A fun video on “silent disco” night!…The unreality of life on a cruise…Routines become all encompassing…

 This was a “silent disco” so you won’t hear much
in the way of sound.
Living aboard a ship is comparable to living in a world far removed from day-to-day reality, not unlike that for other passengers who have left their homes to travel on a ship for weeks or more.

Having spent 198 days cruising since the onset of our travels, beginning on October 31, 2012, it served us well to roll into the comfortable routine. Moreover, doing so provides us with a sense of a home during these extended periods.

The ease with which we move from activity to activity, area to area, and a variety of dining and drinking venues become somewhat of a routine for other passengers and us as well.

Christina hung out with us on disco night along with many other new friends we’d met aboard the ship.

This becomes particularly evident when we visit areas we tend to frequent each day or evening at certain times. As a result, our daily routine looks like this:

6:30 am – One of us gets out of bed to shower and dress, with the other immediately following behind. 

7:30 am (8:00 am on sea days) – Arrive in Epernay dining room for served breakfast at a shared table from six to 10 passengers.

The lighting was not conducive to taking photos, but it’s evident that not everyone listened to the same channel.

9:00 – 9:30 am – Return to the cabin to collect laptops and head to Cafe Al Bacio to begin posting. Often, I’ll go directly to the cafe to secure a seat at one of our favorite of three tables situated along the railing overlooking the centrum while Tom dashes to the cabin to get the laptops and the camera.

12:00 – 12:30 pm – Return laptops to the cabin to recharge. If one of us didn’t eat breakfast (I’ve had smoothies most mornings), we might wander to the 14th deck to the Oceanview Cafe, a buffet, where each item offered lists the following, if applicable:  gluten free, sugar-free, vegetarian, lactose-free. This only helps me choose items to a degree since nothing is notated for “low carb” or “starches,” neither of which fit into my diet.

Sorry for the blur; I couldn’t resist including this dancing photo!

1:30 – 2:00 pm – On sea days:  Return to the cabin, collect laptops, and return to Cafe Al Bacio to work on the next day’s photos and post, respond to email and of course, chat with an endless array of friendly passengers.  Some passengers have giggled with us when labeling our seats in the cafe as our “office.” So true. On port of call days: It’s during this period, we may walk off the ship (or take a tender) to explore the port we’re visiting.

4:00 pm – Return to the cabin to relax a bit, later dressing for the upcoming evening’s activities. Most nights are “smart casual,” with no dressy clothing required. However, when “chic” is listed, people tend to wear dressier clothing, although it’s not required.

5:00 – 5:30 pm – Wander to the Sky Lounge for “Elite (or higher) members free happy hour during which we always sit with other passengers shooting the breeze while we share our collective travel experiences as lovely appetizers are servers by wait staff along with cocktails and beverages of our choice.

Our adorable new friend Christina (of Harold and Christina) also “rocked the night away.”

6:30 – 7:00 pm – Happy hour in the Sky Lounge ends at 7:00 pm, after which we wait in what is usually a short line to be seated for dinner. Since we enjoy dining at a shared table, arriving later than 7:00 may prevent the opportunity to dine with others since most passengers dine early to make one of the two shows presented at 7:00 and 9:00 pm. We rarely attend the shows when variety-type shows hold little appeal to either of us.

9:00 – 9:30 pm -Leave the dining room we make our way to one of the many bars where we’ll listen to music, chat amongst ourselves and others to relax and enjoy the remainder of our evening.

The “Ice Bar” is just that, covered in ice. I couldn’t resist making this heart shape as a remnder of our 22nd anniversary the following day.

11:00 pm to ???? – Head to our cabin for the evening hoping for a good night’s sleep, only to begin the same highly enjoyable routine all over again the next morning. 

A few nights ago, a disco event was listed on the program, referred to as a “silent disco.” This is the point when each passenger dons a lighted headset with three channels, each colored coordinated for three types of music being broadcast.

With all the party-goers wearing their headsets, those not wearing them didn’t hear a sound. This is a hoot, especially when a good song is playing and we all go nuts encouraging each other to change the channel for the better dance song via the use of a little button on the side of the headset.

More new friends from Australia, Corinna, and Beau, with whom we’ve had a great time.

As it turned out, at times, Tom and I were dancing together with each of us listening to a different song. This was hysterical. And proved to be more fun than we can describe. 

