May 1, 2002

    The ship cruised all the day today in the Caribbean Sea from Barbados towards Puerto Rico. It is already May today. We have travelled for a long period of time. Paper forms for entering US and for disembarking were distributed and Shig was eager in filling in them.

    In the morning, Shig attended a lecture on the history of Puerto Rico, knowing the lecturer's English was difficult to understand. An American said she found it difficult, too. Shig could understand only in general. In the afternoon, Sue wanted to see Tanzanite jewels in the boutique shop in the ship, because this kind of jewels were introduced in today's on board news letter. The jeweler with whom we dined last evening together happened to be there and kindly explained about Tanzanite. It yields only in Tanzania in Africa and its color was blue and beautiful.

    Shig got a phone call from a couple of passengers, who wanted explanation of the gifts they received in Japan from friends. The gifts were a birch and cherry tea can, silk cloth and Mino-yaki ceramics. They were all beautiful.

    It was an "Informal" evening and Sue wore white embroidered jacket with crystal necklace. Before the dinner, we enjoyed a pre-dinner show of piano concert by Nina Mukhadze. We listened to her for the second time and were so moved that we bought her CD. But we didn't attend the post-dinner show, because it was comedy. We thought it was difficult to understand humors in English. We shared the dinner table with Bob & Edie again, and a new couple Charlie & Dorothea Phillips also from Florida. Both Shig and Sue ate veal.

 船は今日一日中はBarbadosからPuerto Ricoに向けてカリブ海を航海した。カリブ海は内海になるのでさすがに静かな航海だ。とうとう5月になってしまった。日本では5月連休真っ盛りであろう。2月以来の長旅もあと3-4日となった。米国入国と下船に必要な書類が配られ、重悳は記載に没頭した。

 午前中重悳はPuerto Ricoの歴史の講義に出た。講師の英語が理解しがたいことは承知の上でのチャレンジだ。米人の一人も聞き取り難いと言っていたほどだ。辛うじてまあ大体のことは分かった。Puerto Ricoは米国の準州で我々はここで「米国入国」手続きをする。しかし人々は米国とは違う独自性を主張したがるという矛盾があるそうだ。午後スミヱは船内の売店で宝石のTanzaniteを見ようと言った。今日の船内のニュースレターで紹介があったからだ。昨夜一緒に食事した宝石商がたまたま店に居て、親切にTanzaniteについて説明してくれた。アフリカのタンザニアでのみ産出する青い綺麗な石だった。


 "Informal"の夕べだった。スミヱは白い刺繍のジャケットに水晶のネックレスをつけた。この衣装も評判がいい。夕食前に行われたロシア人のピアニストNina Mukhadzeのピアノコンサートを聞いた。2度目だが本当に素晴らしいと感動してCDを買った。しかし夕食後のショーには出なかった。Comedyのショーだったので、ユーモアを解するのは無理と諦めた訳だ。夕食を共にしたのは再びBob & Edieと、新しい顔ぶれのご夫妻でFloridaから来たCharlie & Dorotheaだった。重悳もスミヱも子牛と茸の料理を食べた。

May 2, 2002

    We arrived at San Juan Port of Puerto Rico. We saw its lights already in the dark as the ship sailed along the north coast. As we approached, a beautiful town with much green and colorful arrays of houses protected by forts was seen. This was our 8th UNESCO world heritage on this trip. Puerto Rico is a commonwealth of US, and we finished immigration into US, but not yet customs, here in Puerto Rico.

    As soon as the ship was cleared by the authority, Shig alone got off the ship and made a 40 minute walk through the streets. San Juan was found a very hot but beautiful town. In the morning we took a bus tour. Old San Juan is a walled town with two forts in the east and west ends. We spent 45 minutes at the east side, Fort San Cristobal. Views from there was good and 45 minutes were not too long. Then we went to Art Museum in the new San Juan to spend an hour, but this was no fun. The bus drove around Old San Juan before coming back to the pier.

