Sailing the South China Sea en route to Xiamen, China
I overslept & missed the morning show today. Checked the navigation channel to see what the weather was. It’s cloudy, drizzling rain & 61*. According Capt. Glenn’s report we are entering the Taiwan Strait with a 10 knot NE headwind. Ever the optimist, he’s expecting to see sun tomorrow; & says the long range forecast looks even better. We shall see. His thought for the day….. (if you ever need to borrow money) ”Borrow money from a pessimist, cause they won’t expect it back.”
Got to the Bistro at 9:15. Celeste & Elaine soon joined me. They mentioned the Cruise Critic party was this morning; & I wondered why I didn't know about it. Then it dawned on me that I had failed to sign up for them after extending this voyage. I decided to skip out on bridge class; & go up to Palm Court for the party. Several new faces & screen names that I wasn’t familiar with. Pat was sporting her new camera; & we were showing Rick some of its features.
Rick, Pat & Jim Brochu
I had a chance to talk with Capt. Glenn about how much I appreciated the Concierges & the bell staff for making my cruise extension & cabin change so painless. And after hearing so much about him on Cruise Critic, I was tickled to finally meet Jim Brochu in person. What a nice man; & I greatly look forward to his lectures & performance of “Zero Hour”.
Capt. Glenn, Celeste & Rick
It was a mad dash up to the Stardust to get a good seat for Jim Brochu’s talk on James Cagney. He’s an amazing story teller; & does some fabulous vocal impressions. I truly enjoyed the afternoon.
At 3pm all the world cruisers gathered in the Galaxy Lounge where James went over the agenda for the 3 day overland excursion into Beijing. We have been given color & number coded luggage tags for our carry on bag; & assigned a bus number on which we will travel all 3 days. Starting with a 2½-3 hr. transfer into the city, all 3 days are jammed packed with activities. They have the schedule firmly set with almost military precision. It looks exhausting.
Celeste, Bill & I lingered a while in the Bistro; & then we went down to the pickup copies of our passports along with the Chinese landing card, which we must have with us at all times. I went ‘home’ to put my feet up a while; & realized that I didn’t have my camera. I called reception to ask if anyone had found one….no. After retracing my steps in my mind, I realized the last time I had used it was in the Galaxy Lounge during the Beijing briefing. I was praying that the phone would ring so I wouldn’t have to make the long trek from all the way aft to all the way forward & up to see if it was still there. I know she’s not a huge ship; but my feet & legs have turned into nearly non-functioning parts of my anatomy. The more I walk, the more swollen they get. Long story short, I did go up; & the camera was right there on the front row where I left it.
I went back, put the feet up & took a short nap. Liz brought dinner at 8:20. I started with a delicious Boston lettuce salad with cherry tomatoes & onion with ranch dressing.
My entrée was broiled filet of fresh Australian barramundo (don’t ask, not sure….all I know it was fish & it was very good). It rested on a bed of thick, sweet corn chowder along with some sautéed Asian mushrooms. I also asked for some lobster ‘meat’.
For dessert, I tried the sugar free frozen key lime pie. Surprisingly good.
I got back to work on the photos until at 11:30. Early morning tour tomorrow; hope to get to sleep quickly.