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7 minutes ago, Jim Avery said:

Haha, isn't it Bloody Mary time?  And welcome Rita.  We liked the old R-Ships too but the Viking ships make them look like the antiques they are becoming.  The gang at Explorer's are a friendly bunch...🍸

 

Jim - that's enough arm twisting. OK, I'll have a Bloody Mary, with my IPA.😀

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4 minutes ago, SoBaycruiser said:


We booked the March 1 Northern Lights trip... a year from today!  We think the Explorers lounge will be a fantastic place to be in a cold weather itinerary.

 

re The washrooms: it would be hard not to be bigger than the Rships! 😉

 

Rita

 

Most definitely. On nice days I used the outer deck on Dk7, but on cooler and/or wet days my favourite was Dk 8.

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On 2/26/2021 at 5:06 PM, Clay Clayton said:

If you have time in Venice, I highly recommend learning to gondolier.  It was half the price for just a gondola ride, lasted twice as long and was way more memorable. That’s Mike steering below. 

7A9A1E3C-C46A-4280-A708-C7ADA1648F6D.jpeg

 

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Just now, Maggie Mae said:

I don’t know what happened to earlier message, but I checked out the gondola lessons and think that would be a great thing to do.  Thank you for the info.

 

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While having a coffee with Baileys in the Explorer's Lounge, I came across an article in a trade magazine with a few Covid stories that we might have missed that will give you a smile ( I freely admit that I nearly fell off my chair after reading the first one - boy that felt good ! ) -

 

Sacrifices have been required all over the world but nowhere more painfully than in Belgium. You see, the country has had a glut -- an estimated 750,000 tons -- of unsold potatoes due to sharp reductions in food exports. So Belgians have been urged to do their part by government minister Hilde Crevits. She has urged them to double or even triple their intake of french fries to help save the nation's economy. I somehow remember the french fries in Brussels fondly, and if I am in the city anytime soon I shall help them fight the glut.

 

You may not have heard about the Airbnb imitator Kasoku. The Japanese startup has a coronavirus wrinkle: It is renting apartments to Japanese couples on the cusp of divorce so they can have some "alone time" during lockdown.

 

Covid-19 may be changing food presentations when you next visit Italy. Valerio Braschi is a top chef in Rome who won the coveted Masterchef Italia award when he was only 18. But inside dining at restaurants is challenging, and some chefs have too much time on their hands. Which may be why his 1978 Restaurant in the Trieste section of Rome now serves lasagna "toothpaste." It comes in a tube, and diners squeeze it onto an egg pasta toothbrush. Something to try at home with the relatives.

 

And finally, we missed the really big story out of England. Yes, we're all mini-experts on the virus, and we all know about droplets and how to try to avoid them when we travel. We will forever be watchful. But just how big are these coronavirus particles? Well, British mathematician Kit Yates has figured it out -- sort of. He has calculated that all the Covid-causing virus in the world right now could easily fit inside a can of Diet Coke. 

 

I know that there are a few Diet Coke lovers here in the Lounge; you might want to think about that last one next time you indulge 😉

 

 

 

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Well guess what arrived this week?

✈️ Airplane arrangements for July 2021.

We are scheudled to enjoy our bumped from June 2020 Iceland's Majestic Landscapes Cruise.

 

Will it happen?

 

Will we be vacinnated? 

Maybe? I have an appointment for my 1st COVID vaccination on Monday! But hubby is healthier than I am... so he has to wait. I think we will both be vacinnated in time. The the other couple we are traveling with are already vaccinated as they are a bit older than us. 

 

Will we go? 

We shall see! 

Meanwhile I need a drink... any suggestions for a libation appropriate for this occasion? 

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3 minutes ago, Liz Masterson said:

Well guess what arrived this week?

✈️ Airplane arrangements for July 2021.

We are scheudled to enjoy our bumped from June 2020 Iceland's Majestic Landscapes Cruise.

 

Will it happen?

 

Will we be vacinnated? 

Maybe? I have an appointment for my 1st COVID vaccination on Monday! But hubby is healthier than I am... so he has to wait. I think we will both be vacinnated in time. The the other couple we are traveling with are already vaccinated as they are a bit older than us. 

 

Will we go? 

We shall see! 

Meanwhile I need a drink... any suggestions for a libation appropriate for this occasion? 

will check and see if they have an umbrella drink....

