Around The World · 44 Days · 62 Moments · March 2018

India - Golden Triangle and QM2

9 May 2018

Did you hear about these new reversible jackets? I'm excited to see how they turn out. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  9th/May. Last sea day, crossing the Bay of Biscay. Weather good, patches of cloud, calm sea with a slight swell. Sally Gunnel Q&A this morning. Not bad. Guitarist in the afternoon - 24-string guitar (no, I've never heard of one either). Not surprised they haven't caught on but chatted with some folks we met in India so didn't mind. Showtime. Fortunately the stage's lift wasn't repaired so we got another session from the Barricade Boys - almost as good as the first session they did which was excellent. All packed, suitcases taken away, hope we find them again on shore tomorrow! I went to our local pet shop to buy a spider as a pet and they were Β£70. I thought, I can get one cheaper off the web πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰
Diet Day #1 - I removed all the fattening food from my house. It was delicious. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 8th/May. Sea day, up the coast of Spain and Portugal. Weather grey, two decks closed because of high winds although only fairly slight motion of the ocean. Went to the next Sally Gunnel lecture while our bridge champion was having a lesson. While Diane was giving the afternoon bridge tournament her undivided attention, I went to a Q&A session with Mike Doyle - it was the funniest thing so far!!! Showtime was supposed to be the Cunard Singers and Dancers but the stage's lift mechanism broke down so we had the next night's act instead, two comic pianists with one piano. Quite good but too frenetic for our taste. Bridge result - back to the middle of the pack. A study of economics usually reveals that the best time to buy anything was last year. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

7 May 2018

A friend of mine recently admitted to being addicted to brake fluid. When I quizzed him about it he reckoned he could stop any time. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ I've got the dates mixed up, today is the 7th/May .....time flies - you can't, they fly too fast. Anyway, Cadiz is where the Spanish Armada set off from. Strangely, no plaque in the city to commemorate it. Lovely sunny day. DIY exploration as usual - it is possible to walk all the way round the city walls. We did 6 miles of it, including a couple of forts. Would have visited the cathedral but it was 6€ each (Christ threw the the moneylenders out - what's gone wrong?). Lunched in a local delicatessen/cafe, chatted there with Mike Doyle,Β the Welsh comedian,Β  very good lunch although expensive (24€ a bottle!!). Back aboard for a pre-dinner snooze (its all that walking!!!). The show was "The Barricade Boys", singing songs from west-end shows. Well deserved standing ovation. Β How to lose an argument with a woman: 1) Argue. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

6 May 2018

I don't approve of political jokes...I've seen too many of them get elected. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 5th/May Sea day. Calm sea, air temp about 21C. Diane went to bridge this morning, I went to the Celebrity lecture. I remember Sally Gunell's tv career as short and not exactly sparkling so was delighted to find that she's a very good speaker indeed. Afternoon was the Cunard Charity Fair, they hold one near the end of every World Voyage - games, tombola, books and clothes that have inexplicably shrunk during the cruise. I went to that while Diane was busy coming FIRST in the bridge tournament. The show was two acrobats. Diane loved it, I fell asleep. We won't see the straits of Gibraltar when the ship passes through at about 1am, en route to Cadiz. Β Give a man a gun and he will rob a bank. Give a man a bank and he will rob everyone. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰
Time waits for no man, time is obviously a woman. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  4th/May Barcelona DIY day so no rush to get off. Shuttled to city centre, Diane saluted the statue of Christopher Columbus - didn't do any good, it rained anyway! Walked up the Ramblas, milled about a bit then explored the indoor market. Lunch at a very popular Tapas stall - the technique was to stand behind someone till they finished then grab their seat, involving, in our case, a half hour wait!! Black pudding, mushrooms with two fried eggs and one of the best burgers ever, also sangria. Good street performers. Strolled past the marina and a wooden lobster-like thing then the heavens opened. Back to the ship to dry out (externally!) G&T, dinner (too full to eat much) then the show, Mike Boyle, comedian. Same patter as last time we saw him on Cunard but still very funny. Conservatives and Labour are like divorced parents who care more about getting the kids to hate the other one than about their well-being. πŸ˜‰ Β πŸ˜‰

5 May 2018

4 May 2018

3 men are stranded in a boat with 4 cigarettes and no way to light them. So they toss the 4th cigarette overboard, which makes the whole boat a cigarette lighter. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  4th/May Sea day, next stop Barcelona. Had a lie in, watched a film (Judy Dench as Queen Victoria). Diane enjoyed it. Late breakfast then bridge for Diane, I read the paper and reclaimed some WiFi time where logout hadn't worked. Afternoon bridge and classical pianist. Yet another cocktail party for long-serving Cunarders. Don't know who gave this one, maybe "the senior officers"?. Weather getting back to "normal" (cloudy and enough sea swell to disguise three glasses of wine!). Dinner in the Royal Court (self-service and very good again) after the drinkies. Back to roost by 10pm! Every so often, I like to go to the window, look up, and smile for a satellite picture. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

3 May 2018

Β I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  3rd/May Sailed overnight, arrived in Civitivecchia (the gateway to Rome) about 7am. We took a bus to the railway station and the train to St Peter's Bassilica in Rome. Queued for about 1.5 hours, through a couple of showers, then explored the cathedral. Couldn't find the cheap and cheerful restaurant we've been to the last twice in Rome so settled instead at a table on the pavement (sunny again by now) for tasty toasties and even tastier pizza with pinot grigio at 2.90€ for a LARGE glass. Strolled back to the train and reversed the morning's route to QM2. Gave the dining room and the show a miss, went to the serve-yourself restaurant and had an excellent meal. Finished with wine and cheese in our stateroom. Royal Carib's Symphony of the Seas was in port - over 6,000 passengers!!!! Β May all your troubles last as long as your New Years resolutions! Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰

2 May 2018

I think this generation will have to go into separate rooms and text each other to work out their problems. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  2nd/May Sorrento. Dropped anchor 8am. Got up fairly early for a leisurely breakfast then tendered ashore about 10am. Inspected the coastal ferry option for visiting Amalfi but the round trip seemed a bit tight on time so opted for a local tour bus along the coast road via Positano to Amalfi. Good choice for a very scenic journey. We've been to Amalfi before so stayed on the coach back to Sorrento, bought some wine, cocktailed on the quaysideside and scuttled back to the burrow. Β I think we'd like to come back some time and spend a week or two exploring the Amalfi coast. The show was a comedian juggling with axes so we gave him the chop and watched "sailaway" from our balcony instead. Thanks for explaining the word "many" to me, it means a lot. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰

1 May 2018

I was going to share a vegetable joke but it's corny. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  30th /April First of two sea days en route to Sorento. Should have been going to Naples but they haven't dredged the harbour enough for QM2 so we're going to nearby Sorrento instead, where almost 3000 passengers may want to be tendered ashore (and back again later). One of the celebrity speakers is Anthony Horrowitz (from Alex Ryder through Foyle's War and Sherlock Holmes to new James Bond books). I missed his first talk but today was about Ian Fleming. It was very entertaining. He said " the James Bond books, they're better than the films!" So true! Bridge results good again, Diane and Peter continue to thrive. Good show tonight - good singer with songs from the musicals - Diane stayed awake! Old age is when you're faced with two temptations and you choose the one that will get you home by nine o'clock. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 
You have two parts to your brain, 'left' and 'right'. In the left side, there's nothing right. In the right side, there's nothing left. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  1st /May 2nd sea day en route to Sorrento. Diane at bridge, I listened to a Q&A session with Anthony Horowitz. He is a most entertaining speaker. Afternoon - Diane at bridge, I went to an afternoon concert. We ate later than usual, in the Veranda Restaurant (one of the perks of diamond membership). Gave the show a miss - Spinettes and multi-instrumentalist, Β I often confuse reptiles and amphibians. Actually, if I'm being honest, I confuse just about everyone I explain things to! πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 
A woman's mind is cleaner than a man's: She changes it more often. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  29th/April Cyprus (copper?) today. No trips planned, just us exploring Limasol and, like half the QM2 passengers we met, looking to buy more tonic for our evening's pre-dinner drinks! Beautiful weather, sunny with temp about 27 degrees C. Strolled, in total contentment, past palm trees, grassy areas, playgrounds, water features and snack and tat sellers. Resisted them all, found a mini-mart for tonic and then stopped in a taverna for Guinness, wine, garlic mushrooms and high-speed WiFi! Made all our phone calls (in the EU so mobile phone allowance available) and got back on board for a test of the tonic (good), showers and dinner. The show was an Armenian comic (shades of Victor Borge, if any of you had heard of him).Β  We saw him once before on Cunard. He was extremely funny this time again. The first time I got a universal remote control, I thought to myself "This changes everything". πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

