7:48 a.m. Usually we wake up in our next port...this morning we're still at sea, though there is an island off to the left. The ship rocked a lot last night, which I enjoyed, and the seas are still a little rough. Apparently there is some problem with getting into Lemnos, though I have no idea what it might be. Getting sailors into and out of liberty boats in choppy seas isn't a problem...getting a bunch of middle-to-old-age civilians into a tender is. Well, we'll see what happens.
This morning for breakfast I decided to have bacon and eggs. I love bacon; always have. However, whenever I eat any “solid” foods, as I chew, most of it goes between my cheek and gums and is almost impossible to dislodge, since my tongue can't just scoop it out as yours can. Nor can I move small particles to the front of my mouth with my tongue and “Ptttt!” it out. Having almost no physical control over my mouth and tongue is a real bitch. (Mentioned, yet again, not as a bid for sympathy but as a strong reminder to you to be infinitely grateful for the totally unnoticed little things you can do.)
Our last day aboard. I've enjoyed it and seeing the places we've been, but it has all been overshadowed, I fear, by the awareness of my increasing and totally unacceptable. If hating/resenting/regretting something intensely could change it, I would once again be...hell, I'd settle for 50!
Since we'll be in Istanbul in the morning, that means we'll be passing through the Dardanelles sometime during the night while we're sleeping. One of my fondest memories of my first time through the Dardanelles was of its being a moonless night and, while not being able to see much, there was the almost palpable smell of...green. (Which leads to another thing I'd really not noticed this time but commented on during my first trip to Europe: the absence of wooden buildings. I can't recall seeing a single one this trip.
8:26 Lemnos is out. Water too rough to safely load and unload tenders. They'll be showing the movie Topkapi...a movie from the 50s or 60s about a jewel heist in Istanbul. (Istanbul...get the connection?)
However, looking out the windows of the observation deck, we do not appear to be moving. If we've anchored I didn't hear it drop. Perhaps we're just going to sit here for the same length of time as we would have been in Lemnos, to keep to the time schedule.
So this means no internet until Istanbul, and I bought 2 more hours of extra internet service than I'm going to be able to use.
Some people just walked by on the outside the windows wearing sweaters, which were flapping wildly in the wind.
8:35 Internet! I've got internet! Just tried it on a whim and....
Adrian, one of the Englishmen I've gotten to know, stopped by and we talked for nearly an hour. I turned the internet off to save time.
10:30 Returned to my cabin, which is close to water level. Spray from waves hitting the hull fly by my little porthole. It is downright chilly in here, and I'm sitting on the bed in my robe, propped up by the pillows, all but shivering.
1:03 Just returned from lunch. We've just entered the narrow stretch of water leading to the even narrower Dardanelles—so narrow that shipping is strictly controlled and ships are accompanied by pilot boats. So glad we're going through during daylight, though! I think I'll spend the afternoon in the Observation Lounge, since it's too windy-cold to spend much time on deck. I brought a light jacket, and will take it with me.
1:21 Tried to get out to the deck to take a few photos but with the wind and the jiggling of the ship, I doubt any will turn out.
1:52 Entering the Dardanelles. Sit down, type, get up to go outside for a photo, sit down, type...
(We'll be passing Gallipoli, of WWI fame/notoriety)
5:45 Please tell me how I do it. Please. I decided to organize my photos and cannot find any of the photos I took in Taormina. Nowhere. I somehow deleted them. All of them! And they are not in my trash bin, where they would be retrievable. Since I use iPhoto, I can only pray that it has a retrievable trash bin as well. I know they have a “Move to trash” but I don't dare click on it for fear it will think I want to move whatever photos I'm looking at to trash. Oh, Lord, but I am hopeless!
Note: Photos of the entire journey can be seen on my Facebook page.