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Hopefully this won’t be breaking any CC rules but there is a new phone app that easily lets groups talk as “Clubs”. Think of it as Zoom but only audio. There is a cruise group that I’ve joined that chats every Sunday afternoon at 2 pm EST.  It’s moderated by some Brits and most members of the club are In the UK but there are Yanks, Germans and others also. 
 

While it doesn’t replace being in the Explorer’s Lounge it is nice to share information and love of all things cruise. 
 

If you have any interest in joining us, let me know via an email to BigNcBear@aol.com. Oh, one has to have an iPhone or other Apple device in order to download the app. 

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1 hour ago, Clay Clayton said:

Hopefully this won’t be breaking any CC rules but there is a new phone app that easily lets groups talk as “Clubs”. Think of it as Zoom but only audio. There is a cruise group that I’ve joined that chats every Sunday afternoon at 2 pm EST.  It’s moderated by some Brits and most members of the club are In the UK but there are Yanks, Germans and others also. 
 

While it doesn’t replace being in the Explorer’s Lounge it is nice to share information and love of all things cruise. 
 

If you have any interest in joining us, let me know via an email to BigNcBear@aol.com. Oh, one has to have an iPhone or other Apple device in order to download the app. 

No Android?

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Just got an email from Palau de la Musica inviting me to a FREE live streamed concert TODAY.  Thought I would share.  It’s at 20:00 hours Barcelona time or 2 pm EST.  Here is a link:https://www.palaumusica.cat/en/juan-de-la-rubia-marco-mezquida_853665?utm_source=INFORMATION&utm_medium=EMAIL&utm_campaign=20210311-pmc-streaming-fron06-en

7500B949-7D35-48C7-9EDC-272842C43F0D.jpeg

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1 hour ago, Clay Clayton said:

Happy to see this but I sure hope Torstein isn’t jumping the gun here.  
 

https://www.mirror.co.uk/travel/cruises/viking-cruises-restart-sailings-new-23735895

 

The sailings will be limited to UK residents and to UK ports, so they are operating in a bubble. No international travelers adding to the existing germ pool. Sounds like a good way to start.

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41 minutes ago, Peregrina651 said:

 

The sailings will be limited to UK residents and to UK ports, so they are operating in a bubble. No international travelers adding to the existing germ pool. Sounds like a good way to start.

Agreed. Just hope they go smoothly, don’t want to see another setback. 
 

I think it will be interesting to hear firsthand the procedures and the capacity for these sailings. Hopefully some on these boards will sail. 🤞

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54 minutes ago, Peregrina651 said:

 

The sailings will be limited to UK residents and to UK ports, so they are operating in a bubble. No international travelers adding to the existing germ pool. Sounds like a good way to start.

 

Restricting pax to UK residents only and to only UK ports is a smart way to start, but I suggest we also need to consider the current conditions in UK, which is still in a virtual lockdown, only 2 months before today's announcement of a resumption of cruising.

 

My experience is primarily in Scotland, and am aware that they have somewhat more stringent requirements than England. With vaccinations being received in huge numbers, both my brother & SIL have received the first dose, with SIL in the 55+ group. Their daily infections and deaths are dropping, but they are still higher than our numbers and they still have severe lockdown restrictions:

  • Only shops open are grocery stores and chemists.
  • All pubs, restaurants, etc are closed
  • Travel is restricted - I can't even get trades from out of town to travel to our home to complete repairs, unless it is deemed essential repairs. My brother explained, you can be fined for being caught travelling outside your immediate area, unless you have an approved essential reason. To have a tradesman from 20 miles away complete a repair, my brother would have to convince the local police the repair was essential, who would then provide him a case number, which would be given to the tradesman. If stopped by Police, without a case number the tradesman would be fined and sent back home.

Compared to our situation in BC, where almost all businesses are open, with our restrictions being the size of party (max 6 per group) and distancing requirements. Travel is not recommended, but is not restricted, with our ski resorts having numerous out of Province/Town visits. Our only real restrictions are wearing masks, distancing and limiting indoor meetings. With minimal restrictions, our COVID numbers/deaths are significantly less than UK, which is in lockdown.

 

What will happen to the UK numbers when restrictions are lifted, is unknown. With a large percentage of the population being vaccinated, hopefully it will go well.

 

In our opinion, going from a complete lockdown to cruising, without mandatory vaccinations, in about 2-months, is a significant leap of faith.

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