Sunday, March 22, 2020

November 4, 2019 – Gustavia, St. Barts – Partly Cloudy – 86F – Chance of Showers

Distance from Terre-de-Haute to Gustavia, St. Barts 156 Nautical Miles

The creak kept me up last night even though I used full power ear plugs.

I had the usual breakfast upstairs but today, as a treat, I had one chocolate pancake.

It’s a long port day – the ship doesn’t leave until 11:00 PM – and a tender port.  There were only three excursions offered and none of them fit our profile.  So we are going to take advantage of the wonderful views as we sit in the clear blue water off St. Barts.

We are anchored near another small ship, the Star Legend (four life boats and about 200 passengers).  This is one of the Windstar ships – I have been offered transatlantic gigs on their ships but there have always been conflicts).  Looked like a really nice and cozy ship.

Lunch was pretty typical today – Impossible Burger (I guess it has become impossible for me to resist having these vegan food tech miracles) and salad bar.  

A lot of folks must be off ship because the pool deck appears empty.

After lunch we retired to the Silk reading room where I was hoping to have a mojito keep me company – alas, there was no fresh mint so the bartender made me a lime heavy, rum heavy concoction that was so strong I had to dilute it with diet Sprite to make it drinkable.  I nursed that drink (no name) while I finished “The Fallen Angel”.  The bad guys all got it in the end but in ways that are not quite typical for the Gabriel Allon books.  I returned the e-book to the library and checked out “The Wong Side of Goodbye”, the next Harry Bosch novel in my list. I am going to try to finish this book before we get home on Friday.

We spent the whole afternoon reading, sipping, and watching tenders run back and forth from Gustavia, the capital city (town/village).  

St. Barts is a French Island and accepts Euros rather than dollars.  At one time, St. Barts (supposedly named for Chris Columbus’ brother, Bartolomeo) was Swedish so the people named the named the town for King Gustav.  The name stuck so the French Island has a Swedish-named capitol.

We are back at Table 32 with our favorite waiter, Dragan, who by the way, has a son working in the Waterside Restaurant.  Our kosher meals were there – another knockwurst for me (a huge diet awaits me when we get back) this time along with onion rings and lamb chops for Ellen.  A pre-meal salad, lettuce plus fava beans, blue cheese crumbled, and other stuff in a raspberry vinaigrette, was excellent.

We went to In Town Tonight featuring vocalist Jamila.  I had indicated in my journal from a previous cruise that Jamila (Ajibade) had put on a great show.  She did so tonight, as well. The first half of the show was the same – “Fever”, Fifth Dimension Medley, Supremes Medley – but the second half was brand new for me.  She did “Someone Like You” from “Jekyll and Hyde” (excellent) and finished with the best version of “Hallelujah” I have ever heard.  Instead of the rumbling background, the full showband played a rousing backup to her perfect three verses (ones that usually don’t get sung) of the song.  It was fantastic.  I am not sure the audience fully appreciated it. Tonight, Jamila was in perfect voice singing a perfect song list.

From the show, we went up to the Palm Court to listen to Double Malt Duo do soft rock favorites – we stayed for both of their sets.  They are perfect for late night listening – just acoustic guitars and piano.  Their voices are unique and they are totally unintelligible when they speak (Reflections did not reveal their background) but their music is great.

Clocks go back an hour tonight – the US is already back on Standard Time.

We stayed up until the tenders were back on board and the ship started moving.

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