Friday 27 December 2019

Silver Muse cruise, Day Four - It's Australia's fault

With thanks to Silversea for this cruise
Silver Muse sailed last night from Stewart Island along Foveaux Strait and around the bottom of the South Island, with the plan to enter Doubtful Sound first thing this morning, and then Milford Sound this afternoon. As has so often happened on our cruises - on most people's cruises, I'm guessing - the weather got in the way. There were 50 knot winds and 3 metre waves, plus low cloud and rain, and the captain decided that it wasn't safe to try to enter either Sound. 
It was a great shame, and disappointing to everyone - though rather less so to us, since we did this route with Azamara a couple of years ago, and of course we've been to Milford a number of times over the years. For the foreigners, though, of whom there are very many on board, it was their only chance to see the Sounds' properly spectacular scenery, and they had been looking forward to it. For some, it was their second, and even third, attempt. Instead, their only consolation was watching the little pilot boat bouncing around in the waves as the NZ pilot attempted to leave the ship. He'd have had to stay aboard till Burnie in Tasmania if they couldn't get him off - I imagine that wouldn't have been a tragedy for him.

I heard several Aussies complaining bitterly about the let-down of the weather, and only just restrained myself from explaining, loudly and clearly, that it was all due to the big H that's been parked over Oz for so long, delivering all that hot, dry weather that's been causing their dreadful fires, and simultaneously condemning NZ to unseasonably cool, wet weather. But, dear reader, for the sake of trans-Tasman cordial relations, I restrained myself.

Team Trivia today introduced some ethical grey areas - first, sneakily corrected answers by the quizmaster (Roy Perez, our Cruise Director, from Cuba) as he prowled around; and also, when you decide on one answer, and then change to another, and then find the first was correct, you don't count it, right? But Jeff from California, and Anne from Scotland disagreed, and insisted our score was a mighty 15/20 instead of the usual 14 I thought it should be. Sample questions from today: how much does a litre of water weigh; which Italian leader was afraid of the Devil's evil eye; what is the standard length of the English military call-up; and what did the Montgolfier brothers invent?

Dinner tonight was at La Dame, which is one of only two restaurants you have to pay for on board Silversea: USD80 each for super-attentive service in a tiny venue with a classic French menu and and an equally classically superior French MC/sommelier. I had escargots, mushroom velouté (ie soup), Dover sole and Grand Marnier soufflé, all of it beautifully presented and delicious.

Naturally, as we headed away from New Zealand into the Tasman Sea, the sun came out and the evening was blue and bright. Ahead, a day's sail away, lie heat and sunshine in Australia. Bring it on!


the queen said...

I no longer trust any Californian or Scotswoman after hearing such disregard for the social contract.
I never realized it before, but “a pint’s a pound the world around” doesn’t apply to the metric system, does it?
So, let’s say 4 pounds because so many things are doubled in metric, and Mussolini becuase he’s the only Italian leader I know of, I have no idea what in earth a call-up is but I say six feet, and they invented the dishwasher.

TravelSkite said...

It never occurred to me to answer in imperial - a litre of water weighs a kilo. Easy! Yes to Mussolini (same reasoning for us). Call-up means military service and no, it hasn't been compulsory in England for a long time; and No! it's the hot air balloon - we got that.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...