March 26, 2016

World Cruise 2016 Day 81

Day 81 – At sea in the Gulf of Oman headed to the Persian Gulf and Dubai. The temperature is a very enjoyable 75, with clear skies, calm seas, and a gentle 12 MPH breeze directly on our bow from the Northwest. Humidity is under 70%. At about 6 AM we picked up speed to just over 20 knots, and my cabin began to vibrate in sync with the engines or propellers.

During the night we were shadowed by two much smaller ships. I could not tell what they were, but they were with us from just after sundown until I retired at 11. Over 20% of the world's crude oil passes thru these waters in supertankers daily. I expect we should see some, but haven't yet. The visibility today is actually good at 10 to 15 miles.

Today was another laundry day. My first bad experience with the self serve laundry. When I arrived 2 dryers and 4 washers were busy. One washer only had a couple of minutes to go, and I was the only one waiting. What I didn't realize was that the 2 empty dryers were broken but not tagged as such. By the time my wash was complete there were numerous people waiting for dryers. I eventually decide to carry my wet laundry down to the laundry on deck 3.

Only 1 dryer here is out of service, but the other 3 are busy. I need to wait nearly 45 minutes for my turn at the next dryer. Waiting is not what one passenger had in mind. She insisted that the dryer above the washer she used was "hers" and took someone's still wet clothes out of the dryer and piled them on the ironing board as soon as her washer finished. For the first time I decide I need to hang out in the laundry facility to guard my clothes. Actually a higher risk than pirates.

One of the reasons the laundry was so busy is that three of the guest entertainers were doing their clothes, including costumes. HAL doesn't even provide laundry for them. How cheap.

I also learned yesterday that on this ship HAL is eliminating the library and the librarian. Also the position of Culinary Arts Center Host is being eliminated. It has also been speculated that Barbara's position of "Location Guide" will be eliminated and her functions taken over by the shore excursion staff. Just more "Carnivalization".

Barbara gave her talk this morning on Muscat, Oman. I no longer have a tour scheduled there, but there will be a shuttle bus into the center of town.

The starting times of various entertainment has been changed for tonight. Not by a lot but by 15 or 30 minutes. Debby is scheduled for two shows tonight instead of her usual three. The change is made to accommodate a disembarkation party for those passengers leaving the ship in Dubai. The main show entertainment is again another repeat show, this time the "The Fly Rights" are performing again, but at the usual time of 8:15 and 10:00.

The crew party must have been a great success last night. Today the dance floor in the Crow's Nest had to be scrubbed with a buffer instead of just the usual mopping. Or possibly it was just time for an extra heavy cleaning. The crew party was not funded by HAL, or by the crew, but by a passenger that has done this for the crew each year for the past few years. Yes, there are very thoughtful and generous passengers on board.

We are scheduled to arrive at Dubai before 8:00 AM, I set my alarm for 6:30