29 April 2018

What’s the difference between a well dressed man on a bike and a poorly dressed man on a unicycle? Attire. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ 28th/April QM2 entered the canal at Suez around 7am. In most of the canal there isn't room for ships to pass going in opposite directions so there are a few passing places, Bitter Lake is where southbound ships wait their turn. (Although they have now also got a parallel canal for about 20 miles at one point). Got two loungers without bloodshed (there aren't many Germans on board) and took our breakfast, and lunch outside. Took lots of pics. Exited the canal at 5pm at Alexandria. Showtime was a girl trio called the Spinettes (think Andrews Sisters) which I really enjoyed. Next stop, tomorrow, is Limasol in Cyprus. Fairytale News: The Pied Piper has 12 rats behind him, more to follow... πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰
One in four frogs is a leap frog πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ 27th/April I'm actually sending this from a seafront cafe in Limasol - days after the entry below was written. Sea day. If you look at the Red Sea map (somewhere in the journal), Aqaba is at the top right, up the right hand "horn-like" bit. Today we sailed down again and then up the left-hand "horn", heading for the area where we anchor to wait for our turn in the Suez Canal. We don't know exactly when we'll set off in the morning but we plan to get up early and fight for a sun lounger. Diane had another new partner at bridge today but still managed 4th place! By the way, one of the pics is Diane in full-body mud and another is her floating in the sea rinsing it off. The show was a multi-instrumentalist performer - not too bad. Confucius say, man who runs behind car will get exhausted, but man who runs in front of car will get tired. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

27 April 2018

Sometimes, Diane says, she wakes up grumpy; other times she lets me sleep. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  25th/April Diane got back from her bridge lesson in time for us to walk 3 miles round the deck before lunch. Most of the way round she was practically skipping - this morning we got the results of yesterday's duplicate bridge tournament - she and her partner came first!!!! On the way up the Red Sea we had to divert to an Egyptian port to transfer an ill passenger to hospital. Didn't bother with the gym, 3 miles was enough and our coach-load (from the India trip) had a "reunion" planned over afternoon tea. Actually, QM2 is so big that we'd seen very few of them around the ship. After dinner we thought about going to the show but settled instead for an early night - we'll be setting off at 7.15 am on a 13 hour trip to the Dead Sea. Hopefully I'll get some pics of Diane walking on water! Today's bridge results: Diane was 3rd! Omar Sharrif?...pfft! Β One in four frogs is a leap frog Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

26 April 2018

Lottery: A tax on people who are bad at maths. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ 26th/April Up at 5.30am (shades of India?) and set off from Aqaba for the Dead Sea tour.Β  The coach ride was almost 4 hours so had a "little" doze on the way. The mud is supposed to be therapeutic so Diane got plastered then swilled most of it off in the sea.The Dead Sea is evaporating faster than it's filling which means it's even lower and saltier! We did some high-level floating (no walking, see pics), found it very difficult to swim on our fronts or even stand up - a buff lifeguard picked Diane out of the water, I had to crawl out myself - a bit like the coelacanth maybe? Sunbathing, g&t, buffet lunch, started to rain (!) and coach back to Aqaba. Cunard greeted us with champagne on the keyside. Had moules mariniere in the cabin, with wine and then time to crash! America is a country where half the money is spent buying food, and the other half is spent trying to lose weight. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

25 April 2018

A plateau is the highest form of flattery. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 23rd/April Another lazy day - gym and bridge in the morning. Diane went to bridge in the afternoon and I relaxed on the balcony in the sun with the paper a crossword and a book (it's not easy but somebody has to do it). Roused ourselves enough for shower, g&t, dinner and show, which was a soprano duet called Indigo May. Diane said they were alright, I thought they were wonderful - a bit on the lines of The Three Tenors but better looking. Β A book just fell on my head. I've only got my shelf to blame. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

24 April 2018

This post is ahead of its time but since I found this map I thought I'd share it with you. Anyway, they seem to end up in the journal in any order at all!! Currently two thirds of the way up the Red Sea.
A commenter once criticised my grammar. He said that double negatives were a β€œno-no.” πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 22nd/April Slept in till almost 9.30. Diane still managed to get to bridge. I sat on the balcony and downloaded Saturday's and Sunday's papers. Gym and bridge after lunch. Steak Diane for dinner. Didn't fancy the singers and dancers so went to the cinema to see "The Greatest Showman". Thought the film very good, in spite of some of the singing. Clocks go back an hour tonight so don't think we'll sleep so late tomorrow. Β I went to the butchers the other day and I bet him 50 quid that he couldn’t reach the meat off the top shelf. He said, β€œNo, the steaks are too high.” πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰

23 April 2018

Β I was watching the London Marathon and saw one runner dressed as a chicken and another runner dressed as an egg. I thought: β€˜This could be interesting.”      πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 20th/April (1st sea day) No early call so, of course, we wakened early anyway! Diane went to a bridge lesson in the morning, I went to the gym. In the afternoon, surprise surprise Diane went to the bridge tournament. I went to listen to a classical duo - the pianist was pretty and the clarinetist wasn't, but they played beautifully and they'll be on again in a day or two. Pleasant dinner companions, not too near the kitchens, nice meal. The show was a Polish fiddler lady - not too bad but may go to the cinema when she's next on. Β A dad is washing the car with his son. After a moment, the son asks his father, "Do you think we could use a sponge instead?" πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 
They say St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland. I wonder if he could do that for Parliament? πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  19th/April (Embarkation day in Dubai) Cases out by 9am, hearty breakfast and braved the traffic to spend our last 45 dirham on chocolate in a SevenEleven (well, you never know when an emergency may arise that requires chocolate!). On the coach to the port by 12.30 and walked through probably the smoothest, quickest embarkation procedure ever! The QE2 is here, reputedly refurbished and accepting her first guests. She certainly looks smart, sadly we didn't have time to visit and inspect to see how well they've done up my favorite cruise liner. We brought a week's worth of washing in our carry-on luggage so Diane did that before the hordes descended on the laundry. Unpacked, went to dinner, didn't like our table, too near the kitchen so requested a move. Gave the dancers a miss. Β What's worse than raining cats and dogs? Hailing Taxis. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 
Β I hate sitting in traffic, because I always get run over. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 21st/April I love sea days, there's so much to do, dancing lessons, films, tv, lectures and much more - its quite difficult to decide which one to not do next! Anyway, for today I've opted for all of them! Diane went to a bridge lesson, I went to the gym. Met for lunch. Diane came fourth in the bridge tournament in the afternoon, I sat on our balcony and read. Coptain's cacktail party (sic) - numerous g&ts - chatted with a friendly couple from Aberdeen and boasted about Kyle! Dinner was Chateaubriand and wine and the show was Darren Day. I think he won Opportunity Knocks in about 1989 and was in Celebrity Big Brother a couple of years ago. Against all my expectations he was very good indeed. I went to the cemetery yesterday and saw four grave diggers walking around with a coffin. Three hours later, they were still walking around with it. I thought to myself, they've lost the plot. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰
A woman's mind is cleaner than a man's: She changes it more often. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  24th/April A little cooler (or rather, less hot) and the balcony is the ideal place with a book after a gym session. Planetarium before lunch and dozed off under a film about weather in the solar system (the film is projected onto a domed ceiling, its dark, the seats are comfy and recline so the weather on Pluto didn't have much chance!). Free wine-tasting session in the afternoon while Diane was playing bridge. I only liked one of the wines (and, at $47 a bottle, wine tasting is as near as I intend to get to that one). After dinner to the next cocktail party, also for people who have given Cunard more money than most (measured in days' cruising). Rushed (in a leisurely manner so as not to spill my wine) to the show - the Polish fiddler and Darren Day. The day's wine helped to make it quite enjoyable. All I'm saying is why blame it on being lazy when you can blame it on being old? πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

22 April 2018

Women spend more time wondering what men are thinking than men spend thinking. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  18/April No rush again today! Breakfast at 10:30 Temperature was high thirties so we intrepidly decided to go for a walk in the noonday sun. Dubai Canal runs alongside the hotel so we set off towards the Arabian Gulf on the boardwalk. There and back was 5.5 miles. Back for a siesta then shuttle bus to Dubai Mall ("biggest in the world") they say. Didn't do any shopping but found a Lebanese restaurant and had our best meal so far (happy memories of Abu Dhabi!). There's a fountain and music show on the lake there, so we watched it in daylight, had a walk round and watched it again by twilight. Shuttled back after great day out, videoed Dubai from the 72nd floor and so to bed. Β As a kid I was made to walk the plank. We couldn’t afford a dog. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰
The cruise itinerary map should now be the front picture .......or maybe not, Journi is still baffling me!!! Entries and pics seem to appear in a more or less random order which is why I've started putting the date on each entry. Good luck reading it.

