Better to arrive than to travel, don’t you think?

I have never been a big fan of journeys especially the back-aching car drive to the South of France, the mind numbing overnight flight to Kathmandu, the slow and constant stopping train journey to Glasgow. Each presents an opportunity to practice the deepest of Buddhist meditation techniques or of making oneself a firm candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize by being kind to lager guzzling football fans on the train, airport security staff who think my wife’s hairbrush is a knife, or French drivers in general! Destinations rule OK!

Cruises are different, a ship is a luxury city that moves, it has restaurants, bars, cinemas, theatre, coffee bars, shops, a library, a casino, a games room, swimming pools, a spa, a gym. Entertainments are available across each day; quiz sessions, wine tasting, dance classes, yoga and tai chi sessions, bingo, plays and musicals, themed talks and lectures, cookery classes, concerts, discos and dances ……… and lots of interesting people, some on their first cruise, some who do a dozen or so each year!

On our last cruise we met a couple who were both in their early 90s and unmarried. Each had lost their partners a decade or so ago and they had come together in companionship via their love of cruising. They had been round the world three times, had completed almost 100 cruises, and often took back-to-back cruises which needs a little explaining. They told us that as you were ending a cruise, say with a couple of days to go, you could get EXTREMELY cheap deals on wherever the ship was going next provided it was a 24 hour turn around. They were just completing a Mediterranean cruise with us, and prior to this they were ending a Caribbean cruise in Southampton and got a 50% discount to carry on. Yesterday they decided to stay on the ship as it disgorged it’s current passengers and took on new ones before setting sail for 10 days in the warmth of The Canary Islands. They were absolutely adamant that it’s a cheap way to live as well as being “quite exciting” because of no food bills or utility bills, no fuel bills, etc etc. They are waited on hand and foot and have round the clock entertainment. They were so enthusiastic in telling us I always have a smile on my face when I think about this marvellous old couple who said the only downside is needing almost a years supply of their daily medications in a separate suitcase!!!
“Being aware of fellow travellers is worthy of mindful attention. Everyone has their own story, their own journey and their own preoccupations. Allow them space ……. and courtesy.” (The little book of Mindful Travel)

Here are a few impressions of a typical day “at sea”:

Categories: Travel

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5 replies

  1. Ha!! Spell check!! 😤 I meant obviously… obviously!! 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So glad you’ve found a type of holiday that you love and that begins as soon as you start the journey! We’re invisibly just not so keen on coping with the movements of the ship!! 🤢

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have never been on a cruise and never intend going on one unless they clean up their act in a major way and that, unfortunately, is unlikely. The environmental damage they are causing is enormous.
    Aswell as that many people don’t realise that they are actually health hazards due to the emissions they are letting off which the passengers are breathing in.
    You may be interested in an article in The Guardian titled “How Environmentally Friendly Is Your Cruise Holiday?”
    Also as a lover of Italy and the country being dear to my heart I find the damage it is doing to Venice without any regard or respect at all is heartbreaking.


  4. We love cruising for all the reasons you mentioned. Love the story of the elderly couple, what a great way to live the remainder of your life.

    Liked by 1 person

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