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Last night was the Captain’s Gala and first formal night. Being on 2nd sitting we received an invitation to the gala at 8:15, at the Neptune Pool. We were asked to ascend by the midships staircase and did so at just after 8 o’clock, and when we arrived we found the area outside the lifts and at the top of that staircase absolutely jammed, with the lifts delivering more people into the already-crowded area every minute or so. There then followed a rather uncomfortable period before they opened the doors to the pool and we could process in. I did overhear quite a few comments about “poor organisation” and so on, but I couldn’t help thinking that since they do this each cruise, there must be reasons why it’s done the way it is.

Anyway, we got our free glass of wine but, to Val’s disappointment, no nibbles. We stood around for a while, Captain Breton made a short speech, introduced her senior officers, and then the ‘crew member of the week’ (or month, I can’t remember which). This was an assistant printer – you don’t think there are printers on a cruise ship, but there are and this one performed excellently when he was left for a week without a senior printer, so he had to do two jobs, and won the award as a result.

The dinner itself was excellent and we enjoyed it. Everyone looked very smart – dress code observance was as close to 100% as made no difference – and a good time was had by all. We also had a very pleasant bottle of wine, a Chilean Cabernet Franc (Valdiviesa?) which we ordered via the wine line earlier in the day and which was, indeed, waiting for us when we got to the table. We’ve decided not to bother with a package this cruise- we’ll order what we want when we decide what we’re eating. With the packages we have sometimes felt constrained by the wines we had left – “if we’re going to drink that Sauvignon Blanc then we have to choose food to suit”. All in all we ate and drank a bit too much last night, which is par for the course on the Captain’s Gala night.

There was one unexpected event subsequently. We returned to the cabin at about midnight and shortly afterwards there was a terse announcement over the tannoy, including into the cabins: “would passenger [name] please make themselves known to the bridge by dialling 5000 from any phone…”. I went back out for a quick stagger round the Promenade deck to see if rescue operations were underway, but there was nothing obvious happening. Most odd.

One Response to “Cruising on Arcadia – Captain's Gala & first formal”

  1. […] another sea day which culminated in theĀ Captain’s Gala; […]

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