The Banks - Half a World Away travel blog

At Sea

The first of 5 days as we head north-east across the Atlantic from St Maarten to the Azores.

As we have said before, we hear very little UK news, but at bedtime we do usually catch a “Tomorrow’s Papers” type show, which gives a quick glimpse of the front pages/major headlines. So we know that there were headlines a day or two ago prognosticating “Frozen Britain !!”, and “Colder than Siberia !!” but dismissed it as tabloid hysteria over a light snow shower in the Grampians or something, not all that unusual for the time of year. It was only when watching the Sports Updates yesterday that we realised that what we took for a Scottish football match being snowed off was in fact County Cricket at Durham totally not happening, and then that even in the Surrey match at the Oval, “snow stopped play”. So, sorry about that, you guys, hope you have not packed your woollies away yet.

The weather here is also a little below what we might expect – (I can hear your groans of sympathy from here…) the temperature did reach 26 degrees or perhaps a little more yesterday, but we had what they called “7/8ths cloud cover”, which basically means the sun pops out every now and then. However we neither of us have any problem with sitting in the warm air, reading, with occasional glimpses of the sun, it’s just that consumption of sun cream is not quite what we expected.…….I know you are all devastated to hear that.

Our breakfast was rudely interrupted by a “ding dong” general announcement, which NEVER happens; having woken us all up from our morning doze over the toast and tea, he repeated several times “FOR EXERCISE, FOR EXERCISE, FOR EXERCISE”; then “Tech Flying Hands to Deck 4 Forward” . Well, I am glad he put the preface on the front, as otherwise there would have been a Great Deal of Confusion. What is a Tech Flying Hand? What do I do if I have a cabin on Deck 4 Forward ? Will Tech Flying Hands be visiting my cabin ? or Exercising in there ? Are there such things as “Non-Tech Flying Hands” ? What do we do if next time the preface indicates that it is NOT an Exercise ? (see also San Francisco earthquake alarm). We shall, annoyingly, never know, as there is no public area on Deck 4 forward, so we could not even go and spectate. Thought about peering over Deck 9 forward, the only place you can actually see over the pointy end above Deck 4, but thought that might involve rather more than Flying Hands if I lost my grip on the railings……

Had a particularly good Coconut and Lime Panna Cotta tonight; I commented on this to the “Restaurant Desk Boss” as we went out, intending this to be just “in passing”. “Oooh”, he said, “shall we put that on the menu again tomorrow ?” – Am I not going to say “Yes” ? Well, came the reply, we cannot promise, (especially as Wednesday is a Black Tie night and that Marco P White bloke does a special menu), but if he cannot get it on the menu, he has made a note and they will keep one specially for me. It’s the little touches that make a holiday special !

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