Okay so I have to admit, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. It does take a little getting used to, because we’re on the water and not on stable land, but there is something moving about it. See what I did there?
Our cabin was a decent size and the bathroom wasn’t too small that it gave me claustrophobia but whenever we were in the cabin, I definitely felt the ocean a little more than when we were on the decks upstairs. We were on deck 4 and we were fortunate enough to have a balcony. I didn’t realise it was a luxury until somebody mentioned it, but I was certainly grateful for it.
Every time I felt a little queasy or when I wanted beautifully lit photos, I would go onto the balcony and just chill. It was also so surreal being on the ocean like that. It’s so vast and somewhat scary and majestic and magical and I could say so much more but in short…I loved it!
We headed straight up to the entertainment deck for a bite to eat, because apparently if you eat, you won’t get sick? Not sure how true that was but I kept it light and went to the open deck before the ship sailed.
I was over-the-moon that I didn’t feel sick at all and that I could watch the ship sail out of our first port. It’s such a huge ship that you really don’t feel anything, it was not how I imagined it at all.
We also attended a little guidance class to make sure we will know how everything is going to go and to sign up for any tours, etc. along the way. We immediately went to register for all the excursions and everything. We did our safety course as well and we were ready to just settle in.
We then went down to our cabin and freshened up for dinner. We were allocated to a table and at first, I was a little confused with the seating with unknown guests. We struck luck when we realised our table was entirely South African! I love experiencing different cultures and meeting people from foreign countries but it was amazing to have had a group of people we could relate and share this experience with.
We had the best ice-breaker, as it was one of our new friends birthdays, and they were kind enough to allow us to celebrate with them. It was like a group of long lost friends coming together because we got along so quickly.
We then headed off to the welcome dance party where we met a bunch of crew and passengers and everyone was dancing to the pumping music! It was quite the night. We eventually headed off to bed after that.
The first night was a little hard because I wasn’t used to having my entire insides moving continuously, but I was tired enough to have some solid sleep. The next morning we woke up bright and early to head off to our first adventure. When we got to the table to receive our tour bus ticket, they didn’t have our names down!
We had a misunderstanding with the booking office and we were not able to go on the excursion at all. They said we could still get off the boat and experience Bari, Italy but that we didn’t have a designated tour. It was bitterly cold, we were super annoyed because we’d already paid the fees and now we going to a completely quiet city with nothing to see or do, as it was Sunday. We ended up shopping a little bit at the handful of stores we found that was still open and pleasantly surprised to have found one cafe open for us to enjoy some hot chocolate.
You will see in the vlog how amazing the hot chocolate was but it definitely is not what we’re used to. It was like a hot pudding because it was steaming hot and we had to EAT it with a spoon! It was Lindt, so obviously delicious. I bought some over-the-knee socks at one of the stores because I didn’t realise how cold it was, and I ended up putting them on, in the middle of the street because there was nowhere else to really go, and I was freezing my knees off! It was so funny!
We spent about an hour or two just wandering on our own until we headed back to the shuttle bus to take us back to the ship. We went for something to eat, walked around the ship a little bit and then went to relax in the cabin before getting ready for dinner. We had some insane laughs at the table and got some tips and tricks from our peeps about the Diario Di Bordo which is a daily information pamphlet we receive in our mailboxes every morning.
It is a must-have on these international ships and it makes life easier to just go through everything because sometimes we lose it along with the broken telephone of people or the language barrier. We sorted the complications out with the booking office so hopefully, that would be the last little mishap!
After dinner, we went to some of the lounges and the nightclubs until we were about ready to go to bed. On the way to and from dinner, we always stopped at a beautiful grand piano and I spent way too much time playing as though I was paid to be there. But I loved every moment of it. I even had an audience some nights, which gave me too much encouragement because I did this every night.
We also started going to the theatre shows every day after dinner. Every night was a different theme and the performances were always incredible!
The next day we decided that we were going to take the map of the ship and find all of the places on it. We started on the first deck and went all the way from the front to the back and from the left to the right. I was shocked at everything the ship had and how we would possibly cover all of the activities. We had a few snack breaks and while we were eating hot chips on the deck, the glass around the deck started shaking very loudly. The water in the pool and jacuzzi got so rough people jumped out and security came running to see where the shattering sound was coming from. It happened for about 20 seconds and then it was completely still again.
We didn’t think anything of it, but one of the crew members told us, afterwards, that we actually sailed directly above a high voltage earthquake! Now that certainly isn’t something you hear every day.
After exploring the ship we got ready for dinner and the theatre before making our way to our favourite lounge and then finally off to bed.
The next morning we were ready for adventure! We were certainly not about to miss out on anything exciting again!