A Travellerspoint blog

Noo Yoik

sunny
View QM2, Westbound Apr-May 2012 on Gelli's travel map.

On arrival, after dumping my stuff, having a coffee and setting myself up, I headed out. I had no real plan, but had pre-booked 4 nights to give me something to start from. I took the L train into Manhattan, and on a whim got off at Union Square. I saw I was on Broadway, so started walking. A couple of blocks up and I happened upon the Flatiron building. The discover that the building is not, in fact, flat, was an interesting one. I sat opposite it for about 20minutes, just gazing around, a grin slowly appearing on my face. Holy cow. I'm in New York! New York!!!!.

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My first impressions of New York had been that it was foggier and more Swedish than I expected. But then when all you can see is fog and ikea, that kind of makes sense. That image quickly passed, leaving me with more genuine first impressions. New York is somewhere that everybody knows. Even if you have never visited, you have seen it so much in Films and TV, read about it in books, magazines, travel guides and in the news. You already know mostly what you will see, what to expect. And though I did know and expect things, they still surprised me. The city was dirty, grimey. Lots of things seemed very run down: the subway though efficient, looks surprisingly neglected and worn down – even the nicest bits that I have seen look significantly worse than any parts of any other subway I have seen anywhere in the world. But what surprised me most was the rights of way: road surfaces and pavements were almost having a competition between each other to determine which could be worst. For a world-class, world-reknowned city, which is a tourist magnet and known as somewhere that everybody walks, and in a country where everybody (at least, that is how it is often portrayed - whether real or not, I don't know) is constantly on the verge of suing pretty much everybody else, the pavements and roads are truly, astonishingly and consistently awful. I have been into some of the poorest slums in Africa where “roads” are made of dirt, covered in garbage and rocks and full of holes, but I would say that many of them are safer to walk along, at least in daylight, in terms of sureness of footing. Every single step in New York needs to be carefully placed if you are to avoid rolling an ankle or breaking a leg. In fact it amazed me how few people I saw limping/on crutches, although there were 3 in the hostel one evening alone.

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The Empire State and Chrysler buildings peaking up in the distance, from Brooklyn Bridge

Once into the swing of things a bit, I found a wifi spot and sent a load of messages off to those in Europe who knew I was coming here to say I had arrived safely. To those I knew in New York, none of whom knew I was coming, to say that I was here. Otherwise, I did not allot. On the first day, I mostly just walked, and walked. Marvelling at, well, everything. By early afternoon, the sun had appeared and burnt away all of the fog. It was a glorious day. I gazed out from Battery Park finally seeing the Statue of Liberty clearly, and walked halfway across Brooklyn Bridge to a point so that I could see the QM2 at the quay in the distance, before she sailed again that evening.

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The QM2 at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, taken from Brooklyn Bridge

And that was basically that. My first day was the most fulfilling and successful. Days 2-4 comprised more walking, mostly in assorted parts of Brooklyn. I managed to meet up with most of the people I knew in New York, happily catching up with old friends, some of whom I have not seen in some time and all I know from assorted random places. People from New York State I met in China; an Irishman I know from Kampala, Uganda; 3 people I had made in assorted places in Sweden for different reasons; A fantastic Bolivian who I once did a few surreal jobs with in unlikely places and haven't seen for 10 years – I had not expected to see him but it was incredible to catch up with, although I may well not see him for another 10 years: a day later he flew out en route to Sri Lanka via Chile, Hamburg and Jakarta. And, of course, lots of new people to meet: people in the hostel, on the street and friends of friends, and I dropped into our office to say hello. I even had a couple of beers, virtually my first alcohol of 2012, at a bar part owned by some friends. Plus, I discovered the wonders of Deli sandwiches, assorted varieties of which I essentially lived off for the first few days.

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But I didn't really do anything. Yes, I saw some sights, and yes, I walked, but I didn't go into anything and didn't really “do” anything. I knew there will always be lots to do in New York, and in some ways I can't wait to explore properly, but perhaps unsurprisingly – and it was not unexpected to me at all – it was all just a bit too much. There was such a sensory overload of sights, sounds, noises; so many opportunities. So big; vast. So many people. So much, well, stuff. And I was just not up to it all yet. I had known that it was potentially the weak point in my plan to go and convalesce: turning up in New York for the first time is not conducive to convalescence. My head was beginning to swirl, I had gained an evil sore throat (probably from having stood in the cold fog for 3hours during arrival) and was again not sleeping well, partly because I appear to be in that state again and partly because the mattress was not great and both it and the pillow had plastic protective covers under the sheets - the bed both constantly, annoyingly squeaked slightly, and as it was warm, any sweat kind of made you stick to it. It was not comfortable.

