Pushing and shoving to get off!
At last we could just see land in the distance ahead of the ship and by 9.15am Florie and I had got trapped in a bad tempered queue on deck five facing a large hole in the side of the ship that didn’t have a gangplank on it, we were due to leave through that exit but the crush of people was growing by the minute and tempers started to flare as the lifts (elevators) kept disgorging their capacity adding to overall mêlée on the deck; the crew trying to fix the gangplank to the ship and arrange all its safety ropes etc were having great trouble getting past the crush of people, this should not have occurred, there is usually an officer in charge but I could see none. When clearance was given to go ashore by the authorities everyone pushed forwards; the passengers coming down from the stairs were most aggressive trying to push between husbands and wives with elbows and sheer force.
After 35 minutes of the crush horror we got off the ship, turned left and walked along the quayside looking left we could see across the water to the hillside opposite dotted with odd buildings; on our right the town was laid out in rainbow colours we crossed the road and walked up the road between the gaily painted structures looking for Tim Horton’s on New Gower St. We were looking for a coffee shop, but there were only office blocks around, we asked a chap and it turned out that Tim’s was in Cabot Place on the 3rd Floor, their coffee was good and I treated myself to a donut while I updated my computer on their free Wi-Fi. Refuelled we explored and found a liquor store with a 1½Ltr bottle of red wine for £14 which I decanted into an empty water bottle so it didn’t break as we went along, then we found a Mini Market and bought some unusual snacks for those evenings when the entertainment is not to our taste, we tend to feed in films to our TV from my small hard drive then enjoy films off it with a glass of wine and some snackies. We walked along Water St taking in the architecture and the shops that sell an eclectic mix of goods, however regrettably 11am the rain set in, light at first, then harder and more persistent; it was this and the insistent attention of drunks and beggars that made out minds up to get back to the dry of the ship.
So here I sit after lunch, in the lounge and as I look to my right through the windows the town lays wet and multicoloured out on the hillside with the rain coming down almost horizontal in the strong wind; it is very much a working town and does not appear to be fully geared up for a shop full of tourists, through they are trying; the individual townsfolk were very friendly and helpful, we wondered whether we should have done an organised tour, but from what I heard the beauty of the surrounding areas was marred by the heavy rain, of course it would have made a big difference if it had been sunny all day, such are the days of a tourist on a cruise ship.
In the evening we went to a jazz session with two friends and we got seats together and the session was excellent; but lucky us we were sat next to an Aussie enjoying himself and there is nothing quite so loud as an Aussie enjoying himself.
Don now dry
TAGS:- Queue Bad-Tempered Tim-Hortons Snackies Water-St St-Johns Newfoundland Rain
Tourist diary Observation People
Another day at sea
Since leaving Ireland we have had to put the clocks back one hour each night and half an hour last night so Florie and I are waking up at 4am now, which we cope with by me going up to the buffet restaurant at the back of the ship (that is not open for food) very early, where I can plug my laptop in the quiet solitude and upload my diaries to my blog site, (it amazes me that people are reading these diaries all over the world); I then I pack up and take a cup of coffee back to our cabin so Florie can get a drink in bed while she is reading her book.
Seven days we have been at aboard the ship and, as you might imagine, as you go about your daily activities you tend to see the same people time and time again, one person you can’t miss is Man Mountain a chap over 6 foot tall and over 30 stone (420lbs) when he come into the restaurant they switch the lights on as he casts a big shadow.
We have to bag people aboard, they walk round with an orange Sainsbury’s (supermarket) plastic carrier bags each and they take up the same corner in the buffet restaurant each day surrounded by their orange bags with their contents spread out.
I attend one of the ships activities and in there we have Daniel Steel, a woman dripping in jewellery and weird clothes who has the ability to write half a page of A4 in a minute and it comes out in great descriptive pros.
There is also a little old chap with a crown of white hair, a Yank I think, who loves the sound of his own voice, once started you can’t stop him.
Of course I see Danny La Rue where ever I go.
We have a presenter of photographs onboard and his small gaunt frame is usually draped in a different gaudy coloured top each day with a stetson or Aussie hat on and walks around as quiet as a stampede of steers.
There seem to be a lot of odd couples; I have seen at least twenty thin men around married to very large ladies.
It is uncanny how many times I have gone round corners and bumped into myself; an old man, now sporting a small grey white beard with glasses, there must be hundreds of me onboard, frightening isn’t it?
It is another sea day today on our way to Halifax Nova Scotia we will land the day you get this, I hope you have a good day today.
Don in the morning