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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

So what’s your story?

Day 23/138 2022/2023 Viking Neptune World Cruise. Day 5/6 sea days.

When we woke up this morning the ship was still swaying significantly and I wanted to understand how high the swells were. I kept trying to figure out where I could find this information, and then I finally figured it out.

On CruiseMapper, the exact longitude and latitude co-ordinates for the Viking Neptune are updated frequently, so I looked up our current position, and punched the latitude and longitude co-ordinates into

On the menu on the right allowed me to choose Wave Swells and the chart above shows you what we were dealing with at 8am this morning. 16 foot swells! Smaller swells than the 20 foot swells we experienced last night, but definitely still big waves! I felt better seeing this chart knowing that I could now look the Neptune’s position, and then type the coordinates into Windy. There are definitely times when I wish I could just stop the swell from the waves, but at least having access to the information above is somewhat comforting to know it will abate.

Learning to walk on a cruise ship with large swells is definitely a skill! Our funny cabin steward AYU cracked me up this morning before breakfast talking about driving her ‘BMW’ up the hallway in the swells, so I had to take a photo of her with her ‘BMW’. With a heavy cart, and the ship swaying, she certainly needs to be skilled to keep the cart from running away from her as the ship sways downwards and making sure she isn’t banging the cart off the walls of the hallway, is yet another skill!

AYU with her ‘BMW’. We will definitely miss the joking around we do with AYU when she departs in Auckland. She lives in Bali and has promised to come and get us from the port when we are in Bali so she can have us over for a meal. Now that is definitely something to look forward to!

After breakfast we decided to try to walk a mile around the promenade deck on 2. What a crazy day to try to do deck walking! The ship was swaying with the large swells, and it was hard to keep our balance. I felt sorry for the folks who were trying to run around the deck. It sure is a new skill set walking around the deck with 16 foot swells!

After 1/2 a lap around the deck I had to go back to our cabin and get my HOKA running shoes on for stability. It seems like everyone ‘got the memo’ that HOKA running shoes are great walking shoes, because I’ve seen so many people on this cruise ship with HOKA’s on. For me with my leg issues (broken femur in 2020) I need the best stability in shoes and my HOKA’s are fantastic and really comfortable too!

That’s better. Now I can walk faster and with more stability with my HOKA’s on!

Deck walking in single file. There are faster people who run, so if we stay single file, the runners can get by us without any incidents. I guess Richard snuck a picture of me leading the way. I walk much faster than him anyway, so its best I go ahead. We walked around 4 times and that was enough for 1 mile of deck walking today.

With the rocking and rolling of the ship we wanted to watch the lecture at 9:30am by Russell Lee on our stateroom tv. The topic looked really interesting, especially given we will be in Hawaii in 2 days.

The Aloha shirt first appeared in Hawaii in the 1920’s of 30’s when local Japanese women adapted kimono fabric for use in men’s shirting. The shirts achieved some popularity among tourists to Hawaii and found great commercial success when they hit the mainland in the mid-1930’s. The shirts were often meant to tell a story and anyone who bought a shirt in Hawaii while on vacation, had a great souvenir to remember their wonderful time in paradise.

Since we have 2 days in Hawaii I thought it would be kind of neat to see if I could find Richard an original Aloha shirt from one of the oldest manufacturers on the Island of Hawaii and sure enough I found this manufacturer still in business in the Ala Moana Center in Honolulu.

Kahala is one of the original manufacturers from 1936, so we will definitely be making a stop on this trip to pick up an Aloha shirt for Richard. I had always called them Hawaiian shirts before, but now I know the true name of these fun, colourful, casual shirts!

Art class was a lot of fun today. I decided to fix my watercolour which had bled into the frame area so that it would not look like an accident, but instead a ‘happy‘ accident. We had to arrive 15 minutes early to be able to sign up for the next class, so my time before class was well spent working on my previous painting.

Our art teacher Deb asked me if I had done art before. I never progressed past Grade 8 art class, other than to try and teach myself watercolours during Covid, so I felt pretty good that she approved of my efforts!

Apparently we are going to have an art exposition on the ship where we create a mural and display our work, so today was all about creating our ocean scene and telling a story with our underwater creatures.

Instead of using the provided stencils, I decided to draw my fish characters. I have a couple of fish, a jellyfish, an octopus and a flying fish. Apparently we will have time to work on this project tomorrow because it is not finished yet. Everyone had to paint their creatures orange if we wanted to take place in the mural exposition. Anyway, it is a fun way to while away a sea day and frankly learn some new skills! I really wish I had brought with me some water colour paper, paints, brushes, tape and perhaps some fine coloured markers, a drawing pencil and eraser. I may pick some of these supplies up in Hawaii if I can find an art supply store. I’ve never taken art lessons as I said before and having access to an art teacher for some critque is nice to have onboard.

