Ocean Princess (II), Thomson Destiny, Le Diamant, MSC Lirica, Celebrity Constellation, Voyager of the Seas, Crystal Serenity, Grand Holiday & Norwegian Jade in Civitavecchia

The 13th October 2010 was a morning cruise ship rush hour in the Italian port of Civitavecchia.  Nine ships were due, including us on Celebrity Constellation.  Last time I had been on the 18th August 2009 on Celebrity Equinox, there were just three including that.  Of course, last time Celebrity Summit was in and, since Ocean Princess was docked where we had been, I could at least imagine how we looked arriving.  The Princess was on a turnaround so was there very early at 4am.  We, Le Diamant, Thomson Destiny and Voyager of the Seas were 7am, Grand Holiday half an hour later while MSC Lirica, Norwegian Jade and Crystal Serenity were 8am.  Things weren't as planned.  The Thomson and Le Diamant were already in.  Lirica was number four with us five to be followed by Voyager, the Crystal, Grand Holiday and Jade.  It was another very windy and cold morning as I went on deck shortly before we picked up the pilot and saw myself surrounded by gorgeous shippies!

As Serenity and Grand Holiday got closer, it also started to rain which is no fun in the bloody wind!  It was the first time all trip the wet stuff appeared despite it being forecast and it would happen during stalking time- grrr!  Grand Holiday was the sister of Grand Celebration, which I had seen in Barcelona in August 2009.  Carnival had transferred their 46,052grt Carnival Holiday to Iberocruceros, starting May 2010.  She was one of eight and had her original maiden voyage in 1985.  Just before Christmas 2015 it was announced she had been sold to Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line to do two night Palm Beach, Florida to Freeport, Bahamas cruises, retaining the name.
Ocean Princess and Thomson Destiny were both due to sail at 6pm so I went on deck to find the Princess moving ten minutes early!  Annoyingly she backed up and turned in the open water.  Meanwhile there was no sign of movement down the other end.
We, Lirica and Voyager were all down to sail at 7pm and there was still no sign of the Thomson moving it out of there.  Before 7pm it started to rain then bucketed down so I dashed to the Prom deck, trying desperately to stay dry.  The last thing I needed was my camera going bang!  We left first.
I don't know who left afterwards because I went in to dry off.  But Grand Holiday was listed for 7.30pm, Le Diamant and Norwegian Jade 8pm and the Crystal at 9pm.  The weather stayed bad part of the way towards Salerno, our next port of call, and including sheet lightning apparently, alhough I never saw any  To see photos of that, click here.  The review of my Constellation cruise can be found here.
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© Patricia Dempsey 13th October 2010
Not to be reproduced without permission
12th April 2016