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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

You mean that’s it?

Day 36/138 2022/2023 Viking Neptune World Cruise

The sea swells have picked up a bit more tonight. We have had calm seas for so long and then we have to quickly remember we’re on a cruise ship and the waves are a ‘thing’!

It was another rough night for me last night. The darn tickle in my throat keeps waking me up and then I start coughing and can’t get back to sleep. Richard saw the ship’s doctor for me today and I finally now have Robutussin DM cough medicine which I’m going to keep next to our bed,

on the bed side table if I need a quick swig in the middle of the night. I’m rarely ever sick but when I get a cold now, it seems like it knocks me for a good 2 weeks. I’m barely eating either since food has no appeal. I guess it is one way to lose weight after 36 days on a cruise ship! And I’m really missing going to the gym. I have absolutely no energy for that until I’m on the mend, which requires more sleep. Vicious circle. Let’s hope tonight is better for me.

Yesterday we had the pleasure of having a bridge tour at 3pm after my art class. I had to pack up my art project before I had hardly even begun it, so I spent this afternoon working on my art project, because we are having a gallery showing sometime before we get to Auckland and I want to make sure everything I’ve worked on is completed before the showing.

My makeshift art studio! I didn’t know he had shot this photo of me today until I asked him if he had any photos for me at the end of the day for the blog.

Art teacher Deb put up a list of items to buy in Auckland for anyone who wanted to continue doing art after she and her husband Jim leave us in Auckland. I will take a photo of the list tomorrow for anyone going on next year’s world cruise who might be interested in having their own supplies. I’m not sure if Viking will offer art classes for the rest of the time we are on board, but having art to work on, sure makes the sea days go very quickly. Today we worked on shadow boxes and tomorrow we will assemble them.

The project I was working on in our cabin this afternoon. It is not finished. Far from it. I do like the process though. Its coming together nicely. We were shown a photo of what we could do, or not do, so I’m taking some creative license with my turtle.

As I mentioned previously we had the chance to visit the bridge yesterday. I was not feeling very well, but we all had to wear masks, which was good, so I thought I could manage a tour as long as I didn’t cough. I had cough drops to keep me from coughing!

Our tour started by taking the elevator near the Nordic Spa on Deck 1, up to Deck 6 and we walked towards the bow of the ship. The door was open and waiting for us to enter the bridge. How very exciting!

Entering the port side of the bridge of the Viking Neptune. What a fantastic view!

The 3rd officer gave us the tour and explained that the Jotron EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radiobeacons) would indicate the ship’s position to rescue authorities, in the event the ship was in distress.

The multi pilot system used by the Neptune’s Chief Navigator who has programmed our route. The depth charts are electronically shown on the screen as well as our route.

A view of the ship with the rudders at the back and the position of the rudders.

The ship’s compass.

Rudder angle gauges for port and starboard rudders, as well as rate of turn gauge.

Richard intently watching the bridge of the ship while I’m taking photos of the flags of each country. I learned that when we sail into port, we fly the flag of the country we are visiting (courtesy flag) and It is a custom among merchant ships when entering or leaving a foreign port and during their stay in the port to fly the colours of that country. as a mark of respect; the exact details of flying such a flag with regard to timings can be obtained from the port control. The dimensions of the national ensign must always be larger than the courtesy. Also, the ship will never fly one country’s flag beneath another’s on the same mast. This is a sign of conquest and projects disrespect, ignorance and bad seamanship. Also, the ship does not hoist the courtesy flag upside down. The courtesy flag comes second in order of preference, after the national ensign.

More flags! We are going to visit quite a few countries on this cruise and of course the Neptune will continue on after we get off,so they need all the flags for the countries that the Neptune will visit at some point in the future. Don’t mix up those flags!

This ship was sailing itself because no one was touching any controls.

What a great view. Lots of instruments to watch and nothing to steer! Perfect!

I did not learn all the names of what you are seeing in these photos, and not being a sailor, or a technical writer, it was hard to know what questions to ask about what we were seeing.

I do know that the entire ship can be steered with that little joystick to the right of the seaman’s hand. I can’t believe it! You mean that’s it? That little stick can steer this huge ship?

And if that joystick fails there is the good old manual way of steering the ship.

Take off the wooden box and steer with a real steering wheel if the joy stick fails! And if that fails, there is a steering wheel at the aft of the ship and radio commands would be provided from the front of the ship, to the person steering at the back of the ship. What I did learn is there are back up systems, upon back up systems to ensure that no one failure of a system will stop the ship in its tracks.

I bet this is measuring our latitude and longitude. I liked the small Norwegian flag in the window. Small but mighty!

We asked if the Captain had a special pair of binoculars that he used when looking out over the sea.

We were told that these were just regular binoculars, but I thought they looked pretty cool in black and white!

And one more nice view from the bridge.

Another view we can’t get from anywhere other than the bridge.

The tour of the bridge was very much appreciated. I know lots of other people are having bridge tours in the coming days, and it was nice to see the bridge and get a little better understanding of what it takes to pilot a ship this size.

Now to get back to today….

When Mike and Sharon were in Bora Bora, they went snorkelling and so did Gene and Margaret (our trivia team friends). Margaret got a great shot of Sharon in the water in Bora Bora and had heard somehow that it was Sharon’s birthday and that is why we were all going to the private dining room for dinner tonight at Manfredi’s. Sharon had organized with Manfredi’s that if she could get 10 people together, we could have a private dining experience. Anyway, Margaret had the photo of Sharon turned into a t-shirt while in Tahiti and was going to give it to Sharon for her birthday today…except Sharon’s birthday is not until June. So, Sharon got a t-shirt, we all got to eat at Manfredi’s and we had a very fun night telling tales that we kept saying “YOU CAN’T MAKE THIS STUFF UP!”

Sharon…the otter…with her pink water shoes!

It is nice to be able to enjoy good times with new friends on this cruise. We wondered what our social life would look like on the cruise and we have to say we are really enjoying the great new friends we have made. Having a community is also great when someone needs some cortisone cream, and we have it to loan, or I needed cold tablets, and someone had them to loan to me. Let’s hope the new cough medicine works well tonight, because I’m running on fumes with little sleep. I’ve got osteopath tomorrow and he also does acupuncture so I’m going to ask him to give me an immune system boost. Anything extra he can do to help me kick this cold! I’m also having a pedicure at the Nordic Spa tomorrow. I wonder if they do gel pedicures or just regular pedicures? I guess I will find out soon enough!

I need to keep the toes happy so my golf shoes fit properly for our next round in Auckland!

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4 comentários

27 de jan. de 2023

To answer some of your Bridge Tour questions

- The photo you labelled as a compass is most likely a barometer, not a gyro or a magnetic compass

- When the 3rd Officer is working the mouse, the screen is set up an electronic chart showing the ship's current position, course and track

- the photo showing the small Norwegian flag is a centre line gyro compass fitted with an azimuth ring. It is used for reading bearings to determine risk of collision. It can also be used with the sun to calculate compass errors. To determine Latitude and Longitude requires a sextant, which measures the angle of the sun/moon/stars above the horizon


Cathy Vee Volpe-Paul
Cathy Vee Volpe-Paul
27 de jan. de 2023

You blog posts are so informative and wonderful. Feel much better soon.


27 de jan. de 2023

Fabulous post. Feel better soon.


John Fran Razmus
John Fran Razmus
27 de jan. de 2023

I'm continuing to enjoy your blog and have started writing lists of the medications you're needing as well as some of your clothing ideas. Hope you get on top of this cold and cough soon.

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