Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Mediterranean 2014 - part four

We're nearing Tenerife, but time to describe Maasdam. The picture above is from a favourite spot for my afternoon tea. You can just see the starboard bridge wing near the horizon.

From the first morning when I saw this in an elevator (useful on long sea stretches when easy to forget the day) ...

... I've been reasonably impressed. 

I like my cabin. For those wondering, the globe is inflatable and I use the spare bed as a second desk.

... and certainly appreciate the sense of history with stairwell oil paintings of previous Maasdams ...

... and corridors lined with old Holland America photos.

Carnival bought the line, acquiring, not only ships, but memorabilia, much from the Dutch colonial era. 

A hundred year old, rattan, ceremonial mask from New Guinea (of which I’ve become rather fond) ...

... 17th - 18th Century Chinese porcelain and Dutch goblets ...

... in the ship's library, a bust of a 19th Century nobleman.

The library, divided into nooks, is better than I'd expected on a mid-range ship. A good selection of titles (about five thousand are stored), computer workstations and a very helpful full-time librarian.

The Crow's Nest on deck 12 ... odd, pawn-like lighting fixtures, but splendid view.

One of Maasdam's undoubted highlights (I gather typical on Holland America) is a wonderful promenade circling the entire ship. It is a boon for walkers and lined with deck chairs for those who prefer to watch walkers.

Chairs have a Holland America logo ...

... and benches bear the ship's name.

I've spent a lot of time in freighter galleys, but never seen one on a 'proper' cruise ship. Among tidbits gleaned, twelve crew members devoted to dishwashing and the Filipino and Indonesian crew go through 2,100 pounds of rice weekly. Not to mention passengers consuming 1,800 pounds of watermelon (which I loath).

To conclude, some shipboard scenes. In the Caribbean and no idea what sort of bird it is.

(December 27 - Thanks to my friend Brian, I now know the bird is an osprey, sometimes called a 'fish hawk')

I'm always surprised that you can find spaces entirely to yourself.

Mid-Atlantic and a lone swimmer in the outdoor pool.

Idling at the stern ...