Saturday, December 3, 2016

Saturday, December 3 – Go West, Young Man

We were up earlier than usual this morning.  Although we had stayed up late, we regained one of our lost hours and had an extra hour’s sleep.  We are now three hours ahead of the East Coast and the NYT finally arrived before we went to breakfast.  For most of the cruise, we have been getting our 2 papers when we go to breakfast and finding “our” paper at the room after lunch.

When we returned from breakfast, “the boys” were still at work cleaning the cabin.  A supervisor was there [for reasons we do not know] and asked when we had taken the Grand World Voyage.  He had spotted the Bluetooth speaker on the headboard and recognized it.

For the first time in about three weeks, we have a blank space in the NYT crossword.  They get harder as the week progresses and we were getting smug about solving them.  We are about 2 letters shy today, but we have until Monday, when the solution appears, to figure it.

Today was another Mariner Luncheon for the 4 and 5 Star Mariners; the ones, twos and threes had theirs yesterday.  This one was an Indonesian rijstaffel and included prawn crackers; Bumbu Gado-Gado [steamed vegetables]; Soto Ayam [soup]; and Nasi Goreng [fried rice accompanied by spicy shrimp, pork cubes, chicken satay, beef rendang, spiced green beans, banana fritters and a meatball].  It was spicy to the palettes of the old people, but we knew just how watered down the heat had been.  Had HAL served authentic Indonesian fare, the flower locker would have been overflowing.

The captain told us in his daily update that he was heading to a more westerly course, so we don’t have to worry about Brazilian visas.  The seas were much calmer today and the wind died down; even so, one of our luncheon tablemates complained about the bumpy ride during the meal.  Ironically, we were seated by the rear window and could see just how calm everything was.  It made us wonder how some of these people reached 200 days aboard cruise ships.

Otherwise, it was “just” a sea day and there are too few of them left.

TOMORROW – More of the Same and the Sunday Puzzle


 Friday, December 2 – Still Heading Brazil

It was the usual sea day comprising too much food; too few correct answers; and lots of SCANs.  We hid more eyes from the towel animals on the adjacent table at dinner and are still waiting for a response.  It doesn’t take much to keep us happy.

The cabin stewards skipped our room tonight, but it was our own fault.  We had forgotten to change the sign on the door from “privacy please” to “service please.”  The only loss was the bedtime chocolates and we have a trove of those [and stroopwaffels] already.

We stayed up late [for us] to see the Indonesian crew show.  Our waiter, Roy, took part and we recognized several other crew members.  It was almost midnight when the lights went out.

TOMORROW – Rolling Home


Thursday, December 1 – Next Stop, Brazil

The ship has been rocking and rolling, just as the captain promised.  He has chosen a heading more southwest than he had hoped for and if he does not correct it in time, we will be in Recife, Brazil.

Since it was a sea day [again!], there was little to report.  The big excitement in our day occurred early when MA had her nails done at 9:00.  We skipped breakfast in the MDR so we would not be late.  We continued to play trivia with Stan and Renee with middling success.  Although we are using the HAL 9000 team name, first introduced in 2001, we should probably call ourselves Close But No Cigar.  It is hard to win when other teams are turning in perfect papers.  We are having more fun than anyone else; we laugh constantly whereas we hear nothing but serious mumblings elsewhere in the room.  Don’t even ask about our discussion of which part of the body a cow uses to sweat [For the record, we said ‘tongue.].  Ah well, Scarlett, tomorrow is another day. 

We discovered today that Renee write “romantic mysteries.”  We are not sure what that means but will check to library when we get home; we have already tried to find her on our free e-book source to no avail.

We attended the evening show tonight which featured Vox Futura, a group of 4 young black men singing as a group and individually.  They had been semi-finalists on Britain’s Got Talent and they did.  We are anxious to see them again on Monday.

TOMORROW -- Another Day

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Tuesday, November 29 – Making for Madeira

It was just another day on the medium seas.  The high seas will come later in the week when we have a seven-day stretch of sea days.

The only change from the usual sea day our going to see The Man Who Knew Too Much, an Alfred Hitchcock f from 1956.  It was a spy story starring James Stewart and Doris Day.  The first part of the film – which set up the rest of the plot [again, pun intended] – was set in Marrakech.  We enjoyed watching scenes in the El Fnaa  and elsewhere, reliving our visit in 2001.

TOMORROW – Magnificent Madeira


Wednesday, November 30 – Have Some Madeira, M’Dear

The last little rock between us and home was Madeira, another Portuguese outpost in the middle of nowhere.  We have visited here several times and always been impressed by the abundance of fresh flowers on display throughout the capital, Funchal.  In past visits, we have taken the shuttle from the port to the center of town and then just wandered around.  We are especially fond of the local market with its displays of local fruits and vegetables, flowers and crafts and fresh caught fish.

We are headed for several days of stormy weather and not-so-smooth seas.  We did some bouncing tonight and on occasion thought we had hit potholes in the Atlantic.

TOMORROW – Let the Crossing Begin!