Monday, March 29, 2010


La niña del sentimiento
y el rey del tango más reo,
se dieron al mar y al viento,
primero, Montevideo

warning: those picture are only a parcial and totally imperfect reflection of the cruise, by no means a reference!
It 's not Roman Polanski's ' Bitter moon' ( Luna de hiel), but our own HONEY MOON CRUISE, in all its splendor!

Even tango was not missing there, danced on the deck, theatre and all the dancing floors with orchestras.

Embarking in Buenos Aires on a beautiful summer march day ( 20th of March)

The ship seemed a fairy tale pic with its bright night outfit.

' Mi Buenos Aires querido, cuando te volvere a ver' ... leaving our beloved Buenos Aires behind.

Even the full moon was hanged there- a perfect scenery for our good byes.
Nobody remained unimpressed by the nocturnal silhouetes of Buenos Aires.

Each day onboard was a new surprise with a new view.There was another surprise waiting for us onboard: our Swiss students/organisers/friends secretly booked the same cruise! WE had a tango company therefore.
Our good old Montevideo, the first port and a first stop for a day, was so different seen from our new floating house. Victor pensative.
Me: romantic on that day.

Victor loved 'sea promenade' - 450 m around the ship. To walk, to run, to meditate.

Victor's favourite terrace on the popa ( back of the ship)- to contemplate the landscape, to have a chat, to take coffe, lunch and neverending snack/picaditas/tapas at the self service bar. WITH THE SEA VIEW.
I loved to have chats with my favourite representatives of all the languages: above with my new Swedish friends ( practising Swedish!)
SUNSETS were another spectacle included in the cruise.
As we moved on northwards, toward the equator, the sunset time was ever changing.
But equally spectacular!

Our second stop at the port: RIO DE JANEIRO!!! A whole day to explore it.
MY VERY FIRST TIME in RIO: from the deck of the ship I recognized the remote Corcovado with the tiny figure of Cristo Redemptor.
The modern part of the city from the boat.
' Full tank, please'- we needed some fuel into our ship!Victor inspected the action.

We did the obvious tourist thing- went up to Corcovado to admire this ' cidade meravelhosa' from above.
Pao de azucar from Corcovado, another obvious picture.
Cristo Redemptor from the neighbouring hill.
Another ' must' as a foto.
You can ' t stop taking photographs up there, even on a misty day...

Victor with Cristo Redemptor above. Not only to show we've been there! He visited Corcovado with his secondary school mates when he was 18. On a 10 day cruise from BsAs. That is- it s his second cruise, second time in Rio.

Unfortunatelly the statue of Jesus Christ is being restaured.
38 m of the sculpture up above the Corcovado mountain is quite a job of mainenance!
Leaving the Bay of Guanabara at night is almost a spiritual experience. You have to accompany it by a glass of whiskey therefore...

After a day of navigation we arrived to our third port-an ex slave city, SALVADOR DE BAHIA.
Pelourinho in its beauty.

And the decadent part of the city.
Tipical actitude of a brasilian dog...

The visits to the ports was my internet time; searching wi-fi everywhere. I adore my little pink netbook ( thank you Rudi for the present!) The connection onboard is one of the most expensive things; therefore to be avoided.
Our fourth port, after another whole day ( and night) of navigation: MACEIO. WE LOVED THOSE TROPICAL BEACHES!

I like that fact that we could leave the port and keep on walking along the neverending beaches, exploring the city and beyond it; without a bus, a taxi, an organized tour. Actually, we are proud not to use all above. The French-Polish couple was of our kind.

Good for a stretch..

You never know whom you meet strolling round the beaches. Not recognized him inmediately. OUR CAPITAN, Massimo,without his white gala uniform! Young, fit and ... Sicilian!
Capitan suggested to lend me another bike to explore our next port- Recife.

However we had a stroll in RECIFE ( where we arrived after other 2 days of navigation), Victor cursing the sun and me not having accepted capitain's offer to have a bike ride. Under the scorching sund at 11 o clock...

Finally we ended up at the beach, recommended by my Brasilian friend Sonia ( my ex Portugese teacher): PRAIA DE BOA VIAJEM. IT WAS SIMPLY A PARADISE!

I was wearing my newly bought swimming suit.

And back to our huge, safe home.

Every day a dance class on a 12th floor on a deck: salsa, samba, bachata, bolero and even tango. Maybe 1% of the passengers participated in them ( of 2 300)... 6 longs days of navigations followed and there were plenty of activities onboard.
Swimming pools and jacuzzis on the deck.
Even capitain was spoiling us inviting us for drinks ( Victor loved his BBC- bailys, banana & pina colada and me my NEGRONI: campari, gin & vodka). I loved my italian convestations with capitain; Victor used to bombard him with his hundreds of technical questions. Our capitan has patience, good sense of humor and Italian charm.
Baptism of the sea: we were painted and thrown to the swimming pool. I got dissapointed that the water did not turn black..
Our unrestrained appetite was directed towards the exotic fruits: lunch consisted of papayas, mango, ananas. Main stream of following the meals from 7 am till 1 am never managed to affect us! Victor LOST 1 kg, while the general tendency on the boat is to put up on weigh some 5-7 kg....Another success!
Guided tour in the ships' s impecable kitchen. A BIG STAINLESS STEEL LABORATORY- 120 cooks, 150 waiters, 25 permanent cleaning personal!

