Current cruise itinerary…Gulf of Aden…Pirates? Warning from the Captain…See letter and map below…

After we go through the Suez Canal, we’ll enter the dangerous waters of the Gulf of Aden. Of course, it will be a relief once we depart this area.
(Correction:  Yesterday, I wrote that we visit the Pyramids on Thursday when it is actually on Friday. It’s easy to lose track of the days of the week lately.)
Bite-sized pieces. That’s our lives, living one day at a time, taking in all that we care to, at our own pace, free of expectations, and one adventure at a time, if at all possible.

Our Current Cruise Itinerary

May  6, 2013, to May 21, 2013

Royal Caribbean – Mariner of the Seas, departs 5/6/13, 15 nights

May 6, Barcelona, Spain, 5:00 pm

May 7 At Sea

May 8 At Sea

May 9 At Sea

May 10 Cairo / Giza (Alexandria), Egypt 7:00 am

May 11 Cairo / Giza (Alexandria), Egypt 3:00 pm

May 12 Suez Canal, Egypt (Cruising)

May 13 Luxor (Safaga), Egypt 7:00 am 10:00 pm

May 14 Petra (Aqaba), Jordan 9:00 am 10:00 pm

May 15 At Sea

May 16 At Sea

May 17 At Sea

May 18 At Sea

May 19 At Sea

May 20 At Sea

May 21 Dubai, United Arab Emirates 6:00 am

Last night, after an enjoyable evening out to dinner with our new friends, a good meal, a great Broadway-type show in the Savoy Theatre, a stop in a Lotus Lounge, and a leisurely stroll along the Promenade, we sauntered back to our cabin.
Early birds that we are, up by no later than 6:00 am most days, we try to get to sleep by 11:00 pm, which is not always an easy task. Our body clocks are back into our regular schedule after struggling with the nine-hour time difference from Belize to Barcelona. It took us almost three weeks to adapt.

My earlier prediction that sailing across the seas slowly would make adapting easier was shot, as the daily changes across the ocean took us deeper and deeper into “biological clock” hell. 

At the end of last week, we lunged into a massive change by getting up at 6:00 am with much difficulty, falling on our faces by 11:0 pm that first night. In 24 hours, we were back on track.

Anyway, last night, as we entered our room, we discover the usual next day’s program of activities and two other items:

One…this cute “towel per” elephant on our bed:

“Towel Pet” wearing my sunglasses.

Secondly…this letter from Captain Flemming, Master, Mariner of the Seas, purposely placed in plain view next to the “towel pet”

Letter awaiting us when we returned to our cabin after our evening out.

On the last ship, the Norwegian Epic, we met a couple who had cruised this route a few years ago, telling us intimidating stories of guards with machine guns guarding the ships at night, frequent and strict drills, and a similar protocol as indicated in this letter.

We’d anticipated the likelihood of certain procedures being put into place necessary for safe sailing through these high-risk pirate-laden waters. Perhaps, not to this extreme, until we talked to the couple on the Epic, whom we thought at the time, was enjoying getting a reaction out of us.

Although, in essence, it may not have been intended to elicit fear any more than our recent telling of the 50-foot swells and 65 MPH winds we experienced for three days on the Atlantic crossing of the Epic.

Are we scared? No. This huge ship has many security measures in place, along with a very important drill coming up on May 15th at 10:30 am, a full day before we enter the dangerous waters of the Gulf of Aden.

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