Friday, 17 February 2012

Valentine's Day - Mauritius

Tuesday February 14th - Day 41

Happy Valentine's Day. ..I forgot to get Vance a card but luckily so did we're quits.
After such a rough day at sea yesterday we thought we'd have a lie in this morning and just get up at about 8:30am to do the face-to-face immigration in Mauritius. John the cruise director thought otherwise and at 7:30am gave everyone a wakeup call over the tanoy saying 'could we come to the Grand Salon now' so that people going on tour could get off the ship early as everyone had to go through the immigration process before the ship could be cleared.

At the last minute we decided to go on the 'shopping with the chef' tour. So about twenty five of us joined Graeme and off we went to the local covered market in Port Louis.
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Although it was fascinating to see all the different fruit and veg available - many never seen in the UK - the heat and the humidity inside the market was unbearable and within minutes we were all dripping with sweat. However we persevered and watched Graeme haggling with the traders (in very good French) until he got down to the price he wanted to pay and then loaded Jackie Chan (his galley assistant) up with boxes of goodies to go back to the ship.
On the way back to the minibus for the return journey Vance spotted a street stall selling watches and as mine had broken over a week ago he said he would buy me a new one for Valentine's Day...lovely watch Vance but surely I'm worth more than $7.

Got back to the ship at 12:30pm so grabbed our ritual beer in The Colonnade with lunch - a bit late but well received after all that heat.
At 1:30pm we were off again to the Eureka Estate on a Seabourn complimentary shore event. Eureka House is one of the most beautiful and well preserved colonial dwellings in Mauritius dating back to 1812. After wandering through the rooms taking photos we thought there would just be hors d' oeuvres and a drink whilst watching the local dancers however the Estate had laid on a sumptuous lunch banquet which was a  bit embarrassing as we'd all had lunch onboard.

The trip should have lasted three hours but after about an hour and a half in the afternoon heat I'd had enough so Vance asked if one of the minibuses could take us back to the ship early...word soon went around and within minutes the bus was full of fellow guests.
Back onboard we all fell into the pool to cool down and spent the rest of the afternoon in and out of the pool with a goodly number of refreshing drinks ... non alcoholic of course... delivered by the waiters.

Tonight was a formal dinner and we dined with newly made friends Mark and Justine - she of the backup photographer fame!! - and both men's blushes were spared as Seabourn had provided red roses for the men to give to their ladies.
Back to The Club for drinks and dancing before falling into bed...very late and tired. What a day!!

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