Day 105/138 2022/2023 Viking Neptune World Cruise. A sea day, 4/5.
We have been getting up and going to the World Cafe for breakfast the past few days because we need our cabin tidied up before our friends Lyle and Linda come over at 10am for a couple of hours, to work on our Icon Building project.
Lately for some reason the World Cafe has had wrapped daily fortune cookies available at the entrance to the World Cafe. I’m not sure why all of a sudden we’ve got fortune cookies available to us, but I grabbed one this morning on my way into the World Cafe.
Ok. I like the sentiment, but maybe the fortune cookie people could have been a bit gentler with the idea!
I had Richard grab a fortune cookie on the way out so he could see what his fortune was for the day. He was not so fortunate with his fortune. His cookie said “Passionate hatred can give meaning and purpose to an empty life.” Yikes! What a bad fortune cookie. We will try again tomorrow for Richard, if they have fortune cookies out again.
Speaking of cookies. Viking is having “The Great Viking Neptune Cookie Bake-Off’ contest. Last week we were invited to submit our favourite cookie recipe to Guest Services and ten cookie recipes have been chosen over ten days to be replicated by the Viking Neptune pastry chefs. We do not know whose cookie recipes have been chosen but we find out each evening in The Viking Daily. The cookies will be replicated and available at the World Cafe as well as in the Atrium. I submitted a recipe that I make at home that is a wonderful mixture of peanut butter, chocolate chips, gluten free oats, Canadian maple syrup and coconut oil, to which I add in things like dried cranberries, coconut, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds. I refrigerate the mixture in a square pan, with parchment paper, after mixing it all up, to harden in the fridge. The no bake recipe, is low glycemic and gluten free and is high in protein. Yummy! Today’s cookie of the day was called “Snow Ball Melt Aways” and the recipe was submitted by Joanne Camp. We tried the cookie at lunch time and it was delicious! We went down to Guest Services to get some voting slips and we returned them after Brain Busters this evening as we have to vote each day on a scale of 1-5, on the cookie of the day. We will see how tomorrow’s cookies are! And maybe if I’m lucky mine will be chosen to be replicated!
Our icon building project is coming along well. We are not sure if anyone else is doing the icon building project, but we think what we are doing will be great once it is finished. Hopefully tomorrow we will start the assembly process, as we have spent a lot of time on the preparation phase of this immense project! Of course I cannot share with you what we are working on, but it is a nice way to spend a sea day morning, with friends, working for a common purpose and catching up on the latest ship scuttlebutt!
Yesterday’s art project was very frustrating for some reason. I ended up working on the project back in the cabin to try and salvage what I had done in class. When I got to art class early today, I decided to work on the project a bit more and then left my painting in the windowsill of the Restaurant to dry. When I got back to the cabin today after art, I decided I would finish off today’s project first. I put all of my finished art projects in order and wouldn’t you know it, I had left my blasted art from yesterday in the windowsill of the Restaurant! Instead of going to rescue it, because I wasn’t happy with the finished project anyway, I decided to do it over again. I have art paper in the cabin, so I got to it while we watched an enrichment lecture that had been recorded from this morning on the “History of Egypt”.
Lots more work to do on this painting, but at least it is looking better than the one I left in The Restaurant!
The seagull project was today’s art work and the fishing boat was from two days ago. I’ve got to add some mixed medium to the waves on the seagull project to make the water look more frothy, but I have to wait until class tomorrow to get some mixed medium from the art teacher as I do not have any with me. We have been using a wax crayon in our art work to have the paint resist the wax. I used it on the bird’s wings so that is why you can see white coming through the black paint. Same idea on the waves in the fishing boat picture. I’m quite enjoying art classes and would like to find some water colour classes when I return home, as long as they do not interfere with my busy golf life!
Around 6:15pm this evening we saw a beautiful sunset off our port side balcony. I went out to take a photo of the sunset and lo and behold I saw land too! Somalia!
If you look closely you can see some humps in the distance. That is Somalia!
We had agreed to meet Gene and Margaret for a drink on the aft deck 2 behind The Restaurant at 6:30pm, and when we came down to meet them we could see Yemen!
Yemen from the Starboard side of the Viking Neptune on Deck 2, as we entered the Gulf of Aden. The Gulf of Aden is a very important waterway as it leads into the Red Sea, which then of course leads into the Suez Canal which links the Mediterranean Sea and the Arabian Sea in the Indian Ocean. About 21,000 ships cross this gulf annually and many ships deliver Persian Gulf oil through this gulf, making the Gulf of Aden an integral waterway in the world economy. The countries that border the Gulf of Aden are Djibouti, Somalia and Yemen.
Gene, Margaret and Richard enjoying the view from the aft deck 2 on the Neptune. Of course the other guy is watching and watching. Viking’s Security staff are busy now watching for any pirate ships that might be in the area. So far so good!
We are now in the Red Sea as I finish up today’s blog, having passed safely through the Gulf of Aden. We have one more sea day before we head to Saudi Arabia for a day. We watched the Port Talk for Jeddah on our stateroom tv this afternoon and it was probably one of the worst Port Talks we have had since we’ve been onboard. I will not get into it, but after the Port Talk was finished both Richard and me googled “What not to do in Saudi Arabia as a tourist” and “What should tourists be aware of when visiting Saudi Arabia” as well as “How to behave during Ramadan in Muslim countries for Tourists”. These were topics that we thought should have been covered in more detail, so we looked into the topics ourselves to satisfy our own curiosity, as well as for educational purposes. We were told in the port talk not to drink or eat in public in Saudi Arabia (on the bus is ok) as it is Ramadan, and it is a sign of disrespect to eat or drink when people from the Muslim faith are fasting during the day. I am keeping an open mind as we always do when we travel to a new, strange land. I am eager to be visiting The Middle East for the very first time, because I have heard about this area of the World from the time I first attended Sunday School as a child. My parents came to The Middle East when I was a teenager and they loved their visit to Israel, Jordan and Egypt. I am truly looking forward to seeing these lands that are steeped in centuries of history!
With no TV coverage of the Masters I’ve been relying on the Master’s App for all of my Master’s information and It looks like Rory will not make the cut at the Masters. Too bad. I thought the way he was playing lately and after his final round at Augusta last year where he finished 2nd and chipped in on the 18th hole on Sunday, I thought he would have gotten the Master’s monkey off his back. Oh well….now let’s go Tiger! Make the cut! Maybe he could win it again? Or am I just dreaming??? I must be dreaming. Koepka is -12 so Tiger at +2 has a long way to go!!!