One last sea day


Now, there’s no automatic right to be a hero but I’ve been reminded by several people on this cruise that mine’s “a keeper” and after almost 34 years, I think that’s probably true.  Yesterday morning, before breakfast though, he had a typical heroic idea.

“Tomorrow’s the last sea day.  Shall we put some washing in the machine?”

Well, yes, because we’ve been in this situation before and we know what happens when everyone decides they don’t want to take home a case full of dirty laundry – there’s a mad scramble for the machines and it’s dog eat dog in the launderette.  So, thanks to some forward thinking, we managed to avoid all of that and have been able to enjoy our last day at sea with no such worries.  It’s not that I want to take home clean clothes, but we have another week of adventure to go!




So it was a day of catching up with my journal.  I didn’t fancy the first presentation this morning so stayed “home” and did a bit of drawing, cutting and pasting until mid morning when I fancied a coffee.




Where was everyone?  The ship seemed empty – surely, not everyone was in the laundries, doing their washing?!




Well, no, because the coffee shop was pretty lively – so many customers they’d run out of cups!  I hung around a while until a breathless young crew member came hurrying along with a basket of new ones, before going to Terry’s presentation about Peru. 




We joined a jolly table for lunch and watched as a huge block of ice was set down in a circle of towels on the deck.  We hadn’t realised it but we’d snagged front row seats for the ice carving demonstration.




In the warm sunshine, it was a pretty splashy job, but Ernesto worked quickly.




We were invited to call out suggestions for what it was going to be, with the incentive of a special prize for the first one to guess correctly.  Eagle, dolphin and seahorse were the first calls, before guinea pig, llama and flamingo created general hilarity.  Poor Ernesto was trying to be serious!




It was a swan…not easy to photograph…and the lucky winner was invited to come and collect her prize: A large ice cube for her cocktail Winking smile




This afternoon, we had the chance to learn more about Machu Picchu and I must say, the day’s presentations have really whetted our appetite!




Then, it was Trivia time again!  How quickly the days fly.




Sadly, no win today – far from it.  It was only when the answers were given that one of our team recalled what a dactylogram does, but we’d never had known who released an album entitled “Change the World” in 1997, nor did we guess anywhere near what percentage of the population is left handed.  Never mind – it’s good for someone else to win!

As we left Trivia, I went to put my glasses into the case and disaster struck – one of the arms fell off and I feared the worst.  Yes, I have spares with me, but they’re not quite the same and sad to say, I’ve passed the point at which I could manage without.  As I passed by Reception, I asked if there might be someone who could repair them on the ship.  After all, we have another week to go, still!




So, with serious, businesslike glasses in my bag and having showered and changed, we went downstairs to the Mariner Lounge for what Daddy would have referred to as a “snecklifter”. 




Looking out of the window, we spotted the most amazing sky and I simply had to go up a floor onto the boat deck and outside to take a photo.




Or twelve.




We ate “a deux”, but the jolly bunch with whom we’d had lunch came and sat next to us, so I’m afraid to say we were probably a little noisier than we ought to have been.  Marcellino and Francisco were working at top speed, serving the Captain’s table too and so we were blessed with super-service tonight. 




We’ve enjoyed the shows put on by the ship’s singers and dancers more than ever this time, so headed for the theatre after dinner and settled ourselves with after dinner drinks to watch the “songs from the shows”.  Really great performances all round and a really great way to end the day.

We avoided the crowds awaiting the lifts and walked up six floors whilst chatting with friends, reaching our deck breathless but feeling virtuous.




There, on my bed was my glasses, mended and returned as new.  What can I say?  I know that when I try to discover who mended them so that I can say thank you, I’ll get a shrug and be told “It’s what we do”, but really, such things are what makes travelling like this so special.


Oh, and you know what I said about my hero?  Well, as I left my glasses at the reception desk and hopped in the glass lift to return to our suite on deck 10, I left him there to collect our passports for Peru tomorrow.  As the lift moved,  I signalled to him that I’d got it sorted and blew him a kiss.  As the lift went up, the last thing I saw was the lady in front of him in the queue throwing her arms around him…

Word has clearly got around that he knows his way to the laundry.

We’d never heard of Moche until today

Guayaquil, the Pacific Pearl