Independence of the Seas & Queen Elizabeth 2
It was a reunion in Southampton on the 27th August 2008.  Independence of the Seas had returned from her second short trip to Cobh while the QE2 had done a five night trip.  The last time these two had been in together was back in April when Indy arrived and Lizzie was undergoing her refit.  This would be the final time so we hoped for a good show.  However before that, I had a chance to set foot onboard that gorgeous fellow 1969 girl an extra time thanks to my then boyfriend, Patrick Patton, a piano player I'd met during my Fjords cruise two months earlier.  He'd arranged a pass for me so I was very excited to be going on without paying for it!  I went over on Hotspur IV - yay!!!!  Great Expectations was out of commission again after less than 72 hours.  Couldn't happen to a nicer ferry.
Coming back it was Great Expectations again.  Pah!  Crowded outside and difficult for photos.  Well I'd completely forgotten to take a photo of the new terminal's progress on the way over as I had other things on my mind, so did it going back.
Indy was due to sail at 4.45pm with Lizzie quarter of an hour later.  Lizzie's eight bells rang out a couple of minutes early followed shortly afterwards by Indy.  Now we knew she would definitely be on time it made the possibility of passing her Majness higher.  Indy left bang on time and despite the cloud and cool, there were many people down the marina to watch.
Lizzie parped then silence for a few minutes until Indy was closer then began blastmania!  I love Indy.  Her captain's not as stuck up as Navigator's last year or Vision's back in March in LA.  They were so rude.  It does my heart good he acknowledges other ships in port, even if they are rivals.  It's all about respect for your fellow mariners and Indy's captain has that in spades.
Lizzie was pulled out six minutes late, Land of Hope and Glory blaring out and she gave three long blasts.  Unusually she wasn't pulled out stern first before levelling up.  Gave a different angle though.  That ship has given me so much since December, changing my life completely and creating more memories in such a short space of time than all those other years put together.  I'm really going to miss her.
Thanks to surprise cooperation from the ships we were able to get a bus instead of a taxi!  I nearly fainted.  Nice when they do as planned but just as fun when they don't. To see photos of the previous meeting, click here.

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© Patricia Dempsey 27th August 2008
Not to be reproduced without permission
20th July 2010