Tom danced for two hours non-stop, standing next to me at the “Ice Bar” while I joined him in dancing as often as I was reenergized, later sitting for a short recovery period only to begin again. (After all, I’d been sick for the past three months and hadn’t yet had quite enough time to recover after months of lounging. Now, vigorously walking through the ship each day, I’m beginning to feel a slow return to my old self).

We both had messy hair from taking the headsets on and off throughout the night. Tom’s was especially messy from sweating. His shirt was soaked by the end of the evening.

Gosh, we had so much fun. We were reminded of our “hay days” of carrying on in our younger days dancing in a variety of bars and discos. Wow! What a fun activity, especially when we were with friends we’ve made aboard during the entire evening.

Today, the ship is docked in Suva, Fiji. Having spent four months in Fiji over a year ago, plus considerings its where I contracted the infection, neither of us has any desire to get off the ship. 

Eventually, Tom had to remove his glasses. He was sweating so much!  I love this photo!

No offense intended for Fiji. We had a good experience on both the islands of Vanua Levu (Savusavu) and Viti Levu (Pacific Harbour) during the extended period. Today we’re content to stay on board in air-conditioned comfort, continuing to revel in our highly pleasing routine and visiting with the wonderful people we’ve met along the way.

Have a pleasing day, hopefully, spent in the presence of YOUR wonderful people!

Photo from one year ago today, March 8, 2017:

The sun was peeking through the clouds casting this glow at the beach in New Zealand. But, of course, the scene would have been more impressive had it not been so late in the evening. For more photos, please click here.

Day 20…Circumnavigating the Australian continent…In the Navy?…Another era…

The seagull is scanning the sea for lunch.

“Sighting on the Ship in Australia”

Artistic rendition in the ship’s art gallery.

With a one hour time change last night, surprisingly, we ended up having had enough sleep for a change. After dining with friends last night, we played a few games of billiards. I lost another one, but it was close. Maybe I will catch up to Tom’s skill level by the time this cruise ends two weeks from today.

After playing pool, we miraculously found two seats at the railing, allowing us to look below to the Centrum where the ship’s staff was performing songs from the 70’s. 

Pristine beach in Perth.
The highlight of the evening’s entertainment was the cruise director and his dance team dressed in appropriate costumes performing Village People’s “In the Navy” which certainly brought back memories for us old timers.  Click this link to jog your memory if you don’t recall this song.
A historic street in Perth.

We were literally dancing in our seats as we leaned over the railing to easily view the hour long show. It would have been an extra bonus to be on the dance floor with the mass of dancing passengers, but our two games of pool, left us too late to find space on the dance floor for us to gyrate along with the others.

The energy of the ship was electrifying, as passengers and staff danced instead of walking while singing along with the plethora of memorable songs from an era most of us recall with endless stories to tell. 

Sushi making demonstration in the Centrum.

It’s amazing how loud music can set the pace if the music elicits memories of another time and places we associate with good times and great experiences. Although Tom and I didn’t meet until 1991, we easily combine our love of old music and dancing that takes us back to another time.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have the camera with us and with the crowds everywhere, we didn’t feel like heading back to the cabin to retrieve it. I’m sure you all “picture” the activities of the loud and wild festivities. It’s one of those things that makes cruising such fun.

Our shipmates, Lois and Tom.

This morning the passengers are quietly commiserating in a wide array of seating areas with little thought of last night’s crazy fun, now sipping coffee and tea instead of last night’s dance-inducing cocktails, beer and wine.

And, here we are once again comfortably situated in Latte tudes Café,  lucky to have found a table which somehow we’ve managed to accomplish each and every day, while many staff members and passengers stop by to chat as they pass. It couldn’t be more pleasurable. We never mind the distractions always taking time to engage in idle conversation with whomever happens to stop by.

Our shipmates, Cheryl and Stan.

Today is another day at sea along with tomorrow while we sail toward Adelaide. We plan to get off the ship to tour the historic city. A few days later we’ll arrive in Melbourne (pronounced “Mel-bun” by Aussies) which we also plan to visit.

The days and nights seem to blend into a mishmash of delightful pastime events. We’re never bored. We spend little, if any, time in the cabin other than for sleeping and dressing for dinner. 

Somehow, as is our collective style, we’re easily entertained, while our mutually gregarious natures ensures we’re never lacking in making new friends while relishing in the companionship of those friendships we’ve already made.

Happy day from this side of the world! Hope it’s a happy day in YOUR location, wherever that may be.

Photo from one year ago today, November 19, 2015:

The bright blue sea in Fiji is indicative of a coral reef of which there are many in this part of the world. For more photos, please click here.