Lunch, day one…. Let the feast begin

Lunch on board

Greetings dear ones. Jet lag is starting to move through and hopefully I am now acclimatized to this part of the world. My home for the next five weeks.

Complimentary breakfast, English style. They had gluten free toast and looked askance that I asked for what? Peanut butter? Ah, no. Some fruit, mushrooms and beans all meet the gluten free, sugar reduced and vegan options. I am trying to not eat meat, however on the cruise I plan to enjoy seafood and specifically shellfish. It was satisfying and we checked email, packed up and stored our bags behind the office.

We went for a walk through Southampton along the port, and past. Then back, up High St where we came to markets, and we picked up some water to drink. One of the gals found a booth selling pashmina scarves for 2 pounds each. Great find. Walking along the historic rock walls that pepper Southampton downtown area is interesting. Buildings dressed in Tudor style, and old brick and rock. Climbing up, down and over, with intermittent views of the sea and very active port.

Back to the hotel, and we hailed a van, to drive for early embarkation to the ship. I noticed that an English bird, likely a sea gull, shat upon the silk ribbon band, white of course, on my hat. I noticed and said it out loud, the lovely taxi driver commented that this was definitely good luck!

Very short taxi ride to the port for Queen Victoria and no lines. Embarkation of ease, and our rooms ready by 1230. The gal who did our embarkation on board also commented on my good fortune for having been shat upon by a local bird! Time for a lido deck lunch and selection of the wine package for the next 14 days.

I have seen some very familiar crew faces. Our wine steward at dinner is the same we had last January when we were on this ship. Does she remember us? Not likely but she says she recalls me. She has a very familiar and unique voice, name of

One of the maître de staff has gone by me a few times, I noticed his familiar face . He must have been responsible for us last year. This year Eduardo is looking after my high maintenance needs. He is very gracious and accommodating and even seems to have a great sense of humour!

Our dinner companions include four sisters, of seven, from England, who some times get along :). And another British couple. Dinner is like a sit com television program so you will no doubt hear more!

Late for the show, and then dancing in the disco, with the sisters and the four of us (Steve and I, Jan and Joanne) … The dance floor filled and we had a lovely time. I tried melatonin for a more restful sleep, inside stateroom, 8 th floor …. Lovely room. Champagne greeted us and we are unpacked, have attended the life boat drill and now are quite settled in.

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