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Well, we’re home with nothing left but memories. Oh, and a big credit card bill! – it would appear that we did not stint ourselves while on board….

We managed to swap our original disembarkation time to 8:45, the earliest slot. So we got up, after a not-very-good last night, at about 6:15, showered, had breakfast, packed up our hand baggage, and exited the cabin before 8 o’clock. There was time for one last cup of tea on the Terrace and then we found some seats in the Tamarind Club to sit and wait. It was just after 8:45 when the disembarkation team announced that all luggage had been transferred ashore, and passengers holding green disembarkation cards (which included us) were invited to make their way to the gangway on Deck 5; where we waited. And waited, and waited some more. It turned out that not all the luggage had made it ashore when they made the announcement, and in the end we were queuing for maybe 30 minutes or a bit more. So it was about 9:30 when we stepped ashore. It then took us about 10 minutes to locate our bags, but in recompense for that, collecting Val’s car keys from CPS and finding the car was very quick. In the end we were driving out of Dock Gate 4 at about 9:45 – a little bit later than we had hoped.

The journey home turned out to be hard, as well. We chose to go up the M40 to J15, then on the A46/A45/A46 to the end of the M69, but when we got to the A46/A45 junction it was closed – it appeared that there had been a pretty major accident on the sliproad, and there were a number of police cars, ambulances and several fire engines in attendance. The slip road onto the A45 was simply shut. We then proceeded to get very lost around Coventry, and I would guess that this added another 30 minutes onto the journey. In the end it was about 2:20 pm before we got home.

We were tired and a bit niggly and the next few hours were had work for both of us. I put it down to the traveling, but on Sunday I suddenly developed a massive cold. As I write this (Monday evening) I’m surrounded by boxes of tissues, waste paper bins to put used tissues in, and all the paraphernalia required by a suffering male. Note however that I have not used the ‘F’ word (‘Flu’); I know enough about my colds that I’m sure this will last just a few days. But trying to go back to work today has been very hard. Val, thankfully, has been OK so far. This is the second time I’ve come off Ventura with a cold – it happened in October 2008 as well. We think it’s probably because I work at home and never meet anyone; then I go on a big cruise liner with 3,000 other people, and I catch whatever is going around that my poor under-utilised immune system hasn’t encountered yet. (I bet Carol Marlow doesn’t get colds, what with all the thousands of people she meets on ships all the time…..)

Well, that’s it. Now we are looking forward to our Arcadia mini-cruise in September, and of course we will be saving hard for the 17 night cruise back on Ventura in late May 2011. Guess what – I expect I shall be blogging from it….

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