Sunday - Tuesday Nov 20 - 22 2011
Our suitcases had been delivered to the ship earlier in the day, so all we needed to carry on were our personal items. Of course, Tom's camera pack was brimming over with lenses and at least 3 different cameras - each with a unique application. We boarded by the gangplank and were shown to our cabin where our luggage filled the floorspace. The narrow room seemed like we were in our RV! We had only a few minutes to unpack and stow the suitcases before the first orientation meeting. Everything fit and it was good to be living out of a closet and drawers rather than packing cubes in the suitcase as we had been doing for the past 2 weeks.
We met in the lounge which is located at the bow of the ship. This meeting was focused on the lifeboat drill and other safety procedures including a demonstration of the immersion suit that could keep a person alive for up to 12 hours while in the frigid Antarctic waters. This suit reminded us of "Tele-tubbies" outfits.
Our voyage through the Beagle Channel provided a comfortable ride and an opportunity for a scrumptious dinner. However, for many on board, this was a "last supper" as the seas began to grow around midnight as we entered the Drake Passage. In the morning we were awakened to large waves splashing past our window. Tom estimated that the waves were 20 feet high since that's how high our window is above the water. Anne was having a great time with her "cast iron stomach." Tom was a bit queazy which is unusual. He was really down & out after lunch and on seasick pills. The dinner that evening had only about 30% of the passengers partaking. Tom was well enough to have a bit of food, but Anne had the whole meal with wine and dessert. She found that walking like Charlie Chaplin made it easier to keep her balance
The next day, we were still in the Drake Passage, but the seas had calmed down to 10 feet and more passengers were seen in the halls and in the dining room. Tom had recovered completely. After dinner, Anne had to try on one of the "Tele-tubbies" outfits and she bought a T-Shirt at the ship's store.