Thursday, 29 January 2009

Day Twenty: Cabin Fever

Today was the day when for the first time we did virtually nothing. We were still tired from our early morning start in San Francisco and only just managed to get out of bed in time to have breakfast in the Peninsular Restaurant before it closed at 9.00am. We met some more Scots at the breakfast table and they had just joined Oriana having flown in from London the night before. They are going as far as Hong Kong and it was obvious that the wife was still feeling a bit rough from the flight over followed by the lumpy seas as we left San Francisco. Their first experience of food on the Oriana was in the Conservatory self service restaurant and they were not impressed, breakfast suited them better but I noticed that she took things a bit steady.

We only had two real excursions out of our cabin today; the first was to see a presentation about Honolulu which is our next stop and then later we went to a presentation about the Portunus Club as we were recently told that we are now Ruby Members. The Honolulu presentation was pretty standard with the Tours Manager reading her notes to the background of a Power Point presentation. I don’t think that we learned anything new other than to confirm that we have made the correct decision not to join any of the organised tours. They were peddling the Pearl Harbour tour like mad but made it sound like hard work with a lot of waiting around because of the number of visitors that it gets. I don’t think that many people realised that they are going to visit a mass war grave as that is really what the USS Arizona is. Our Portunus presentation wasn’t much better really, all she told us was that P & O are a great company, have great ships, do lots of cruises, and that in future we will get 5% discount on our on board purchases because we are now members of the Portunus Club. After Hong Kong we will get 7.5% because we will be Sapphire Members. Woo Wee.

A chunk of the day in our cabin was spent watching a DVD on how the clay wizard is made. This was purchased from the arts and crafts teacher who has now left the ship. Hilary’s Jimmy starts off life as a piece of plumbing waste pipe, the wizard begins as a 75cl Perrier bottle! The instructor has a nice easy way of explaining things and although the video is home made he has done a good job and I don’t see why it can’t be followed well enough to make a model by watching it.

Other than that it has been a nothing day, I have a stinking cold, probably gotten from Richard who had it a few days back, I am on the Lemsip strategy, two down and three to go, and I have sucked enough Lockets to keep the hunger pangs away – Hilary and I are still skipping lunch to compensate from the amount of fried food that we consumed yesterday. Mind you the spicy tiger prawns that I had for dinner on Fisherman’s Wharf were really excellent. We haven’t ventured outside as it is still cold but I am glad to say much less windy, the ship is literally cruising along, not doing a great speed, the sea is relatively flat with just a few white tops. I have seen only one sea bird and that was quite early this morning and there have been no sightings of dolphins or whales so far. We are on a pretty much south westerly course to Hawaii and hopefully as we move closer to the equator again it will start to warm up and we can get back in the pool and catch a few rays of sunshine. That’s it for now, I will add a bit after dinner and the Headliners show Viva Vegas – if it is half as good as their last show it will still be worth seeing.

Tiz I. Sam has a cold and is not feeling so good – as you may have gathered from his part of the blog. He has covered most of our activities today but I see them from a different point of view – I don’t have a cold. Breakfast was quite interesting with the other couples talking about their experiences of cruising and the food aboard. Apparently the food being offered to all the newcomers to this cruise was not as good as usual. The conservatory is self service and can get very crowded around the food counters, this makes carrying a tray between the various counters quite tricky. When you are asked to do this when you are tired from travelling across the world to join the ship is probably a step too much for most people. Oh, I had a ‘Monk’ moment during breakfast. The waiters always serve the meals with the ships’ emblem on the plate at the top. My butter plate had the emblem off centre – I had this overwhelming urge to straighten it up and did! Then I had to put the butter knife straight too! What am I like? I will watch for any further signs of ‘obsessive’ behaviour….scary.
I went up to the crows nest – 8 flights of stairs – to check out the new craft project. It’s making a paper cover for your post-it notepad…well, why? Am I missing something? I declined and saved at a couple of pounds. Then on the way back to the cabin I passed the shops and found an evening bag which would be perfect with my blue dress – well what can I do? Well buy it of course. Now not making a cover for the post-it notepad has cost me £8, but I do have a very pretty bag.
Tonight I have been asked to take Jimmy down to dinner for a lady to photograph. What’s with him and the bear that they get all the attention? Its nice really, I get to talk to even more people. Must go, dinner calls. God bless.

I understand that this is not going to go out tonight as there seems to be trouble with the satellite link but I will add that dinner was as entertaining as ever, we learned a little more about the mysterious ex-Hong Kong copper Richard who apparently is a tax exile and that is why he lives in Spain for most of the year. Apparently he is limited to 90 days per annum inside the UK. We also saw a glimpse of his relationship with Keiko in the theatre tonight, Richard wanted to reserve a couple of seats for friends of his from Hong Kong and Keiko thought that it was not necessary, a short “domestic incident” was evident. The Viva Vegas show was magnificent as always, this is a very talented cast of 5 men and 8 women, two of whom do most of the ladies vocals while all 5 men sing and dance. Two of the men have very big voices and certainly do justice to Tom Jones songs and of course they finished off with an Elvis medley. As I said to them at the end – the cast always stand by the exit doors as you leave – “we are running out of superlatives to tell you how much we enjoyed the show.”

Gonna sign off now and take my last Lemsip before going to bed, I will have one attempt at connecting but if you checked and found no blog then don’t blame me, blame the satellite link and I will get it posted just as soon as I can.

1 comment:

samw7 said...

made it safely to Shanghai and was met by Jess and Nathan. We wandered around the shopping district and ate an excellent Indian meal. Now we are going to go and seee how much of the skyline we can see through the mist. Tomorrow some sightseeing annd then an overnight train to Beijing
Love you Sam