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Monday, May 26, 2014

Day 2 of Our Transatlantic Cruise

April 28th, 2014 Day Two

Because of the direction we are going, we will have to set our clocks ahead by 4 hours by the time we get to our first stop in the Azores in 6 days. So today was the first of those time changes. We had to set our clocks one hour ahead and I don’t know if it is that or because my body is so tired from cleaning the house for the Open House, but I am exhausted. Chuck woke up early today but let me sleep until 9, which was really 8. We had breakfast and met a very interesting man named Neil who is on the ship with his wife. This is the largest ship they have ever been on. This guy is a retired high school Math teacher and lives in Colorado. I don’t know how he and his wife have the money to travel like they do. But he told us of a recent trip to Tahiti where they stayed on my favorite French Polynesian Island, Moorea for a week. Also about a cruise they took down the Amazon River, and another one down around Cape Horn. They have cruised to Alaska, and many other places. When they get back from this trip they are going fishing in Canada for one week, and then to the continent of Asia. I often think I should write a book about cruise passengers and their adventures and lives. On the last cruise we took, I was thrilled to meet a woman who travels around the world in her RV with her husband and am now getting travel letters from her about her adventures.

After breakfast we found a cozy spot to read to give the steward time to make up our room. I just started to read a book called, “The Well Fed Writer” which is about how to have a writing career. Can't wait to read it and glean information from it. The library on this ship is not very good so Chuck didn't find anything he was interested in reading.Here's the ship's small library.

So, after reading for a bit, believe it or not, we went to eat lunch at 12:15 so we could make it in time to the first art auction on board. We met a really nice girl that works in the on board art gallery last night and she gave us advance tickets to the art auction. You get free champagne during each Princess art auction so we have gone a few times. Today they were touting the talent of an artist whose art I didn’t like at all. His work was the main attraction for today’s auction but people could go around the room prior to the auction starting and tag paintings or prints they were interested in. They had some Thomas Kincaid, Goya, Peter Max, a Renoir Lithograph and a lot of others. People were paying from between $500 to $17,000 for the pieces that went up for auction. I think I may go again because periodically they held raffles and you could win prints just for being there.

We came back to the room and I took a 2 hour nap while Chuck dozed for a bit and also worked on his computer as he had a report to review. We get 250 free minutes each on the internet because we are Platinum members on Princess. Chuck says he is worried about me sleeping so much but I think my body is just trying to catch up from all the work we have been doing on the house to get it ready to put on the market, which we did the day before we left for the cruise. When I woke up, I didn’t feel like walking as I am still quite groggy but I couldn’t wait to write. It’s just something inside me that needs to be able to be expressed or I feel something nagging at me. I am sitting on the bed and have the doors open to the balcony. I can see the deep dark blue of the water, feel the breeze and hear the water crashing against the sides of the boat. It sounds like waves hitting the shore. It is a beautiful and very peaceful sound and I am so very happy to be on this cruise.

After Chuck worked out we got ready to go to dinner. On the way to dinner, Chuck suggested we have a glass of wine in the Piazza, a beautiful atrium in the center of the ship that is mostly glass, brass and marble. There was a band playing called, “The Rick Clover Band” and they played ballroom Dance music. We watched about 6 couples dance beautifully together. One we surmised as a competitor couple because their moves were so fancy. The second best couple kept trying to get Chuck out on the dance floor. I was silently cheering him on because I have been trying to get Chuck to take ballroom dance lessons on every cruise we go on, but he always says an emphatic, “No.” The guy, Reggie says he was the same way and his wife signed them up for dance lessons and now they go dancing 3 to 4 nights a week. He says he is 70 and it keeps him young. His wife talked to us afterward and they tried to convince Chuck to dance, but he was having no part of that! Here's a picture of the atrium where there is a space at the bottom where people can dance.

After watching the dancers we went to dinner at the Symphony restaurant, one of 2 of the “anytime dining” restaurants on board the Royal Princess. This means we can walk in as at any restaurant back home and we can eat at any time without waiting till the traditional seating of 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. on cruise ships a decade ago. We did not have a good experience at this dining room. They were very busy and we had the slowest service we have ever had in a cruise ship restaurant. To top it off, Chuck had lamb shank which he thought was awful, very tough and he only ate half of it. My meal of filet of beef was very good. So between the service and Chuck’s meal we would give this restaurant a big thumbs down. Tomorrow night we will try the Concerto Restaurant, the sister restaurant to this one but one floor up. After dinner we decided to skip the show which was entertainment by singer Jennifer Fair, and opted to go back top the room and finish the movie 9 to 5. After that we watched a Nicholas Sparks movie which I had seen advertised, called, “Safe Haven.” It was a love story with a few surprise twists and we both enjoyed it…me more than Chuck I am sure. Lights out after the movie to rest up for another busy but relaxing day tomorrow!

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