SA: Scenic Cruising – Cape Horn

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Once we got cleaned up for the evening, we went for those drinks at the Ocean Bar and then to the main dining room. We asked for a table for two since neither of us had the energy to make a lot of conversation or spend a long time in the dining room. We didn’t have to wait too long for a table.

I wish HAL would copy Carnival’s dining app. If you have any time dining on Carnival and you are ready to eat, you can request a table, list the number of people eating, willing to share a table or not, and then the app will let you know the approximate wait time and then alert you when the table is ready. No standing in line, no hovering around the maitre’d station – just show your app info to the maitre’d and you are escorted right to the table. It’s nice that you can keep doing what you are doing until your table is ready. HAL and Carnival are in the same Carnival Corporation group so I would hope they share info like IT practices.

Tonight, I had the short ribs with black olives and Chuck had the wiener schnitzel. I really like the schnitzel, but I haven’t ordered it since the time on a previous cruise they brought me one the size of the whole dinner plate. I wasted half of it.

The ship was supposed to leave at 8:00 but tenders were still coming back from Ushuaia. I was so glad not to be on one of those tenders. We didn’t leave until 9:00. The sun was still out and shining like it was noon.

I was done for the evening and pulled the curtains closed and pinned them with my deck chair towel holders. Since the ship was underway, Chuck went to get in on the poker.

The Captain said we would be rounding Cape Horn in the morning. Time approximate.

I woke up at 6:00. Meant to get up as I wanted to be ready when we got close to Cape Horn. Wouldn’t you know that instead of getting up, I fell right back to sleep.

At 7:00, the Captain came on through the room PA system (which is rare) to announce that we were getting close to Cape Horn and the visibility would be really clear to see the lighthouse and the albatross statue if we wanted to see them. I was so glad he made the announcement into the rooms instead of just the hallways. I never would have heard the announcement, missed it all, and been so disappointed in myself.

He said the bow would be open but to be careful as it was very windy.

I jumped up like I had been shot out of a cannon. Pulled on my clothes, coat, hat, and gloves and grabbed my– camera and got straight to the sea view deck. The wind was fierce – moving chairs along the deck.

At the closest point he could get, the Captain turned the ship in a circle so all could look. I never went out on the bow because of wind but I did go down to the promenade deck for some more photos.

The Captain said there was a married couple, their five-year-old son, and their cat living at the lighthouse. They have a two-year commitment to be stewards of the lighthouse. He didn’t say what happens after the commitment is up.

Not sure what this building is
Very tip of the southern-most point of Cape Horn

There were some albatrosses flying around.

As we sailed away from the lighthouse and the statue, the Captain read the poem by Sara Vial that is engraved with the statue:

I am the albatross that awaits you
At the end of the world.
I am the forgotten souls of dead mariners
Who passed Cape Horn
From all the oceans of the world.
But they did not die
In the furious waves.
Today they sail on my wings
Toward eternity,
In the last crack
Of the Antarctic winds.

Travel Trivia

Cape Horn

Cape Horn marks the northern boundary of the Drake Passage and marks where the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans meet.  On the cape near the lighthouse there is a monument. It was designed by Chilean sculptor José Balcells Eyquem in 1992 and depicts an albatross in flight—the seafaring symbol for souls lost at sea.

Today, the Panama Canal has greatly reduced the need for cargo ships to travel via the Horn. However, sailing around the Horn is still widely regarded as one of the major challenges in yachting.

Traditionally, a sailor who had rounded the Horn was entitled to wear a gold loop earring—in the left ear, the one which had faced the Horn in a typical eastbound passage—and to dine with one foot on the table.

Google photo – albatross

Author: mmmtravelmemories

A retired college administrator who loves to travel. I write to remember the experiences and, I hope, to inspire others to make their own travel memories.

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