The MS Prinsendam (Picture on top is Prinsendam in Skye Harbor) leaves Holland America Service on July 1, 2019. Before she left the fleet, we wanted to take one more cruise on her. We had planned to travel in July … Continue reading 2019 Celtic Explorer, MS Prinsendam.
“I’m not condemning cruise vacations.” Travel writer Rick Steves wrote in his book “Travel as a Political Act. “I’m simply saying that type of activity is not ‘travel’ it’s hedonism. (And I don’t say that in a judgmental way either. … Continue reading Two Cruise Coda
You can try to shelter yourself from travel’s inconveniences but you’re never completely successful. We’re used to negotiating travel’s mine fields (sometimes literally.) We’ve done winding dusty mountain roads in third world busses, train rides with goats and chickens, and … Continue reading The Long Ride Home
It was strange seeing all luggage lining the halls on Sunday night and ours was not there. Others were wrapped up in packing, we were not but could enjoy the evening. On Monday Morning when we went to a fashionably … Continue reading Amsterdam Turnaround — “Flip a Ship.”
When we got on the ship several people asked “Why Zebrugge” and “Why Antwerp?” Especially “Why two days in Antwerp? This is the Celtic Explorer, the Celts left Belgium more than a thousand years ago.” Sailing down the Schelde River … Continue reading Antwerp Postcards.
St. Charles Borromeo Church is easy to miss if you are not on a tour. While it is “hidden” in a little square it is not small. It does not appear in my Lonely Planet book or on either of … Continue reading Confessions and Anguished Angels.
When we arrived in Antwerp we did what we often do, check in with the local tourist information office to get a map, mass transit map and timetable and to buy tram tickets. The women at the desk told us … Continue reading Antwerp’s Two Cathedrals.
I love Art Nouveau movement and always live cities where there the movement has taken over the architecture of a neighborhood. There are several neighborhoods in Antwerp where there are fine representations, including Zurenborg neighborhood near the Berchem tram stop. … Continue reading It’s a Bourgeois Town
Yesterday was a “sea day” on Prinsendam. There are not enough of them on this segment of the cruise. I like a day at sea to recharge, and go to lectures and to ask the Captain questions. This sea day … Continue reading Einstein on the Beach
…especially conversation. While Dublin has many fine sights it’s the conversation that attracts me, the storytelling in word and music. When I saw the sign on the barbershop (above) I almost went in for a haircut even though I didn’t … Continue reading Cuts and Conversation…
Ireland is going to the polls this month and Dublin is strewn with posters for every sort of candidate and for one referendum issue. All of Europe is voting for members of the European Parliament. Further Dublin appears to be … Continue reading Diversity of Views and Style
The Town of Tobermory seems to be built upside down. The High Street runs along the waterfront and the other streets sit above it on a hill. In since the turn of the century High Street has been inundated during … Continue reading Upside Down, Tobermory
Helen was the last baby born in the Hospital on the Isle of Skye before they closed the maternity ward. And Helen is a young woman now. She’s our cabdriver on Skye. Today, expectant mothers now have to drive three … Continue reading The Isles of the Blest (Skye)
When we first decided to take this cruise I messaged my Facebook Friend Catherine. Her people are from the same town in Ireland that my people are from, Greencastle County Donegal. She found me while Googling, I think, a great … Continue reading A Tardis and a Traffic Cone.
… sounds like an oxymoron but Glasgow Cathedral is Presbyterian. It started as Catholic, a dark early Gothic building. The first cathedral on this site was dedicated in 1136. It was destroyed in a fire in 1197 and the current … Continue reading A Presbyterian Cathedral…
We had intended to travel to St. Davids on our own, using the bus system through Pembrokeshire. But Fishguard is a tender port and the seas were fairly big so it took a long time to disembark. They had to … Continue reading A liner returns to Fishguard.
We are half way to Rome or a third of the way to Jerusalem, at least according to Pope Callestus II, who, in 1124, said two pilgrimages to St. Davids (they officially don’t use the apostrophe although some people do) … Continue reading St Davids (no apostrophe please)
Truro is the County Seat of Cornwall. It’s also the county’s cathedral town. Truro Cathedral is not ancient but an example of Victorian Gothic Revival. The Architect said that when people went in, he wanted them to drop to their … Continue reading Truro Mambo
Some sail-ins are spectacular for their natural beauty, Rio and Vancouver come to mind. Some sail-ins have wonderous cityscapes, New York or Sydney. Sailing across the bar into the Fal River to Falmouth is not spectacular, it is gentle, it … Continue reading A Pretty Town, Falmouth. Cornwall.
The English Channel has some of the widest tidal ranges in the world, ranging to 40 feet. Sea farers have to have different strategies to deal with these tides. In Jersey some harbors are open to the sea and the … Continue reading Tides in the English Channel.
Right now we are sailing in some rough seas. We were supposed to leave Falmouth at 6:00PM but the Captain ordered all on board at 4:00 so he could get around Land’s End to beat a storm. But after we … Continue reading The Beaufort Scale and Jersey’s Public Art.
There’s something we’ve not seen before, waiters and waitresses going table to table trying to upsell us to the “Premium” restaurants at significant discounts. There are similar sales at the spa and for other “ad on” features. As an incentive … Continue reading And We’re Off, Dover
…as many of my adventures do. London was my first foreign metropolis. I went there as a kid with my grandfather and had a great amount of freedom to wander and fall in love with the city. It was Suzi’s … Continue reading The Adventure Starts in London…