Voyages of Discovery had organised my flights to Rome for the Springtime European Voyager cruise on their current ship, Voyager. I had only done Discovery once in 2012 and that was roundtrip Harwich so transfers were new to me. I have had hits and misses with other lines over the years so expected nothing. Due to the flight being Easter Monday, I headed to Gatwick the day before in pouring rain, where I’d booked into the Premier Inn right opposite the North Terminal. The description said soundproof but it was noise reduced only. The flight itself was 1455 so plenty of time. Two VOD reps were waiting by check-in to check your name off. Check-in a doddle apart from an error when she swiped my passport. Turned out someone (BA or VOD, I have no idea) entered my Executive Club number incorrectly so once I gave it to the lady, everything was fine. The transfer, once the long trek was over and the bus turned up, was perfect. Our guide, Lucia, gave running commentary as we headed to Civitavecchia. And there we got first glimpse of our bambina, all alone apart from ferries.
We were the first bus to arrive. They had organised check-in at the terminal in alphabetical groups, which made sense. When I’d done Discovery, it was Discovery Club members and the shorter queue of first timers like me. Your passports were taken, card handed over and after a dockside walk, boarding. My cabin was 4115, right near the forward stairs.
Dinner was in the Discovery Restaurant. They now had open seating between 6.30pm-9pm so you could easily escape the Hyacinths for the duration! I went to the wrong door but Eric saw me. He had been my head waiter on Discovery 19 months prior, gave me a hug and not only remembered my friend, Rob O’Brien, who had been with me then, but also my dietary requirement. I was amazed! Sadly Raffie has gone to Carnival while Reagan got off several ports ago. You still pre-order but tell them your cabin number wherever you’re sitting. Had a wander afterwards and ended up chatting to the barman in the Sunset Bar for a while before going to bed.
As we were staying overnight, I had my first cruise stalking! Voyager would be alone no longer as Eurodam, Berlin and Costa Serena were due to keep her company. Berlin is smaller than we are! The deck cleaner left me in my dry corner. Awww. On many other lines they soak you regardless.
Breakfast, dock photos then back to sleep!
Eurodam left before 4pm. We went at 6pm.
They have singles meetings in the Sunset Bar so I went along to that then some of us went for a group dinner. I ended up chatting to Alan and Carol mainly. Snackette at 10.30pm then bed.
Livorno was our first port of call. We were originally scheduled for 9am and sailing 6pm but it was changed to 7.30am-7pm, which was better. We followed Nieuw Amsterdam, Eurodam, Seabourn Spirit and ferries into the port.
I took the opportunity to explore the ship before an afternoon nap.
The Seabourn sailed just after 6pm. We left an hour later, as did Eurodam, loud blasts between her and her sister.
The show in the Darwin Lounge was Those Were The Days then bed.