Thursday, October 07, 2010

At Sea for Halifax Revisited

Wednesday has us at sea, headed back to Halifax, Nova Scotia. As we rise, the sky is clear and the day fairly warm. Lots of folks are already claiming deck chairs, even though they remain fully clothed as they bask in the Sun's rays.

Around noon, the clouds begin to slowly thicken. Soon, they begin to blend into the flat but slowly rolling sea. The engines' sound seems to move off into the distance, and we enter a mystical state of floating and gliding through the atmosphere.

One of the more unusual aspects of our cruising experience is how we can experience many moments as though we are the only ones here. The rest of the 3,000 passengers and crew easily pass into the deep background as we are left alone on deck to enjoy the moving experience of passing sea and sky. Or maybe even the sensation of motion ceases and again we are floating quietly in the space of sky and sea.

Mind-altering without chemicals. Is this the real cruise experience? For us it is.

In port, we are again in the commercial and bulk dockage area. We watched the latter arriving Royal Caribbean and Princess ships take the passenger docks while we labored long and hard, with the help of a tug, to back into our spot.

As inconvenient as that is, worse is the strain that three large ships place on the Halifax transportation. The free bus that loops through the downtown and the port is packed to the gills, and still would-be passengers wait on line.

Yet another gripe, our sailing time was moved up an hour at the last minute, probably due to the fact that the entire ship must clear customs tomorrow morning, on arrival in Portland, Maine.

No comments: