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A day at sea

Some of you know I'm currently on a Transatlantic cruise. I doubt I'll be doing a fulsome review, but I thought I'd pop in to describe our first sea day.

DH got up early to attend a paid fitness class. This ship (Anthem of the Seas) has kettles in the cabins, so I had two glorious cups of tea in my pj's, one in bed, then one on the balcony. Heaven.

I had breakfast with our cruising friends, then did the (no charge) morning stretch followed by boxercise. I've not been keeping up with my fitness, but I was pretty proud of how I did.

After a quick shower, I had a fruity coconut rum drink. We explored the ship before a quick lunch.

After lunch I participated in a cabin crawl organized through the Roll Call on Cruise Critic. We ended at a very posh Loft Suite. The couple in that suite had their butler (lol) prepare a bit of a spread for us -- sweets, meat, cheese, etc. It was very, very nice, but you know what? They get to port at the exact same time as us! Probably budget isn't an issue for them, but for me I'd rather have more trips than a fancy suite.

This afternoon DH and I went to a bar and sipped drinks as we watched the waves. We saw a pod of porpoises frolicking in the waves.

I got a bit maudlin at this stage of the day as I recently lost my father.

Right now we are in the cabin. DH is napping (world champion napper), and I'm having wine watching the waves. Sun has just poked through.
Looking forward to dinner.

Our first port is Madeira on Sunday.

Happy travels!

Posted by
3342 posts

I hope you post about your next few sea days! I keep thinking about taking a Transatlantic cruise.

It is so hard to lose a parent - Condolences.

Posted by
6670 posts

Sorry about your father.

We like sea days, though we don't exercise or drink as much as you. ;-) I can sit for hours with a book overlooking the ocean, read a paragraph, look out for whales and porpoises, reread the paragraph, look at the clouds and waves, reread it again, take careful note of other ships in the distance, then maybe get on to the next paragraph.

We had a crossing years ago from NYC to the Azores on one of the NCL megaships. It got wet and bumpy, and they closed off the decks, which made everyone grumpy after about the third day. It helped to have a balcony to retreat to, even though bundled up.

Hope you enjoyed dinner and look forward to what you found on Madeira.

Posted by
2528 posts

Thank you for posting about your sea day - I've been intrigued by the transatlantic cruises but having never cruised before, wondered what I would do with myself for that many days. It sounds perfectly doable (especially the nap!). I hope you'll keep up with the report, I am interested in following along.

And sympathies for the loss of your father. Your story about seeing the porpoises reminds me of some lines from a Margaret Mead poem:

So as you stand upon a shore, gazing at a beautiful sea – remember me. [ ]

For if you think of me, I will never be gone.

Posted by
1604 posts

Thank you all for your replies.

We are up somewhat early. DH is soon off to another Fab Abs class.

I have a coconut poultice massage at 8am. The price for 8am is significantly cheaper than later in the day. I prepurchased this on a Cruise Planner sale. It's still significantly more expensive than a land massage. Oh well!

On embarkation day I had a manicure. Again prepuchased on sale, and choosing the cheapest time. The aesthetician remarked I have a particularly beautiful left thumb nail. I wonder if there's a bunch of women onboard all feeling rather good about their hand model-quality thumbs!!

Tonight is "formal night". I brought a knee length navy dress. My shoes are rather orthotic and will ruin the look a bit but I don't care. Formal night is optional, but we like making a bit of an effort and having one or two photos taken.

Tea calls ! TTFN.

Posted by
4946 posts

How fun to follow along on your sea voyage! I love all the activities, although Dick's description of daydreaming over a paragraph in a book sounds about right, too.

I love the quote, CL. Sympathies to you, Andrea. I hope the ocean views bring you some peace.

Posted by
1604 posts

The coconut poultice massage was wonderful, though I never did get the scent of coconuts which is why I chose it. Perhaps I'll go for a Pina colada to make up for it.

Her hand did slip into the top of my crack for a fleeting second and I thought perhaps I booked more than expected. Just the once, though, so I think it was OK. I'm probably scarred by a massage I had years ago in China, where it was made clear happy ending was definitely on offer.

Posted by
1604 posts

Yesterday was beautiful Day 3 at Sea.

DH went off for Fab Abs. It's killing him but he likes it. I had a relaxing start before 9am morning stretch. Somewhere along the line I've injured my knee. Not sure when or how, but I think no more boxercise or dance workouts for a day or two.

