The guest for Good Morning Amsterdam was Philip Birkenstein who is onboard selling Faberge Eggs. He is always selling, not surprisingly, and he gave some additional insight about Faberge Eggs.
At 9 am every sea day in the Explorers lounge is the “Crafters Meet”. This was originally called “Sit, Knit and Needlework” but was changed to “Crafters Meet” after Bali. It never really mattered much what they called it after the first week as everyone who was interested knew where to go. They did try having it in the Crow’s Nest for a day or two, but that didn’t work out and it has been in the Explorers Lounge at 9 am ever since Panama Canal.
At 1100 am in the Queens Lounge was “Chatting with the Stripes” with Captain Mercer, Staff Captain Van Benthem and Chief Engineer Robert Vlaardingerbroek. The three officers sat on the stage and answered questions from the audience for almost an hour. I never saw it rebroadcast on TV and as a general rule, the only events consistently rebroadcast are the port lectures and Good Morning Amsterdam. If you really want to hear a lecture or speaker, best to go in person to avoid disappointment.
Here is a summary of a few of the more interesting questions and answers. 95% of the questions were on point and interesting. There were only a couple of complaint question/speeches about the volume of the ships alarms.
- Why did the ship experience an unusual heel after leaving Livorno and Monaco? An electronic device that controls stability during turns wasn’t working correctly and has been fixed.
- Why was there black soot on deck one day? The ship will sometimes switch to a cleaner burning fuel in port but this fuel has a cleaning effect that blows out black soot after it “cleans” the stacks – There is no way to avoid the soot, but they try to get winds right so the soot blows out to sea rather than hit the Seaview pool.
- What changes are being considered after the grounding of Tender 9 in the Cook Islands. They are looking at using more land based tenders/ferries to avoid using the ships life boats so the risk to mandatory safety equipment is less.
- What changes are contemplated for the Amsterdam’s next overhaul? I didn’t hear the date, if it was mentioned, but they said that they will start to remodel all the atriums throughout the fleet to look more like the Koningsdam. The same for the staterooms and other public areas. While they can only do so much with the interior of a ship, the trend is to align the look and feel of all ships towards what you saw on the Koningsdam.
- What determines which side of the ship faces the port? There are 3 factors:
- Certain decks can support people leaving on either side, while some decks (A deck) only support starboard side mooring.
- Sometimes they must maneuver out of the harbor at a very precise time to avoid ferry traffic so in these cases they will have the bow facing to sea.
- Sometimes certain maintenance activities require a certain side of the ship to be accessible from the pier.
We spent the afternoon with Crafts and Texas Holdem. The Craft today was to cut a spiral into a circle of fabric creating a ruffly ribbon. The Hold’em game could only attract 8 players as a few of the regulars have left.
For dinner this evening our table went to Canaletto as a group. We had a wonderful time and the food in this restaurant is always amazing. The Ragatoni, Sea Bass and the Soup are the best things going, but everything is good. Our table ordered 1 of everything (with an extra Ragatoni – it is that good!) so we were all able to share everything and it turned out to be just the right amount of food.
The show this evening was a local Flamenco Group from Cadiz. They joined the ship in Barcelona and would be leaving us in Cadiz. I am not a big fan of Flamenco, so I am a poor judge of how good they may be, but they were interesting and it is always fun to see something new.This entry was posted in Uncategorized