Juanita and I went on our Island Discovery tour and the escort didn’t seem to know she had to take the ticket and we weren’t given a map as we boarded so Juanita went to get some. The earlier one was in reverse order so began at the lighthourse where they had their snack an hour after leaving the ship. Ours began at Aksla, the viewing point overlooking the city. We saw Marina and Ryndam berthed but poor Aurora was out of sight!
There was also a coastguard rescue exercise going on. Next stop after going through a tunnel or two (can’t remember) was Giske, which was where I learned about the morning tours’ route. Nothing there to look at apart from an old church so I went Aurora hunting!
Then it was up to the lighthouse and refreshments. The girl was a bit stroppy with our guide because we were early and they must keep to their schedule. Juanita went up the top but I kept my feel firmly on the ground!
Refreshments consisted of a pancake each drowned in sugar and you ate with your fingers, tea/coffee and cake. Then back to town. We drove around a bit as the guide told us what was what and we had an opportunity to be dropped off or return to the ship.
Juanita was going walkabout but my back hurt so I opted to get off for a while, take snaps of Ryndam as up close and personal as security allowed then catch the shuttle.
Confusion reigned as to how frequently they ran but I was lucky and one pulled up as I was heading back to the tourist information centre anyway while another was already there. Juanita told me later she asked inside and they didn’t have a clue. I got a shot of a statue without realising a seagull just perched on the head. I had a nap after getting back to the ship and when I woke up the sun had been replaced by heavy rain! During dinner it was announced the show had a technical problem so would be replaced by the comedian. After dinner we went to cheer Marge and Cedric on at their second show singing in Carmens. Gareth and Beth joined us. It was very good and Cedric really got into the swing of it all.
Then they had dancing and the nearly dead took it very seriously because they brought their dancing shoes! We left after a while and as we passed Champions, Gavin saw us and said, “Where were you?” so we replied, “Back there”. He was giving the answers to the quiz anyway. I went to the photo shop and an Italian nearly dead lady was moaning to Darren about everything, although I do agree about the Arctic Circle certificate photo. That was really bad of them. I told the girl who served me about Darren showing his builder’s bum when taking the photo of the geyser in Reykjavik and she loved that, making him embarrassed. Sailaway was about half an hour early in the pouring rain.
Next morning was Geiranger in the cold, wet and wind! I had last been here in June 2008 on the QE2 and it was lovely weather. When I got up we were almost there so early again. There was a Code Alpha for a cabin on A deck as we were having our ropes secured.
I went back to bed for an hour since Costa Deliziosa was now 11am instead of 10am. When I woke up and put the webcam on, I saw Marina in the fjord! She wasn’t meant to be there until 1.30pm so I dashed up a deck and managed to get her before she went out of sight.
Being up the top would have been better (despite the crappy glass) but I wasn’t going to soak when I had shelter. Not long after I’d made myself comfy in one of the chairs the nearly dead put close to the heat extractor, the Costa sneaked around the corner.
I returned to the cabin after she anchored and heard Agostinho’s assistant say my name so he must have told him I was back again. When I went 20 minutes later, I told Agosthino I really was going this time. I went down to deck 4 for the tender. Rather annoyingly we were doing it badly AGAIN! It was one on, one off despite four being in the water. Marina and the Costa had at least two alongside the dock with the Costas often waiting to get alongside. The cloud was horrendously low but thankfully was slowly lifting by the time I landed ashore. Pity it was still raining! I wandered to where the webcam is to take some photos of the ships and met a lady from Marina who took my picture with the gorgeous Aurora baby behind.
I took the photos of an Italian couple from the Costa and an American couple from Marina then wandered back up and talked a while to the poor soaked Explorers girl about the tours. Juanita’s Birksdall Glacier is half a day from Olden apparently instead of the full day here. The bloke in the bear suit for Costa photos was mucking about so I told the Costa lady about Darren at Akeuryri. I had a wander around getting the ships, had my photo taken by a German bloke who’s wife told him to. They spoke no English so I tried remembering my limited German. “Mit Aurora” is the thing to say, folks! We got on the bus about 12.10pm and we had a proper coach rather than the usual one. Our guide was German and called Oliver. I was sat beside the Italian nearly dead lady who moaned from the moment we set off up to Mount Dalsnibba. Web couldn’t see a damn thing for the cloud despite the sun slowly burning it off.
We also only had fifteen minutes there and half an hour at the stop to buy things at the bottom of the road. The cafe part there was closed off due to a booking, probably from the other cruise ships. Our final stop was at Flydal Gorge, the best viewing point in my opinion and thank goodness the rain had stopped during the tour. We had a mere ten minutes here. As usual, the more interesting parts have sod all and boring ages!
Back to the webcam as soon as we got back then to the tender and room service as soon as I got in. That was very fast arriving, just 15 minutes. Meanwhile above in the theatre, they appeared to be fixing the problem with their hammering and drilling! Marina was due to sail at 5pm so I decided to get her, change for semi-formal then go back out for the Costa and us at 6pm. As usual the best laid plans of ships and stalkers….. While Marina’s ropes were thrown at 5.20pm there were still two tenders outstanding. One of those was raised 7 minutes later, the other 4 minutes after that while both tender docks were closed by 5.44pm and then she picked up a bit of speed, disappearing from sight just before 6pm. Bugger!
We then left, giving three blasts, doing some more as we passed the Costa with her replying. Quick change for dinner and everyone thought we weren’t going because we were a bit late.
Since the Costa was in sight from the Medina, I headed out after dessert to get her, making a detour to the Emporium, while Juanita went to the show with Marge and Cedric.
I spotted something out the window just after 9pm so headed up to the Prom deck to try and see if it was a bloody ferry or something important. Turned out it was Marina. At the other end, the Costa had turned starboard and continued her course.
Morning was Bergen, another place I’d last been to on the QE2. It had been her last call. Both visits were tinged with sadness thinking about how much has changed in the past three years, most notably neither my mum or Lizzie are here any more. I ended up sleeping longer than I’d intended because I was knackered after the early start at Geiranger! Gemini was due at 8am as well, which is Braemar’s sister. But where would we dock? Close to where I had on Lizzie, that’s where, while Gemini went where I wanted us to – bastards! As Gemini was coming in, we began to turn so I had to change sides – double bastard! The only good thing was it was sunny and mild instead of tonnes of wet stuff – yay! But would it last????