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Saga Pearl II blog - Captains' blogs

2nd May, 2018

Well hello everybody, Captain Tanner here again, having returned from my little excursion to Ireland and an action-packed friend’s wedding. I think I have just about recovered…

I re-joined the ship in Gibraltar, having flown in the night before and stayed in a hotel located a few hundred feet above the foot of the famous ‘rock.’ Rarely having experienced an uneventful trip, the night in my hotel proved to provide yet another story to add to my bank of travel escapades. Having only arrived at my hotel at around 1am, slightly exhausted, I was keen to locate my room and hit the hay. Once in I found a very stuffy atmosphere, so immediately threw open the balcony doors, closed the curtains, brushed my teeth and fell into bed for what turned out to be an excellent sleep.

I awoke around sunrise the next morning, to an odd scraping, tapping sound which appeared to be coming from the direction of the balcony. As my brain slowly came to life I initially thought this to be some sort of early morning maintenance taking place, but as my eyes opened fully I quickly came to realise that I had intruders in my room - in the form of the famous Barbary Apes. I leapt into life, grabbed a towel from the bathroom and shooed the mischievous creatures out, with not quite 100% success - I later discovered one more in the bathroom sitting on the windowsill as I went to replace the towel.

Once fully awake, I took note of the large warning sign placed on the coffee table notifying guests of these creatures and advising to keep doors & windows closed. Note to self: always read hotel warning signs before dropping off to sleep in future.

Well, after a short taxi ride I re-joined our little ship. Passengers were already pouring ashore on tours or independently to enjoy a sunny day ashore. The weather was glorious: light winds, clear skies and temperatures in the mid 20’s. A quick chat and a few signatures later, I was back in the hot seat having taken over from Captain Lambert. All was well on our little ship, and everyone had enjoyed 3 pleasant calm days of sea passage from Portsmouth down to Gibraltar, settling into life aboard.

After a whole day exploring Gibraltar’s rock, or heading further afield for dolphin watching tours, Marbella or Puerto Banus, it was time to leave in the and we backed out of the harbour and into the calm Mediterranean sea, setting course to the east.

I noted that this cruise is entitled a “Mediterranean Adventure,” which got me thinking…what could we possibly do to make it more adventurous? Watch this space…

Captain Kim Tanner

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

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