Anthem of the Seas, Queen Victoria, Balmoral, Queen Mary 2 & Queen Elizabeth (II)
Back down for the departures, which for some reason were all 4.30pm.  Oskar was staying in Southampton for this after our Anthem cruise while Tony Cannings came down and both came over on the 3pm ferry.  We stayed on the pier since the marina would be packed.  Annoyingly, the last ferry would be at the usual Sunday time of 6pm from Town Quay meaning those who came over would have to return by bus if things ran late as they tended to.  At least the sun was out but it was still very windy.  The Cunard blurb had them starting to move at the same time and be past Dock Head by 5.40pm.  Would they be right, overly optimistic or just had no idea there would be five ships not three that day?  Anthem was brought forward fifteen minutes but actually began throwing the ropes on time.  Her Captain acknowledged the Cunard ships as they passed.  Meanwhile Balmoral, once again aided by trusty Lomax, headed to the Upper Swinging Ground to turn twenty minutes after Anthem left, delaying things further.  She just ignored the Cunarders.  Vicky then repeated the process FINALLY forty-five minutes late.  Tony was worrying he'd not see them together as he had a train to catch, especially with the turning time wasting.  Betty threw her ropes and went astern to Dock Head an hour late as Mary eased forward from Ocean Dock another fifteen minutes after that making a din as she did.  The straightening up of them was well coordinated, though Vicky was a little off and lagged behind, blasting when she reached Dock Head as if to say, "Wait for me!"  Well the last ferry returned and you could see the crew were pissed off people were on the pier but they should have run an extra hour to accommodate this while making more money to pay the overtime.

Oskar and Tony left to catch the 6.30pm bus from town while my dad and I stayed a bit longer then everyone still on the pier began to slowly trudge off it, including some from coach parties whose coaches were blocking Prospect Place and preventing the buses getting through.  Thankfully, Tony made his train while Oskar returned to the Dolphin and we went home.  Happy Anniversary, Cunard!

The review of my Anthem of the Seas cruise can be found here.

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© Patricia Dempsey 3rd May 2015
Not to be reproduced without permission