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Suez Canal

sunny 34 °C

May 12
Suez Canal

This was essentially an 'at sea' day. We (apparently) entered the Canal at 1:00 a.m., but we were, of course, soundly asleep. I got out of bed at about 7:30 and watched the passing scenery (from our balcony :-) ) for a couple of hours, and took numerous photos. This was very anticlimactic after having gone through the Panama Canal. First, there are no locks, it is just a channel dredged from the Mediterranean Sea to the Red Sea. Second, the scenery is almost unrelievedly flat desert—and I think our side of the ship (starboard) was likely more interesting than the other side. And third, there was no running commentary, which we enjoyed and appreciated when going through the Panama Canal. I guess there was a lecture we could have attended the day before (there are at least one or two guest lecturers on the ship who provide 1/2 -3/4 hour talks the day before each port of call), but in this case, because we were off the ship on an excursion the day before, we were not able to attend the lectures on the Suez Canal (nor were we able to attend another one or two, since we were not on the ship). So we don't have much knowledge of what we were looking at. About half way through, we stopped for about an hour and a half in Great Bitter Lake, as we had to wait for the convoy coming north through the next part of the canal.

After watching the shore go by for a couple of hours, I headed up to the top deck (12) and walked my mile (5 laps). Then Mark and I played a couple of games of mini golf (nice course). Going back to our room we smelled barbecue and noted the pool deck was setting up for lunch of bbq'd ribs and chicken. We decided to indulge—Mark loves ribs....

About 3:00 pm we were clear of the Canal, and heading on to our next port, Safaga.

We inquired a few times and were rather unkindly rebuffed (the staff on this ship is definitely not like our NCL experiences), or told to watch in the daily newsletter, to find out about 2 for 1 drinks, as we had enjoyed our evening martinis on our last trip. Finally, this cruise has started offering half price drinks, but for one hour pre-dinner, and it seems to vary as to venue. So we keep our eyes on the flyer and have a drink with Val and Troi before dinner, when offered. Tonight was our free dinner at the specialty restaurant, Giovanni's. (It may seem like we harp on free or discounted stuff, but things that you have to buy on the ship are expensive. You may get a deal on your cruise, but there are no deals on the ship. They charge like a lounge or bar at home for drinks (or more) and even though your cruise price includes all your meals, to dine at a restaurant other than the main dining room, they charge a premium, from $20-30 PER PERSON. We fail to see the value in these premium charges, but it is just nice to dine in a different venue. So Free is good.). We had at least one of the same wait staff from our previous dinner here (not sure if the girl was the same) and they made our dinner very enjoyable.

I don't remember any more from this day....so, that's it. It would be nice to be telling you this stuff as soon as it happens, but so far, I am the laggard. I'm tired by the time I get 'home' at night, and each day there is just too much to occupy me....and sitting at a keyboard and writing stuff is too much like 'work', which I am on holiday to get away from. So, I hold Mark up, since we have been rotating days. Coming up, though, are very exciting days in Safaga (Luxor, Valley of the Kings) and Aqaba (Petra!).
SO glad we are here!

Posted by mutzy 11:49 Archived in Egypt

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