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COVID stretches Utah couple's 10-day cruise to 3 weeks

Brett and Lynda Williams have been quarantining on a cruise ship for weeks after testing positive for COVID-19. (Family photo)

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

SALT LAKE CITY – In the middle of the omicron surge, a Utah couple has found themselves in quite the bind on a cruise ship.

They've been stuck in quarantine long after they were supposed to go home.

The pictures make it look like an Instagrammer's paradise that includes incredible sunsets and jaw-dropping ocean vistas. Then there's the food.

"Come on, five-course gourmet dinners every night," said Brett Williams.

He was in paradise with his wife Lynda for a tour of the Caribbean that launched from Saint Martin.

"And so we were just going to go on a cruise through these different islands, down and back," Brett Williams explained.

The couple set sail on Dec. 18 for a 10-day cruise that has now lasted three weeks.

"Halfway through our cruise, staff and passengers started coming up positive on COVID tests," Brett Williams said. "Lynda tested positive and they're like, 'Nope, you're not going anywhere.' And then three days later, I tested positive."

Because of health and safety protocols in that island country, the Williams need to test negative before they can leave.

"Typically what they can do is after the 10 days of quarantine, the physician on the ship can write a letter," Brett Willams said. "Well, Saint Martin won't honor that and they're saying 'nope, we don't care what the doctor says. You have to test negative.'"

Even without symptoms, Lynda Williams keeps testing positive. "It's just what it's been. It's been great and we're, you know, just kind of living through it."

With an unknown departure date, the couple is trying to make the best of their unexpectedly long vacation. They are allowed on the deck only an hour per day, wasting away in a real-life "Margaritaville."

"And I'm like, cool! I've got time to sit and write my new book that I've been wanting to write forever," he said.

Some people claim that there are governments to blame, but they know it's nobody's fault.

Brett Williams explained, "I'm not stuck. I choose to be here, I choose to live my life. And you know, I'm not a prisoner. It's all part of my choices."

He said there were dozens of cases on the boat, but they are the last.

They're simply sharing their story to caution people, if you're heading out into the world during the surge, be ready for some unexpected possibilities.

Andrew Adams


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