    After the lunch in the ship, we two set out again and took a cab to the west side, Fort El Morro. It was another interesting place. We walked back to the ship through Calle de San Francisco and Calle de Fortaleza, stopping by gift shops. But nothing interested us except a key tag.

    We set out again around 5:20pm for a party held by Radisson in Hotel El Convento in Old San Juan. It was located in the old site of convent in front of the oldest church in Puero Rico. We enjoyed snacks and drinks, such as sangria which was rum and fruit juice, and a creamy drink of coconut milk plus rum plus brandy. Sue and Shig walked around to chat with acquaintances.

    There was another party in the ship from 7:30pm at the poolside with buffet dinner and music. Many people, passengers and staffs, danced a lot. We were invited to sit together with Dick & Ann, and Tom & Susan. It was a fun evening.

 Puerto RicoのSan Juan港に着いた。San Juanは北海岸の中央にあり、船は南東からやってきたので、Purto Ricoの灯が朝まだ暗いうちから見えていた。近付くと要塞に守られた緑豊かな中にカラフルな家屋が並ぶ美しい町だった。UNESCO世界遺産の今回の旅で8つ目だ。Purto Ricoは米国の自治領なので、我々はPurto Ricoで米国入国手続きを済ませたが、税関はFloridaになるとのこと。

 船客全員の入国手続きが終わり上陸許可が出るや否や重悳は独りで船を下りて、40分ほど町を歩いた。San Juanはとても暑く、しかし美しい町だと思った。午前中我々はバスツアに参加した。Old San Juanは城壁都市で、東西両端に要塞がある。我々は東側のFort San Cristobalで45分を過ごした。見晴らしがよく、45分が長すぎるとは感じなかった。それから我々は新都市San Juanにある美術館を訪れ1時間を過ごしたが、これは宗教美術と近代美術がなかなか理解できない我々にはあまり面白くなかった。バスはOld San Juanを巡って船に戻った。

 船で昼食を済ませてから、2人だけで再び出かけ、タクシーで東側の要塞Fort El Morroに行った。ここも面白い場所だった。そこから歩いて目抜き通りのCalle de San Francisco、Calle de Fortalezaを通り、時々お土産物屋に立ち寄りながら船まで帰った。1つキータグを記念に買った他は面白いものは無かった。

 5:20pmに再び出かけ、RadissonがOld San JuanのHotel El Conventoで催すパーティーに出た。このホテルはPurto Rico最古の教会の前の元Conventつまり修道院を昔使っていたことからこういう命名になったそうだ。スナックと飲み物を楽しんだ。Rumと果汁のSangriaという飲み物や、椰子のミルク、Rum、Brandyを使ったドロッとした飲み物などを物珍しく飲んだ。我々2人はわざと着席せず歩き回って知り合いとダベった。

 もうひとつパーティがあった。船上のプールサイドで7:30pmからあり、バイキングの夕食と音楽があった。乗客も乗務員も大勢が盛んにダンスをした。我々は招かれてDick & Ann、Tom & Susanと一緒に食事し、楽しい夕べだった。

May 3, 2002

    The ship left Puerto Rico at midnight and two cruise-only days began today.

    Shig got up early as usual and went to the continental breakfast alone. Chaplain Eli & Margaret Takesian were already there and invited me to sit together. While eating, we discussed cultures and religions. Eli seemed interested in discussion with a man like Shig from different culture. He was found a very open-minded rational curious person. Shig asked a rude question because Shig was really interested to know, "You look quite different from what I know as clergymen. Are you different as an individual or are most military chaptains different from ordinary priest ?" To make a long discussion short, Shig learnt that military chaplains are different, but that Eli was more different. He said he would always want to avoid "tunnel vision". Shig learnt an important fact. A military chaplain takes care of non-Christians as well as Christians in the responsible military unit, and Chief Chaplain, which Eli used to be, takes care of non-Christianity chaplains as well. No wonder that military chaplains must be more open-minded. It was an interesting breakfast.