By Monday, less than 72hours in and I could not wait to leave on Tuesday. I will come back in a few weeks, hopefully by then refreshed and back to something resembling humanity. I am really looking forward to it. But for now I am reverting to my only real plan, and heading out to find the middle of nowhere and a few days off nothing.

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The view from our office in New York. I'm used to seeing a car park, a field, or a tube embankment from my office!

Posted by Gelli 14:28 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Why me? Welcome to America!

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View QM2, Westbound Apr-May 2012 on Gelli's travel map.

I guess I should not really be surprised that the QM2 is in reality nothing more than a glorified ikea shuttle but it was still a tad surreal. With nothing more to be gained on deck I headed down to my cabin, shivering in the cold and soaked through : Fog, after all, is nothing more than a cloud which is too lazy to fly, and clouds are just water. I had a hot shower, and then went upstairs to join the queues for breakfast. I stocked up as much as I could and 2nd cup of tea in hand returned to the deck to survey the scene. After a week of essentially doing nothing except avoiding any rogue icebergs and shaking hands with rich passengers, the captain and crew had definitely earned their wages this morning. Daylight had by now fully broken, and though the fog was clearing, it was not an immediate process. Parts of Manhatten and it's skyline were now visible, though muted as opposed to gloriously lit up. The view including the top of 1 WTC which only 2 days earlier had become the tallest building in New York, and although the top was visible the middle section was still hidden by fog. The Statue was more obvious, though detail still not clear. Brooklyn Bridge was visible, and the fog was definitely clearing up, though slowly. This morning would not be a good time for anybody who planned a trip up the Empire State Building.

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That is the world famous vista of the Manhattan skyline. Yes, exactly. It mean's i'll have to come back and do it all again in order to get a good view! Note the top of the under construction 1 WTC just appearing out of the fog, with lower reaches still hidden

Standing on deck, It all felt quite surreal and I had one of those “I can't quite believe I am really here” moments that I occasionally have. It felt quite strange but I also felt pretty good, especially in comparison with how I have been for the last few months. I muttered a phrase that I never expected to say: 'Good morning New York City', shivered in the still early morning cold and started pondering the next few weeks.

I had packed the night before – slightly disconcertingly my bag felt both lighter and emptier than when I boarded despite having gained a bottle of bubbly – and after checking my stuff, I paid up and closed my on-board account (previous voyages have all been well into hundreds of dollars. This trip was the princely sum of $13.58) and was back on deck, yet more tea in hand and marvelling as New York City slowly woke up and began to appear, whilst simultaneously being happy to be here and wishing I was still in bed.

I had chosen early self check-out, which basically meant that I was amongst those allowed off first providing I was happy to carry all of my own luggage and accept that there would be no assistance available. As I had little stuff, that was no problem. Immigration took a bit of time, but I was eventually stamped in, welcomed and kicked out on to the streets of a dodgy part of Brooklyn at 07.05 am. For a few short minutes, I just stood and surveyed the scene idly wondering if a taxi might, indeed, be cleverer than a walk. Foolish talk; I was aching for a good walk, and the taxi queue was already over 100deep with not a taxi in sight. And so I took my first steps on my fourth continent - still no planes although I suspect that the remaining 3 will be beyond me. Sooner or later I will have to fly, and I guess that it will probably be this year – mentally visualised my route to the nearest subway and started trudging through Red Hook.

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No, I don't know why I always look so miserable in self portrait shots either

In such a rush before I had left England, I had not looked into arrival at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal and had only discovered whilst at sea that virtually no map or tourist guide on-board bothers to map that part of Brooklyn. It took me three days to find somebody who could even tell me where the dock is, and the only map of the area I could find was in a fellow passengers 1999 Lonely Planet that I had had a quick perusal of. From that I had gleaned that it was quite a rough old industrial area and the subway was about a mile/20minute walk away.

