December 01, 2021

Day 2, At Sea

We continue slowly on our course south along the coast of Florida. By 2 PM we are off shore from Boca Raton heading south at the blustering speed of 5 knots. The captain is deliberately following the coast line so passengers have a view in the distance.

Our passenger count is about 2400 out of a maximum of 4600 if all berths were occupied. There are very few children on board, and 99% of passengers are vaccinated. A requirement of the bahamian government for ships calling in the Bahamas.

At many times the ship almost feels deserted. At lunchtime, during a walk down the promenade, I encounter more staff and crew than passengers. 

In what has now become the norm, I encounter a couple in the Diamond lounge "working from home". In one overheard conversation, "I have to work one more hour today to get my time in."

By midafternonn the sun has become very hot. Most passengers are on the sundeck, many getting a sunburn. I have a reservation for the ice show later in the week, but will try to see it today on a standby basis.  Reservations are required for all shows, and at least for the ice show each passenger is restricted to one reservation.

A few tidbits picked up during the Captain's Corner presentation. Royal has returned 18 of it's fleet of 26 ships to service.

Nassau is one of the most challenging ports to enter and exit.

Sorrentos pizza receipe was reformulated. I have yet to sample it.

Tomorrow the water temperature at CocoCay will be about 77 degrees, not much different than the air temperature.

The plan for the ice show is foiled by a mechanical failure. No show today, maybe tomorrow.

The Diamond Concierge, Grecia Guillen Roca, is from Manilla. Very personable and makes a point to visit with many of the guests in the lounge. At one point she was promoting Royal's world cruise in 2023. I suggested she should line herself up to work that cruise and she became very excited  at the prospect. 

The sun sets as we were passing off the coast of Miami. A beautiful sunset behind the Miami high rise buildings. A sight not caught on camera.

The Hotel Director and the captain made a pass thru the lounge to greet everyone. both employees have been with Royal for many years.

We wound up at a different table for dinner. We learned that they were using the dining room for one seating of main dining and then using it for my time diners. Depending on how quickly tables turn, or how many no shows there are for the main seating, determines where we might be seated. Regardless the specially requested savory bite rolls made it to our table. My sliced tenderloin was excellent as were the dishes served to others.  

Because of special procedures being implemented in the face of the covid pandemic, many activities have been curtailed. Food sevice in the Solarium has ceased. The very popular parade of flags for all the nations represented in the crew has been suspended. There is no Captain's reception and no photo ops with the captain. Many games just don't exist anymore such as crew vs passenger water volleyboard, the egg drop. and stair golf. Some day, things will return to normal.

The headliner entertainer tonight is vocalist Daryl Williams. Another headliner I do not remember from any previous cruise. He has an excellent voice. My guess is that the theater was 50% full, the most I have seen yet.

Thinking of entertainment. The piano player that usually rides up and down in an elevator as he plays has been sequestered in a little alcove between the two aft elevators banks where he can still be heard through much of the promenade.

Directly to bed at the conclusion of the show. Tomorrow we will spend the day in CocoCay, Royal's private island. we have heard that the Anthem of the Seas will also be there, adding to the competition for the best beach spot.

The seas remain calm as we head east during the night.