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Live from QV to the Canary Islands.


LadyL1
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It has been a year since sailing with Cunard, our last in November/December ‘22 to the same destination on this ship. Since then we have sailed with 2 other lines in the Pacific and Europe and enjoyed long distance travel. How pleasant to be back in familiar surroundings of QV.

From reading CC over the past few days, it appears that there are quite a few active members seeking some sun joining me on this voyage. 

I have written blogs before and always try to convey the atmosphere on the ship to anyone interested enough to read this.

We arrived about 10 minutes prior to the time on our boarding papers, straight into the Mayflower Terminal, checked in and onto ship without having to sit and wait. A warning to those who arrive very early: it was perishingly cold on the dock side, and there was a queue for those not admitted into the terminal! The checking of boarding passes was greater than we have encountered before.

So QV is due to depart around 6.00pm on this clear moonlit evening and we are just off to the Commodore Club. I doubt whether there will be many hardy souls out on the open deck for sailaway drinks.

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Last night the ship was very quiet and little atmosphere in the atrium. The harpist played to herself. I noticed the average of the pax is very high although there are a few children onboard who are revelling in the Christmas decorations.
The sea has been incredibly calm since we left and during the night was like glass and bathed in moonlight. So far today it has been grey but getting noticeably warmer, so I feel that there is a strong possiblilty I will take a dip in the pool late afternoon, which I should have to myself: the air temperature is currently 14 degrees. Walking the promenade deck earlier on, was refreshing but so few outside.
Later I am going to the spa, but I really hate the hard sell which now happens on booking, and not just after treatments when they try and load you off with creams and potients! It takes the edge of what should be a serene and relaxing experience.
Black & White is the theme for tonight and there are WC parties for platinum and diamond members which gives one an idea of how top heavy the system is. I think we shall pass on this, but have another delicious meal to anticipate. Maybe it will be another viewing of the musical “ Be Our Guest”. I was not too impressed with the singer last night Tesni Jones who apparently has been winner of Sing for Wales and appeared The Voice, but we all have different preferences. Perhaps we were all just too tired for the late performance to be appreciated!

A rather boring photo, but this shows how calm the BoB is. At least we are not suffering the same fate as a Saga ship a few weeks ago.

 

IMG_1416.jpeg

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LadtL1 managed to pick me out last night as she was passing the Casino.

 

I did have a wee bit luck for a change and left with far more than I took.

 

I would concur with LL's assessment of the weather. Although its  dull and overcast, BoB is very well behaved today with no lumps whatsoever.

 

Curiously, tonight is a B and W Gala night. Its also the WC party as mentioned. However the WC invitation clearly states: "Dress Code: Smart Attire".

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6 minutes ago, BigMac1953 said:

Curiously, tonight is a B and W Gala night. Its also the WC party as mentioned. However the WC invitation clearly states: "Dress Code: Smart Attire".

And one wonders why there are so many questions about the dress code on these boards. 

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1 hour ago, BigMac1953 said:

LadtL1 managed to pick me out last night as she was passing the Casino.

 

I did have a wee bit luck for a change and left with far more than I took.

 

I would concur with LL's assessment of the weather. Although its  dull and overcast, BoB is very well behaved today with no lumps whatsoever.

 

Curiously, tonight is a B and W Gala night. Its also the WC party as mentioned. However the WC invitation clearly states: "Dress Code: Smart Attire".

Well spotted Big Mac 👍 Someone has made a clanger here. Over the past several years WC receptions were changed to take place on smart attire evening , the logic being  'Revenue'  !  Gala/Formal evenings' being a sense of occasion usually attract folk to the various cocktail bars, whereas, the cocktail receptions attract folks away from the Bars to enjoy a freebie glass of plonk,  or for those in the know an occasional G&T . 😉   

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Edited to my post above ;

 

BigMac It will be interesting to see if your 'Senior Officer's' reception is rescheduled to an 'Evening Event'  as it was on my trip in October,  rather than the usual midday event , another Revenue concept 😅

    

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Hope it's OK to jump into this thread. We too are on this sailing. I'll post a review at the end of the cruise. Embarkation was remarkably smooth for us also. We arrived at the port at 12.30 pm, and were in our room by 1pm . All very smooth and organised. As mentioned above, last night was B&W night, and everyone I saw was dressed up to the nines. Lovely to see everyone in their finery.

 

Agree with LadyL1's comment about the constant attempt to upsell in the Spa. Irritating, and an insult to the intelligence. Other than that, I enjoyed my treatments.

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Also on board and so far enjoying ourselves.  However today we cannot find anything on the Daily Programme of interest at all.   The pianist who we enjoyed yesterday will not appear again until after we are starting our return journey which does seem rather odd.  
 

I am wondering rather cynically whether this is to encourage me to buy another day of internet access!

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1 hour ago, CABINET said:

Also on board and so far enjoying ourselves.  However today we cannot find anything on the Daily Programme of interest at all.   The pianist who we enjoyed yesterday will not appear again until after we are starting our return journey which does seem rather odd.  
 