That, indeed, proved to be the case. Well done LP! What it didn't tell me was that the station – Smith & 9th – was shut for 9months for reconstruction. It also didn't tell me that all hell was breaking loose, as just as I came up to the station all the sirens I could hear around me simultaneously converged on the shop 50metres ahead, and the owner came running out waving a huge carving knife and shouting at all the police (who were running around like headless chickens with guns pointed at everything and everyone anywhere nearby, including me) “They went that way! They went that way!” whilst pointing off ahead of me.

Something about the scene told me that now was not the time to ask which the closest open station was. Happily, at this point the subway is elevated, so easy to follow, which I did. At the next stop, Carroll Street, I put my brand new US Dollar prepay debit card (I had thought I was being clever getting such a thing) into the machine to buy a ticket, whereupon it promptly got stuck. Completely stuck. 30Minutes, 7 people taking turns at trying to grasp the card and pull, lots of laughing and frustration and very, very careful use of a pair of scissors borrowed from the security office and I had prised it out. But the transaction had long since cancelled itself and I still had no ticket. I wasn't going to put another card in, so tried cash. I only had 50's. The price was $29. The maximum change given was $4. ****. So out I went, to find a shop and buy something – anything – in order to get change. That should also have been easier, but 20minutes later I had a bottle of coke and a subway ticket and was on a train going in the correct direction.

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Brooklyn Bridge. Another glorious view hidden by the fog!

By this point, I just wanted to sit down, have a coffee and decompress slightly – gather my thoughts again. So I got off in central Brooklyn, assuming that finding a starbucks, coffeebucks, mcdonalds or something – anything – would not be that hard. I had reckoned without downtown Brooklyn being mostly closed, despite the number of people wandering around, and when I eventually found a coffee shop it had nowhere to sit. So I gave up, found another subway station, and headed to the hostel I had booked. What should have been a 45minute-ish trip from boat to front door had taken over 3hours, but I had made it, they had my reservation and even bed available at that early stage, and their was coffee brewing. I was finally there.

In the following few hours I witnessed 3 accidents, saw/heard more emergency sirens than in an average few months in London and saw a building on fire. America was going to welcome me in the way it saw fit. Later that afternoon it culminated when I went into a phone store to buy a SIM card. The transaction was going fine until the door opened and a drunk &/or insane &/or homeless guy burst through shouting incoherently, his hands full of shit – literally, handfulls of shit – which he dumped on the counted before promptly vomiting over himself and everything nearby.

That night, I had an early one and was just dozing off when 3 people came in a few minutes apart. They started whispering to each other in English, which was ok. What wasn't was that after about 10minutes, one suddenly asked another if they were French. Upon discovery that they were all, indeed, French, the dorm light was switched on and a discussion suddenly commenced at a great rate of decibels. Why you whisper in English and shout in French, I don't know, but this persisted with increased levels of excitement until I decided to utilise my best French and told them all to shut the f*** up so I could sleep.

To be fair, it was probably the best first day I could have got, as it meant that my levels of expectation were near rock bottom. From here, things could only get better.

Posted by Gelli 23:17 Archived in USA Tagged arriving Comments (0)

Fog, Fog, Glorious Fog

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View QM2, Westbound Apr-May 2012 on Gelli's travel map.

It was an inauspicious start. After a few good nights, I had reverted to only very limited and poor quality sleep. I had finally dozed off properly and was in the middle of a very strange deja-vu style dream (I couldn't tell you what about any more – it is unusual for me to even know if I have dreamt) when the alarm went off at 04:20, and I dragged my sorry arse out of bed. But there was anticipation, excitement in my mood.

Even at this hour some other people were stirring, and I hurried up to my pre-planned vantage point on the front of deck 11, just below the bridge, to gaze at the glorious vista of New York lights in front of me. Or, I would have done if there had been any. In fact, there was nothing except fog. Lots and lots of fog. The fog was so thick that it was a struggle to even see the waterline below. Occasional glimpses of the water confirmed that yes, we were indeed still moving, but other than that, no clue.

Our fog horn went off at regular intervals, and even though we all knew it was coming it was still loud enough to make us all jump. Something in the back of my head told me that I had spent many hundred pounds and seven days on a ship, getting up at an hour which would be illegal in some cultures, just to see the approach to New York and all for nothing. The rest of humanity – and my friends – were probably correct. I really should just fly. Pah!

