Circling Eyjafjallajokul - Late Summer 2010 travel blog

weather forecaster

terminal

sign

Southampton

sail away

sail away


The weather here has been getting better and better. We understand that Hurricane Hugo has something to do with that. He’s been sucking in all the bad mojo leaving us with warm temperatures and clear, blue skies. We can hardly believe that we’re in England. Weather forecasts here are truly mystifying. They use words like “fresh” and “fine.” We’re better off just looking out of the balcony and seeing what is there. We’ve heard that old Earl is moving up the coast to the area we are sailing toward. We may not be thanking him so much in a few days. You can tell the forecast then when the crew starts hanging vomit bags along the stair ways. Fingers crossed!

As the ship’s personnel were busting their buckets getting rid of the evidence of the previous passengers and preparing for the new ones, we walked into Southampton. We’d asked around and people told us there was nothing to do there, but we had a fine time nevertheless. Whenever we have a little extra time on our hands we look for a wifi opportunity to counteract the excessive fees the ship charges. That used to mean that we looked for an internet café. Now we look for a café that has free wi fi. We buy two cups of tea and can sit there for hours if we wish. The spot we chose today was a pub and sold beer in addition to that tea we were sipping. We amazed how many folks were already there slurping the foamy heads off their ales at 10am. By the time we left the place was full of people ranging from grannies to babes in buggies and nearly everyone was enjoying the suds. But the place had a much different atmosphere than a local bar would have in our town. Convivial conversation abounded and it looked to be a place “where everyone knows your name" - except ours.

Vendors had set up tents outside of the stores in the main shopping area and were selling all kinds of the stuff you need in real life - food, clothing, flowers, hardware. It’s always fun to see what the locals are buying. Eventually we came to a mall that was as familiar and comfortable as any we have at home.

By then it was time to return to the ship where the friendly British passengers with their delight accents saying all sorts of erudite things were replaced by New Yorkers with their “dems and dos.” It makes sense that they are here since this cruise ends in New York, but we’re wondering if we will enjoy their company as much as the Brits. We went outside for the sail away party that we missed on the last cruise due to drizzle and toasted the setting sun.

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