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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

What time is it?

38/138 days 2022/2023 Viking Neptune World Cruise. A cloudy, grey sea day with 2m swells.

It is the strangest thing to skip a day of our lives and yet here we are; we adjusted our iPads and our IPhones and now its Sunday. Strange. I visited Australia once before for four nights. Four nights? Yes. Four nights! In my working life I was responsible for managing Executive Relationships with 10 Automotive Manufacturers in Canada, one of those was KIA Canada, and KIA was the corporate sponsor for the Australian Open tennis in Melbourne, Australia. I was asked to join the KIA Canada Executive and some KIA Canada Dealers who were going to Australia to watch the Open. So that is how I managed to go to Australia for 4 nights. We flew from Toronto, Pearson, to Hong Kong, then to Adelaide, and then to Melbourne. 27 hours later we were going out for dinner, 2 days after we left Toronto. We were able to watch first the Women’s Tennis Final, and then the Men’s Tennis Final at the Australian Open. I also got in a round of golf at Victoria Golf Club with one of the KIA Canada dealers, then we flew to Sydney, and had dinner at a restaurant looking up at the Sydney Harbour bridge, before flying home to Canada the next day. It was so strange for me trying to figure out when the PGA Tour (which I follow religiously) was playing and was there a way for me to watch it given the Tour at the time was playing their West Coast swing. I finally gave up because the time difference was just too much. So yes, I’ve had a wee bit of experience with this time difference, but for four days, it was not that difficult to be on a different day, than back home. This time and day difference will be our new reality for quite some time, so we are going to have to get used to the 18 hours, and a different day, difference from back home.

.We just received our Viking Daily for Monday January 30th and we found out that the NFL playoff games will be on a 9am tomorrow for the NFC Championship and 12:30pm for the AFC Championship. Its very strange to be watching football on a Monday morning, and afternoon when we never watch football at that time, but hey, we’ll roll with it because at least we do not have to get up at some awful time in the morning to watch the games! Go K.C.!

I have to say that my throat was pretty good last night after the concoction that was delivered to our cabin. The drink really soothed my throat and I sent the Hotel Manager, Ronald a hand written note this morning to thank him for his concern. I was genuinely touched by his suggestion and his care, since I was not in a good way last night. I find myself ’in’ for another night, as I’ve got no energy to go to the World Cafe for dinner, so Richard is sending me some food from the World Cafe, which I know the Head Waitress is helping him with. Viking really is so accommodating, especially knowing I’m still struggling with this lingering cold. It is getting better, its just zapping the life out of me. And as I’m writing, our door bell just rang with someone delivering me my dinner.

I think there is enough honey to last a month of making hot honey and lemon drink! And there is wayyyyyyy too much food too!

Today was a great day at Team Trivia. We were asked the bonus question to name all of the characters on the Brady Bunch and we were able to get the names of all of the people, but we did not know the name of the dog unfortunately. We finished 1 point behind the leaders with 24 points! Our best showing yet. The easiest question for me today was “What is the name of the bird for 3 under on a hole in golf?” Of course that is an ‘Albatross!’

After a very small lunch it was time to head to the last art class with Deb and her husband and helper Jim. I am very sad they will be leaving us, since it has been such a nice diversion to have somewhere to go on sea days right after lunch for 1.5 hours. Class is supposed to start at 2pm but Deb is always there early, so we always have time to finish up a previous day’s project. It was time to hand in my shadow box, and my turtle today, because tomorrow is the big Art Exhibition from 11am-1pm in the Wintergarden on Deck 7. Deb and Jim will start setting up the Exhibit at 10am, so some of us are going to go and help them get set up. Deb also ran a morning class each day from 10am-11am, so I’m sure there will be a lot of art to set up, to display tomorrow, in a short one hour timeframe. After the exhibition at 1:15pm we are going to have our group art picture taken with the Exhibition, before receiving back all of our art pieces to store in our art folder or hang in the cabin and decorate the walls, as a memory of our art classes. We sure hope that Viking has another Art Teacher getting on in Auckland for us, so we have the chance to continue with our creative, artistic endeavours!

We had our Port Talk for Waitangi, Bay of Islands in New Zealand today at 4:30pm, which we will be visiting the day after tomorrow on Tuesday, January 31st. The port is a Tender port and we will be dropping anchor and then the ship must be cleared by the port authority for biohazards before we can start the tender process. We were advised to bring a photo ID as well as our Stateroom Key card and NOT to bring any food with us because of the strict biohazard standards New Zealand has for tourists. The weather is NOT looking good with 100% chance of rain and a 21C forecast. Good thing we are prepared for rain - me with a goretex hooded, long rain jacket by The North Face and Richard with his Viking World Cruise jacket, so we will take whatever comes our way, since it will be nice to be on land again! Chantelle our Shore Excursions Manager assured us that in Auckland, despite the horrible flooding situation they have had, will not impact for our shore excursions, since there is presently a ship in Auckland and they were able to do a full embarkation today with excursions. We learned the airport has also re-opened in Auckland, after being closed and completely flooded. Auckland received 75% of the rain they would normally receive in a season, in 15 hours. What a mess for the City. It is so strange that we left L.A., skipping Santa Barbara because of flooding and here we are two weeks later and having similar flooding in Auckland, New Zealand. Climate change is definitely impacting so many continent’s weather and we really feel like we are living it, with the ports we are either seeing, or avoiding.

With the Viking Daily delivery this evening, we also received our Crossing the International Dateline Certificates Signed by Hotel Manager Ronald and Captain Eric. Another first and another memento to save for framing in our future.

We’ve had so many firsts so far; 1) The naming ceremony for the Neptune in. L.A., 2) Crossing the Equator and becoming trusty Shellbacks and 3) Crossing the Dateline, and we’re only 38 days into the 138 day cruise with another 100 days to go! I wonder how many other ‘Firsts’ we will have as we journey on with our Viking World Cruise?

I think that’s it for me tonight. I’m pooped and yet I did not do much today. Thank you for the messages that people have sent me to help me get better. I’m going to be trying the Vick’s on the feet with socks (I have tiger balm but it should work); also trying the butter rolled with sugar on it, as a cough drop, to coat my throat courtesy of my good Scottish friend Shauna. And at some point this cold has to release its hold on me! I’m sure your’e as tired of hearing about it as I am of living with it!

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