April 21, 2016

World Cruise 2016 Day 107

Day 107 – In the North Atlantic sailing towards Funchal, Portugal. The skies are partly cloudy, temperature about 60, with occasional rain showers. The winds are about 20 mph blowing against our Port side. The seas are slight but there is a swell that is causing a little roll and pitch to the ship, not enough to be uncomfortable, but enough to make the ship emit its characteristic moan and groan.

Two elevator repairmen have finished work on one of the forward elevators. I expect changing the large pulley that was moved to deck 10 several days ago. The repairs took about a day and a half, and really had no impact on passengers as many use the stairs and the ship is only about 65% full.

Tomorrow is going to be a day of mixed emotions. It is our last port of call before returning to Florida. The last port where we get off the ship and then back on. The last chance for seeing new sights. The last chance for shopping in a foreign land. The last chance to visit an old church or do something silly like ride in a wooden sleigh as it is pushed down the road.

There are a few passengers that are very excited that this is the last port. They are the ones that are still asking themselves why they even took this cruise. They can't wait to go home.

For another few, tomorrow is just another port of an endless stream. They do not end their journey in Florida, but in San Diego or at a port yet to be determined some time in the distant future, maybe not for months.

For the majority of us a little bit of sadness is beginning to sink in. The end is in sight, we have to return to regular life. We don't want to face the reality, but the lifestyle we have become so used to will suddenly end. Enough about that, just thinking about it could be depressing.

This morning Barbara gave her presentation on what to do and see while visiting Funchal. The last time that I will go to one of her talks, I don't need to hear about Ft. Lauderdale.

A few minutes after Barbara finished there was a presentation by the CEO of the company that produces the Faberge eggs created by world renowned artisan Theo Faberge of St Petersburg. He also had a dozen or so "eggs" on display. Yes, they are available for purchase on the ship. Yes, they are beautiful, individually crafted of gold, crystal, glass, wood, and ceramics. No, I don't want one. And no, I won't even guess at the price tag. They must sell, otherwise they wouldn't be here.

One of our new guest speakers gives a presentation on America's Journey to the moon. He starts with the development of rockets in the 30's and 40's and covers many of the highlights through the years. Being one of those that was fascinated for hours listening to "beep", "beeb", "beep", from Sputnik in the 50's, I find his presentation interesting even though I have heard it all before.

As usual I listen to Debby from 7:00 to 8:00 before going to the main show in the Queen's Lounge at 8:15. Tonight, Debby, with help from the audience, sings half a dozen verses of "99 bottles of beer on the wall". Draw your own conclusions.

Tonight our entertainer is Mike Price, a world champion Juggler. The theater is only about half full, but the show is good and his humor and technology including laser lights makes the show different than the usual juggler performance.

The wind has increased to about 35 mph on our port side making the ship rock and roll a little more. Good sleeping tonight except for those few prone to motion sickness. My tour tomorrow is late enough that I don't need to set my alarm. The forecast is for a high near 60 with chances of rain decreasing during the day. We are expecting to dock before 7:00.