Day 5 - At Sea
Wednesday, October 26, 2011: After sleeping in a little too long, we got up just in time to grab a quick breakfast and join the morning galley tour.
|The passengers were separated into groups of 20 and we passed a fruit-carving demonstration, where we sampled crackers and sausage.
|We passed a pastry chef creating marzipan mice, with more treats to sample.
|We saw all sorts of figures made out of bread for future buffet displays, ...
|... including these spooky bread busts.
|Here's a group of pastry chefs at work, ...
|... and here's an impressive chocolate castle, ...
|... and an attractive food, cheese, and spirits display. All fascinating stuff, and probably even more so in the middle of a busy dinner service.
|Since we were at sea and didn't have any place in particular to be, we photographed the ship's attractions for your viewing pleasure. Here's a large model of a ship.
|Here's some of the art displayed on each stairwell landing.
|These are the sliding doors to the pool area in the back of the ship where we enjoyed many hours outdoors.
|This is the main pool area in the center of the ship. The roof retracts and closes as needed.
|Here's the entrance to the Rotterdam dining room, ...
|... and a small lounge area in the hallway, ...
|... and a bar where a guitarist (who had to be the captain's or CEO's nephew) played depressing cover songs to two people at a time, max.
|Here's the casino with the not-so-subtle ashtray scent even when it was closed.
|Here's the atrium, ...
|... and the shops around it.
|Here's Tom's favorite attraction on the ship: the large electronic wall map.
|As you can see we were en route to Funchal on the Portuguese island of Madeira.
|Tom recreates a pose we had seen another couple strike earlier that day. Some couples are incapable of taking photos unless one half of the couple is in the photo. If that half is also pointing to the name of the ship in the painting, it will be even more fascinating when showing the grandkids.
|We enjoyed a leisurely sunny afternoon at sea, building up our appetite for our dinner at the Pinnacle Grill, included as a promotion in the cost of our cruise.
|First up at the Pinnacle Grill, an amuse bouche consisting of salmon and seaweed.
|One of our waiters prepared Tom's lobster bisque tableside. Ooh, fancy.
|Debbie can't get enough of seafood appetizers.
|We enjoyed steaks and seafood for our entrees. Even the bread basket was fancy, and was served with three different types of butter and three different types of salt.
|Debbie ordered the Baked Alaska for dessert, which was also served tableside. The serving table was on wheels and the ship was rocking, so sometimes the table moved unexpectedly.
|That didn't stop the dessert from being complete perfection, made with Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia ice cream, cake, meringue, and cherry sauce.
|To put it completely over the top, we were served a small tray of truffles as well. It was really delicious and completely worth paying for.
Reluctant photographer Tom snapped this shot of Debbie when she went out on the balcony to admire the ocean after dinner.
Copyright © Deborah Schilling/Thomas Bundy