21 April 2018

Journi seems to have stopped working. If you see this postΒ  PLEASE LET ME KNOW ASAP, by email. πŸ‘€πŸ‘€πŸ‘€ Β I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  16/April The pics relating to today seem to have already appeared much further down the journal. Up at 6:30am for a sightseeing tour of Old Delhi, first to Raj Ghat which is a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Ghandi then on to Jams Masjid, one of the oldest mosques in India. Lunch was at the Sana-Di-Ge, a really good Indian restaurant where we had a sampler menu - the best meal of the holiday so far!! Sightseeing in New Delhi in the afternoon, lots of pics. Back to the hotel for shower, nibbles, g&t and bed. Tomorrow we have the morning free (apart from Diane, who will be packing) and pickup for airport at 12:30. Then on to Dubai, the QM2 and a rest. Β If you ever get cold, just stand in the corner of a room for a while. They're normally around 90 degrees. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

18 April 2018

Β I grew a beard thinking it would say "Distinguished Gentleman." Instead, turns out it says, "Senior Discount, Please!" πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  15/April Guess what? Today's early start, 8am, feels like a lie in! First to the Taj Mahal. The early start was worth it, the crowds weren't bad at all. This was probably the highlight of our India Tour and there are lots of pics to come. Then, on to the Agra Fort, again, really interesting and lots of pics. Visited a mosaic works (I'm getting punch drunk, I can't remember what it was called) but it was fascinating and too pricey for our souvenirs, although they did give us canned drinks. A long drive back top Delhi, punctuated by a stop at a Pizza Hut(!) for lunch, then checked in at the Taj Diplomatic Enclave (the hotel we started in). Had another early night (for a change?). Β Two windmills are standing in a field and one asks the other, "What kind of music do you like?" The other says, "I'm a big metal fan." πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 
Β I was at a cashpoint yesterday when a little old lady asked if I could check her balance. So I pushed her over. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰ 17/April Slept for 10 hours!!! Leisurely breakfast on the terrace then back to the burrow for Diane to finish packing. Coach to the airport at 12:30, where it all got a bit chaotic - first they got us out of the cattle-class queue and tried to upgrade us to business class but found there was only one seat left there. Next the computer system went down, then our luggage was pulled off the conveyer and it finally took us an hour and a half to get checked in!!!!! Still, it helped to pass the time. The Marriot Hotel in Dubai is super plush, we're on the 52nd floor. Turns out we don't board QM2 until Thursday so no early start tomorrow, a free day. Β I love being married. It's so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  .. . .
Why do seagulls fly over the sea? Because if they flew over the bay they'd be bagels!Β Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  14/April Its a long way to Agra (is there a song there somewhere?) so up at 5:30am and off by 7:00. The Maharaja (I can't remember which one) was very into both astronomy and astrology and he built an "observatory" outside Jaipur with lots of enormous "instruments", many out of marble. One instrument is a several metres high marble sundial. Lots of the others were quite esoteric and beyond my comprehension but thought to be ahead of his time. Took pics. Next we stopped at an abandoned town (Fatehpur Sikri, a lot more interesting than it sounds, see pics) where we were again overrun by tat sellers - we do keep buying their stuff. Then onwards to a buffet lunch at Laxmi Vilas Palace (aren't there a lot of palaces?). Finally arrived at Agra, checked in at the Radisson Blu and so to bed. Β To the mathematicians who thought of the idea of zero, thanks for nothing. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰

17 April 2018

These words of wisdom SHOULD cover the pics uploaded yesterday. Thanks for all the likes and comments. Keep them coming. Β A termite walks into a bar and says, "Where is the bar tender?" Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  13/April Off for 7:30(!) but well worth while - no major traffic snarl-ups. First stop was a photostop at the Palace of the Winds in Jaipur which is, apparently, just a facade, built with around 150 screened windows, to allow the maharaja's wives to view the goings on outside without being seen. I took my life in my hands to cross half a dual carriageway to take pics.
If I've got something right this time this should be continued from the previous gems of travel writing. ---------------------------- Back on the coach after my jaywalking the next stop was the Amber Palace, not named for the jewel or the color but deriving (our guide said) from a Hindu God. This was an amazing place. The coach was stopped in a car park and we all got into jeeps (ours was driven by a wild-eyed desert tribesman, I thought) to be driven up to the Amber Fort where we were besieged by tat sellers (fridge magnet anyone?). There were elephant rides and good stories from our guide (Kemal) about the Moghul invaders and the cunning Maharajas. Took lots of pics. Next photostop was Hawa Mahal, a palace on an island which was used in a James Bond film. Then, on to a carpet maker's - somewhat out of our souvenir price range! Finally, back to the hotel for another exhausted early night. Β I'm very pleased with my new fridge magnet. So far I've got twelve fridges. Β πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

