Today is the first of three sea days before we reach our next stop in Rarotonga. We crossed the Equator around 5:15 this morning so we are now in the Southern Hemisphere. We did our usual sea day routine of getting up around eight or eight-thirty and having a quick, light breakfast in the Neptune Lounge before starting the day’s activities. The first thing on our agenda was a talk on Raiatea, our next stop after Rarotonga by Travel Guide, Julia. As usual, her talk was very informative. She is a very good speaker and gives an interesting talk. After Julia there was a talk by Dr. Ken Longenecker, a marine biologist who is onboard as a guest lecturer. His lecture today was on the discovery of deep coral reefs (at about 300 feet below the sea surface) that no one knew existed until recently.
After that talk it was time for lunch and today we were meeting some of our new shipboard friends in the main dining room. We had a great time with Ken and Cathy, Mark and Shirley, and Stan and Deanna, as they are all very interesting people and we enjoyed talking with them. One thing we have noticed on this cruise is how well travelled most people are, not just cruises (which most have done many), but travel all over the world. We have added several things to our travel to-do list from talking to other people onboard. Also, most of the people we’ve met are retired or at least semi-retired and it has been very interesting to talk them about their former careers.
After lunch, Val was off to trivia and I went back to the room to start the process of preparing the pictures and writing the Fanning Island blog post. That was difficult as Fanning Island was so interesting to us and we had many photos to sort through. I made some headway, but at 3:00 they were having a show put on by the crew that we wanted to attend. The Holland American crew is mainly Indonesian so the show featured music and dance of their home cultures. It was a great show, and there is a lot of talent on the ship. They do this on their own time and it was greatly appreciated by the full-house audience.
After the show, I went back to work on the blog with Val’s help and then decided to get some exercise on the Promenade Deck. When I went out to start my walk though, some of the deck crew were washing and polishing the deck so a walk was impossible. It was back to the room to relax until dinner. The food continues to be excellent on this trip and tonight was no exception. Others we have talked to have agreed that the food seems to be above average on this cruise. As usual we finished the night in the casino before returning to our room.
The weather was beautiful today with mostly clears skies and towering clouds in the distance. We were treated to another beautiful sunset as you can see below. Life is good on the Westerdam, but going by much too quickly.