Oriana (II), Queen Elizabeth (II) & Adonia (II)
Three ships on the 18th May 2012, beginning with the early arrival of Oriana, due to some sort of medical issue.  She had been belting towards the Isle of Wight at 25 knots, preparing to dock in Mayflower Terminal for 12.45am.  Even around Ryde, she was doing over 23 knots.  A private ambulance would be waiting to take whoever to hospital, but no idea if they are alive or not.  Betty and Adonia were the usual times, with Adonia in the QEII Terminal.  Nice to see it being used!
Because we hadn't seen Oriana's new ducktail properly, added during her November/December refit, we went down.  Course, with her being the wrong way round, she would get to us at least half an hour after Betty.  Adonia was the normal 4pm.  The weather was wet and a little windy at times as they left.  The bus was late so by the time we got down, all the benches were taken so it was down the front, which I had only done once in more than a year due to my back.  With visibility getting poorer, it was hard to see when any ropes were thrown but Adonia's had all gone by 4.15pm.  She came out parping then would do one every so often, like a foghorn.  Betty was even harder to see and it was only when she blasted we knew she was off.  A couple of people thought Betty was Mary!  Must have shrunk in the rain.  Despite it still being a little heavy at times, it was brightening up so it made focusing much easier - and Oriana returned down the end!  If she made a sound, we didn't hear but it was definitely lovely weather for ducktails.
So home to dry out because we were absolutely soaked through.

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© Patricia Dempsey 18th May 2012
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