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About jocap

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    UK and N. Spain

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  1. I said somewhere on the site that Carnival co had organised all Indian crew members in the UK, from P&O/Cunard ships, to return home on Ventura, and there was a great movement of people from the ships ready for last Tuesday's sailing. At the last minute, the Indian Government agreed that all these crew members could fly home, so the ship returned to her dock. Perhaps this has happened to other Carnival owned ship moored near you, Aplmac?
  2. In 2013, a vaccine was produced against shingles, which was for all people aged 70 to 80, the most dangerous years. As it was told to us by our Health Centre, there would not be sufficient for all those people for 5 years, but there was enough for 1/5th of the people. The decision was taken to give it to those aged 70, and those aged 79... whether this was from the Ministry or the Health Centre, I'm not sure, but we received a letter with a two minute slot each over one weekend, and I'm sure it took a great deal of organising just for this small, rural area. The following year the same thing happened, and I believe enough vaccine was produced to cover the rest of the age group in the 3rd year. I remember this when anyone talks about oh, we'll all be able to have an injection... obviously there will be many more labs producing world wide than for shingles, but the sheer numbers of people, and who will be at the most risk, so needing the very first set of jabs is mind blowing- Health staff, followed by other services... then those with underlying problems? It's a massive problem, even when a solution is found.
  3. Our cabin steward came to introduce himself, and was bubbling with excitement... it was his first cruise, and first time abroad, so he would say: "I've been in an AEROPLANE!" or "I've been to LONDON!" and best of all: "I've stayed in a PREMIER INN!" He was lonely at first, because he was from the Philippines, and the majority of the crew were from India. We knew a waiter in the buffet from other cruises, also from the Philippines, so were able to introduce them... plus, we'd done this month long cruise before on the same ship, so he kept asking where this was, or what did he do...etc. On the return crossing it was Valentine's Day, and my OH opened the door to our lovely man, who was handing out the roses to all the women. My OH said he'd take it, but, no- he wanted to give it to Madam Jo himself. What a lovely, happy person, I hope his future cruising has continued to excite him.
  4. Ephesus in the snow was much more comfortable than my previous visit, which has been so hot and crowded that I really didn't do it justice... but with just one coach load of tourists well-wrapped up, I could see and hear about everything I'd missed the first time. But the best of all excursions was the Golden Circle in Iceland, which covered my passion for volcanoes, geysers and tectonic plates. I loved every moment... and was disappointed that some people found it "rather dull". 😲
  5. I miss the sail-in and sail-out... I've spent hours on freezing ferries just to watch the ports draw close or disappear... I used to visit Glasgow and Edinburgh a lot, but arriving by train or car isn't spectacular... but sailing up the Firths and out again show me a whole different city. Once I missed food and entertainment for hours, watching out for the diving gannets from Bass Rock, in the Firth of Forth out of Edinburgh. Also, as one who can hardly park a bike, never mind a car, I always marvel at the way these vast hulks can park in such limited space... I'd need a whole empty harbour. 😁
  6. We had our fingerprints taken at Fort Lauderdale airport in March 2006, plus some sort of eye scan. It was a first for us, which is why we remember it. Around that time we read about the British Airways captain who flew regular flights into Miami. Unfortunately he had cut his finger before departing the UK, so he had to sit in the small room for 6 hours in Miami, as his prints didn't match, before being allowed to fly back to the UK.
  7. We'd booked our holiday time from work around our 30th anniversary, and began looking at cruises... nothing much in late October, except for the new P&O ship, Ventura, which had had such poor reviews over a disastrous first Christmas that she had become the laughing stock on the UK forum I belonged to. Indeed, there was a radio programme by the BBC about the fighting and damage done on the ship during that disastrous time, that we all agreed we'd none of us try it. But... as the time neared, Ventura was the only option for our dates. And we loved every moment.. I think it was around 14 days in the Med, visiting a few ports we'd not touched before, such as Cartagena. Our anniversary dinner took place on the balcony of Marco Pierre White's restaurant, as we sailed out of Gibraltar, and everything was superb. And Ventura became our favourite ship for long cruises across the Atlantic and back.
  8. No, I'm not a fan of hot beaches, but I do enjoy spending time with the dog on cold, windy beaches.
  9. I hear that 3 NCL ships are leaving the USA to dock in Portsmouth, UK. When I checked their whereabouts on AIS this afternoon, they were lined up in Norfolk, Virginia.
  10. jocap

    Age limitations....

    If over 70s were not allowed on board, that would leave a very narrow band for Saga cruises, for 50+ years! 😨
  11. Lock down for 70+ and underlying conditions started the weekend of March 14th; lockdown for everyone was a week later. So, yes, the hotel would have closed on Saturday 21st.
  12. The first call from the UK government in March was for over 70s and those with various ailments, to stay indoors, except for necessary shopping/medical needs- which meant us. As my OH has a couple of medical problems, I went to the shop, but when the following week, everything shut down, we were advised that both of us should stay at home, because of our ages. The local council has organised voluntary shoppers for us all, including repeat prescriptions, although most of our shopping is delivered from a big supermarket. Our last trip out was to lock the 2 churches we look after. We are allowed outside for exercise by walking or cycling once a day, and there have been checks by the police. Nothing is open, apart from essential items, and it probably will stay like this for some time.
  13. Yes, they are... unfortunately she has memory loss now, which is explained during the various programmes.
  14. Yes, I used to watch for this from my house in Seascale, Cumbria, and saw it mainly in the summer months.
  15. Look for Great Canal Journeys, where actors Tim West and Prunella Scales, who've always owned a narrow boat, go on canal journeys not just in the UK, but France, India...there's at least 6 series.
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