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Dinner last night – smart casual – was a chattier affair than the first night, and we had a good evening which we finished off with a quiet drink in Metropolis (a ‘New York’ night). Once again dinner was perfectly acceptable; I had roulade of turkey breast and Val had a pork dish. We also felt that whereas the first night tended towards the casual end of Smart Casual,  a lot of people were definitely dressier last night. Tonight is the first formal night.

Both nights so far we’ve had had a half-litre carafe of the house wine, red on embarkation night and white last night. Our view is that the red is a better wine than the white; this latter, a Chardonnay/Pinot Grigio blend, was a bit nothing-y. Not offensive, it just didn’t seem to have anything going for it. The house red was a Shiraz, and while definitely not great it was clearly a Shiraz. There’s also a house rose, which I don’t think we’ll try.

On the subject of wines, there are a number of wine packages on sale. First there are the Premier Package (£117.50), New World (£80.65) and Continental (£79.65), all of which are a mix of red, white and (in one case) rose; and two more packages,  Red (£87.65) and White (£83.25). All of these packages offer savings compared with buying the bottles separately, from £36.55 on the case of the Premier Package to £7.95 in the case of the Red selection. We’ve ordered the New World selection. I’ll try to post what’s in this package, and what the wines are like.

Today is quite a bit cloudier and cooler than yesterday, so many people are staying safely inside the ship. The shops especially are very busy. One thing that I’ve become aware of that I don’t remember so much from our cruise 18 months ago is the use of the Atrium for demonstrations, presentations, and so on. It can get a little busy and loud in there – Tazzine, the coffee bar, has been busier than I remember.

Well, it’s nearly time for lunch, and today I think we’re going to try tapas in Ramblas.

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