|Rough seas hit us again for a few hours on Friday and carried on throughout the night. However, it was calm by the time we dropped anchor on Saturday morning at Nha Trang in Vietnam. At Nha Trang we had to use the tender boats to get ashore and we were fortunate enough to get on a small group tour, altogether eight of us from the ship. The tour took in the Ponagar Cham Towers, a group of temples built by the Cham people about 1,200 years ago. We also took a drive through the town of Nha Trang and along its beaches. Then we took a boat trip along the river that runs through the town and finally we visited a couple of rural villages while checking out old and new houses (that people actually still live in). All in all a very enjoyable morning.
In the afternoon, after re-boarding the ship, the Captain informed us the authorities at the port of Ko Samui have refused the ship permission to use our tenders for us to be able to go ashore - they wanted us to use their tenders which the shipping company didn't think were satisfactory. We were scheduled to be there on 28 December so there has been a change to our schedule for that day and we are now going to be staying overnight in Bangkok instead and not departing there until the afternoon of the 28th. So we'll have a bit more time to explore Bangkok but we miss out on Ko Samui.
On Sunday we docked in the port of Phu My (Ho Chi Minh city), but given we'd spent some time in Ho Chi Minh last Christmas, and given Ho Chi Minh is about 1.5 hours drive from the port, we decided to just remain on board for the day. Of course not all of shipboard life is full of glamour and so, on Christmas Eve, Graeme spent time in one of the ship's self service laundries getting the washing and ironing done.
Before dinner on Christmas Eve we attended a reading of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" followed by the crew singing Christmas carols while "snow" fell in the central atrium. Also on Christmas Eve we treated ourselves to dinner at the ship's steakhouse restaurant. So far just about all the food has been very good and the steaks at the steakhouse certainly didn't disappoint. Very disappointed though there has been no sighting of fruit mince pies anywhere so far. Anyway, Santa is anticipated to arrive on board around 3 pm today so I'll have a word to him about that.
Well, being Christmas Day we're at sea sailing towards Sihanoukville Cambodia where we dock tomorrow morning. Of course you may also have seen or heard Typhoon Tembin is in the area. It's smashed its way through the Phillipines and is now heading
towards Vietnam and then will hopefully weaken before crossing to the area we'll be sailing through over the next few days. The last update from the Captain was that he expects the main cell to miss us but for us to expect a fare bit of rain and strong winds later today and through the night.
Here's wishing all our friends and family wherever you are a very happy and safe Christmas, love Ron and Graeme