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Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 20th 2012

Slept in late again as the Star Princess homed in on La Serena/Coquimbo, Chile. More documents to complete for our day off the ship tomorrow in La Serena. We are seriously getting rocked as we steam south, and the sea state has gone from moderate to heavy, and the Officer of the Deck says we are reaching 20-foot seas. Also Force 8 winds are not helping. However, Mr. Patch is now out and in force which is helping. Spent the day learning about the Star Princess through a series of lectures and tours of the ship, which is just amazing. There are a bunch of titled and untitled photos from the day under the heading “About the Star Princess” for those who have an interest, but they are copies of power point foils that cover everything ... read more
Big Seas Off Chile 1500
20 Footers
Big Seas Off Chile-002

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 19th 2012

Just a chill day. Winds are up to force six and the seas are getting rougher as we steam south in 8 to 10 foot swells. A lot of it has to do with our direction of travel now, which is steady on 140 degrees true, and we have averaged 21 knots (almost 25 MPH) since we left, which is humming right along for a tub this size. Worked out and laid in the sun. No sign of “Das Thong” today…. The sun is so close to us here (18 degrees south of the equator), we both put on SPF 60 sun block, and Steve still got burned after laying out a total about 45 minutes on front and back. Saw a great video of Machu Picchu (which literally means “Big Mountain”) today in preparation for ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 16th 2012

Our second Sunday at Sea and doing our usual Sunday routine. Biggest change is the temperature has dropped back into the high 60’s and low 70’s today, but we are closest to the Sun, so this is somewhat misleading. Carol is down for a bunch of Foo Foo stuff today while Steve watches football and reads, but he did agree to take Tango lessons (he did draw the line at line dancing lessons, however, which Carol and her friend Jenny will do solo). Today we were introduced the “The Thong” (NOT to be confused with “The Thing”). Folks, we are talking about 250 pounds of prime pork roaming the deck here, wearing (seriously) a thong pulled right up you know where. It was an OMG moment for both of us… Steve was sunning on the Sun ... read more
Close Up
Early Morning Fishing
Huge Pod of Dolphins

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 14th 2012

Swells and winds are up a bit this morning, so a little more rolling around. Big graduation for us today! Although this will not really happen until tonight while we sleep, this will be our first crossing of the Equator on a ship, which of course, means that we were low-life, scurvy-infested pollywogs requiring punishment, which was altered at 1100 this morning. Called to the Sun Deck by the Captain of the ship, all pollywogs were required to attend trial by King Neptune and his Court, and supplicate to his orders for torture and punishment for our crimes against the sea. They picked a few passengers to stand in for the rest of us (Thank God), but the ship’s crew really took some serious gas. Neptune’s “Doctor” (ship’s physician) really got into “disemboweling” a ship’s officer ... read more
The Punishment for All
Crowd Gathers for Ceremony
Neptune's Shills

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 12th 2012

We were awakened this morning to an urgent loudspeaker call for “Captain to the Bridge!” It appears a few passengers reported a “small white boat” passing along the starboard side of the ship with “People waving their hands” in it. Uncertain of what was going on, under International Maritime Law, the Captain immediately rolled into a 180 to investigate. After a 20-minute search we came upon a small (10 meter) boat (see photos) with four dudes aboard who were tuna fishing, and were just waving hello at the “big white ship passing in the sea.” False alarm, but it gave all of us a thrill. If you recall, we had seen a small boat in a similar position on Day Four, and two more tiny mast head lights last night at about 2300. All we can ... read more
Boat is Stationary in the Water
25 Miles Off the Coast!
Catching Tuna it Appears

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 10th 2012

We hit the gym hard this morning after a day off and then just laid in the sun for the rest of the day. Felt like a fat lizard on a hot rock. Still about 85 – 90 degrees, but the humidity is definitely getting equatorial. Another pod of dolphins passed down the starboard side of the ship, but these guys were under water and going like the bullet train. The water is so clear here you can see the fish swimming alongside the ship. We entered the Gulf of Tehuantepec at Noon, and the winds picked up a tad, as did the seas. This place is notorious for raging seas and howling winds off the high peaks of southern Mexico during February through May, as the northern and southern air currents collide here (think a ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 9th 2012

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday – which on sea days in our family = Day Off!! Slept in late and awoke to VERY hot and humid conditions, calm seas, and almost no wind except from the passage of the ship. Almost 90 degrees by Noon, and the Captain came on and warned everyone to use their sun block, stating it will be this way until we hit Southern Chile, well below the Equator. No more winter for two months almost! Steve hit Jimmy HARD (Carol says, “Hard enough to double him over”) this morning (of course, Carol had her sensible assorted fruits for breakfast). Very interesting event during breakfast… From the navigator’s map on our stateroom T.V., it appears we are about 25 – 30 miles off the coast. While eating we passed (or they passed us) a ... read more
Steve Above the Bow
Bow Wave
Carol Above the Bow

Oceans and Seas » Pacific December 6th 2012

Another foggy-to-sunny day today with one big change – Temperature has gone from the mid-50’s to the mid-70’s. Sea temperature matches the air temperature as we head south toward the Equator. After our workout, we headed up to the Sun Deck and just chilled while reading our books and drinking iced lattes all afternoon in the warm sun. Breeze freshened late in the afternoon so we headed back to our balcony, only to be met by a huge pod of dolphins cruising down the starboard side of the ship – they came right along-side and traveled the length of the ship, and then threw us a flying salute and headed away toward Hawaii – Sailors for centuries have considered this Good Luck! Had a great formal dinner with some new friends from New Zealand (husband is ... read more
Chillin' on the Balcony in the Sun!
Fog Breaking Up
Nothing But Clouds and Sea

Oceans and Seas » Pacific » Philippine Sea November 20th 2012

After being on this ship for a little more than a fortnight we have formed a little group of friends. We gravitate together everyday and chat about all the fun activities we have done. So when our new friend, we will call him "Ken", because that is his name, heard about the hypnotist show, he wanted go and volunteer. So we said we would be his support team. We all met a half hour before the show at our normal perch and walked into the show room together. There were 21 chairs displayed on the stage and then the hypnotist walked out after a flamboyant introduction from our cruise director. He asked for volunteers and we were all very vocal in getting attention for Ken. Ken made his way on stage and the hypnotist approached me ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Pacific » Philippine Sea November 19th 2012

Apparently I have an accent and it is a thick one, I am told. So as we sail "across the Ditch" I thought I would share a few. Jumper/sweat shirt, bloke/gentleman, mate/friend, umbrella/brolly, brilliant/amazing, lift/elevator, alone/on your own, truck or car/boot, hood/bonnet, crazy/mad, Swim suit/ togs or bathing costume, I get it, I do NOT speak English. I speak American. I usually say "how ya' doin'?" Or "y'all" I am a "mom" not a "mum" and I inspire to be a "grandma" not a "nan". These are just so fun difference we have all be joking about while I have been onboard with our new friends. But hanging out with my new Aussie, Kiwi and British cousins, I have had to change some of my language to be understood. And I have had to completely cut ... read more




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