– Tuesday until 5/4/19 – Saturday
5 days at sea may seem like a boring proposition. Believe it or not,
we were crazy busy and struck that we didn’t have time for all that
we wanted to do. I do believe that you would feel pretty bored
reading about our days on ship, day by day, though. So I’ll try to
compile what we did.
various exercise classes I took another Polyfit dance class and
several hula dance lessons until May 3rd when our group of
44 along with 25 ukulele players (cruise passengers also) performed
for other passengers on the ship. I wore my Hawaiian shirt, shorts,
my Kukui bracelet along with Shirley’s (dinner tablemate) Kukui
necklace with flowers in my hair. I really wished I’d had a real
Hawaiian dress (thin and light) and my own Kukui necklace so when we
landed in Honolulu I bought both.
went to every Judson Croft class on the Pacific Ocean we could make.
You can skip this section if nothing appeals to you.
Drones/Robots: They look like
torpedoes, using an external
bladder and light oil to enable the drone to go up or down in the
ocean. Argos Gliders
also have wings and a rudder to guide them into angles. They also
have a battery set on ‘tracks’ to give weight forward or backward
thus getting the nose to tilt up or down. Then the drone can travel
in a wavelike pattern. Both have GPS and robotics built in. The
oceans are filled with them.
at Sea: MARSEC (MARitime
SECurity) communicates with
the US Coast Guard using satellites stationed above the equator.
Their orbit is always at the same spot above the Earth. They are set
at 23,000 miles above Earth which is similar to the diameter around
Earth (Equator). They’re used by ships at sea. If you look at
images/videos of below the ocean in Google Earth you’ll see
sometimes what looks like tracks in the sand. These are where a
survey ship has passed over a path using a high resolution camera to
take images of the sea floor in preparation for laying a cable. The
detail shows all those indentations that aren’t visible in other
areas recorded with less resolution. When
a passenger sends a message from our ship it’s split into “packets”
which then travel through several (5?)
systems before they reach the device of the person they’re sending
the message to. Then they endure
that very complicated process to travel back to you, the sender.
That’s why the internet on a ship is far slower than what you have
at home, it’s not the ships’ fault.
Unfortunately I seem to have lost
my notes so this is what I remember: A US gentleman figured out that
if you put boxes, all of the same dimensions that would then fit to
completely fill a large space (eventually trucks, then container
ships), you could pack things more efficiently. Soon trucks beds
were given standard dimensions to work with these boxes. Businesses
caught on with how they packaged their items. In time this concept
grew throughout the US, then the world. Container ships were built,
enlarging this idea beyond trucks. Each container has locking
mechanisms at each corner so they stay “attached” to the
container above and below as well as become
attached to the floor of the ship. All
this pretty much ended the very back breaking work of dock workers
since they invented cranes to lift the containers onto waiting trucks
or trains at the dock.
and Rogue Waves: Most
waves are cause by wind. A sea shows little waves in all directions.
Swells are larger waves from remote locations. The longer a wind
blows in the same direction the water becomes organized into swells.
Waves are not water flowing forward. They are moving more like a row
of dominoes sent dropping or a sports crowd doing the “wave”.
Only energy moves along, not water.
Pollution: What was most
devastating was what we learned about drift nets. These are set out
by fisherman with buoyant balls holding them up at the top of the
water. That’s okay if the fishermen gather up their nets with fish
when its time but when they can’t find their nets or just drop them
into the sea because the nets are old or torn. Then as more fish get
caught and die the net drifts lower until it reaches the predators
like sharks who have a feast on the dead fish but then get caught
themselves and die. When the fish eventually no longer weigh down
the net it floats back up to start the process all over again. This
is besides the times when these nets get caught in a ship’s
a Holland America ship experienced (not
the one we were on) even as
we were sailing) or caught disabling some creature of the sea.
large ships have a big bulb under the bow to lessen the bow wave
which creates a drag for a ship. Ships can also have thrusters
(little engines that push water away, thus moving the ship in a
certain direction like away from a dock). Stabilizers are set back
in the starboard
and port sides of a ship. They are like airplane wings (small) when
they’re sent out into the water to help the ship not rock so badly
in rough seas. Diesel engines power the generators that provide
to run the “hotel” elements and the engines. Thus they don’t
need a long shaft connecting the motors to the propellers.
Albatross: These birds have a
total wing span of 12 feet. They are designed to glide although they
can fly enough to get off the ground. They use their large feet to
brake for landing and as their landing gear. They can “fly”/glide
for months using very little energy, never landing in that time.
They use the wind and an “S” path to incorporate the wind that
happens over waves. They turn fish they eat into energy that is
equivalent to diesel fuel, very efficient.
had our laundry done for the 2nd
time on April 30th,
figuring we could last just washing underwear until we got home. We
we’d crossed the Equator so the ship has a ceremony to celebrate
that. The King Neptune Ceremony entails various crew members being
required by “King Neptune” to swim across the pool and “kiss
the fish”. It was just an ugly metal fish, so not so terrible. We
all got certificates to mark the occasion as well.
had an agreement to meet with Jamie and Beth to play cards in the
afternoon. Eventually we decided that I didn’t need to learn
Canasta because John didn’t want to play it and the ladies I play
games with at home (9) would need to split into 2 groups/tables. I’m
sure they don’t want to do that. Sometimes
Beth and Jamie couldn’t make it so we played with Ken and Gail
(dinner tablemates). Speaking of tablemates, during this time Ross
and Rosalie decided to try Open Dining, leaving our number at 6. Ken
and Gail would be leaving the ship at Honolulu (shorter plane ride to
home from there than Vancouver, BC), so our numbers dropped to 4:
Larry/Shirley and us so we got to sit at a smaller table after
were talks on Honolulu and Kuaui as well, our next stops.
enjoyed most of the evening entertainment adding some time listening
to the quartet playing at our “Lincoln Center Stage”.
fun incident: John told our cabin steward that we had a fly in the
room (true). I figured this would not help our situation. Ha! The
next day the fly was gone. I asked Dhana how he got the fly. He‘d
sucked it up with his vacuum. Why didn’t I think of that?
Also interesting: I would ask for 1 fried egg every morning for breakfast. The buffet attendant would get a cup of 4 eggs that had been broken out of their shells and placed in a small bowl. then drop just one onto the griddle. I asked how he could possibly do that. First he joked that he’d had 10 years experience. Then he explained that every egg has a thin string across its diameter with air pockets at the ends, thus they would remain separate from other eggs broken into a bowl even though they seemed to huddle there as one. If the egg is older it gets more air at the ends and then floats – not a good sign.