Coctail party for the HONEY MOONERS; we all renewed our marriage vows, repeated after the capitain in 6 languages ( you have to hear the Italian capitain speaking German......)
EASTER ONBOARD, somewhere on the Atlantic ocean....
One of the ' midnight buffets' ( for us- only for the eyes, how can you still eat after the dinner????! It was only our rethorical question)
MORPHEUS, one of the dancing floors with a stage for the orchestra; about 2 am when all the passengers left and we were the last ones ( together with our Swiss tango couple).
The young crowd including all the POLISH of the cruise ( 4): Przemyslaw and Basia and Sylwia married with a French Christian and an Argentinean from Cordoba. My drinking company ( caipirinha on daily bases but eager to experiment any drink of the day)
Elengantissima Concord Plaza; impossible to take a good picture of. To dance and drink.
Talking about drinks...
Capitain Massimo was not only a good drinking and talking companion. A frequent guest of a disco ROCK STAR, even at 2 am ( what happens to the ship when the capitan is dancing or drinking?). Tried to convert him into tango, we shall see...
Our dance show at the disco- the last two persons dancing...
Guess whom the capitan reminds me of? Of course, everybody tell him this.
Our lovely, lively Brasilian dancers- Mauricio y Ivete. WE also shared the love for whisky ( with or without coca cola). In their cabin, with an Andalusian passenger ( who showed up with a bottle, while Ivete was giving me a stage make up corse). THE LONG 6 DAYS of navigation across the Atlantic ocean kept us in a good company. NO WAY TO GET BORED ( I am already answering some bizzare questions I got)
ITALIAN NIGHT; italian coloured bread and waiters singing ' Volare' and dancing with the passengers. Italian crew and Brasilian-Italian-Argentinean service make the cruise a real latin experience!
Our mixed dinner table: 2 Spanish couples from Malaga, a couple of our Swiss friends-students- organisers and us, representing Argentina.
Our sweet little boat anchoring in Malaga. Yes, before we had Tenerife ( Canary Islands) and Funchal ( Madeira).
Malaga is super catholic city, specially known for Eastern processions:

Views on Malaga from the deck.

It was a beautiful sunny spring day. However the deck was more and more deserted. The tropical summer was over- we arrived to Europe....

Entertainment onboard continued to the last day. My favourite pianist and singer. Dino, the Italian. Loved to sit beside and sing with him in a bar-stage beside Casino.

The Easter buffet of fruit & vegetable sculptures.

Making friends with Roberto, the crew member.

I asked him to arrange me the sexy white overalls! Would be perfect for my tango training.

The sad day of arrival to Savona- end of the odyssey...

.. and of the summer. WE had to dig out our ' winter cloths'.

We had a last tour on the empty, cold decks of the ship.

Our memories will be those of the tropical part of the cruise and great time onboard. Like the day we visited PUENTE DE MANDO ( sorry, no English equivalent coming to my mind right now). It's a privilege, not permitted to the passengers for safety reasons since 11 of Sept 2001. But after so many drinks and chats and walks and dances and saunas and gims with the capitan, he made a little exception. Victor sent me to chat him up.

No passengers can see this view.

The place looked like a space ship, absolutely impressive. Capitain explained all the secrets to Victor.

Massimo was pround to show the exibition of the souvenirs from all the ports the ship has been to.

This is what nowdays replaces steering wheel. Not very romantic though...

An obvious photo at the streering wheel with the capitan. Will I dance tango with him next cruise ( the joke onboard was, that the capitan would have to wear high heels, not me...) However I am sure he will make a good leader!

Meteorological instruments onboard.

My favourite part of Puente de Mando: a square meter of transparent glass on the floor, too look streight at the ocean some 30 m below...scary-lovely sensation!

The capitain was kind enough to show us his suit and his office. I could not resist to wear the capitan's cap.

Roberto, my favourite crew member and responsible for all electicity of the cruise- he is a magician able to arrange whiskey and camomile tea for me when all the bars ( for the passangers) are closed.

This was a reason to descent to the hell ( infierno) of the Divine Comedy. He was a Cicerone, I fully trusted. Below: in the bowels of the ship.

Roberto liked taking pictures of me; even when I was talking.
Or nostalgic on the last day of the cruise...Robert gave me a DVD of a musical ' Notre Dame de Paris' as a present. Obviously, in Italian.

No comments: