Barcelona, Spain to Lisbon, Portugal
Finally a sea day and I believe, based on how quiet the ship was today, everybody is rejoicing and taking some well deserved down time. What was planned as a full day of blasting through photographs and writing blog posts, was quickly derailed and most of the morning was taken up with administration and billing issues with the Purser’s Department.
Temperature: High 29C/84F, Low 19C/66F
Wind/Weather: Light Airs in Meddy, but 15 to 20 kt winds in the Atlantic Ocean. Very hazy.
Clox: Z+1 (clox back 1 hour last night)
Sea Princess maintained SW’ly courses along the Spanish coastline, until rounding Cabo De Gata Lighthouse about 10:30, when W’ly courses were set towards the Gibraltar Straight. Sea Princess transited the busy and narrow Gibraltar Straight shortly after 19:00 and set NW’ly courses towards Lisbon, through the Atlantic Ocean. This is our 4th of the 5 oceans on the World Cruise.
Breakfast in the dining room was a complete disaster and a low point even for this sub-standard galley. Judi’s pancakes were so cold the soft butter wouldn’t melt. I initially requested an Egg Benny with bacon and fried tomato. The poached egg was undercooked, with the white running out when cut open, the tomato must have been waved above the grill, as it was completely uncooked and cold, and to top it off the bacon was also cold. I sent it back, opting for my usual porridge, well surprise, surprise, it was also cold and got returned. Therefore, my breaky was 2 slices of toast and tea.
This was the straw that broke the camels back, so I immediately went to the Purser’s Desk and requested a meeting with Cynthia, the Customer Service Manager (SAP). We met her previously and chatted extensively with her, at which time she requested, if we have any issues that will be reported on the post cruise comment form to please give her a chance to rectify during the cruise. A very refreshing outlook to customer service and we found her to be very pleasant. Therefore, having agreed with her, I met her at the desk. She took down the details of the issues with the cold food and since her Fiancée, is a bridge officer, I also mentioned the glaring errors from the Navigator. She agreed these are not acceptable and will address them with the relevant department heads.
After that, with the end of the segment approaching, I decided to print and check the bill. The last few days the Purser’s Desk is queued solidly with billing issues, so if we had any I shouldn’t have to wait. Bingo, I discovered 2 issues with medical centre invoices, a tour we cancelled still charged and a bottle of wine charged at a premium of $12. On heading down to the Deck # 5, the tour desk had a queue, so I went to the Purser’s first. Got one medical invoice corrected, but they requested I head down to the medical centre to resolve the other. My response being, “You are Customer Service and I expect one stop shopping and you to resolve”. All said politely, so the young lady immediately headed into the back room to call them. She returned, advising they won’t deal with her, but she will escort me down. Quickly resolved, we both returned to the desk to complete the other issues. I thanked her gratefully for her assistance, as she did a splendid job, she looked very proud at receiving the compliment. Next was the tour desk and the young lady checked her system, apologised for the error, and issued a refund immediately. Totally destroyed my morning plans, but got all the billing issues resolved.
All afternoon and evening was spent working on completing the hundreds of Cannes and Monaco photographs and writing the overdue blog posts. I took a quick break for dinner around the time we transited the Gibraltar Straights, but the sun and bad haze was completely wrong for good photographs. Therefore, my apologies, but no photographs of Gibraltar.
As another day closes, we bid you farewell, till tomorrow and hope for fair skies and following seas.