A Nautical Nomad

16 December 2020.

Well another posting from the past in place of actual traveling. I came across both of these posting from my memories on Facebook. They are both the same date but one from 2015 and the other from 2017., Both are voyages on the QM2.

If they were on any other cruise line they would be cruises, however the crew on the QM2 insist on the term, voyage. Just a little bit more of the inbuilt snobbery. I remember on the first cruise ( sorry voyage) I did on the QM2, the master of ceremonies in the ballroom made reference to, “your fellow elite” yes in this day and age. Anyway I digress , so here is the first travelogue from 16 December 2015.

16 December 2015 somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean

Day two on my transatlantic trip to New York and it is all about rocking and rolling . Last night in the disco it was the real rock and roll and during the night and this morning the ship is rocking and rolling in rough seas . There is a few rather pale people going about clutching sickness bags . We seem to go through a rough patch

followed by relatively calm periods. I can hardly believe it but I am sitting in the coffee shop having my morning coffee and have just been joined by an elderly couple from Southampton . Now this is uncanny because the exact same thing happened on the last cruise I was on, when a couple sat beside me and it turned out the gentleman had some sort off dementia and wife went off to do other things and left the elderly gentleman with me. This is incredible because it has just happened again , the wife has just left me with he guy. Now this gentleman is not in the same category as the last one but he has just asked me where I am getting off the ship . This is a Transatlantic voyage and there is only one place you can get of this ship and that is New York, unless the ship sinks. So this looks like the beginning of another of these very one sided friendships 🙂 . Kidding aside though, it makes you realize just how fortunate you are. So an iPad course to go to this morning and I am sure I saw a Cha Cha class somewhere on the program . Busy day ahead 🙂 Few photos the gingerbread house . The coffee shop and the cruel sea.

Ok, so here is the next travelogue from exactly two years later.

16 December 2017

QM2 somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean

Day 9 of my two-way transatlantic trip and a good day yesterday with a meet up with two friends from my last trip on the Queen Mary, Graham and Theresa, in Southampton. Theresa also joined the ship with her family for the leg to New York. It was also good to get ashore with my feet on dry land for a while and access to decent wi fi. Sitting here wondering if it will be as interesting this week with a mostly new set of travelers on the ship. Last week was interesting with seemingly endless conversations on politics, both US and UK with a good slice of Scottish independence discussions thrown in. We have had the Scottish budget set out by the SNP government and as to be expected, a huge amount of condemnation from the same media outlets who were pushing for tax increases and are predictably now condemning them. From the limited information I have seen, and assuming there was a need to collect the realistically pretty low amount of revenue accruing from the increases, the Scottish government have probably managed to produce a fair budget with tax increases coming mainly from the better off. However, the question that has to be asked, is this just the start and will the UK government continue ,through reduction in the Scottish budget to pile pressure on the Scottish Government to continually use their very restricted tax powers to prop up a failing UK economy. I think the answer to that question is yes and I must go back to previous blogs on the subject that warned against having anything to do with the Smith commission proposals as they have always been a process of supplying just enough rope by which the SNP could hang itself. In other words, a small amount of fiscal freedom with a large amount of blame for the resulting tax increases. The rights or wrongs of the Scottish budget are irrelevant, as with a huge amount of media ranged against the independence movement, it is all about perception and that was always going to be negative. So perhaps another insight to the strategic abilities of the SNP.

So some lunch and then a walk on deck to take advantage of this beautiful weather and perhaps a few photos.

So both lunch and a walk on the deck later and back in the coffee lounge with a nice capachino and thoughts on another interesting lunch. Interesting guy who had worked for some of the main media organizations in New York such as NBC , New York Times etc. There was also a lady from London who had presumably ( confirmed later ) been public school educated according to her accent. Interesting lady who had all the answers as to why Scotland should not be independent. I don’t know what it is but on this trip I seem to be a magnet for these people . “Now why on earth would a country that depends on 90% of its trade with England even think about becoming independent”? This was her first reaction to discovering I was in favor of independence for Scotland, in response to a direct question as to my opinion on the subject. I resisted the impulse to escort her to the promenade deck and throw her overboard and said “well there is a couple of reasons that come to mind and the first one is that the figure you have just stated is entirely fictitious and as I would assume your newspaper of choice would in all probability be the Telegraph I cannot understand why you would be quoting figures that would normally be found in the Express or the Mail” I went on to explain that even the UK government do not know what the true figures are because if you take say the discredited GERS figures , there is estimates used in 22 of the 24 tax bases used to compile these figures . So therefore wherever you got these figures from, they are inaccurate.

