More days at sea. I did not have a birthday card for Penny. She said
that was, of course, understandable given the circumstances. Because we
had turned over our passports upon boarding the ship, the crew all knew that
it was her birthday and went out of their way to wish her well.
They had a fire drill on one of the afternoons. As passengers, our sole
function was to show up at the muster station by the starboard lifeboat
carrying immersions suits and wearing warm clothes, kapok life jackets, and
orange hard hats. This we did. The “fire” was in one of the A.B. seamen’s
rooms. The hose did not reach all the way, so they had to get a second
length and recouple everything. Oh well!! With the obvious exceptions of
the galley and the engineroom, there is practically nothing flammable aboard
the ship anyway. Of course, this is as it should be, and just as well when one
considers all things. Shipboard firefighting is not their specialty.
On September 27, the ship had a barbecue and luau in honor of Penny
and me. They don’t get many passengers on the long trans-Pacific crossings.
The captain had bought two suckling pigs for the occasion. There was
something of a cooking contest. The chief mate comes from a family in the
restaurant business, and his wife is Filipina. He prepared one of the pigs
himself, including a marinade with which he basted the skin during the three
hours on the open pit rotisserie. The other pig was prepared by Filipino
crewmen in a traditional style. Both were very good, but I must say that the
chief mate’s pig tasted a little better. There were also steaks, chicken,
sausage, and pork chops. No place for a vegetarian! I took the camera with
me to the luau, but forgot to actually use it! Bummer!! I did get a few
photos earlier of the pigs being roasted.
We have decided to declare our round-the-world journey over when
we arrive in Long Beach. The longitude there is east of the meridian in San
Francisco. It will ease logistics matters a great deal if I fly to San Francisco
as early as possible, get our car, and drive back to Gary and Ann Moore’s
home in Redondo Beach. It will be much cheaper than any of the car rental
options. We hope to get in touch with Charlie and go visit him in Las Vegas.
Then we must to go San Diego to take care of some legal matters before
arriving home on October 10.