Pago Pago, American Samoa to Auckland, New Zealand
Having spent most of the last week heading west across the Pacific, on departing Pago Pago, we headed south. While this is normally good news for us northern hemisphere types, on this side of the equator, it means heading to chillier climates. After the heat and humidity of the past few days, it was already noticeably cooler down on the Promenade Deck this morning. With respect to weather, the swells and winds have picked up and we continue to rock and roll our way across the Pacific.
Temperature: High 27C/81F, Low 25C/77F
Wind/Weather: SE’ly freshening to 35 kts by early afternoon. Moderate swell on port bow. Overcast and occasional rain. Constant rolling and pitching
Clox: Z-11 (no change)
Throughout the day, Sea Princess maintained a SSW’ly course at almost 19 knots across the Pacific Ocean towards Auckland, New Zealand.
My day started about the usual time down on the Promenade Deck, but with the weather and ship’s movement it was tough going this morning. The ship was pitching fairly heavily and when slamming into the waves, the spray generated was blown over the deck. Wendy, one of the regular ladies arrived shortly after me and walked with me while we chatted away. The next thing I knew it was almost 07:00, as she headed up to continue her exercise routine in the gym. I continued, completing a couple of full laps once the fwd section was opened. Returning to the cabin, I was surprised to find Judi again awake, so I asked if she arranged another surprise breakfast.
At breakfast, we sat with 2 other couples and enjoyed some excellent conversation for well over an hour, being one of the last to leave the restaurant. Yet again an excellent breakfast; however, the waiter was a tad concerned he overheated the porridge. Thank you kindly, but porridge can never be too hot – it was perfect. He also did the toast to almost cremated perfection, served with strong, steaming hot tea. A perfect breakfast.
Having watched the reflections video many times, while waiting for a tour, in the Princess Theatre, we are actually impressed with some of the specialised content they produced. We haven’t bought one for at least 6 or 7 years, as they were a collection of shots from various onboard activities and we have never watched them since returning home. On this cruise, they seem to be including more footage of arrivals/departures and port tours, with special footage of Suez, Panama, Machu Picchu, etc. We have watched the promotions with interest and think it is something that may be of interest in future years and possibly even to show the kids and friends where we went. Anyway, we decided to at least investigate if they have any promotions, as my heritage precludes paying the asking price of AUS$400 for 22 disks. I headed to the photo gallery, chatting with Jamie, who is one of the regulars out on deck in the morning, although being much younger he runs rather than walking. With Elite status, he offered me the entire 22 disk package at $100 discount, or $300. Still fairly rich, but not too bad, so I signed us up and then continued to have a good chat about cameras, especially the pros/cons of Nikon and Canon.
Returning to the cabin, I got to work on catching up on blog posts, as I am about 3 days behind, due to port days, birthday parties, etc. At noon, I headed down to Princess Theatre for the science lecture titled, “Scientific Enigmas of the Solar System # 2”. Another excellent lecture in which he discussed comets and the possibility of other solar systems and planets similar to Earth. On completion, I ran to meet Judi for lunch outside the dining room, as today is the final pub lunch. Wow, every table was full, so we had a short wait, before being shown to a table that had just been vacated. Although run off their feet, the waiters did an exceptional job. We sat with another couple and three single ladies, again enjoying some excellent conversation for well over an hour. The lady sitting next to me, who is a regular cruiser and has completed previous world cruises was extremely perturbed with the condition of this ship. She is keeping notes on all observations and will be completing a detailed survey at the end. She also mentioned having been on this ship only 4 years ago and found her in pristine condition, at that time.
After lunch it was back to the cabin to complete the back log of posts, including getting today’s post started. At 16:00, we had arranged drinks with Bill & Jo, as couple from Freemantle. Originally coming from the Govan area of Glasgow, in the shadow of my football team’s stadium, he actually supports the arch enemy from the East side of Glasgow. When in Greenock we picked them up a Rangers book, as Bill brother supports my team. We spent a most enjoyable almost 3 hours enjoying some great conversation and a few refreshments.
Dinner tonight was another repeat of the “English Dinner”, with main courses of roast beef, sole and chicken. I had the roast beef, which tonight was nice and tender. Yet again, the galley’s performance continues to improve. After dinner, 6 of us headed to Princess Theatre for another show from the excellent Michael Falzon. Yet again he didn’t disappoint, putting on an excellent show. Unfortunately, being up fwd the movement and pounding is more evident, so Judi had to leave about 1/2 way through the show.
As another day closes, we bid you farewell, till tomorrow and hope for fair skies and following seas.