But at this point there was nothing left to do but enjoy anyway, and get involved in the kind of morbid banter with other passengers that only the Brits can in such a situation. By glimpsing occasional dim buoy lights to the starboard side, we knew we we're “in the channel” and on approach. Another dim light that we thought was a buoy turned out to be the stern of a harbour tanker, probably 100metres long and which we passed at maybe all of 25metres, yet only saw when we were practically alongside. We had passed half of the boat before we could see the bright light on it's front. The pilots boat travelling adjacent to us we saw only the lights of.

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There is water there somewhere, but the fog was so thick it was hard to work out where

As we approached the Verazanno-Narrows Bridge – a massive 2mile long/211m high structure that we passed under with only 4metres clearance – we saw nothing. We could hear the traffic on it about 20seconds away, but did not see it until we were virtually underneath it. My eyesight is one of the few things that really work and I saw it first: a ghostly line of lights at about head height. 2-3seconds later, everybody else saw it. A further 2 seconds and we were passing under it, almost as a shock despite it being lit up and on a clear day, being visible for many miles and minutes. It's sudden ghostly appearance *just* over our heads was both a bit spooky, and really cool. And at that point, we suddenly had precise confirmation of where we were.

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The Verazanno-Narrows Bridge suddenly appears at a distance of a few metres. On a clear day, it can be seen for miles, whilst (below) looking back as the ship sneaks underneath it

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On any normal entrance to the harbour, at this point the woman holding a torch would be dead ahead, the Manhattan skyline showing in all of it's glory. Today, nothing. As daylight slowly began to break and the fog marginally cleared, we started to see the outline of the lights of the Brooklyn shoreline. A few minutes later, a Staten Island ferry appeared just next to us. Still no woman and torch, no tall buildings.

Eventually, as we slowly turned past Governors Island, I spotted her. The mythical Statue of Liberty, a gift from the French (though how many American's know/admit to that is perhaps unsurprisingly quite small) maybe only a couple of hundred metres away, and only just a dim outline in the distance with a tiny light. Again I was the first to see her, but as we then turned away, many people who's eyesight was not perfect did not see her at all. Of the Manhattan skyline, there was still nothing.

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The least exciting photo of the Statue of Liberty that you will ever see, just glimpsed as we approached the dock. Again, on a clear day, visible from a much greater distance and looking much more spectacular!

We then slowly turned, backed and manoeuvred into out moorings at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal; at that point, looking out over Brooklyn I got my first view of proper land; of America. A few warehouses, some containers, a parking lot and my first American word. I actually laughed out loud when I saw it. Unmistakeable despite the fog, it proudly said “IKEA”...

Posted by Gelli 12:07 Archived in USA Tagged monuments ships transatlantic Comments (0)

Last days at sea

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View QM2, Westbound Apr-May 2012 on Gelli's travel map.

A few days along and I have settled in. As is normal for me on a ship, I have acquired a basic routine now I know what is going on. One logical curiosity of the trip is the combination of time zones and journey time mean that the clocks change virtually every night (6 out of 7) – thus on a Westbound voyage, the days are generally 25hours long. After the first night the scene was quite empty, with just the occasional bird to be seen until Day 5 when occasional cargo ships started to be spotted as well as a random airplane that circled the ship one evening and came, I assume, from Newfoundland. After 24 hours on board, I was further West than I have ever been in my life and rapidly moving more into the unknown hemisphere.

Though I have found my niche on board, I have felt increasingly out of place. Whilst I freely admit that I haven't 'played the game' fully, at no point have I have ever really felt welcome on the ship. I have thus found it much harder to relax than normal, and making connections has also not really happened. In theory, I should find it easier to fall into conversation with people on this trip than on my HAL trips - the vast majority of people on board are native English speakers, and whilst many passengers are much older as a percentage there are more younger people. In practice, I have found it harder to connect with people. Although I talked to any number of people, I only managed to have anything resembling a meaningful conversation in isolated cases. For the first time on departing a ship, there is not a single person who I will stay in touch with once ashore or would wish to become friends with.

