Tuesday, 27 June 2017
27.06.2017 - 27.06.2017
Checkout time at the Cathedral Gate Hotel is a generous 11:00 so we had plenty of time to get our luggage down to the foyer. We'd thought to order a taxi but the staff assured us it was just an easy walk to the bus station. We'd walked there previously and decided to try. It is so much more difficult when you're weighed down with over 30 kg of luggage even though it is on wheels. If the bus was an additional 500 metres I doubt we'd have made it.
Plenty of time to wait and just to keep us amused the Country Express bay has been moved to a new location during the week.
The coach trip to Dover was not much over 30 minutes, getting to the centre added another 15 minutes. Our booked destination was the Ferry Terminal where we would have to find a taxi. There were only 4 couples remaining on the coach and the driver generously offered to take us to the Cruise Terminal as were all heading for the Pacific Princess. He pulled up at the baggage drop-off where the porters took care of heavy bags. The entire building looked like something from a more elegant past. The whole area was tastefully decorated and the check-in process totally painless. Found out later there were only about 400 new passengers embarking in Dover.
Found Stateroom 7037 on Deck 7 right near the forward lifts and stairs. The ship has accommodation on decks 6, 7 and 8 with the buffet on 9 and passenger services, casino and shops on deck 4 and 5. This arrangement places us very well for just about everything. Found the buffet for a quick lunch and returned to the cabin to meet Silawan, our steward, who took great pains to ensure we had everything to our satisfaction. The baggage arrived and was unpacked into the quirky storage spaces. Then we were off to the compulsory Muster Station Drill, just 2 decks down in the Cabaret Lounge. With that taken care of, I went out to the open deck to photograph our departure with the iconic White Cliffs in the background. The light didn't cooperate and the results are fuzzy with little contrast.
There is one general dining room the Club Restaurant with two fixed seating times 17:30 and 19:45 and assigned tables. The was a long line and lots of confusion with many guests having no table number recorded on their Cruise Card. We're assigned to Table 54, Early Seating. We ask for and normally have a table for two but this time we're shown to a table of nine. We sat there for about half an hour and no-one else joined the table. Someone must have noticed that we were not too happy and the Maitre d'Hotel came over and asked us to discuss a re-assignment after dinner. Looks like we may have to change to the late seating, something new for us.
The meal was excellent and the two waiters most helpful and pleasant, it will be a shame to leave them. I suspect, Peter the waiter, picked up on our conversation about the size of the table and contacted the Maitre d'Hotel.
The ship is becoming lively as we head for the Theatre for the introductory show. The layout is not a typical theatre which is no doubt why it is referred to as the Cabaret Lounge. For the size of the ship it is an appropriate space and it re-enforces my feeling that the ship's facilities are designed with the feel of an upmarket intimate private club. Jenny worries about tall people sitting in front of her and she much prefers the stepped down seating of a regular theatre.
Clocks are set forward an hour overnight and we have a sea day tomorrow.
Until next time. Wishing you good health and safe travel.
Have a great day and stay well.
Cheers .. Tony