I then put forward the argument that ,yes we do trade a lot with England and the basis of any one trading with anyone else boils down to several factors . Price, quality and availability, so was she suggesting that in the event of independence, English companies would cut their own throats because they were in the huff ( I had to explain what being in the huff was). She looked somewhat perplexed and said “well I simply do not see the point of it “Later ,during lunch she asked me why I would think her newspaper of choice would be the Telegraph and confirmed that I was correct in my assumption. I said, “two things, attitude and accent “

So, I have been very diligent in my attempts to restrain myself from over indulging in the vast array of foods available and generally do not eat until lunch time. I walk on the deck as often as the weather will allow and last night I had some exercise in the ballroom before a work out in the disco followed by a large plate of ice cream at half past one in the morning. Absolutely ridicules’ having ice cream available at that time of the Morning, I intend having words with the Captain when I next see him. So, to all my friends wherever you are , have a great weekend .

So a few photos .

Stay safe every one . one day this will end, we will be able to travel again and will look back on a bad dream.

A Nautical Nomad

10 December 2017

With travel more or less impossible I have taken to trawling through my past Facebook postings and came across this one, from December 2017. Very apt for a couple of reasons. Reference is made to Donald Trumps policies especially in respect to his views on foreign people coming to the US. Well the American people have recently woke up and have sent him packing.

The other reference was to the SNP ( Scottish National Party) who have constantly prevaricated in what should be their main propose in life and that is the attainment of independence for Scotland. Well that was three years ago and they are still at it and now we are on the eave of leaving the EU and despite the promises of Nicola sturgeon to move towards independence, we are no where near that goal.

Transatlantic voyage on the QM2

Well day four on my transatlantic sojourn and I must admit, it is hard to settle in to this sedentary interlude of relaxation after the hustle and bustle of business, which gets pretty intense at times.

The ship was delayed in leaving New York because of the premier of “The Greatest Showman” being held on board. It was a bit of a nuisance as some of the passageways on the ship were blocked off and for the people who wished to see the sail away from New York , they were faced with a 2 in the morning late night because that is when the ship left.

When I boarded the ship I went on deck and looked out towards the statue of liberty and got to thinking of what America stands for today. The statue of liberty was a gift from the people of France to celebrate Americas freedom. It stands at the entrance to New York city where the emigrants came to Ellis island from all over the planet to make new life’s in that great country.

The Lady Liberty holds in its hand the torch of freedom. It says to the World “give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free” How hollow that now sounds with a president who is preventing people coming to the shores of America based on the country of their origin which includes the colour of their skin together with their religion. A President who has just re-ignited the flames of war in the middle east by allowing his masters in the Zionist Israeli government to dictate American policy by declaring acceptance of the City of Jerusalem as the official capital city of the artificial state of Israel. I say artificial because that is exactly what it is. Israel is an artificial construction of expediency made by man, using God as an excuse.

So enough of politics and I will not even comment on the farce that is the Brexit negotiations or the ever-clearing mist around the SNP position regarding independence. I say mist considerately and selectively as I am directing this at the selectively blind sycophantic sheeple of the SNP who I have been warning, that this situation would arise. The situation I am talking about is the position where all of the UK will be part of the single market taking away any hope that Nicola Sturgeon has ( if she ever had) of calling another referendum on the basis of no single market deal . Something that Scotland never voted for in the first place.

So back to the travelogue. Sitting here listening to the piano tinkling away in the background drinking coffee. Actually, thinking too much and my coffee has gone cold. Another formal night tonight, which is a pest. I was speaking to a guy from New York yesterday who is obviously a Cunardphile . He goes about during the day with a jacket tie and waistcoat on trying to be more British than the British. He tells me he has been on over 40 cruises, all with Cunard. He also tells me that he wears a kilt on formal nights and was asking me how to properly wear his plaid ( or sash ,as he called it) he also told me that it was a different tartan than his kilt. My first reaction was to burst out laughing and tell him that he will look a proper dick, but I resisted the urge and explained that a plaid is not now normally worn with a kilt and the origin is that it was actually part of the kilt , the kilt being made of 8 yards of cloth one end being wound around the person and the end part being thrown over the shoulder and fastened by the belt. I look forward to seeing is outfit tonight, he tells me it is the Balmoral Tartan so you can imaging who his heroes are.

Ok so time to change into my shabby Kilt for the Captains reception which I have been invited to ( free drink)I hope all my friends are having a good weekend Slainte.