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Oceans and Seas » Mediterranean » Balearic Sea March 31st 2015

From the "don't believe what you read department". The seas are calm according to the ship's TV. As I look out my windows the swells are at least fifteen feet with white caps are far as I can see. The spray is blowing in all directions off the swells. The winds are force 9. This is by far the roughest the seas have been since Florida and we're in the Med. Since I love it, I can't complain but it means packing is a bit of a challenge. Yesterday I went ashore in Cartagena. It was another adventure. We walked from the ship to the center of town. All around the banners were out to support the clubs who will be marching all week. It was a beautiful sunny day and once in town, the shade ... read more
Palace
Cartagena
The Legion patrols

Oceans and Seas » Atlantic March 23rd 2015

Good morning Breakfast Clubbers, and how ya doing? Probably only one or two of you remembers this radio show. For some reason it popped into my mind. The string of sea days is reaching an end. We arrive in Funchal, Madeira on 3/25. The sea is choppy today with wind up to 40mph. My good intentions to exercise regularly backfired with a vengeance and now both of my knees are aching. Even Advil doesn't seem to help. I'm hoping that once I'm on terra firma, things will be better. I have too many places to see and things to do to deal with this. For those playing along a home I have a couple of trivia questions. What body part expands eight times it's normal size when excited? How many days are in the Tour de ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Atlantic March 20th 2015

Ahoy Mates, Day four and there are giant swells rolling in from a low pressure front all the way from Greenland. Really rocked to sleep last night. Loving it! Shipboard life falls into somewhat of a routine. Wake up at 6:15, coffee and juice delivered at 6:30, dress and out on deck for a couple of laps, return to a freshly made up cabin. The Times Digest is waiting and I always wonder why I read this as it is never good news. Shower, change and off to breakfast, to the Lido if I want to be alone or the dining room if I ready to chat. By then it is time for one of two lectures. My favorite so far was by a salvage expert, Captain Nixon, who explained how the Kurst, the Russian nuclear ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Atlantic March 18th 2015

Good morning Mr. and Mrs. America and all the ships at sea. The skies are blue, the sea is calm and we are sailing into the sunrise. My coffee arrived on time and, MaryLou, they brought your milk as ordered. Habits die hard. A gift of chocolate covered strawberries arrive from my TA but since I am allergic I will have to find someone to share with. Today's plans are vague. Our Meet and Great is at 10, a Texas Hold 'em tournament at 11:30, then maybe pool time. Until then I will relax and watch the sea traffic. The seas are calm but there is a little movement so I know we left the dock. I love it! So far we have passed two tankers. It is now 8:00 so I had better get ready ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Atlantic » Sargasso Sea March 17th 2015

OK. I admit it. I love to fly. Not the trek to the airport, or the security lines, not hoping to find a free space in the overhead or that my seat mate might be Samoan.....but when I look out of the window at the clouds or the lights below, it is still magic to me. Here I am at 35,000 feet traveling to another adventure. I do miss the pillows and the blankets, I do miss having room to stretch out but I will be in FL in 2:49 hours. I have my own seat and no one is asking "are we there yet". I hear it's 81 degrees and I think of a pool and green shrubs and I'm a happy camper. In two days I'll be boarding the M/S Zuiderdam where I expect ... read more

Oceans and Seas » Pacific » Tasman Sea March 16th 2015

Australia, the largest island-continent, had been inhabited for nearly 60,000 years by Aborigines, who migrated from Southeast Asia during the ice age, This was before the sea levels rose and isolated Australia from the rest of Asia. it is believed that Aborigines flourished for tens of thousands of years, free of outside influences. Their were many tribal groups, speaking at least 200 different languages. Their common bond was their spiritual beliefs. At the height of their culture, there may have been 500,000-1,000,000. The arrival of the Europeans quickly changed their isolation. They were described by the first explorers as 'wandering bands of savages still living in the Stone Age.' This perception was the beginning of a deep and long lasting misconception. They need a voice and their history needs to be told, so here goes! The ... read more
Tjapukai Cultural Center
Medicine woman
Tjapukai rain forest people with spear

Oceans and Seas » Pacific March 11th 2015

A little over 24 hours until I depart on the holiday off a lifetime. Just picked up all of my Contiki documents... read more

Oceans and Seas » Pacific » Auckland Islands March 10th 2015

Dienstag, 10.03.2015 Nuku’alofa - Auckland(1097 Seemeilen, 2 Seetage) Auf der Fahrt nach Auckland, verliessen wir den tropischen Gürtel der Erde, und sind nun wieder in den Subtropen. Die Tagestemperaturen stiegen nicht mehr über 25°C, allerdings bei strahlendem Sonnenschein. Nachts fiel das Thermometer auf 16°C. Unterwegs wurde die See wieder etwas rauher, jedoch nicht so rauh, wie nach Valparaiso. Für die Ankunft im Hafen von Auckland liessen wir uns von unserem Wecker wecken, die Hafeneinfahrt wollten wir uns nicht entgehen lassen. Bei unserem ersten Bummel durch die Häuserschluchten der Stadt fiel uns auf, wie sauber die Strassen von Auckland sind. So gut wie keine zertretenen Kaugummireste oder Zigarettenkippen waren auf den Gehwegen zu sehen. Wir marschierten die „Queen Street“, die Shoppingmeile von Auckland, entlang bis zum Sky Tower (328 m). Von ihm spra... read more
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Oceans and Seas March 7th 2015

Samstag, 07.03.2015 Bora Bora – Nuku’alofa(1368 Seemeilen, 3 Seetage) Auf dem Weg nach „Tongatapu“ der Hauptinsel von Tonga, überquerten wir die Datumsgrenze. Den Kalender mussten wir vom 4. März direkt auf den 6. März vorstellen, den 5. März hatten wir, durch das ständige Uhren zurückstellen, bereits vorbezogen. Bis anhin hinkten wir der Schweizerzeit immer hinterher, nun sind wir ihr 12 Stunden voraus. Tonga ist das letzte Königreich in Polynesien. Die Tongainseln (176 an der Zahl) erhielten von James Cook den Namen „Die Freundschaftsinseln“, da er von den Bewohnern 1773 sehr freundlich empfangen wurde. Die Bezeichnung ist mehr als zutreffend, die Menschen hier sind sehr liebenswürdig. Unser Schiff machte in der Hauptstadt des Inselstaates in „Nuku’alofa“ fest. Am Kai empfingen uns Trommler und eine Tanzgruppe, in traditioneller Kleidung. Entlang ... read more
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Oceans and Seas » Pacific March 6th 2015

The ship seems to be getting smaller. Did not expect to spend 10 of the 14 days of this cruise stuck on this boat. A gilded cage is still a cage. But this is our last full day on board. We pack, review our bill, and do little else. Another beautiful day on the ocean, although quite a bit cooler (~20°C). The ship is following the coast of the Baja Peninsula and we are often in sight of land. We attend a presentation in the afternoon on the attractions of San Diego. We did not realize the city offers so much, and we are pleased that we elected to spend a few extra days there. Entertainment tonight is a "Dance with the Stars" take-off. A number of passengers have been practising dance routines with the ship's ... read more




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