At Sea, on the Bearing Sea.
From the Ships Navigator
Today we will sail on a west-southwesterly course crossing the Bering Sea on our way to Petropavlovsk, Russia with an average speed of 18 knots. The weather forecast predicts an outside temperature of 50 degrees F and a strong breeze from the west – northwest with a wind force of 6. (appx 25 mph). This would mean that the swells (sizeable) and the wind would be arriving at the ship on our starboard (right hand side) quarter (between the bow and the beam), or about two o’clock.
This prediction was dead on. As I was taking my shower this morning I thought the shower drain was clogged – again. Then I realized that the wind and the swells were causing the ship to list to port – causing the shower water to buildup away from the drain. The listing condition really became apparent as I walked fore and aft in the passageways. In seas like this, one really has to plan their next move, with the rolling of the ship, and make sure a handrail is nearby. I really enjoy this type of weather. To be able to go to the upper dining room (Lido) and observe the waves and wind through the large windows is a joy to me. Around mid afternoon the seas calmed, the skies cleared. How nice for most folks to be sailing in calm waters again.
What else is amazing are the number of passengers that are much older than Barbara and I. They all pretty much are taking the random movements of the ship in their stride. Just business as usual.
The ms Amsterdam is kept spotless by her had working crew of over 600. Cleanliness is a watchword also with the passengers. There are stations all over the public areas with automatic hand sanitizers. One only needs to hold a hand underneath one and a dollop of liquid is dispensed. Some folks, I have read, carry this a little farther than some in that the first thing they do upon arrival is go to their stateroom and wipe every surface down with antiseptic. That’s a little over the top for us. Our stateroom is cleaned every day, the bed is made up and washcloths and fresh fluffy, beach-size towels are placed, if we request so. The crew is genuinely friendly – with greetings on every encounter. The fresh fruit bowl is kept stocked with at least two apples, an orange a pear and a banana.
Night before last, we received our canvas HAL tote bag, with last nights gift a waterproof clear plastic valuables container about the size of a deck of cards, to be worn when on the beach or poolside.
As I stated before, there is a Protestant Minister, a Jewish Rabbi, and a Catholic Priest on board. Mass seems to be conducted on a daily basis, with a protestant bible study conducted each day and a church service every Sunday at sea. Reverend James Walker is a fascinating speaker, teacher, religious historian, and is becoming a good friend. I find his daily bible “teachings” most interesting. His instant recall of bible history with names and dates reminds me of my dear departed friend; Art Dunker. What a joy Rev. Walker is, as a teacher/preacher.
Tomorrow is our first port; I will be up early to witness our arrival.
Jack and Barbara