Pacific Jewel in Sydney
I was staying in Sydney a couple of days after my cruise on Radiance of the Seas and was doing some ship stalking.  Typically, they have my fab cruise at the end of the season but I was able to get a couple of ships.  On the 10th April 2013 was Pacific Jewel, which I had last seen on the 25th April 2007 sailing on her maiden from Southampton as Ocean Village Two.  When I was thinking about an Australian cruise initially, she was my ship of choice as I've always liked her and her sister but never got the chance to try them.  Of course, being under P&O Cruises Australia, they only seem to take bookings if you have an address over there.  There doesn't seem to be a way of booking outside Australia unless I haven't discovered it.  It was lovely to get the chance to see her again anyway after almost six years since she appeared fresh from refit.  She was due to arrive at 7am, the Sydney Ports site listing her as being at White Bay, which is under the bridge. I went onto the roof of the hotel to watch her and was surprised to see her dock instead at the Overseas Passengers Terminal.
Time for photos!  According to the security guard Stella chatted to, it was their last time at the OPT, White Bay being used in future.  When the sun was shining on her, you could still see Ocean Village Two clearly on her side but we couldn't find any of her other names.
White Bay departures were 4pm but as she was in the OPT, it was changed to 6.30pm.  Stella had gone, as she was flying to Vancouver around that time, so it was just me waiting.  As my knee (which I'd injured a month earlier) was giving me problems, I decided to watch near the OPT, which was a short walk from my hotel.  Two tugs, which seemed to always be required by ships in Sydney, appeared and quickly attached themselves.  Quite a few were out for her as she threw her ropes slightly earlier than scheduled and backed up to turn.  I hadn't expected the security gates to be opened once she had reached a certain distance, so I went there for the rest as she turned then sailed towards open sea.
The review of my Radiance cruise is here and to see photos of Jewel in her previous incarnation as Ocean Village Two, click here.

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© Patricia Dempsey 10th April 2013
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