Monday, June 18, 2018

Celebration Time

Capture 5

Celebration Time: London To Dublin

Silversea Style

I have wanted to write about the unique conclusion to our last cruise, but since arriving home our life has been tumultuous at best.

We flew home from Dublin Ireland on Tuesday, June 5th, where we were finally able to drop into our own beds about midnight. Attended to the usual jetlag, it always takes us a day or two to reorient ourselves, but then I had to go make it worse. That weekend I walked out of the shower without paying attention to the fact that the bathmat was not down on the floor, and promptly slipped and fell. I landed on my right knee and then fell forward on my right shoulder until finally my head came firmly in contact with the granite floor while I slid forward and banged into the bathroom cabinet. I will make no bones about it, I saw stars for quite a while, and for the better part of two days, I really had difficulty getting my brain to work. Now of course you want to know if I went to the emergency room, but those of you who know me already know the answer. No! I self-diagnosed as a mild concussion. Thank goodness I was wrong as was later confirmed by a physician the following week, but I did injure myself pretty badly.

Just about the same time, Lisa came down with a case of bronchitis which developed over the next few days to an acute case. Not to be undone; about three days later, I followed down the same path. So, we were at a point that both of us were pretty much useless in terms of getting anything done. My condition worsened to the point that I had to see a doctor for chest x-rays, but then that opened up another can of worms. There were images on the bottom of one lung that were causing some concern; it was not until last night that we learned the result of the subsequent CAT scan letting us know that everything was okay. All I can say is that this was one heck of a welcome home!

Let’s go back to our cruise. Lisa and I scheduled ourselves to fly into Dublin and spend several days, and then board our ship that would tour the northern reaches of Great Britain and the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. It was an absolute wonderful journey, and given a few days’ time, I hope to be able to get some of our pictures up. Yes, I did have a little problem with my leg following a fight with a zodiac, but all in all, we got to see a lot of interesting things and thoroughly enjoyed our trip.

However, our journey was to have an unusual and unexpected ending! Just before we departed Kansas City, we received a phone call asking if we would please stay on board the vessel in London and travel back to Dublin on a private cruise sponsored by the company. Everything was a little “hush-hush,” so that in the beginning, we were not exactly sure what this was all about. Well, as it turns out, all the passengers left the ship except us, and they were replaced by a horde of travel writers and reporters, along with senior executives of the company for a celebration cruise. It seems that it was exactly ten years ago that Silversea started into the luxury expedition cruising market. In fact, they started in London by cruising beneath the tower bridge on their outward journey down the Thames River which our celebratory cruise was also going to do.

We spent the next two days being treated like royalty. On our first evening there was a five-course dinner during which we were invited to sit with the chairman of Silversea, his wife, and three other guests. The following evening, we had the pleasure of dining with the owner of the company and his wife. It seems that all this attention came about because Lisa and I were recognized as the number one cruisers on Silversea’s expedition ships. The company, at their expense, had brought around 15 of their most experienced cruisers on board for this event. Some of these individuals had come all the way from Australia.

Obviously, this was an unexpected ending to what had already been a wonderful cruise. We received a plaque and a small gift from the owner of the company himself. Graciously the company sent us a photograph of the presentation, which I hope to paste below for you to see.

I know that many of you have been following our journeys for almost as long as we have been sailing, and I want to thank you for expressing such confidence in our efforts to produce a dialogue and a journal so that you, too can travel in your minds to some of the exotic places that we have had the privilege to visit.

I wish everyone well and stay tuned for our next journey which will begin this July.


P.S. One of my friends made the suggestion that they would very much appreciate it if at the end of each blog, I would include the link to our photographs. This is something that I’m therefore going to start doing, although this is the one time that I don’t have photographs from this trip posted--yet.


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