May 4th again

May 4th again

It’s a bit like groundhog day…

The strange thing is that we haven’t actually crossed the dateline yet: we are sailing at 55°37.22’ N 179°56.39’, so there’s a short distance still to go (about 0.5° latitude, I’m not so sure how far that is at this longitude). There have been jokes about there being red lines in the sea, ropes across the ocean and so on, needless to say, but the main feature today is the sound of the foghorn for it’s pretty much a whiteout right now.


What’s most noticeable around the ship is the quiet atmosphere. We’re all - staff and guests alike - feeling the effects of six consecutive nights with a time change. Of course, the ship’s time is purely arbitary - there’s two settings on our TV, one to show the onboard clock and the other to show the time in the outside world. Whilst we are at sea, it doesn’t matter what time we work to (or what day of the week we might claim it to be) as long as we are in sync with the outside world when we get there. So, the day after tomorrow, when we will arrive in Dutch Harbor, we will need to be in step with the inhabitants of Unalaska, and that means another lost hour tonight.


Sea days mean we see more of the ship than usual and this morning, returning to our suite after breakfast we took a different route from usual. I think this games area is one of the least attractive parts of the Mariner, being a plain but well-used pathway between the coffee shop and one of the lounges. This morning, I noticed the artwork on those walls, which is rather reminiscent of the last ship we sailed on.


It seems a strange and rather bland choice for that area, especially as “the real thing” was just opposite, through the window. Though I had noticed several of the artworks around the ship, these “seascapes” had totally passed me by. But now I’d taken note, I realised that there were quite a few others here and there.


Here, a little further along in a more furnished part of that same walkway was another in the series.


With a little light and a bit of soft furnishing around, the effect is rather different - and yet I can’t help but feel that something a little less bleak would look more in tune with the surroundings.


Others in the series can be found in the adjacent nightclub/bar - always a strange place in daylight, so maybe I wasn’t viewing the art in the optimum circumstances.


I’m not altogether sure just what artworks I’d choose for these surroundings! But these must have been purchased by the dozen…


There are a few of these circular, map themed panels around the ship which are rather more to my taste. Too detailed for a dimly lit nightclub, perhaps, I frequently find myself gazing at the one in the restaurant where we usually choose to have breakfast.


I find this panel amusing too, as it hangs in our favourite bar. There’s a lighthearted spirit about it somehow, a bit of whimsy and joie de vivre.


So, when I came across another, similar painting this morning, I smiled. I need to go and take another, closer look sometime!


The art we see most of all? This painting, above, which must be about 4 feet wide by 2ft tall and which hangs in our suite. To begin with, I withheld my judgement - I wasn’t sure how I felt. But I must say, it’s grown on me and sitting at close quarters here at the desk, all the textures of the paint are evident and there are some very distinctive areas that I like very much indeed. Could I live with it long term though? Probably not!


The art on board Regent ships is always distinctive and is sure to provoke opinion. The CEO of the company makes it his personal responsibility and I suspect it’s a far from straightforward task. Just what would I choose were I given the job?

Fun and games

Fun and games