Thursday, January 12, 2023
Honestly, the night before is kind of a blur. We met the room stewards. We unpacked the suitcases. We ate dinner. I know I had fish and Chuck had steak but that is all I can remember about the meal. We listened to the piano players. Fatigue had really set in.
We endured a very long traditional unorganized lifeboat drill. Why the Captain would make us stand outside on the deck at our lifeboat station in the cold to watch a person put on the life vest is beyond me, especially after the day we had. Other HAL ships have gone to expedited drills and they are much smoother, but you still get the same information. But he is the Captain – so there we stood.
Once he dismissed us, he then came on the PA to say that the Port Authorities had closed the port once again – the third time that day. He did not know when we would be allowed to sail. That’s it – I’m done – it is after midnight and I’m going to bed.
As we walked to our cabin, we passed Guest Services. The line of guests waiting to “discuss” their issues with Guest Services snaked down the hallway. What a day. Guest Services advertises themselves as a 24/7 operation. The guests tonight are going to put them to the test.
Woke up once at 4:00. Looked out the window – still in port. Just wonderful. Got up at 6:00. We are moving and moving fast. Waves are huge outside the window. Maybe we will get to the first port.
I started the morning in the usual way – coffee from the Coffee Bar. On this ship, the coffee bar is part of the Crow’s Nest bar so the wait staff has to do double duty. They don’t know if you’ll be ordering a Latte Grande or a Bloody Mary. I preferred it when the two bars were separate entities.
I again passed by Guest Services and there was still a line of people albeit not as long as last night. I had noticed that we were charged crew appreciation tips on our account. I sent Guest Services a text asking them to review our booking because Gratuities were complimentary according to my paperwork. I gave them the code for our promotional offer so they could verify it. I was not getting in that line unless absolutely necessary.
We ate breakfast in the dining room. Had a nice conversation with a couple from Texas and a couple from Michigan.
I went to the 11:00 presentation on Antarctica. The guest speaker has worked for both New Zealand and Great Britain doing research on Antarctica. He was a very good speaker, so I look forward to more of his presentations.
I also recognized the speaker from our French Polynesia cruise. His specialty is astronomy. He said he hoped to be conducting star gazing on this cruise too. They were a lot of fun to attend then, so I hope he can on this trip.
At noon, the Captain came on for his daily weather and operational report. We were allowed to leave at 5:30 this morning and he is sailing at 17 knots. However, it is not fast enough to arrive during the necessary tidal conditions for Puerto Montt; therefore, tomorrow would be another sea day.
We had an excursion planned that involved seeing a volcano, lakes, and waterfalls. Disappointing but not unexpected. The cruise director said that all excursions booked with HAL would be refunded.
I checked our account again and the tips had been removed and the excursions refunded. Yay! At least I don’t have to get in the line.
Another long line was for people to get help with the Navigator app to connect to the Internet. I ended up helping the woman sitting next to me as we were waiting for the speaker to begin. She saw me access the Navigator and then Google. She was happy that she did not have to get in the Internet Help line.
Chuck and I played some slots and then went to a late lunch in the main dining room.
I spent much of the afternoon on the Sea View deck admiring one of my favorite views. It was soon time to get ready for our first dressy night.
Note: The Internet is getting noticeably weaker as we head further south making it hard to upload pictures, etc. so my reports will be intermittent at best. Will continue with this tale when we reach a stronger signal.