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  • Neil Wylie

Wednesday, January 4th, 2023 At Sea Queen Mary 2

Updated: Jul 1, 2023

Breakfast in the Britannia was very good, as usual, and since we had purchased the hot drinks package for this crossing, we enjoyed some fine lattes. During breakfast the captain announced the ship had changed course to head for the Cape Cod peninsular to allow a coast guard helicopter to extract a sick passenger. Soon we heard the helicopter making its approach and it successfully winched up and loaded the patient. Following breakfast we hurried to the Illuminations Theater to attend the first Cunard Insights lecture for this cruise; a fascinating talk by Carol Ann Lloyd on The Story of Richard III – this is the king who had his two young cousins murdered in the Tower of London so he could ascend the throne (there is debate about his role in this) and who’s remains were found under a car park in Leicester just a few years ago. Carol Ann tried to make the point that, despite being thought of as one of the worst monarchs in history, Richard III actually did some good during his short reign – I’m not sure she succeeded. At noon today the ship’s clocks advanced 1 hour to begin our transition to UK time; this will occur 4 more times before we reach Southampton. It’s traditional for the captain to give a navigation and weather update at noon, and today we heard our first report from Captain Hashemi – he also concluded with a little humorous anecdote, a nice touch.


We managed a few laps of the deck in the afternoon as the we



ather was quite mild with just a slight breeze and relatively calm seas. We have fond memories of being on a crossing, at this same time of the year, many years ago and having to walk through snow that had accumulated on the deck. In the buildup to this cruise we joined a Facebook group for anyone going on the full world cruise and those doing segments of the full cruise – it’s called the Anchor Group and we have all shared ideas and experiences to help each other prepare for this exciting event. There are about 350 people in the Anchor Group, about 12 of these, like us, are making the Queen Mary 2 crossing from New York to meet up with the Queen Victoria as it sets off on the world cruise. As previously arranged, we met up with several of the Anchor Group in the Commodore Club at 5PM this afternoon – 7 attended. It was great to finally meet some of our fellow world travelers and begin to get to know each other. The first formal night was designated the “Red and Gold Ball” and I had procured a nice red bow tie for the event (actually Sandra bought it for me). Over the years I’ve mostly used pre-tied bows, but several years ago I


learned how to tie a “proper” bow – then, during the covid period when we didn’t cruise, I forgot the tie tying procedure. However I was determined to relearn the tying procedure and had brought along several “how-to” videos. After a few very frustrating hours, and managing to make my neck red-raw, I gave up and used a pre-tied bow – I was so disappointed, but I’ve got many sea days to finally crack it!

Dinner in the Britannia was a disappointment; none of the main course options were anything we liked – three included mushrooms and one was scallops (neither of us eat these items) and the other was spanakopita. We both opted for appetizer items-only for our dinner; I left very hungry. We had struck up an acquaintance with a Scottish couple on the table next ours, and by the time we had finished talking it was almost 10PM. I had hoped to swing by the buffet to satisfy my hunger, but it stopped serving at 10PM and so I settled for a sandwich from room service.


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