sahuaru, I'm shocked you were not turned away at the pier. Without a birth cert they are supposed to, and usually do deny boarding. I've never heard of anyone being allowed to board with a signed statement.
Anyone reading this, please get a passport. If you choose to sail this year without one you WILL need a birth cert (no photo copy, no hospital copy) with a raised state seal. You'll also need a Gov't issued photo I.D. (Driver's license, military I.D., green crad, etc.) if you don't have passport. For children just birth cert until 2008. If you have to fly to Vancouver or any foreign port to board a passport is already a requirement.