Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Panama Cruise, Day 15: Full Day at Sea

As the Sun Princess left Cabo San Lucas and set a north westerly course, it was clear that the warmest days of the cruise were now behind us. The Pacific Ocean would henceforth be cool and windy by comparison to the first 13 days of the journey. This afternoon we sailed past the archipelago of Isla San Benito and Isla Cedros, areas known to have the world’s largest salt deposits. I did not see any cargo ships in the area, but the Officer of the Watch informed us that there are usually many bulk cargo ships transporting salt overseas from this area. Photo above left: decidedly more choppy waters in the cooler Pacific.

Having dutifully finished reading “Sammy’s Hill” on Monday, another sea day was a perfect opportunity for more reading. After perusing the stack of books I packed for the trip, I selected “Savannah Breeze” by Mary Kay Andrews. This was another title I bought strictly based on the cover art. It was a quick read and held my interest all day-I completed all 440 pages before dinner. It’s a fluff story, kind of a “chick book” but it did the trick.

In today’s Princess Patter I noticed there was an art auction scheduled, so I checked it out. They served complimentary wine and cheese prior to the auction, I suppose to get passengers liquored up and ready to spend money. I was surprised to see how well attended the auction was today. But then again, I should think an offer of free wine would draw people to just about anything.

Evening Entertainment
Far more interesting, would be the German Beerfest, featuring German beer and Bavarian food specialties. Surely this was an event not to be missed! I was a little disappointed to learn that they did not have any real steins or unusual German beers, but what the heck, it was still beer. The Bavarian food specialties were more dinner type foods, and since I was heading to dinner at 8:00 I skipped the munchies.

Since the German Beerfest was a bust, I made my way to the Vista Lounge to see a show featuring Kenny Byrd, whose act was billed as “A Ventriloquist with a Twist”. As a kid I was fascinated by ventriloquist acts. I used to try to catch the ventriloquist’s lips moving when the dummy was talking, as proof of what, I don’t know.

Kenny had a few different “dummies”, a older black dude, a monkey, (yes Todd a monkey) and a bird. He had a very funny bit with two audience members, where he tapped their shoulders and all they would do is open and close their mouth and bend a their knees up and down. In effect they were his “dummies” as he put words in their mouth, making it look like they were talking. It was really quite funny, clearly the best part of his act.
(See photo below)

After the show had ended I realized that had I been home in Palm Springs, this was not a show I would have paid to see; and if I had paid to see it I would have been more critical. Since it was free it sure was a great show. Funny how money changes ones perceptions about things.

Tacky Tourist-Trap Junk Award
This evening after dinner I saw what deserves the award for the “Best Tacky Tourist Trap Junk”. Someone sitting at the table next to ours had purchased this as a joke gift, and felt compelled to share it with our table. It was a series of shells glued together to look like a bird. Who makes this crap? And what would possess anyone to seriously buy this? Any what would I do if I ever received something like this? I immediately began wishing I had bought several of these for people back at PETCO, thinking they would feel compelled to have it on display at their desks for a little while. Someitimes I have a wicked sense of humor.

-Rick Rockhill
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