Yesterday I wanted to go to the gym, but because of the sea swells the gym on Deck 1 was out of the question. Today I had no excuse so I spent a good hour working out on the recumbent bike, TRX Suspension Trainer, cable machine and floor mat. The best time to go to the gym to not be stepping over other people, is definitely around 4pm. I missed the port talk on Hawaii while I was at the gym, but given we are not doing any included or optional excursions through Viking, we didn’t miss much since we have both been to Oahu, Hawaii before.

I came back from the gym to find Richard on Facetime with his brother Norm and his wife Jo. Its amazing that we can have good enough internet to enjoy catching up with family from the middle of the Pacific Ocean! From talking to Norm and Jo, it looks like Florida will be having a bit of a cold snap for a few days. Hopefully our hibiscus bush and pineapple plants survive in our garden in Plant City, Florida and we don’t have any frost on the ground!

We saw that The Restaurant had a pasta special on this evening and the pasta was not available at the World Cafe buffet, so we decided to go to The Restaurant to be served dinner this evening.

Main courses at The Restaurant this evening

Appetizers at The Restaurant

Desserts at The Restaurant.

Ravioli Freschi Ala Caprese e Basilico, Broiled Grouper Fillet with Ligurian Olives, Persica peach mousse, nectarine chutney and pistachio cream, Chocolate crown with chocolate Namelaka, crunchy praline and apricot gel. I really enjoyed my ravioli today and the Persica was not only delicious to eat, but beautiful to look at.

While we were eating dinner we met a very interesting couple who were seated next to us with an amazing story! They had lived and worked as music teachers on American Samoa for a year in 1997. Then they started a music software management program for school teachers because the wife in this case, was teaching over 400+ kids and needed a program to manage all of the ‘nits and grits‘ of managing and tracking that many kids in multiple choirs and bands. It was very interesting to hear how they sold the company in 2018 and are now on this World Cruise with us. Eating in The Restaurant is not like when you go out for dinner at home and people don’t talk to each other, even though you might be seated next to someone for 2 hours. Here we are all going around the world and will probably see each other again one day, so it is nice to hear people’s story’s and how they ended up on a Viking world cruise, and what they did before they retired. I would say as long as you don’t mind talking and being friendly, there are a lot of nice, like minded people who will listen!

Gene and Margaret our morning Team Trivia pals from New Hampshire, were in The Restaurant for dinner and saw we were seated behind them, so when they finished their meal they said they were headed up to The Explorers Lounge on Deck 7 for Cruise Director ‘Bruce’s Brainbusters’ Trivia at 8pm if we wanted to join up with them to form a team. We were finished eating so we headed up to see if we could do any better at Bruce’s trivia. Bruce runs a quick trivia and despite our best efforts, we only got 8/20. Yikes!

Tomorrow morning I have a special treat with a ‘Hydrafacial’ booked for 11am for 50 minutes. I can’t wait! I don’t remember the last time I had a facial. I had booked a lot of our spa treatments when we were back home, when the ability to book spa services and dining reservations opened up in our ‘My Viking Journey‘ app. I thought that with so many long sea days in a row, we would both enjoy a spa treatment to pass some time. I already had to move this spa treatment from 2 days ago because it conflicted with Art Class. At least tomorrow I should be able to run from my facial to Team Trivia…well maybe not run, but at least get there in time to try to help the team!

So how am I feeling after 5 days at sea? I think Bruce said it best today after Bruce’s Brain Busters at 8pm. He said “I’ll be so glad to see land, it doesn’t matter where we are, as long as we see land!” I totally agree. This has been a very long stretch of not seeing any land and I am really looking forward to getting off the ship to be able to enjoy some time on land; golfing, biking and sightseeing, as well as shopping of course! I am also really glad that we did not board the ship in L.A. for the World Cruise. With the port stop of Santa Barbra cancelled the cruise would have started for us with 6 straight sea days, and with tough swells to boot. At least I had the Caribbean Ocean swells to experience and less sea days in a row to get used to, before we hit the Pacific and 6 straight sea days. I feel that I have my sea legs now and starting in Ft. Lauderdale gave me bite size bits of cruising, before our ‘hard core’ 6 days straight with tougher Pacific seas to get through. I had never really thought about this before, but I would watch out for it on other cruise itineraries in the future.

Some lucky people today saw flying fish, whales and birds, but unfortunately I did not see much of anything other than wave swells when I was walking around the deck. Tomorrow we may get to see the Kilauea Volcano at 2:15pm as we journey towards Honolulu! Wow! Let’s hope we are able to get some good photos as we pass by! Stay tuned! That will certainly make for a good story if we see the volcano erupting!

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2 comentários

Ernie Zaremba
Ernie Zaremba
14 de jan. de 2023

I have never heard of HOKA shoes. Could you tell me more about what makes them so good?


14 de jan. de 2023

You are such a great writer. I look forward to your blog every day. How wonderful that Ayu is picking you up in Bali. What a treat! After our Auckland to Bali cruise we stayed in Bali for 4 days with a private guide and it was wonderful. Enjoy your facial!

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