After stretch I decided to get to the pool deck. There's a whirlpool on this ship. It shoots you around and around. It's a blast. I've read online people dissing it as juvenile, but it's fun. I say life is short, do the whirlpool. People aged 2 to 82 are enjoying it. I also got into the hot tub. Nice and hot, good strong jets. I really felt in vacation after that.

In the afternoon we attended a lecture about the plants and animals 'under the keel'. I enjoyed it. DH studied marine biology so thought it was a bit simplistic. For 99% of the attendees it was fine. I don't expect university lectures onboard, nor do I really want one.

We finally made it to a show. A Las Vegas entertainer. He did some great impressions singing Bowie, Rod Stewart, and more. It was well worth rearranging our dinner plans.

Afterwards we watched a Caribbean band. Best party we've seen so far.

This morning we are doing The North Star. It's a viewing pod that goes up and out beyond the ship. Looks pretty awesome.

Lots of friendly people onboard to get to know. Cruising brings out the best in most people. We've met people from all over Canada, US, and Europe.

Ship is moving enough to rock me to sleep. I like that. I feel cheated when the seas are so calm I don't know I'm on a cruise.

We change time each day at 2pm, jumping forwards from 2pm to 3pm. This is why some prefer westbound transatlantic. 25 hour days. We've only done eastbound (this is our 3rd).

Posted by
1604 posts

Forgot to mention I ended up dancing on stage at the show last night. The entertainer invited folks up to dance. The fellow beside me grabbed me and we went up and had a blast.

Just got word our car rental in Le Havre was cancelled due to a French holiday. We have to pivot to other plans.

Sitting on a main deck online. Fellow behind us spotted a whale. Of course we all missed it.

Posted by
4352 posts

I am not a “cruiser”, but I can sure picture myself with a manicure, massage, book, drink (minus coconut), jet pool, hot tub, shows, dinner, and being rocked to sleep by the waves. Hmmmm…..

Posted by
1604 posts

The Captain just announced we are detouring to Ponta Delgada to drop off a passenger in a medical emergency. We are wishing them the best. It will happen at 2am.

He says arrival in Madeira remains unchanged.

Posted by
33339 posts

so your bad knee didn't stop you dancing on stage!!!

I love it!! Way to go!!!

Posted by
10366 posts

Madeira the 5th! Can't wait to read about it. We've been twice while crossing east to west.

I'm following your itinerary: https://www.cruisemapper.com/ships/Anthem-of-the-Seas-801
and see that you are still heading toward Ponta Delgada. Hope the medical stop goes smoothly and the patient gets help. We watched someone medically disembarked in Nassau after five days at sea: a bit emotional and compelling.

Sorry about the car rental.

Posted by
1604 posts

I've been on the Tylenol. It's helping.

Yesterday we did a "Taste of the Caribbean" drink experience. Six different rum based cocktails. We got it on a cruise planner sale before we boarded. It was a good time but I wouldn't recommend it without a discount. They weren't six full sized cocktails. About a third of a cocktail. I hated the Dark and Stormy Loved the Painkiller.

There is a show called Spectra's Cabaret onboard. We went last night; unfortunately the venue (not the theatre) has poor sight lines. If you're ever onboard, go very early for best seats.

This morning I did aquafit, then the whirlpool, then the hot tub. After a shower I invited myself to do trivia with a couple from Scotland. Then went for a tea and invited myself to sit with a couple from New York. I love meeting all these people. It's so easy on a cruise to strike up conversations with strangers from all walks of life.

back later!

Posted by
1604 posts

Just did Next Cruise destination trivia. Many places I've visited not on a cruise.

Posted by
14288 posts

Thank you Andrea for your updates. It sounds like you are having a great time and giving yourself permission to enjoy yourself after your loss. That is good.

Posted by
1604 posts

Last night we went to see "Lauren Turner Live". She plays the Killer Queen in We Will Rock You. Pretty good, if not quite up to some of the vocal gymnastics she attempted (shrill at moments). I'm still glad we went.

I set my alarm early to watch sunrise. It was cloudy and dull, so it was more a coming of light. Right now I'm having tea on my balcony, feeling the sway of the ship, and watching grey skies turn blue.

DH seems to have given up on Fab Abs. He's taken to scampering off to the Adults Only Solarium each morning with his book. The Solarium is beautiful. Cascading pools, hot tubs, greenery -- all with huge windows with views to the front. I guess he's doing Flab Abs, like 90% of his fellow passengers.

Today I'm doing morning stretch and maybe the dancercise fitness class after. We Will Rock You starts this aft, and we plan on attending the matinee. I wanted to fit in Harry Potter Trivia, but that seems a bit ambitious with our other plans. I'd ace it though.

Saw more porpoises yesterday. We've seen more wildlife than on any other cruise we've been on.

Posted by
6762 posts

Looking at the ship's track I can see you made the brief port medical call at Ponta Delgada at around 3am this morning, and are now on the 26 hour passage to Funchal.

On port approach at 0205 UTC, and already well out of port at 0350 UTC, so a very brief call.

Posted by
7031 posts

I am not a “cruiser”, but I can sure picture myself with a manicure, massage, book, drink (minus coconut), jet pool, hot tub, shows, dinner, and being rocked to sleep by the waves. Hmmmm…..

This. I'm not a cruiser either, but I do like the idea of being able to relax while heading to another destination. Andrea, sounds like a very nice trip! I'm glad you're enjoying it.

Posted by
1604 posts

We Will Rock You was excellent. We've seen it twice in Toronto and the ship's production was every bit as good. I'm impressed.

We met a couple who have arranged with Royal to disembark a day early, which is Le Havre. Not a bad idea. I wouldn't normally want to short a cruise because you don't get any discount, but in this case it would make sense. They are spending a week in Paris. Nice, but hey it's not Liverpool! Lol!

Posted by
1604 posts

Madeira at daybreak was beautiful. Steep town right at the port, twinkling lights, and a bright moon. Magic.

We are going on a 4-hr Jeep Adventure Tour. Today is the Flower Festival so I expect the itinerary will need adjusting. We shall go with the flow. I do hope to see some of the Festival.

Expected temperature is 23 Celsius.

Posted by
1604 posts

Well who did we run into right after we disembarked? Martin Clunes. Very kind man. Graciously spoke with us and posed for photos with us. Nice start to the day!! He's filming a show on the islands of the Atlantic.

Posted by
1604 posts

A sad sight at the pier. A passenger returned with a nasty head wound. After long treatment it seems she won't be continuing with the cruise.

We are late leaving; I don't think just that medical issue.

Posted by
1604 posts

Tonight our head server told us there are 4100 passengers and 1700 staff onboard. He says this is quite relaxing compared to the Christmas cruise that had 4700 passengers and I forget how many staff. He's quite a good advertisement for Royal Caribbean. He's very proud to have been chosen to launch Wonder of the Seas a few years ago; very enthusiastic about working for Royal.

Posted by
1604 posts

A funny thing happened on the way to the buffet...

The spa staff were outside the buffet selling their services and didn't I find myself booking a hot stone massage. It was fabulous; better than the poultice massage.

We arrive in La Coruna later this morning and we are off to Santiago de Compostela.

Posted by
4946 posts

Funny how these things happen... glad you're enjoying yourself!

Posted by
14288 posts

Very cool that you met Martin Clunes! I'll have to watch for that show.

The adult only solarium sounds wonderful!

Posted by
1604 posts

Just back from our excursion to Santiago de Compostela. We really liked it. Very moved by the emotion showed by pilgrims. We saw some crying, some singing, some dancing -- and some doing all three and more. The guide checked the website and said 1500 pilgrims checked in today.

Had a beautiful late lunch. Best meal of the trip so far. I'm reminded what good value eating can be in Europe.

Tomorrow at Sea before a day in Le Havre port, then disembarkation.

We received certificates from Royal Caribbean recognizing our being on the crossing. This is our 3rd crossing but only second time the ship gave certificates. I'll be scanning those for the photobook.

Posted by
6670 posts

Seems like you're having a great time. I remember the solarium from our only previous RCI cruise, a very nice place to hang out. Looking forward to your last days on board. Have a great time on land!

Posted by
1604 posts

A guy from Coronation Street is onboard. Kevin Kennedy, AKA Curly Watts, is Pop in We Will Rock You, and sings in a pub band onboard.

Our cruising friends are quite thrilled, I hadn't a clue.

Posted by
33339 posts

I haven't watched Coronation Street since I was about 12. Blast from the past.

Posted by
1604 posts

What a wonderful day! After our car rental cancelled on us, we ended up talking a taxi to and from Honfleur. What a beautiful town. It is Ascension Day, so packed with French tourists as well as others. Mass was underway in Eglise St Catherine, so we had to wait to enter. It was joyous to see a church full of life, instead of just full of us tourists. Watching kids be kids, the same the world over.

Lovely lunch at a place recommended by our driver, including a Normandie cheese course.

Our quick change from rental car turned out to be better than our plans!

Posted by
3905 posts

Well who did we run into right after we disembarked? Martin Clunes.

How cool is that?

Posted by
1604 posts

It was super cool!!! So gracious and accommodating.