Posted by sean on September 16, 2019 at 10:00 pm in Holiday with No Comments


Enjoyed a meal in the cabin last night, courtesy of the ship’s room service. On all our previous cruises, this was once a free perk, but now that once welcome and often overused luxury has sailed. Thankfully, breakfast remains complementary.

Despite having to pay, Claire and I enjoyed our meals – ordering veggie burger and pizza respectively.

After eating our full, we walked/rode from our cabin to Havana – one of the many bars onboard Ventura. As mentioned earlier, the comedian/impressionist Jon Clegg was performing. Jon made it all the way to the final of Britain’s Got Talent in 2014 and in his own words, is still milking the accolade five years later.

The bar filled up, with many cruisers hoping to see the man who almost won a talent competition half a decade ago. You can judge how in awe I was, by the fact I am an autograph collector and didn’t bother to ask for his squiggle, despite having a pen in my possession. I suppose I have highly standards when it comes to celebrities these days. You’re nobody if you’re not Marcelo Bielsa.

I’m being very mean. While Jon’s act started slowly, it continued to build, throughout the performance and by the closing routine – a medley of impressions, classic and modern – he had the audience in eating out of his hands.

Time will tell if Jon left a good impression. He has two further shows across the next couple of days. If he attracts another full bar, he can consider his act a job well done.

We will almost certainly attend Tuesday evening’s show, although will have to give tonight’s a miss – considering it doesn’t start until 11.45pm!

Awoke early this morning – by our standards anyway – and left the cabin shortly before half past eight. The reason for the early start was to allow ourselves the chance to experience a restaurant breakfast, without having to wait in line for a table.

As we had hoped, we were shown straight to a table, where we were well dined on the finest hen eggs, fresh bread, hot drinks and juice.

Feeling that we were now more than setup for the day, we browsed the shops. Claire enjoyed the table top sale on one of the lower decks. Given how many other people were also browsing and how little space there was between the stalls, I thought it would be wise to remain sat on my scooter, well out of the way. I would certainly hate to be responsible for mowing down a little old lady by mistake.

Discovered the arcade filled with lots of video games – all chargeable, of course. The geek in me was thrilled to see an actual, working machine of Daytona USA – a classic racing game, from almost 25 years ago.

Claire was equally as thrilled as I was, but in her case, it was the claw machines that excited her. Unsurprisingly, the cuddly toy game didn’t return anything, apart from an addition to our cruise tab. The second machine did reward my wife. The prize – a lollipop. Not bad, considering she only paid 50 pence to play. Did I mention that you were guaranteed a prize everytime?

Visited the gift shop and spent more of our onboard allowance, with yours truly being the guilty party once again. A small, soft toy Peter Rabbit made my heart melt and I just had to have it. Claire kindly agreed. It was either that, or face the embarrassment of me throwing myself to the floor and having a temper tantrum like a two year old, which ironically is the age in which the soft toy I wanted was designed for… ok, make that two MONTHS.

Spent the afternoons in the cabin having a very relaxing time, watching the world go by. Keep spotting birds flying alone above the ocean. According to the live map on the television, we are many miles from any land. The resilience of the creatures fascinated me. I would love to know what type of bird they were.

Shortly before leaving for a night on the town, we noticed the toilet flush had broken again. This is taking the piss – except it isn’t, and that’s exactly the problem we’re having. Nowhere for our wee wees and other “business” to go.

Head to reception on the way to the restaurant, our eatery of choice for the evening. Managed to blag a couple of breakfast room service cards, so at least we can enjoy brekkie in the cabin again during our holiday.

Notice the colossal queue for the restaurant and realise that we may just get to the front in time for breakfast if we were to join now. That’s fantastic, but no use to us this evening, as we were hoping to eat before bed.

Head upstairs to The Beach House – one of Ventura’s premium restaurants. You do have to pay a small service charge, but the quality of food and atmosphere is worth the extra.

Starter of nachos was very well received by the two of us. A little too well by me, who didn’t leave much room for my main course – a vegetarian chili dog.

The portion was huge and it was all I could do to attempt part of the chilli dog.

Despite my appalling effort at the main course, I was able to find room for dessert, albeit in the lightest possible form – lemon sorbet.

Return to the cabin to find the bed and sheets made up beautifully for the night. Unfortunately, the toilet was very much out of action. Telephone reception to give them a piece of my mind and a jolly good rollicking. Instead opt to ask very politely when they think our lavatory would be repaired and would they mind awfully making an effort prioritise our request.

Sit with Claire by our balcony, while trying to stay occupied by completing a crossword, while waiting for the plumber to repair our loo. This is how we spend our holiday, folks.

Hear strange noises coming from the bathroom. Ask Claire if she would mind investigating the strange sound. Realise as I write this that if this was a horror movie, I would be a horrible husband, having effectively just sent my beloved other half to her demise, at the jaws of the toilet monster.

Thankfully, it turned out that there was no toilet monster. Even better news – the flush was now working.

Decide to head to bed for an early night, as both tired. An afternoon of relaxation can really take it out of you. Still wary of receiving a knock at the cabin door from a plumber, enquiring into the dodgy flush, so keep the bedroom lights on for now.

Informed by Captain Allen that as we are visiting Maderia tomorrow, we should put our clocks back an hour, to match Portuguese time, which is also the same as the UK. I believe the Canary Islands, which we visit later this week, also share this time zone, so there will be no further changes to times again on this cruise.

Captain Allen also tells us that we should expect some rough weather tonight, but it’ll be ok as the ship’s stabilisers will be deployed. For those cruisers who presumably thought stabilisers were something you find on a young child’s bike, we are then given a lecture on what they are and how they stop the ship from rocking and becoming out of control.

I will let you know tomorrow how we get on with the storm…

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