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BTimmer's Almost Live Downunder 2022 - (10/2/22 to 12/6/22 on the Westerdam)


Btimmer
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It's 75° as we near Hawaii.  We're enjoying Hawaiian music and dancing Lido poolside.

 

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Earlier today we had a large crew drill which utilized much of the Promenade.

 

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Wish you were here!

 

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17 hours ago, Btimmer said:

Tonight's entertainment was Cantaré performing songs from Stage and Screen.  It was the world public debut of this set. They were really good. It was so good that we watched both performances.

 

I first experienced Cantare during the first season of the Nieuw Amsterdam after they had performed several weeks before during her Dedication Ceremony.  The performers change, but, it is good to learn that they remain a truly quality group.  Maybe the best performances on HAL ships currently?  

 

 

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9 minutes ago, Btimmer said:

Earlier today we had a large crew drill which utilized much of the Promenade.

 

These are most interesting to view and to listen the Officer's instructions (and the Q&A of some crew members that sometimes occur).  Once, I tried to be a "fly on the bulkhead" during a drill and an Officer shooed me away.  

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11 minutes ago, rkacruiser said:

 

I first experienced Cantare during the first season of the Nieuw Amsterdam after they had performed several weeks before during her Dedication Ceremony.  The performers change, but, it is good to learn that they remain a truly quality group.  Maybe the best performances on HAL ships currently?  

 

 

They are at the top of our list.  While the individual members vary, there's a consistent quality to the group.  The Jersey tenors are another quality group.

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We enjoyed a nice Hawaiian sunset tonight as well as more Hawaiian music.  Earlier the wake from our fast speed was impressive.  The curve isn't due to a lazy helmsman.  There's a long swell approaching from our starboard rear quarter.

 

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We've made up the lost time and are expected to dock on time at 8am.

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We have just received notice of new changes in our itinerary.

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Also there's a further reminder about travel insurance and possible additional Covid testing for Fiji and New Caledonia.

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I have never heard of  a country placing a requirement like that on cruise ship passengers, particularly mid-cruise.  I would refuse to buy it as I self-insure.  I wonder what HAL's reaction would be to that?

Ray

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7 minutes ago, USN59-79 said:

I have never heard of  a country placing a requirement like that on cruise ship passengers, particularly mid-cruise.  I would refuse to buy it as I self-insure.  I wonder what HAL's reaction would be to that?

Ray

I was aware pre cruise of the possibility of the requirement and we were asked at embarkation if we had travel insurance (we do have an independent annual policy).

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Here's a flew pictures from yesterday on Oahu.

 

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Bird of paradise with Jurassic Park mountain in the background.

 

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Swimming with turtles

 

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Polynesian dancers


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Our route

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14 hours ago, Btimmer said:

I was aware pre cruise of the possibility of the requirement and we were asked at embarkation if we had travel insurance (we do have an independent annual policy).

It will be interesting to see if they ask for documentation - and what type of documentation would be acceptable.   

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It was fantastic scenic cruising today along the Napali coastline.

 

 

 

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Kilauea Lighthouse

 

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Honopu beach arch

 

 

Edited by Btimmer
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Does your itinerary include Conflict Islands? I hope it does as this island group has the best snorkelling I've ever experienced. It was included in a Sydney/New Guinea cruise we did on Noordam  Jan 2019 IIRC.

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32 minutes ago, lyndarra said:

Does your itinerary include Conflict Islands? I hope it does as this island group has the best snorkelling I've ever experienced. It was included in a Sydney/New Guinea cruise we did on Noordam  Jan 2019 IIRC.

So far it does.  But the itinerary changes weekly.

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Today another couple and us shared an Uber to go to Poipu Beach which was rated as the favorite place for locals to snorkel.  We got there fairly early before the crowds arrived and spent about an hour in the water.  The water was clear, but pretty shallow and there was a significant current flowing across from left to right.  Additionally there were periodic large swells that were cool to ride.  Afterwards we returned to the ship and then took another Uber to Walmart.  Angela purchased a ukulele at a nearby music store. We then Ubered back to the ABC store in an interesting way.  But you'll have to read my blog to learn of that.

 

Below are some snorkeling pictures from today taken with my GoProHero7.

 

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Tonight we booked a last minute HAL snorkeling trip in Kona tomorrow to Kealakekua Bay where Captain Cook was killed and a monument is erected.

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On 10/11/2022 at 11:33 AM, Btimmer said:

So far it does.  But the itinerary changes weekly.

We visited the Conflict Islands on one of the last Maasdam cruises in 2019.  Of course we had to tender ashore and it was to a floating jetty!  We did a cruise on a glass bottomed boat there - fabulous.  I hope you do visit there as it was a lovely port.

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We ended up booking a last minute HAL snorkeling trip to Kealakekua Bay where the Captain Cook monument is found and which we snorkeled in 2016.  In my opinion, the snorkeling was much better then.  The fish today were much smaller.  I was also able to replace my 2016 polyester shirt with a 2022 version.

 

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What animal?

 

 

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23 hours ago, Btimmer said:

Tonight we booked a last minute HAL snorkeling trip in Kona tomorrow to Kealakekua Bay where Captain Cook was killed and a monument is erected.

Is there a port - anywhere - without a Capt Cook monument?  LOL - he did get around.

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It's 4:25am, we were just awakened with a message from the Captain that another helicopter medical evacuation is in progress after returning to within helicopter range. We left Kona yesterday at around 5 pm , and at 10:55pm there was a medical emergency in a stateroom on deck 6.  It's dark out, so I'm staying put. 

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27 minutes ago, Btimmer said:

It's 4:25am, we were just awakened with a message from the Captain that another helicopter medical evacuation is in progress after returning to within helicopter range. We left Kona yesterday at around 5 pm , and at 10:55pm there was a medical emergency in a stateroom on deck 6.  It's dark out, so I'm staying put. 

Oh gosh, a lot of medical issues for this cruise.  Hope this person/persons will be ok.  
 

 

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Just now, canadianbear said:

Oh gosh, a lot of medical issues for this cruise.  Hope this person/persons will be ok.  
 

 

Before this cruise and in over 650 days of cruising we had never experienced a helicopter medical evacuation.  Now we've had two.

 

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On 10/8/2022 at 7:24 PM, USN59-79 said:

I have never heard of  a country placing a requirement like that on cruise ship passengers, particularly mid-cruise.  I would refuse to buy it as I self-insure.  I wonder what HAL's reaction would be to that?

Ray

These requirements were not initiated mid-cruise.  These requirements were in effect prior to embarkation as Fiji and New Caledonia opened to travelers post pandemic.  I asked HAL on several occasions about the requirement for medical coverage to no avail.  I received either a non-response or non-answer from HAL.  This is a major fail by HAL if anyone is denied going ashore in either New Caledonia or Fiji.  

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