At Sea Once Again

We woke up around eight o’clock this morning to another fine day, as we went up to the Secret Garden for our breakfast.  We had the whole day to do what we wanted, when we wanted, and we were looking forward to what the Boudicca had to offer us.  While we were there, we noticed an elderly chap who had birthday cards sellotaped all over him; apparently he was travelling on his own and this was his way of encouraging people to talk to him.  His name was Alan and he was 72 years old today.

After venturing out on deck to see what the weather was like (bright but crisp, as expected) we spent some time wandering around the ship and chatting to some of our fellow passengers who we were starting to get to know.  Then we went and had a browse around the shop to see if we could pick up any bargains.

In the shop we noticed, on the glass shelves, some interesting globes of the Earth.  They were revolving slowly on their Perspex stands, and I was looking to see where they were plugged in, or where the batteries were inserted, but couldn’t see anything.  We learned that the globes’ rotation was powered by solar power or incandescent indoor light, and aided by the earth’s natural magnetic field.  I gently picked one up off its stand and held it in both hands, and was astonished to see it continue to rotate in my hands!  It transpired that the globe is suspended in some special fluid within a very thin Perspex outer layer, and revolves within.  They were amazing and so very novel.

Afterwards Trevor decided he would go and spend some time in the Jacuzzi up on deck 7, while I thought I would go to the Iceni Room and do some of this blog.  Trevor then went to the port talk, but as I was just outside the Neptune Lounge I could hear the talk anyway, whilst typing away on my laptop and enjoying a cup of coffee.

We thought we’d go along to the Lido Lounge afterwards to take part in the morning quiz, but when we got there it had just finished, and dolphin racing was about to start.  So we just had a (free!) drink each, chatted to John and Jean Fletcher, and passed the time pleasantly until lunchtime.

It was just a case of pottering around the ship after that.  We sat outside on the aft decks in the sunshine and, whilst it was warm in the sun, there was a brisk wind blowing and the water in the swimming pool was very choppy.

At 3.00pm we went along to the Neptune Lounge once again, where the speaker Chris Bielby was a naturalist and wildlife expert, and he gave us a fascinating talk, accompanied by a slide show, of the  different whales, dolphins, birds and other species, such as arctic fox and polar bears, that can be found in northern latitudes and which we were to look out for.  Personally I don’t think we’ll see any  polar bears this time; we won’t be crossing the Arctic Circle and I think the weather is too warm for them.

The end of the talk was just nice time for us to go along to the Lido Lounge and take part in the afternoon quiz.  We were joined by another very pleasant couple, Steve and Marilyn.  We enjoyed a couple of drinks while doing the quiz and thought we’d done quite well, scoring 18/20.  However, two other teams also scored 18, and it went to the tie-breaker which we lost.  Oh well, we’re getting closer to that elusive prize of a bottle of Fred Olsen bubbly  🙂

We decided to stay at our tables for the bingo.  We don’t normally play bingo but thought it would pass a nice little interesting interlude, so we thought we’d give it a go.  We played six games then the jackpot ticket; Trevor got a full house on the final game which netted him £18.00.  🙂

It was then time to start getting ready for dinner.  Tonight the dress code was smart-casual so it didn’t take us too long to get ready.  In any case we weren’t going to the restaurant tonight, but rather to the self-service Secret Garden, where they were holding a Chinese buffet.

The selection of dishes was such that we were spoilt for choice and didn’t know what to have; the main thing was not to pile our plate too high as it is all too easy to eat too much.  We sat with two other couples and, as usual, the conversation was all about cruises past and present and places visited.

After dinner it was along to the Neptune Lounge as usual for tonight’s entertainment, which was a comedy magician called Davey MacAuley.  The old guy whose birthday it was, Alan, was sitting in front of us and had put a birthday card on the table that had been given to him by his table-mates in the restaurant.  He was hoping that the magician would pick him to assist with a trick.

The magician was actually very good and he did tricks/illusions that we hadn’t seen before.  He did pick Alan to help him, and the old guy milked it for all he was worth; I think he likes basking in the attention.

We followed the show, as we always do, by participating in the quiz.  Nope – still no win.  😦

Then we went up to the Lido Lounge and listened to the pianist and had a couple of drinks before the late night cabaret, which featured the lead singer from the Boudicca Show Company, Luke Suri.  He was a young lad, 22 years old, but a very good singer and entertainer.  We enjoyed his one-man performance a lot.

By then it was after midnight and time to return to cabin #4125.  We were due to reach land once again tomorrow, this time Reykjavik in Iceland.  We settled down and went to sleep almost immediately.

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