St Helena was wonderful. A ring doughnut of barren, moon-like rock landscape with houses clinging to the bare rock. And then you drive inland and there is the volcano’s crater, lush and green and fertile. Breathtaking. The people were lovely, the weather was divine and it was nice to be somewhere that felt British again, however briefly (it is a British protectorate – the currency is sterling, the monarch is the Queen and the jailhouse is labelled HM Prison). We wandered through the town and then took a drive around the island with a lady taxi driver, who told us all about the island and its people. The drive along the bendy road around the cliffs was not as hair-raising as it might have been, thanks to the waist-high stone wall protecting us from the view of the sheer drop below.
Back at the quayside, we had to queue for the boats (called tenders when we use them to go ashore and lifeboats if we have to use them in an emergency!) to take us back out to the ship. This is where we all got very burned. I am more pink than I think I have ever been, although it is not as itchy as yesterday. At dinner last night, mum said she could see where my sunglasses had been – I was wearing a white mask across my eyes!
Back on board just in time for the barbecue lunch on deck. While we were eating, we watched them pack it all away, even though not everyone was back on board. We were annoyed by this, as it seemed most unfair that the people still queuing for a tender got no lunch. Granted, the sandwiches and scones for tea were put out 15 minutes later, but it’s hardly lunch, is it? It also meant that we got no fruit, which was very annoying. Dad and I had to go to the midnight buffet later just to get some flipping watermelon!
I eat much more healthily on board than I do on land. It’s just so much easier when someone else does all the preparation. I eat tonnes of fruit and loads of vegetables. Last night for dinner I had half an avocado for starter and the other half as my main course. Yummy. Talking of which, I haven’t had any fruit today. Might nip back up to the Conservatory restaurant and grab some before they close at 2. The stir-fry I had for lunch was nice enough, but the chef used WAY too much oil. I still feel all icky from it. Bleurgh.
Today is the first of two and a half sea days (we left St Helena @ 3 yesterday) which will take us to Walvis Bay in Namibia. So, although I skipped line dancing this morning (the room is really hot and I didn’t think my sunburn would appreciate the bright, hot lights), I do have creative writing this afternoon. I may even get a chance to paint at some point, if I ever get the time!
Films seen lately: Mission Impossible III (did I mention this already?), Catwoman, The Matador, a film starring Bruce Willis as one of the Sleepover Bandits (I forget the name), Philadelphia and Goldeneye.