Day 3: April 9 – At Sea
Today was a day of relaxation and preparation. I had a great deal of time to type experiences from my small cabin with the waves crashing outside my window. The purr of the engine, splashing of the waves outside my porthole along with the rocking motion of the boat almost put me to sleep a number of times but I did manage to stay awake.
I did complete a token amount of exercise in the morning but not nearly enough to compensate for the three large meals I ate during the day. The food on the Aranui is absolutely incredible. Although there is a set menu, the staff have been extremely accommodating to allergy requests that we made prior to the trip for our youngest boy. They also have been great at preparing special meals that don’t contain certain foods we requested not to have for the rest of our family.
My only complaint with the food is that there is way too much. Breakfast is buffet style with fruit, pancakes, breads and cereal. The lunch and dinner always consist of a salad or other appetizer followed by a main course and then a much too tempting desert. My hope is that I don’t have to roll myself off of the ship when it is time to leave.
On our boat there are a total of 9 children, just over half of which are our children. According to one crew member we are the largest family they have see aboard the vessel. Two other French families (including the onboard Doctor) have two young 3 and 8 year old girls. The children seem to really be enjoying the onboard activities organized by the designated kids activity director. An early lunch (11 AM) and dinner (6:30 PM) has also been organized for the children so that they don’t have to wait until 7:30 PM to eat like the rest of the adults.
Being that it was Easter Monday, the children were able to color Easter eggs and to judge the adults Easter egg coloring contest. They also were kept busy playing games, swimming in the pool and watching an after dinner video. There seems to be plenty to keep the children busy and they are always excited to have something different to do.
Our first big orientation session was also held today to review the entire Marquesas portion of our itinerary. We were also advised to ignore the other itineraries that are frequently distributed as the exact itineraries change based on what cargo is being shipped along with the tide schedules. In Hiva Oa we have a long stop as we have to enter and exit the pass at high tide. During low tide the ship is only about 80 centimetres from the floor of the ocean where it anchors as it waits for a safe time to leave.
All excursions are included with the Cruise passage of the Aranui. With the exception of some optional scuba diving trips, museum admissions and horseback riding, the guided hikes, on land traditional meals and 4×4 excursions are all included. We are anxious to be heading for shore tomorrow early in the morning to catch our first glimpse of the Marquesas Islands.
Written by Norm Schafer, Victoria BC
CEO Of FarAndAwayAdventures.com
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