Late night notwithstanding, I’m up reasonably early. It’s a strategic decision, not to go back to sleep: tomorrow my excursion meets at 7am. No sense in getting all off schedule.
Breakfast is at leisure at the buffet, and I share a table with a nice couple from Pennsylvania.
After breakfast I’m at loose ends. A podcast on the open deck. A stroll around the promenade deck. Looped around. The shops browsed. The internet checked. I find a trivia game in progress and sit in on that for a spell.
And this is why I never consider repositioning cruises: days at sea without ports are deadly dull to me, no matter now many activities they pack in.
Around lunchtime I bump into G, just startig his day in earnest, and T, just back from breakfast. G and I go for a light bite – lunch for me and breakfast for him, and we plan to meet up with T for tea and scones at 3pm.
In the mean time, we stop at the shore excursions desk. There are days that G doesn’t have any excursions, having already been on the ship for 10 days and seen some of the ports. He adds excursions to join me on mine – he’d like to get to know me, he says, and that needs time. Since he can’t make the cruise longer, he’ll settle for maximizing opportunities to have time together. (Later, he’ll change the tours he did have, so they will align with mine. When I point out, teasingly, that he’s giving me the sense he maybe likes me lilbit, he says, More than maybe. And more than a little.)
At 4:45 there’s a cocktail reception, T G P and I attend. A glass of wine goes to my head. Afterwards we stroll down to the Wheelhouse Bar to meet ND who is up for a very large Fosters, and T has another champagne. (I just have water. There will be wine with dinner but I’ve had enough for now.)
Even so, halfway through dinner I will just be feeling waves of love for this awesome group of people. They are ALL so fantastic. (And also, I’ll be missing awesome people from previous trips, anew.)
Over dinner we sort out who’s doing what and who has excursions together tomorrow, and we go up for the Stargazing event that proves to be a total bust.
But it’s just as well because by then it’s late, and the wine has overcome me, and I am anxious to go to sleep.