I am wondering rather cynically whether this is to encourage me to buy another day of internet access!

Why would they target you in this way? Presumably others would enjoy some of the activities. Or, what I do, gaze at the wondrous sea.

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7 minutes ago, exlondoner said:

Why would they target you in this way? Presumably others would enjoy some of the activities. Or, what I do, gaze at the wondrous sea.

I wasn’t being entirely serious but I don’t think I can ever remember being on a Cunard ship and not finding anything for a whole day.   Still nuance doesn’t seem to work on message boards.  

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I have the opposite problem on Sea Days , too much choice. Sometimes it’s hard to fit in time for lunch between Insight lectures and other talks. I have to watch some talks  on catch up getting ready. My only bugbear with that is that they are on continuous loop. I wish you could fast forward to the one you have missed. 

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1 hour ago, CABINET said:

Also on board and so far enjoying ourselves.  However today we cannot find anything on the Daily Programme of interest at all.   The pianist who we enjoyed yesterday will not appear again until after we are starting our return journey which does seem rather odd.  
 

I am wondering rather cynically whether this is to encourage me to buy another day of internet access!

Agreed, today's programme is less than interesting to us also. I did enjoy the Faberge talk yesterday, even though the last 20 minutes was taken up with sales spiel! Looking forward to a nice, relaxing day today doing nothing very much which is a luxury in itself.

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I’m on this cruise as well. 
 

Some notes so far:

- pleased with the overall feel of the ship. Friendly efficient staff, condition of the ship and things to do.

- we have struck lucky with the bay of Biscay, smooth as anything. There was just a bit of movement yesterday as we excited the channel and rounded Brest 😀

- restricted mdr evening menu ( more so than I remember on here in June). Only 3 non veggie choices, last night black and white evening was beef wellington (which was very nice), sea bass or Sicilian something? and that was it. I hope that if any of the 3 choices were not to one’s taste that things like steak and salmon are always on if requested? First night I had steak Diane and it was a very thin sizzle type steak not thick sirloin type one, felt pretty short changed. Quality of food which we have had so far been good though.

- we are on second sitting and the tables are well occupied (very full) compared to our experience on recent cruises where there we a lot of unoccupied tables.

- the public areas were very full yesterday with mid afternoon chart room, queens room (tea) and pub all full. As weather gets warmer obviously more people will go outside and it will be less crowded inside.

 

Looking forward to Lisbon tomorrow.

 

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In QG, our "free" spirits are now 70cl not the usual 1 litre. The dreaded PA is a half bottle, isn't that lucky?

 

Had Duck a l'orange last night. Meant to be half, but they brought the whole duck. Luckily her indoors was with me so had half along with her main course.

 

We're mid-ships and haven't felt any movemenrt whatsoever. A bit disappointing.

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8 minutes ago, exlondoner said:

I suppose it just means you’ll need a replacement bottle more quickly.

 

We have given up duck l’orange, because, even between us, it is just too much, But I still enjoy the spectacle.

Try eating it when it's for one.

I have often thought of asking for a doggie bag and have soggy orange duck for breakfast instead of crispy bacon.

Wouldn't need the extra portion of brown sauce for that although breakfast orangey duck on toast doesn't quite have the same appeal. 😕

Edited by Victoria2
missed a 'g' out
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Our journey across the BoB was totally uneventful; no marine life to see just a few merchant ships.
My afternoon trip to the spa was expensive and I refused to tip on top of the already added gratuity or buy any products which I was constantly told would improve everything about my skin, but I am beyond that! I will not be going again as this upsell totally spoils a visit.
The B & W evening, as already mentioned, was lovely. We also had  an invitation for the party in the Queens Room (and we did not go in smart attire as said thereupon). Before going to dinner we walked past to see it was heaving but it was nice to see how well dressed everyone was. 
At dinner my Dover sole was very tasty and my husband’s chateaubriand cooked to perfection.
This is another calm sea day before Lisbon tomorrow. So far the speakers have appeared underwhelming and have not bothered going to listen. The diplomat giving a history lecture on Portugal, I am sure we have heard before. 
Today our genteel cruising is interrupted by my significant birthday! We have ordered off menu for a meal tonight and could not wish to celebrate in style anywhere else. To mark this occasion I will go for a swim this afternoon. I usually do this everyday from Southampton, but the cold beat me this time. Our turn around the prom this morning saw the steamers in use and many folk enjoying a stroll as the temperature is now a balmy 18 degrees.
The ship is looking lovely with Christmas decorations, they are the same as other years, but who cares?

It is good to see other passengers posting on this thread, as it really corroborates what I am writing. Everyone seems to be happy and best of all the ship does not seem crowded, although most are indoors, on what is a very full sailing!

With that, I can confirm we are certainly enjoying ourselves and the crew are wonderful as ever.

IMG_1420.jpeg

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When we arrived at Lisbon, we berthed without the usual turn around..

 

Tonight, just after 5:00pm, when all were aboard, we let go our lines, and moved off to do a 180 degree turn.

 

Half way around, the Captain has just announced we're going back in due to a crew emergency Medivac.

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