16 – 21 April, 2019 – 6 Days at Sea off the Coast of Africa

For most of the people on this World Cruise, this is the greatest number of consecutive sea days ever sailed. There used to be a stop on the coast of Africa and for whatever reason, it is no longer a stop on the World Cruise. So here we are, starting our 8 days at sea.

Sea Day 1 – What shall our schedule be? Can we break out of a routine? The day after a port day always starts with those questions. And yet here we are in our routine – check emails before dawn, exercise, breakfast and off to spend the day in lectures or reading. What has made this day different? It’s actually cool outside, and a jacket is required for the morning walk on promenade deck. New lecturer – former detective in Essex England – Simon Dinsdale tells about the five building blocks for solving a murder. Useful information? Very interesting though….Next new lecturer – BBC TV personality talking about herself and the Royal Family – blah, blah, blah. Find out how many nautical miles we have travelled – 28,130 nautical miles since Ft. Lauderdale. Lovely classical concert by the Metier Ensemble – two women, a pianist/composer and a flautist.

Sea Day 2 – What day is it anyway? Oh – Wednesday already of Holy Week. A port presentation for Gran Canaria, where we arrive in 6 days. The port presenter, this being her last pitch to us, says – “Travel as much as you can, as far as you can and as long as you can. Life is not meant to be lived in one place.” Marketing for Cunard? Next lecture – Gloria Barnett – Ocean World. Where did the water in our oceans come from? No one knows for sure! All kinds of other information about our oceans is shared by Gloria. Good speaker. Back to the theatre director and producer, Giles Ramsay. All about Christopher Marlowe and lots of English history leading up to his plays and ultimate death as a spy. He was also a contemporary of William Shakespeare – guess who the next lecturer will be about? Back to my book and Steve works on pictures. Dinner at The Verandah with a Sarasota friend and her friend for our last dinner hurrah together.

Sea Day 3 – Temperatures are warming as the ship sails into the Western Hemisphere and will be crossing the Equator again tomorrow – our second same-day two-for on this world cruise. Today there were many things to choose from to entertain ourselves….lectures, classical music concerts (harpist who broke a string), dance classes and casino games. I finished reading a book and Steve’s almost done curating all his pictures (he hasn’t even started processing my three thousand world cruise pictures). The Atlantic Ocean is calm and fairly deep – 5000 meters plus; there’s a trench along the African coast, resulting from the separation of the continents due to plate tectonics.

Sea Day 4 – Good Friday. Steve is reading “Moby Dick.” He found this passage while reading:

But what is worship?—to do the will of God—that is worship. And what is the will of God?—to do to my fellow man what I would have my fellow man to do to me—that is the will of God.

So on this Good Friday, that is what we will do. Worship will be on Easter Sunday on this ship.

During his noon report, the Captain says the ship will be crossing the equator at 11:30 pm, back in to the Northern Hemisphere. Weather at the equator is warm, raining on and off and very humid. We are staying in the air conditioning after our hot-and-humid morning walk on deck. The full moon was spectacular this morning. The ship only has to sail just under 2,500 miles to reach the Canary Islands. And we turn the clock back one hour tonight. We will then be only 5 hours difference from home, after being a maximum 19 hours near the international date line several months ago.

Sea Day 5 – Another hot humid sunny day – just as we expect Sarasota is today. Seas are calm. The ship will be on a course north westerly with Liberia lying on the starboard side.

Walking the deck this morning we could see the sunrise and the moon set almost at the same time. Glad we had the extra hour of sleep last night, too. Two of the lecturers are talking all about the Royals again – one from a TV Commentator’s view point and the other the photographer. Can you imagine a life following the Royals around and traveling with them to take pictures and do reporting? Why do they need to know everything about the Royals?

Our favorite lecturer Gloria Barnett talks today about Exploring the Oceans. Some quick facts: 1960 was the first time that two men explored the ocean at the Marina Trench – 10,972 meters deep. It was not explored again by a human until March 2012 – it was James Cameron. So now only three men have been to that deep portion of the ocean.

A geologist and ocean cartographer, Marie Tharpe, created the first hand drawn map of the Atlantic ocean bottom which was used by oceanographers until 1992 when Satellites started mapping the ocean. When the satellite ocean pictures were complete in 1995, and compared with the hand drawn map of Marie Tharpe, they were near alike. Speaking of modern day cartography, the lecturer made a point to highlight the deep reliance and appreciation the world should have for NASA and NOAA in expanding knowledge of this blue orb on which we reside. Thanks fellow taxpayers!

An amazing undersea photographer named Edith Widder is one of the first to photograph the bioluminescence species that live in the very deep ocean areas. The lecturer provided a quote from Edith Widder……

“Success in life depends on how you handle Plan B. Anyone can do Plan A.”

Now back to reading and relaxing and another classical concert.

One of the activities on board occasionally is something called “The Liar’s Club.” Strangely enough, all we are hearing on TV is the word ‘liar’ referring to various people not to be agreed with or trusted. What is all this about anyway?!!?

Sea Day 6 – Alleluia! Christ is Risen! Happy Easter and blessings to all on this wonderful day of celebrating Christ’s resurrection; or for those of you, celebrating the Easter Bunny arrival for your children, Happy Easter! Look at this display of chocolate to greet us from the Easter Bunny in the Lido Buffet.

Worship today and then a dinner at The Verandah. Two more sea days before Gran Canaria and only two weeks and we will be docking in New York City! Alleluia in deed!