Please pardon my lack of updates. I’m having internet troubles on the ship; my laptop won’t go online but my iPod will. Since internet is SLOW and $0.13/minute, my iPod tap-screen blogging is NOT an option. I’ve had LOTS of training this week as a new crew member, but once that wraps up I should have time to find the IT guys and sort it out. Things are going great; I’m off the ship right now in Mykanos, Greece at a cafe with Diane, my fellow glass team member. The weather is sunny, and would be hot if not for the glorious breeze. I’m drinking fresh orange juice and sitting three feet from beautiful clear turquoise water.
My training will be done soon, I’ve been re-learning how to “turn off the fire” from our Greek safety officers. I’m highly entertained by the strange phrases I hear from non-native English speakers. When I was waiting in the cruise terminal before coming on the ship in Barcelona, I was excited to hear American accents for the first time and see someone wearing a Mad Men graphic t-shirt. I was confused a minute later when the accents went away and the English switched back into what I later learned was Swedish. They are the acapella group The Ringmasters: there’s Martin, Jakob, Emanuel, and Rasmus, and they are my new friends because they are going through all of the embarkation training, and I can understand them when they speak to me. I’m looking forward to training my ears to understand most everybody else, too.
There are about 1250 crew members from 70 countries, and our passengers are from all over. Plenty of Americans and Spanish, for sure. The crew on the Solstice is very warm, and this ship seems to have a nicer vibe than the Eclipse. It might help that I’m more familiar with ship life on my second contract, but I described the Eclipse as a strange international high school where everyone can drink, and the Solstice doesn’t feel like that at all.
Diane Stendahl and Laurie Kain are the other glassblowers and we have really nice chemistry and are doing great shows. I’m really looking forward to making some new artwork.
I miss home, but I’ve talk to Chris every day and he sends me pictures of vegetables he’s harvested from our garden on Facebook.
Love to everybody. xo Meg