Thus instead of being social, making friends with crew or drinking beer, all of which were regular features of previous trips, I have spent more time alone, often in my cabin or reading in the library. Plans to attempt some work rapidly went up in a plume of smoke – literally - when the power supply on my macbook went BANG! on the first sea day, rendering me sadly mac-less for the voyage. Frequent strong winds and squalls (it was, after all, the North Atlantic in April/early May and not prime summer weather. Heck, 100 years ago this month, the Titanic and other ships were encountering icebergs on this very journey) limited the amount of time that could comfortably be spent on deck or that I would normally spend outside, although I still went out as much as possible and also tried to do a few laps every day at least. I went to a solo traveller meet on Day 2 (which was very, very scary being full of mostly retired American and Canadian ladies who seem to virtually live on cruise ships and I can only assume are not lacking the odd dollar – several had just completed the 4 month round the world voyage, and at least 3 had been on board for more than a year. To put into context, at the very cheapest rate that would cost me about 3 years salary just for the cabin alone), took in a couple of lectures, and watched some films and sport shown via satellite link in the main auditoriums.

In the early evening of Day 5 we passed 50miles north of the final resting place of RMS Titanic, a slightly eerie and sobering moment on any transatlantic voyage, but more poignant in the 100th anniversary of it's sinking and barely a couple of weeks after a memorial cruise had come this way. But onwards, relentlessly we sailed. I tried hard to empty my head, to relax, to forget things and to a point it definitely worked. Perhaps not quite as well as I would have hoped, but it was not bad. After all, I was no longer in Newbury. I also managed to sleep about as much during the week as in the previous month or two combined, and for that reason alone the trip has been worthwhile.

Though it has not been a bad voyage, I admit that it has probably been the least enjoyable of all my voyages to date. It is also the first time that I have been increasingly happy that I will be disembarking soon; on all previous ships I would have been content to remain on board for longer. I am not entirely sure why, but guess that my mental and physical state have probably not helped and the novelty of passenger trips has also probably worn off. But as previously noted, I don't fit the desired demographic of passenger and feel quite awkward because of it. This does not necessarily bode well for the return voyage, especially as an administrative balls-up has led to my paying in excess of 400gbp more than I should have done – something I had resigned myself to before this voyage, but after this experience it certainly hasn't helped my mood about the incident. I may well have company on my return trip, which will force me to get some fancy clothes and play the game more, and it may mean I enjoy it more. I should also be much healthier, which will be a definite help. Time will tell. But on this trip at least, though I have enjoyed being at sea again, especially after finding a nice spot to watch the sea, I have found the whole experience just a bit, well, oddly underwhelming. I have realised that I miss the slight chaos of German chartered HAL ships, but more than that, I really miss the freedom of cargo ships.

Oh well. Tomorrow is a new day, and assuming I can prize myself awake in time, I should see the promised land – America; New York City – slowly appear though the dawn.

Posted by Gelli 04:46 Archived in USA Tagged boats ships transatlantic Comments (0)

Slop onboard

all seasons in one day

One of the main events of any time at sea is the cuisine. Whether a container ship or a cruise ship, life almost inevitably ends up revolving around food. It is quite interesting. The QM2 was no exception. The number of options available means that your main daily decisions are often based around where you are going to eat. I have the program for Tuesday 1st to hand, and it lists 5 different locations which I could choose to go for breakfast, nine for lunch and seven for dinner, many of which had several options within them. Should none appeal, room service is a constant extra option, as are “between meal” snacks.

In general, I found Breakfast to be pretty good. Because a majority of people ate casually, the choice in the Kings Court was pretty good: everything from cereal and porridge through continental to full English. Having said that, on the one morning that I braved the 'proper' dinning room, though having some extra options and being fairly tasty, my choice of breakfast (smoked haddock and scrambled eggs – for which it took a long discussion to be allowed to have both together and not individually as on the menu) transpired to be so small – bear in mind that I was essentially ordering 2 breakfasts by this choice - and the fish full of bones, that on finishing I headed up to the buffet for a second breakfast to help me make it through to lunch. Lunch, similarly, had a number of options, from simple sandwiches through numerous cooked options – served or self service - to pub lunches (served, of course, in the pub). Afternoon snacks and late lunch were available, ditto traditional Afternoon tea (with or without champagne and service charge), although options were generally less than I had encountered elsewhere and the inevitable late night snack was rarely hugely appealing. In fact, although not small, in virtually every case I found the food or the available options (or both) to be inferior to other passenger ships I have travelled on, and in cases less appealing even than that which I have experienced on freight ships, which I found somewhat surprising.

