Thursday, March 24, 2011

WC 2011 Embarkation Day

12 February 2011

I woke up at my regular time of 6:30am- no jet lag!! We had another wonderful English-style breakfast..this time Eggs Benedict with, of course, extra hollandaise sauce.

A little souvenir shopping at Sky City (and a taxicab sprint across town to Jane’s purse place because she decided she really DID need that cute red leather purse after all!) and we were ready for the bus to take us to the ship.

While we waited, I had a lovely conversation with the owner of a beautiful white 1984 Excalibur, who was waiting to pick up a bride to take her to her wedding.

Here comes the bride!

New Zealand customs didn’t take long and we were processed and aboard the ship in time to have lunch in the Crystal Dining Room. Lunch was a wee bit decadent- spatzle with a wild mushroom ragout. Champagne flowed. Two of my sommelier friends Christian and Rafael kept pouring more and more. Perfect way to start any cruise. We saw many friends, including our senior waiter from last year, Sanli.

Unpacking was uneventful-I always bring 30 or so drip dry wire hangers as they take up less space. Our stewardess Evelyn was wonderful, making sure everything was just as we wanted it. This was her last cruise before her break- she had been on six months and was ready to get back to Estonia.

Our view from 9086.

SilverSea's Silver Spirit was docked a little ways from us.

She would follow us all along our route.

The ferry we took to Waiheke the previous day.

Dinner had been arranged by Bill for Silk Road. It was good to see Sigi, the Maitre d’ again. Christian convinced me to try an Italian Chardonnay which I surprisingly liked. French oak- not American. Must be something to that.

We left the selection of sushi and sashimi to the Chef (“omakase”, I believe is what you say), followed by Nobu Matsuhisa’s specialities, among them Waygu beef with three sauces and rock shrimp. As if that weren’t enough, I had one of my favorite desserts-sesame ice cream. Happy happy happy.

We attended the Maori show was an extended version of what we saw at the museum. Still nice. And we greeted many old friends.

Our sail away was not until midnight, but I was just too tired to stay up.

It was nice to be home- aboard Crystal Serenity.

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