October 10, 2017

Day 9 – At Sea

When I arise this morning and look at the navigation channel I see that during the night we have suddenly changed our course from nearly westerly to almost due south. We are also still running at just under 20 knots, when the impression I got from the captain was that we would be running at less than 10 knots after about 4 am.

The seas are minimal, the sky mostly overcast, and temperatures in the mid 60's. Much better than last night.

As I'm leaving the cabin, the captain makes an announcement confirming that we have deviated from our course and will be meeting a Canadian Coast Guard vessel within an hour to transport a passenger to a land based medical facility.

I join many other passengers on deck 5 to watch the transfer. I will try and be polite, so I will just say no one was impressed with the boat handling skills of the CCG. It took them about 30 minutes to get their boat secured to the boarding platform extended from the side of our ship. Several times the lines slipped loose from the coast guard vessel because they were not properly secured. In the process they lost a large portable fender, managed to rip a five foot section of gunwale from the side of their vessel, not once but twice, and nearly wrapped a dropped mooring line around the propellers. After numerous attempts the vessel was sort of secured to the boarding platform.

Everyone held their breath as the patient was passed between the vessels. A feat performed mostly by Vision crew members. Eventually the transfer was completed which resulted in a loud outburst of applause from the watching passengers. The Coast Guard vessel was quickly on its way to shore, and we would soon be underway again.

Shortly the captain tells us that we are still in the speed restricted area for several more hours and he does not expect the time lost for the medical emergency to delay our arrival in Quebec City. What he does not say, but I can only speculate, is that the needs of the medical emergency had priority over the speed restrictions, or the captain just ignored them. Continuously prior to the transfer we had been doing almost 20 knots, and now we have only several hours of restricted speed while yesterday the captain said we would have 10 hours of restricted speed.

The pool has been refilled. The life guard is standing at his post on the edge of the pool, and no one is in the water, understandable as the temperature is probably about 60 today. The sun peaks in and out through the clouds.

Just after noon we pass a cruise ship heading the other way. She is too far away to identify, but she is definitely a small ship, smaller than any royal ships. I don't know the name of the land area we are cruising by, but hundreds of wind generators can be seen on the horizon, extending as far as the eye can see to both the East and West.

At 2:30 there is a meeting to tell us the procedures for the 121 back to back cruisers. I have done this a number of time in US ports, and each time it is different. Here in Canada I have no idea what to expect. My past experience with Canadian customs in general is that it will be very smooth and easy.

We have passed a number of dolphins today and some whales. Of course when I didn't have a camera.

In another unusual change, it has been pretty predictable that on formal nights RC would offer lobster and prime rib on the menu. Well last night was formal night, but tonight has the lobster and prime rib. I have no guess as to why, except this is a 10 day cruise, and the ship usually does 7 day turns.

We turn our clocks back 30 minutes tonight so we are on the correct time when we arrive in Quebec tomorrow for an overnight stay and a new manifest of passengers. Well new except for the 121 of us that are not disembarking there.

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