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Yesterday was the first formal night, so we dressed up in all our finery. I was pleased to find that the instructions I’d downloaded on how to tie my bow tie were good, or perhaps it was just that I could understand them: I recall a formal night on Galaxy when it took me almost half an hour(!) to get it done properly.

So then we went to the main dining room to look for our new table, and not knowing what to expect. It turned out that the maitre’d had come up trumps: I think he’d identified the stray French Canadian couple and had simply swapped us with them. Our new table companions are an English couple from Devon, a Scottish couple from Glasgow, and an american couple from Connecticut & southern California – I think they switch between the two. This second evening was everything the first wasn’t, and we had a great time. It was also a better table physically – out in the middle of the lower level, right under the central lights, in a position where you can really get a feeling for how spectacular the Grand Epernay is. The dress code was pretty well observed – I would say there was a small majority of men in  dinner suits, with almost all the remainder wearing business suits; there were very few men not wearing one or the other. The ladies, of course, were without exception dressed very elegantly.

Today is Santorini which meant that this morning was Santorini tender ticket queuing. Tickets were advertised as being available from 9am, but I’ve read comments on Cruise Critic about people queueing much earlier than that. So I got up at 7:30 and was in the queue at 8 o’clock, with about 20 people or so in front of me. In the event the staff arrived at 8:45 and started issuing tickets immediately – I got a pair of tickets on the first tender. By that time the queue was all the way back through  the length of the casino.

(Val has just raised the possibility that the queue is caused by Cruise Critic advice, however. She went back to look for me at 9:15 and she says that the queue was almost non-existent. However what we don’t know is what tender the 9:15 people were actually getting tickets for.)

I’ll post later on what we do in Santorini.

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