Pitcairn Island to Papeete, French Polynesia
Our second sea day between Pitcairn Island and Papeete, the capital of French Polynesia. During his daily announcement last evening, Captain Kent advised the forecasts called for the winds and swell to abate, which they have done to a certain extent, but we still have a healthy swell causing a fair bit of pitching. After yesterday’s excellent schedule, we are basically back to the usual dross, so not much of interest. The galley today has also achieved new lows in mediocrity, excelling in the service of cold food.
Temperature: High 27C/81F, Low 22C/70F
Wind/Weather: SSE’ly wind at 12 to 15 kts. Moderate confused swell. Overcast and clear.
Clox: Z-9 (back 1 hr last evening)
Throughout the day, Sea Princess maintained a WNW’ly course across the Pacific Ocean towards Papeete on the island of Tahiti. Initially tootling along at 17 kts, we must have put another engine online, as by early afternoon the speed was 19.9 knots.
Down on the Promenade Deck by 05:20, I completed almost 2 hrs. I walked a few laps, having a pleasant chat with I believe Wendy, our morning speedster, who we had breakfast with yesterday. She slowed down slightly and I increased above my normal fast pace of about 4 mph. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly she can walk. Although the ship is still pitching significantly, it was vastly improved over yesterday, when we were continuously getting drenched by spray and rain.
The very pleasant start to the day crashed and burned at breakfast, with even the waiters being rather disorganised this morning. A most rare occasion, as the waiters and waitresses are normally exceptional. My first mistake was trying something new – Alaska Scrambler, which is scrambled egg mixed with smoked salmon. When served, the eggs were almost stone cold, the english bacon was US streaky bacon and they missed the potato and tomato. The second attempt, arrived on a red hot, almost glowing plate, but unfortunately they used the same cold food. The eggs were slightly warmer, almost lukewarm and were actually greasy. The bacon was english bacon, but who knows how long it sat after being cooked, as it was cold and tough. The fried tomato had no grill marks, so at best it may have sat next to a grill, it certainly never made it onto a hot grill. The potato, similar to the bacon was exceptionally greasy, cold and who knows how long it was since it was cooked. Therefore, breakfast this morning consisted of tea, toast and a glass of juice.
After breakfast we met a couple who are planning to tour North America in an RV and wanted some pointers. We chatted with them for well over an hour, especially trying to address the size. Australia is also a large country, but nothing like the distances involved in Canada and the United States. They haven’t finalised a time frame, initially asking if 3 months was enough. When I asked what part they wanted to see, they responded all of it. I explained our trip last summer of 15,000 miles in 3 months should have taken at least 6, if not 9 months and that only covered coast to coast through southern Canada and the northern reaches of the States. We gave them some websites to check out and advised which states and provinces have the most favourable sales taxes.
Trevor Knight presented his final instalment of his horse lectures today, covering his procedure for training a horse, which does not include “Breaking” the horse. It was very interesting, with his methods confirmed by film clips. Unfortunately, Trevor will be departing tomorrow in Papeete, as new entertainers will be boarding. The movement in the Princess Theatre did Judi in, so she headed back to the cabin, but with minimal breakfast and having walked about 7 miles, I was starving, so headed up to Horizon Court for lunch. Big mistake, as yet again everything was lukewarm or colder. Thoroughly disgusted, I went to get Judi’s tea, but they didn’t have any English Breakfast tea. Try the other side was the suggestion from one of the Waiters, as we are running short. On the other side I met Santosh, our evening Waiter, who gave me a bag and mentioned the outside grill have more. At the grill I decided to try my first burger and chips since joining in Sydney. Surely it must be hot? Not really, but starving I ate it anyway.
I spent the afternoon working on the 2nd Pitcairn Island blog post and starting today’s post, as with 2 port days in a row, I prefer not to get behind. At 15:30, I was going to try afternoon tea, when Judi suggested she was going to head up for more tea. Great idea, I’ll join you as they also have scones in Horizon Court. Wow, the scones were cooked to perfection and even hot. They were without a doubt the warmest food I have received on this ship today.
The Captain’s announcement confirmed that we will be an hour late getting into Papeete, due to the weather and adverse currents. Personally, I suspect they had one of the engines down for maintenance, with the 4th engine coming back online today. He is delaying departure also by an hour, so we will have the same length of time ashore.
Dinner this evening was another repeat of the Chef’s menu, so I had the Tilapia, which was tasty and served at least warm. Poor Bob couldn’t have his regular desert tonight, as the ship has run out of bananas (again), strawberries and is almost out of English Breakfast Tea.
As another day closes, we bid you farewell, till tomorrow and hope for fair skies and following seas.