October 1, 2018 – Sea Day

It was the first of five days at sea until we reach the port of Dutch Harbor, Alaska, in the Aleutian Islands chain. By early morning the ship’s fog horn began sounding, alerting us that the weather outside was not especially bright but instead a heavy fog. The fog, clouds and light rain persisted throughout the entire day.

Mark attended the first day of watercolor class although it was just a short introduction with no painting involved. There was a morning show hosted by Jorge the cruise director on each of the sea days. At the show Jorge interviews members of the crew aboard the ship. On this day the guest was a gentleman from England by the name of Ian that is the onboard port expert. Ian lectures about each port that we will be stopping at to give guest ideas about things that they may want to see, things to shop for, as well as local cuisine and places to eat.

We attended America’s Test Kitchen cooking show hosted by a young man by the name of Spencer. Spencer showed us how to prepare garlic shrimp, a Spanish Tortilla which is a potato, onion and egg dish similar to a frittata and cooked in a skillet. We also learned how to make Sangria so that we are all set for a Spanish Tapas party when we return home. We have not watched the cooking show on television but the test kitchen folks spend extensive time researching and perfecting the perfect dishes. In this case they were very specific about the limited amount of olive oil, the best potatoes to use and how to crush the garlic.

We did attend the first of Ian’s lectures where he did a quick introduction of the ports that we would be visiting up to Sydney, Australia. Ian shared a lot of facts and information about the upcoming ports and will elaborate on each of them further in the coming days and weeks.

The afternoon was filled with a lecturer speaking on the history of Alaska and how it was that the United States was able to purchase the vast land from Russia in 1867 for the sum of $7,200,000:  not particularly a lot of money by today’s standards but a sizeable amount at the time. We will be visiting the small town of Dutch Harbor in the coming days which still today has a large Russian Orthodox Church and most of the residents are members of the church.

We had all of our meals in the dining room hoping to limit our food intake rather than going to the buffet upstairs in the Lido where the food is limitless. We had reasonable sized meals but still too many desserts and certainly more food than we would eat at home.

The evening’s entertainment was a comedian by the name of Bud Anderson. He was funny and told some interesting stories about his family and life.

When we arrived back in our cabin after the show we found two messenger bags on our bed to be used while going ashore on our trip. On Grand Voyages like the one we are on; the ship typically leaves small gifts like these in your cabin along the trip.