|17/04/2009||Port Canaveral, USA||Cocoa beach|
|18/04/2009||Port Canaveral, USA||Cocoa village|
|21/04/2009||Hamilton, Bermuda||Town and gardens|
|22/04/2009||Hamilton, Bermuda||St. George's|
|27/04/2009||Ponta Delgada, Azores||Town|
|01/05/2009||La Coruna, Spain||Town|
Just to let you know that I'm home from my Transatlantic cruise aboard Braemar. I drove up to the Holiday Inn at Heathrow and dropped my cases off before parking on Brian's drive in Ealing. I took the tube to visit the new Westfield shopping centre at White City.
The flight to Miami on BA was better than my last two with Virgin Atlantic. The economy cabin wasn't full so I had two seats to sprawl over. I blubbed my way through the film "Marley & Me" about a yellow labrador just like my late dog Jasper!
At Port Canaveral I visited the lovely Cocoa beach on the first day and historic Cocoa village with my cabin mate Ray Bond on the second. They were celebrating their annual children's day with a lively fete.
At beautiful Bermuda I saw the sights of Hamilton on the first day and St. George's on the second. They were holding their annual peppercorn rent ceremony with the Governor General and dignitaries, together with a military parade, band and 21 gun salute!
We had to turn back to Bermuda to rendezvous with a helicopter for a medical evacuation. This meant we didn't have time to stop at Horta in the Azores but we did sail past there and the dramatic volcano Pico too. Ponta Delgada in the Azores was delightful, like Funchal on Madeira must have been 25 years ago. At La Coruna, Spain I just walked around town since it was the May Day bank holiday there. We didn't get any tour escorting since they were all nabbed by the full time staff.
When we got back to Dover Ray, Tim and I were asked to do disembarkation duty, so I didn't get away until after 10:30. I caught the 10:45 shuttle bus to Priory station and the 11:22 train to Victoria. I took the District line to Brian's before driving home.
The dance instructors were Gwyn & Steve Sherriff from Birmingham. The other dance hosts were Ron Jones and the 23 year old Tim Regan who took the popular belly dancing classes. I did the line dancing classes and the Western night participation session as usual.
The food on Braemar is the best of the 5 Olsen ships. We ate in the main restaurant on three occasions when the Palms Café was hosting a special buffet. Some evenings the midnight buffet was replaced by pathetic canapés ('midnight bites') in the lounges. The lounges were often packed to overflowing after the recent increase in the number of cabins. The weather was reasonable with temperatures in the 70s for 9 of the 18 days with sunshine on 12 days.