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Published: October 24th 2018
Dateline: Tuesday, October 23, 2018- San Pedro Harbor, Los Angeles, California
3:30pm, lifeboat drill. Important to note that we will not see or touch a lifeboat during this drill, neither will we put on or touch a life jacket. The 300 or so of us assigned to Muster Station D will however, go to Deck 7, the Explorers Lounge and find a comfy chair to await instructions. On the stage, our drill instructor is a funny and lovely ship’s officer from Chile. She tells us that staff will be coming around to scan our cruise cards to make sure that everyone shows up for this important briefing from the Captain. She tells us every few minutes that the Captain will be addressing us shortly on the Emergency Broadcast System on the ship. We wait, we wait.
I always bring a book along so pop it open and continue my reading…we wait. Alas, as with the absent lifeboats and life jackets, it appears the Captain is also absent. We wait, and wait some more, with nervous laughter making its way through the lounge. I re-open my book and read another chapter. Thank heavens for these comfy chairs. We wait some more for the Captain’s directions to be announced over the Emergency Broadcast System. Nothing. We wait some more, I re-open my book to find out what is happening to my hero. Does he solve the murder?
In the meantime, our Chilean officer tries to make the best of a bad situation and starts telling us about changes to the entertainment schedule on board. Seems our entertainment for tonight didn’t make the ship. What the heck? She’s now quizzing us to pass the time… how many have not been to Hawaii before, (3 out of 300) …what Muster Station are we in? We all obediently repeat loudly, “D”…ughhhh this is dragging on too long. Turns out the Emergency Broadcast System of the ship is not working, it is unclear why. We will not be hearing the important life or death information from our Captain. So…our Chilean Officer goes to plan B and says she will read us some of the most important parts of the briefing, LOL! OK. So, she tells us…when you hear the 7 short whistle blasts and one long, DO NOT abandon ship. DO NOT jump in the water. If we do have to abandon ship it will only be done on the verbal command of the Captain over…you guessed it… the Emergency Broadcast System of the ship…good luck with that ?. And so starts day one of our South Pacific Adventure.
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