vicksburg waterfront to greet passengers arriving from the American Queen Voyages Special Presidential Cruise.
In fact, my hands haven’t been that cold since I went skiing umpteen years ago.
So, when the executive vice president of land operations James Palmeri asked if I would like to go aboard and interview the president of the company – it was all I could do not to say, “H*** yeah.”
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I instead demurringly replied, “Oh that would be lovely.”
Once aboard the boat, I was given a tour of the vessel and was in awe.
I have been on a few ocean cruises in my lifetime, but never on a boat that travels the river, and let me just say this one was a beauty. (And I’m not just saying that because my hands had begun to thaw.)
The American Queen Voyage had a large dining area and a smaller café style restaurant. There were elegant furnishings everywhere and fresh flowers, including stargazer lilies — my favorite.
Upon meeting the President of the company, Cindy D’Aoust, I was offered a cup of coffee, which I gladly accepted as I was still trying to warm up.
And for nearly an hour I visited with this charming woman. In sharing her vision for the company, I found it impressive how dedicated she was in trying to not only provide luxuries for her passengers but her desire to connect with each city in which the American Queen docks.
She was interested in hearing about Vicksburg and the stories that make us special.
Well of course that caused my ears to perk up, since I know we have many stories to tell, and with that, I proceeded to tell her and her vice president of marketing Angela Composto, who was also at the table with us, about the Vicksburg Living Magazine.
While some of you may think I was just trying to promote myself, prattling on about something I have a hand in, you would be wrong.
Yes, I am proud of the work I do for the magazine, but what makes me feel most honored is that Boone Newsmedia believes in our community enough that we are given a platform for which to share these stories.
Hence while climbing aboard the American Queen Voyages brought warmth to my hands, I also felt a little flush with pride.
Not every community is so fortunate.