I managed to get ashore on our 2nd day in Barcelona and post some photos of the city. The main thoroughfare is a tree-lined promenade, full of stalls, cafes and buskers, many of whom displayed extraordinary costumes and, for a small fee would allow photographs.
One can’t visit Barcelona without seeing the indoor market, tucked away off La Ramblas. A feast, (literally) for the eyes and also one’s stomach.
Onto Cadiz, our course taking us south-west, paralleling the Spanish coastline for a way-point at the eastern end of the Traffic Scheme of the Straits of Gibraltar. Once through, a turn to the north and the approach to Cadiz. I would have liked to post my usual time-lapse for this challenging port and indeed, that early morning I, as usual, turned it on. The lights of the city in the distance and I remarked to the 2nd Officer, who was conning the ship, that there appeared to be some light fog hanging over the city. Within 15 minutes the ‘light’ fog had become dense, with visibility down to 50 metres. On advice from the pilot, we stopped just outside the channel until he boarded, at which time we conversed about my feelings on the matter of continuing to dock, or wait to see if the fog lifted.
I knew the port well, after several calls here and had no challenge with the approach and entrance (narrow) between the breakwaters. So we slid down-channel at a very slow speed, still not seeing anything and doing the navigation by radar. As we neared the entrance, I slipped into ‘joystick’ mode and adjusted speed and course with it. Through the entrance, (on radar, as we didn’t see the breakwaters) and then a sedate plod across the harbour. Nearing our berth, we could actually see 100 metres, so that made life easier. Just under an hour late, we were tied-up and ready to enjoy the city.
The sun burnt off and the city came into view. We had the best berth in Cadiz, a short walk into the winding lanes and markets. My pleasure at being in such a majestic city was marred by the fact the Sam, Ant, Olly and Emily were leaving us here; tears were shed and with big lumps in our throats, we bid them goodbye, for a while at least. I promised Olly and Emily that I would blow the ship’s whistles for them when I left and I obliged 🙂
Then on to Casablanca. I had never called here before I wasn’t sure what to expect. Many guests went on tours to Rabat and Marrakesh, while others chose to ride the shuttle bus into town. No fog this morning and lo, a time-lapse of arrival. I let it run a little longer so that you could see another Cruise ship docking after us; the AIDAdiva (sic), Aida being German company, however it is also part of the Carnival Group of companies. Aida’s passengers are mainly European and German-speaking, Germany, Austria, Switzerland to mention a few.
Into the city then……
So, we are on our way towards Funchal, Madeira. We are almost back to Fort Lauderdale and the port where the 2017 Grand World Voyage started, almost 4 months ago. How time flies. My days are now filled with reports, social functions and heaven knows what; I’ll still find time to sit here at my desk and write to you though!