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St. Petersburg

Saga Sapphire blog - Captains' blogs

15th July, 2014

We joined a minor procession of passenger ships heading for 'Marine Façade';, the modern cruise terminal at the very head of the Gulf of Finland built on reclaimed ground a few years ago south west side of the city. With some reduced visibility our pilot became even more athletic as he raced over to the VHF as soon as the ship’s name was mentioned, nervous perhaps, but noticeably grateful when I offered to take the con for the last mile or so.

With other duties and some catching up to attend to I did not even pass through immigration over these two days, so I missed the opportunity of offering my ‘spaseeba’ (thank you) to the very serious ladies of ‘Immigration’ in an effort to drag out a smile. By all accounts there were no problems with any officialdom whatsoever. Tours went off like clockwork and passengers came back suitably exhausted as temperatures rose during both days to the mid 20’s.

During the first evening, fortunately after concert goers were already seated, a spectacular but relatively brief rain storm came over the city, deluging us and momentarily illuminating the night sky with some very impressive lightning. By the time the folks came back for the ‘Russian buffet’ it was all over. It did clear the ‘beach’ though, a small still unused area where the seabed had been dumped during the reclaiming process, between the passenger terminals and the main road half a mile away and where locals were sunbathing. I can’t say it looked too grand, or even particularly healthy, but needs must I suppose.

I chatted to Britannia Club members at the following evening’s cocktail party and they all agreed it had been a great visit, with fantastic weather, and even a few smiles from the ladies at immigration., the modern cruise terminal at the very head of the Gulf of Finland built on reclaimed ground a few years ago south west side of the city. With some reduced visibility our pilot became even more athletic as he raced over to the VHF as soon as the ship’s name was mentioned, nervous perhaps, but noticeably grateful when I offered to take the con for the last mile or so.

With other duties and some catching up to attend to I did not even pass through immigration over these two days, so I missed the opportunity of offering my ‘spaseeba’ (thank you) to the very serious ladies of ‘Immigration’ in an effort to drag out a smile. By all accounts there were no problems with any officialdom whatsoever. Tours went off like clockwork and passengers came back suitably exhausted as temperatures rose during both days to the mid 20’s.

During the first evening, fortunately after concert goers were already seated, a spectacular but relatively brief rain storm came over the city, deluging us and momentarily illuminating the night sky with some very impressive lightning. By the time the folks came back for the ‘Russian buffet’ it was all over. It did clear the ‘beach’ though, a small still unused area where the seabed had been dumped during the reclaiming process, between the passenger terminals and the main road half a mile away and where locals were sunbathing. I can’t say it looked too grand, or even particularly healthy, but needs must I suppose.

I chatted to Britannia Club members at the following evening’s cocktail party and they all agreed it had been a great visit, with fantastic weather, and even a few smiles from the ladies at immigration.

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

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.

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