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Guernsey, Channel Islands

Our third stop was Guernsey in the Channel Islands. I’ve not been to any of them before and I was highly excited to learn that they have their own currency – more for my notaphily collection. And of course a magnet, although I’m running out of places to stick them.

This was a tender port and 4 & 5 star mariners were given some sort of priority which didn’t seem like priority at all. I stepped off with Vicky and Janice, two casino acquaintances to explore on foot. After a few wrong turns we finally found a World War II museum in the rocks, which was fairly interesting, but not spectacular. We were walking at a different pace so the ladies abandoned me which I guess was the best option. They were both 70 and Guernsey is quite hilly.

Next stop was Castle Cornet which was a sprawling complex and suitably average. After that I headed into the main area of St Peter Port and trekked around for a few hours. This was the surprise package of the trip. Guernsey is very lovely indeed.

The late afternoon line for tenders going back to the ship was prohibitively off-putting so I sat on a bench and waited. And waited. Two hours later the line was still not to my liking, but eventually I had to join it and got the last tender back to the mother ship.

The weather in Guernsey had been super with beautiful blue skies and relatively good temperatures for walking around. This was a very pretty place and I shall return to the Channel Islands at some point.3

The following day we stopped in Le Havre, France, but the weather was a bit shit. Cloudy skies, lots of wind, cold, with a chance of rain. So I thought I’d stay on board and have the spa, gym, the boat to myself, with a chance of wine. Rouen will have to wait until the weather improves.

Michael Stetson from Memphis was my favourite. 74 but could easily take ten years off that and be believed. Back in the 1980’s he owned Sam Philips’ Sun Studio in Memphis, made famous by Elvis and others. He is now a travel agent and had a group of around 30 with him. He said he’d been to 142 countries and done over 1000 cruises. I’m not sure maths was his strong suit.

I’ve very much kept to myself on this cruise. I’ve dined alone every night at the buffet. Even the one night I wore my tuxedo. My only interactions have been with acquaintances in the casino and the staff who insist on calling me Sir Patrick. I tell them Patrick is good enough, but they won’t listen.

The crossing was calm, but became increasingly colder so my vitamin D is suffering. That is until Morocco next week. Caroline picked me up at Dover. Georgia couldn’t make it so mum volunteered. I’m truly heartened by her kindness.

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