Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Day 47 - At sea for a day - Sep 10th

I had another less than solid night but made Paula suffer by waking her at about 7:45am, as by then, I had already been awake for a while and cracked a couple of codeword puzzles.

I seem to have regained my appetite and even though the sea was a bit on the choppy side, I managed a substantial start to the day.  Although the ship’s movement was noticeable, we haven’t heard of anyone suffering sea sickness at all. (Not on the ship anyway.  The tender boat earlier doesn’t count.  Several experienced cruisers believe that this ship and its sister ships are far more stable than others in the fleet.  Something to consider if you are a new cruiser and worry about such things.

The morning quiz was early (9:45am) but in the Wheelhouse Bar.  It started late, as Ali who was supposed to be hosting it was suffering – we think from toothache, so Rommel had to step in.  We didn’t win.

Into the Theatre for a presentation on comedy, by Lee Bayliss.  Interesting to hear some of his philosophy and also how he got started at the Oklahoma carnival as a 16 year old, standing in for the clown.  The clown’s job was enticing people to buy whatever it is they throw at a target to dunk him, by winding up the passer’s by getting them mad enough to want to throw stuff at him, but not mad enough to and to beat him up!  Having given the regular clown a load of his own medicine, the owner realised that Lee would be an able deputy when the regular had his coffee breaks.

With the full breakfast still apparent, it was only a soup and pineapple lunch, but I suspect that my renewed interest in food has already had an adverse affect on my sylphlike figure.  (Gagging actions from Paula...)  On the way back to the cabin we saw the Golden Princess heading the other way!

We had a cracking 17/20 for the afternoon quiz, but sadly, it wasn’t enough to scoop the gold medal.

Our last formal night was a hectic one.  After dressing up for probably the last time before about July next year, we went to the theatre for the brilliant production show “The British Invasion”.  This was put on by the original cast and they received a much deserved standing ovation.  We have seen it twice before but is a top show.  We then shot straight through to the Vista lounge to meet the Captain (Ivan Jermain) for a farewell do, for those leaving at San Francisco, reputed to be about 800.  With hand sanitizers at the entrance, we were told it was a non-hand shaking evening, as they are still playing safe.  The captain’s speech contained a reference to just how much had been consumed since Sydney, such as 31 tons of beef, 32 tons of fish etc., and the equivalent of 272 litres of water per person per day!   Apparently the ship does 25ft per gallon of fuel.

On to dinner and unfortunately Meg was off colour so it was just Alex & Terri who enjoyed the food with us.  Once again, my first lobster tail was less than appetising and Allan volunteered to return it before I even asked.

The atrium balloon party at 9:30pm was a real blast and left a lot of clearing up to be done by the staff, though Paula did emerge with a bottle of the house champagne.  Pics show the amazing orchestra leader Sarah, who is tiny, but plays and conducts so well and is hugely popular with passengers and staff.  Matt, the Deputy Cruise Director – still suffering from a tooth extraction, Marcus & lead dancer Stephanie (from my neck of the woods), who are getting off in SF and Kim, who does the Zumba and quizzes etc.   

Although we were back at the cabin about 10:45, the internet was quite quick so I managed to upload the previous day’s blog and download emails.  Great news from NZ in that Hampton Downs race track has had the crowd limit restriction lifted from 20,000 to 50,000.  It may not mean too much to most of you, but it does mean that the track in  which we have a vested interest, can now attract higher profile events.

Heading now for Vancouver and slightly warmer weather as we head south again.  We don’t arrive until midday, which is a shame, but the confirmed 12 people left in Juneau will just be happy to see the ship arrive, regardless.

Query.  Why is it we can just walk off the ship in Canada, yet each time the ship enters a USA leg, we get all the entry documentation to fill in and a face to face ‘interview’?  Having gone through it all in Alaska, we have to go through it all over again in San Francisco, because we’d left the USA.  So at the exact time when we should be having breakfast and clearing out the cabin, we have to report for another farcical bit of red tape.  We have to report at 8:20am, but be out of our cabin before 8:30am for a 9:30am walk off.  We really don’t want to dwell on such things at the moment.   

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