16 April 2018

Because I'm posting these after the event (and because I don't necessarily know what I'm doing!) you'll have to try to make sense of the order of the posts and pics. Certainly the pics are well out of order and some seem to have crept in ahead of their approved slot. I'll post some more in the morning.
Β I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  16/April Up at 6:30am for a sightseeing tour of Old Delhi, first to Raj Ghat which is a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Ghandi then on to Jams Masjid, one of the oldest mosques in India. Lunch was at the Sana-Di-Ge, a really good Indian restaurant where we had a sampler menu - the best meal of the holiday so far!! Sightseeing in New Delhi in the afternoon, lots of pics. Back to the hotel for shower, nibbles, g&t and bed. Tomorrow we have the morning free (apart from Diane, who will be packing) and pickup for airport at 12:30. Then on to Dubai, the QM2 and a rest. Β If you ever get cold, just stand in the corner of a room for a while. They're normally around 90 degrees. πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β 

14 April 2018

Moses had the first tablet that could connect to the cloud. πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ 14/April Haven't had time to write yesterday's Journi yet - we were on the road for 8am today and just got into the Agra Radisson for 8pm. Had a g&t and room service and now (9pm) off to bed for a 5:30am (!!!*!!!) call. Call this a holiday? Updates will follow as soon as I catch my breath (but don't hold yours!!!).

13 April 2018

R.I.P boiled water. You will be mist. Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  πŸ˜‰Β  At last, time to sit and have a drink and update the journal. 12/April When we arrived in Jaipur we had time to visit the City Palace, now a museum. Two nights in the same hotel, the Jai Mahal Palace - even more splendid than yesterday's. Another early start but breakfast was outside, at 6:30am, in perfect temperatures.

12 April 2018

Maybe we'll make this our next holiday?
.....this is actually supposed to be the "continued" bit so really you should read the next bit first😒😩 So....after the museum we called at a diamond/precious stone emporium where I failed to persuade Diane to let me buy her a lovely diamond and white gold ring, even when I got the price down to £950. Oh well, at least she bought a fridge magnet from a street seller. The hotel is lovely with beautiful grounds but we opted for a g&t and a very early night. We're here tomorrow as well and we've got the afternoon off so we can explore and swim then. Forgot to say, we passed India's biggest call centre. The tour guide said he'd once called help line and found he was speaking to somebody across the road from where he was.
Behind every angry woman is a man who has absolutely no idea what he did wrong. πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ Early call at 6:30am!! This is supposed to be a HOLIDAY. The early start was necessary as we had a 5 hour coach drive to Jaipur. In the event it wasn't enough, we got stuck in a horrendous traffic jam and our driver had to perform some heroic manoeuvres, fighting off rabid tuk tuks, suicidal cyclists, obdurate lorry drivers and a lot manic cars. When we finally reached the blockage we found six policemen standing by and watching with interest as people struggled round whatever it was that had caused it. Anyway, trying to make up time our driver was stopped twice by police speed traps (I hope he's still around tomorrow) and, instead of the planned visits we stopped for an excellent lunch. On the way to the hotel we visited a museum which had Maharaja portraits, Maharaja robes, Maharaja photographs and Maharaja pyjamas. /To be contd...

11 April 2018

The virgin lounge.
In the hotel grounds.
You'll see from the randomness of the pics that follow this that I haven't quite sussed Journi yet. I think I may have posted all this already so hope I don't contradict myself too badly. Anyway, a good flight, beds like sarcophagii but comfier than the ones on the BA flight from LA and infinitely better than the bunks on the train trip across America. The road trip from airport to hotel (The Taj Palace.... in the Diplomatic Enclave no less with all the Embassies) was exciting - manic scooterists going with traffic, against traffic and across traffic, Uber taxis stopping randomly, everybody changing lanes and pedestrians wandering across the 4-lane highway, all to a cacophony of horns! The hotel is rather posh with flunkeys offering to help every time we stand still. Sadly our room is on the side that looks out, through the smog on some dilapidated flats. I wonder what is at the other side of the wall in the picture that necessitates lethal protection?
These are not our seats!

10 April 2018

.....but these are!
I needed a password eight characters long so I picked Snow White and the Seven Dwarves πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ Off to a good start, chicken korma and a few glasses in the virgin upper class lounge. Boarding in about 20 minutes. Diane has added a new drink to her "preferred" list - gin fizz ( me too). More tomorrow, when I might be sober!

26 March 2018