It was at dinner that I really struggled. Upon booking, each guest is assigned to one of the three main restaurants: the suites split between two restaurants for (doubtless) fancy eating, and the rest of us in the Britannia; a large double level venue which was additionally spilt into an early and a late seating. The problem was that many of the guests were here for the “full experience”, and Cunard actively advertised that very experience. For many that included dressing up in full tuxedo et al, and I would guess a majority were also paying significantly more money than I was for their journey; this is at odds with how I normally travel, and although paying a not inconsiderable single supplement, I was very much travelling steerage.

Every night on-board, one of three dress codes applies and this is enforced in the Britannia restaurant. The problem is that I am not a hugely formal person, and thus was not up to the required standard and so denied access. In fact, even if I had brought all the clothes that I have ever owned along, I would only have barely qualified for the least formal of the three, the “casual” days (shirt, shoes and jacket) – the semi-formal and formal requirements being well out of my league. I knew this beforehand and thus it was not something I had worried about as I was assured that less formal options were always available. On HAL ships, I had pretty much lived off the less formal options, and still had superb food and choice throughout. But on the QM2, this becomes less friendly. With the main Britannia not open to me, I explored other options. The Todd English restaurant also enforced the dress code, and charged a supplement to dine there. Worse, the casual Kings Court area changed at night, so that 3 of the 4 sectors became reservation only, charged a supplement and though not as strict as elsewhere also enforced a dress code. With certain other options not serving dinner, it left me with room service (food ok, but when your room doesn't even have a window, not necessarily enticing) and the final Kings Court option. Here, at least, I could eat without having to be wearing fancy clothes, although even here t-shirts, jeans etc were banned. There was normally a decent turnover of people eating in this location, and at least a handful of regulars indicated that I was not the only person travelling without approved clothing. But sadly, on most evenings, I found the food here was remarkably poor and generally unappetising. It reminded me more of the bottom end of my days as a student in halls of residence than any type of restaurant, and certainly was below my expectations despite the fact that it was reasonably popular.

After a couple of days had proved to me that it wasn't a one off, I started eating more earlier in the day and not relying on large tasty dinners. But the fact that most other people on the ship were dressed up also made me feel unusually self-conscious and once I was actively removed from a communal area on the first night by exceptionally rude staff who obviously wanted to make a scene (my bag had not even arrived in my cabin by then, so even if I had had clothing to change into, it would have been impossible), in that instant I knew I was in for a long week and was not really welcome on board.

As I am still currently off alcohol, it was not a major issue but I was also disappointed to note that several bars open during the day were closed in evenings (including all outside venues), which meant options were limited to the deck 2 and 3 public areas, all within the dress-code areas. In effect, after dark, people not dressed up were limited to room service for their alcoholic needs. Thus by evenings I generally avoided large parts of the ships communal areas staying in the upper deck casual areas, in my cabin, wandering outside looking at stars (on the clear nights) or being buffeted by the wind and rain (more frequent), or occasionally watch the evening showing of the day's film. That way I could avoid the disapproving looks that some of the crew would give me for how I was dressed, and feel a bit more relaxed. I am sure for the majority of people everything was fine, but for me I just found that the experience was not as relaxing or as enjoyable as it really should be. And therein lies the crux.

It is an odd conundrum: For a non-flyer such as myself, probably the single most useful ship in the world is the QM2: A regular, scheduled passenger ship, which goes somewhere very tricky to get to by land. But it is also deliberately an extremely formal ship, and I am by nature, generally very un-formal. In addition, even though the QE2 it replaced was a third of the size in terms of tonnage, she had a number of single cabins designed for regular travellers, whereas the QM2 has none – hitting solo travellers instead with single supplement of 90%. Put together, it means that the QM2 is probably the least useful or “user-friendly” ship in the world for someone like me. I simply do not fit with it's desired demographic. It is quite odd, and I find it a bit frustrating and paradoxically, if I do end up based in North America for a while as currently envisioned, the presence of such a ship and a service may end up contributing more to me eventually flying than if no such passenger service existed at all.

In a perverse way, though, I was glad that at least one thing measured up to my past experiences on HAL ships. But consistency can be over rated at times, and sadly the coffee on the QM2 is as truly awful as I remember it being on the Westerdam.

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I have never had a sweet-tooth, but even i found some of the cake selections tempting. Sadly, some of the rest of the food did not live up to the cakes

Posted by Gelli 16:11 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged food ships transatlantic Comments (1)

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