Just catching up on some miscellaneous items here.
Last Sunday evening during high seas we lost a huge stack of empty dinner plates & equal number of dessert servings to the floor – created quite a hazardous mess of broken glass but the crew quickly swept everything. You could easily tell who’s hearing-impaired because as the dinnerware thundered to the tile there were quite a few folks who didn’t turn their heads.
Wii game sessions continue – our group today consisted of just over 30 folks and was much more lively than earlier sessions. Some of you may recall my mentioning of a player named ‘Eddie’, a gentleman from Brooklyn, New York we met last year. I quoted Eddie as having been on 19 consecutive World Cruises but have since learned I was wrong – the number is actually 22! He and his wife, Leah, are a beautiful Japanese couple whom we’ve kept in contact with the past several months. We had an extra Wii disc back home and we sent it to Eddie last Spring so he could practice his games – he’s actually improved quite a bit though has yet to win any games this trip.
Cheryl and I started playing gin-rummy our first day at sea – we’ve played 7 games now (to 500 points) and she’s won 5 of 7. We’ll keep the scoresheet going until May and see who comes out on top. I’ll update you periodically – this is usually one of my better games against Cheryl (I don’t have many) but I seem to be struggling thus far! The game of ‘Bridge’ is very popular on these world voyages – we were exposed to it last year but elected not to participate – earlier today we took our first 45-minute lesson! It’s very interesting so far – many rules to remember and some new terminology. We plan to return for a few more lessons and see what happens from there. The organized groups play for several hours while at sea.
Celebrity watching – the only notable person we’ve spotted thus far is John Amos – I doubt any of our kids recall this gentlemen but some of you may. John played the father of ‘JJ’ on the TV series ‘Good Times’. He also played ‘Gordy’ the weatherman on ‘The Mary Tyler Moore Show’. We’ve seen him a couple times in the hallway and have exchanged ‘hellos’ but haven’t had conversation. Have no idea who he’s traveling with or for how long.
The cocktail lounges are much more active this year - the casino seems quieter. Have stumbled across many more folks we met last year – many of them we didn’t actually meet, but merely observed. We’re now introducing ourselves as…”I remember seeing you last year”…and getting to know them a bit. Amazing to us – this is a lifestyle for many people – Cheryl and I are some of the least-traveled folks on-board. After sailing the world, several of these people return home just long enough to do laundry and perhaps say hello to their neighbors… then they’re off on one of many 45 – 70-day cruises offered by Holland America. Again, Cheryl and I are the ‘babies’ here – it’s fascinating to listen to many of the travel stories these folks have – much more interesting than ours. We may take another World Cruise (possibly two) but haven’t decided yet. Next year is out – we have a wedding to attend on March 29 (2014) so possibly the following January. Much will depend on our health and the itinerary. Other considerations are time spent with our kids and grandchildren, plus the non-profit drum corps we’re involved with (Blue Stars Drum & Bugle Corps) – we’re missing some very valuable time on both fronts. We may just elect to do some shorter itineraries offered by Holland America. For example, they have a 75-day Baltic/Holyland trip that begins & ends in Ft. Lauderdale which would take us to some places we’ve not yet visited – we’ll just have to see what develops. We also want to get another dog and if we do, we wouldn’t leave the animal for an extended period of time. If that’s the case, this could be our last trip. Again, time & circumstances will dictate our travel activity.