Anthem of the Seas - 3 Night Royal Experience, Paris & Bruges Cruise

We went back to the cabin to get out of the wind and get ready for the evening.  Janice had separated the beds as we'd asked and I took the one by the window.  Under the light was another socket which was very handy.  The container ship, Hyundai Dream, was heading in and we saw her out of the window as we passed Ryde.  Oskar had wanted to see We Will Rock You, so we booked the 7pm show, which was one of two slots left.  Despite being a Queen fan since Live Aid in 1985, I had never been interested in the show but agreed to go since it didn't have an extra charge.  I have to admit I do prefer original production shows in the theatre because you can get some excellent ones.  West End/Broadway productions on ships just seems lazy and unimaginative.  As we waited, we heard whooping and cheering from below so looked to see Queen guitarist Brian May and his wife Anita Dobson arriving and taking their seats.  Well the show was fantastic and had obviously had updated references since it began in London back in 2002.  Kevin Kennedy, better known to UK cruisers as Curly Watts in Coronation Street, played Pop.  It took ages before I remembered where I'd heard that voice before.  I hadn't expected to enjoy it but loved it though still prefer a variety of shows onboard.  When the show finished, Brian went on stage just as my camera battery died - typical!  I'd left the spares in the bag I boarded with - grrr!  He said it was the first night (the press had a preview) and this was the maiden voyage - we wish!  

Afterwards, we went to the Music Hall where I'd arranged to meet Marcus from Twitter but I didn't know if he got my last tweet.  Rock The Boat were playing so we had a drink then headed to Silk for dinner.  The only time left was a very late 9.45pm, which is a drawback of this Dynamic Dining pre-booking.  They weren't using the regular menu but one which had a selection from various dining venues.  We were done in an hour so had time to shop.  Marcus spotted us so we had a brief natter with him and his friends then went our separate ways.  Sadly no models or much of anything on sale so it was a cheap bill for once!  Then we wrapped up and wandered around a bit.  Oskar was brave enough to stand on glass about fourteen decks up but I wasn't.  The North Star was my limit.  And so much needed sleep!

We arrived in Zeebrugge on the 1st May.  It was my 20th visit by cruise to the port.  We were remaining in ships time rather than putting the clocks forward.  It was a late wake up and thankfully the Windjammer was still open but surprisingly packed for after 10am so there was a long queue.  A group of us were taken to a table after we'd washed our hands.  After we'd finished, we went to the future cruise desk and booked Harmony for 2016.  They gave you $100 onboard credit but applied it to the current cruise.  That was annoying in a way but good in another because it meant my account was minus and Oskar's reduced.  Then it was time for our favourite pastime of Blondie hunting, that officious security guard who harasses people when they dare to take photos of their own ship.  He had been reasonably okay the last couple of times I'd been there but the weather was crap and he was keeping warm so maybe that was why.  On the way, we spotted two familiar faces taking photos as part of a media group - Tibo Deprest and Sebastiaan Peters, who we know on Facebook.  It was just a flying hello before they continued on their tour but it was nice finally meeting them.  

And so onto the dock and there was a band playing which was nice.  We saw Blondie yelling at some people for photographing Anthem when not on his phone so he was definitely back on form.  We took our photos, thankfully with him elsewhere on the dock, then returned to the gangway.  The band sang Happy Birthday to one of the lady coach drivers.  Back onboard and we were in time for lunch.  Well this is a cruise and it had been all of an hour since breakfast.  They had a yummy beef curry which had such a kick like curries should.  Oskar discovered prawn crackers at the Asian station so I had to get some.  I'd have taken every one if I could have got away with it.  When I was young and my parents bought Chinese takeaway, I hated it so only had prawn crackers.  Nothing much has changed with me forty years later, though I will eat more Chinese food then as a kid but my preference will always be prawn crackers and as many of them as I can.  Upon returning to the cabin, I found my Diamond goodies which were shared with Oskar.


© Patricia Dempsey 30th April-3rd May 2015
Not to be reproduced without permission