Dawn Princess (II)
A rare visitor in a very wet and windy Southampton on the 26th August 2009, and one I thought I'd never see again.  Dawn Princess, who I'd last seen in three Mexican ports back in March 2008, had subsequently been transferred to Australia to join her sister Sun Princess.  She underwent a refit in Brisbane shortly before embarking on her first world cruise from Sydney on the 5th July, returning on the 16th October.  During the refit, a screen similar to that on Sea Princess was added.  Personally I think they look stupid on the smaller Princess ships, appearing to be huge open mouths.  Now with this addition she could earn the nickname Yawn Princess.  She arrived at the rather-too-early time of 4.45am and wasn't due to sail until 7pm when the other Princesses, based here and callers, go at 5pm.  I was in two minds whether to go or not but in the end decided to since the 2010 call would be an even later sailing time and there was still no guarantee of good weather.  Also I did need to get her in my home with her mouth.  With the squally rain and gusts it made it difficult to see at times as she kept vanishing in the wet stuff.
Despite the drizzle becoming so light you couldn't feel it, it was still coming down when she blasted about 7.25pm as she moved away from Mayflower terminal with the aid of a tug.  We were beginning to think she wasn't going to leave and we were being soaked for nothing.  At least it brightened up somewhat but the light was fading now on top of everything else.  Plus she had a huge squall she brought along with her!
Then we went home to dry off and warm up.  It had been lovely to see her again.  Just wish it had been dry.  Funny how two ships I never thought I'd see again, Vision of the Seas and Dawn, both ended up visiting the UK.  Of course, it would have been better if Vision had come here too instead of Harwich.  To see photos of Dawn in Mexico, click here.

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© Patricia Dempsey 26th September 2009
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