    Today, we spent most of our time for packing and for preparation for packing such as reading instructions, filling documents, writing tags, and sorting belongings to what would be sent directly to Japan and what we would carry to Japan. We gained confidence that we could manage packing, but we intended to pack tomorrow, after this evening's party and dinner in formal attire.

    Around noon, the ship passed near a peninsula of Dominica. It had much green, like other islands in the Caribbean Sea.

    The world cruise will end at Ft. Lauderdale, Florida on May 5. But some people, mostly from west coast, chose to stay in the ship until it would come to Los Angeles through Panama Canal after calling several more ports in 17 more days. In addition, as a result of relatively cheap price setting and shortness of the trip, many people will embark at Ft. Lauderdale to fill the ship. We hear that the ship will have 480 passengers in the accommodation capacity of 490. Many crew members of the ship will change at Ft. Lauderdale. At present after Puerto Rico, therefore, the crew is double-staffed for smooth transition. The crew rooms are overflowed and some crew members are staying on our floor.

    There was a pre-dinner Farewell Party held by the Captain. As usual, we didn't sit down and said hello and farewell with as many people as possible. One stage effect was impressive. The Captain made a farewell address. After that, the curtain in his back opened. There were many crew members on the stage, officers, clerks, waiters, maids, chefs...., whose services during the cruise were reminded by passengers. They left the stage waving hands to their works.

    This evening with the "Formal" attire, Sue wore the brownish purple kimono with a white belt. We two were invited by Staff Captain of the ship, Gianmario Sanguineti, who was, so to speak, the vice-captain. We were seated with another couple, Bob & Beryl, and 2 other young staff officers. Shig tended to ask meaningful or serious questions to the vice-captain sitting next to Shig, but Beryl, sitting in the other side of him, didn't seem to enjoy serious discussion. The Staff Captain handled two different types quite cleverly, and Shig was marvelled at his sociability.

    Shig learnt three interesting things from him. Most officers on this ship are Italians. Shig thought that the Italian Captain hired those. But the Staff Captain told Shig that this ship got a subsidy from Italy when built and Radisson felt obliged to hire Italian officers including the Captain.
    The officers are hired by contracts of 4 months followed by 2 month vacation. During the 4 months on duty, Radisson allows the family of officers on board for 1 month. Therefore officers can spend time with the family for 3 months in 6 months.
    While the ship is docked, many crew members go ashore. But officers, especially high-ranked officers, can not leave the ship in most cases. Therefore, they can rarely do sightseeing at a port of call.
    Both Shig and Sue took pasta dinner, which was big shrimps on creamed boiled raice. After the dinner, we enjoyed the last show by The Peter Gray Terhune singers and dancers. It was great as always.

 船はPuerto Ricoを昨夜真夜中に発って、航海だけの2日間が今日始まった。

 重悳はいつものように早く起きて、独りで朝食に行った。Chaplain Eli & Margaret Takesianが既に来ていて一緒に座るよう招いてくれた。食べながら文化と宗教の議論をした。Eliさんは違う文化を持ちしかし米文化とも比べることができる重悳のような人間と議論することに興味があったようだ。彼は異質なものを受け入れる能力に優れ、合理的で好奇心が強い人のようだった。重悳は一つぶしつけな質問をした。本当に知りたかったからだ。「聖職者として私が存じ上げている人とあなたは全く違うように見えるのですが、あなた個人が違うのでしょうか、従軍牧師は普通の牧師とは違う人が多いのでしょうか?」 少々長いやりとりを縮めて結論を言えば、従軍牧師はより「普通人」でないと勤まらない。しかしその中でもEliさんは特別に変わっている、ということらしい。視野が狭いことを"tunnel vision"というのだそうだが、彼は聖職者にありがちな"tunnel vision"にならぬよういつも努力していると言った。そうでもなければMarinesの従軍牧師の元締めにまで出世できるはずがない。面白い事実を聞いた。従軍牧師は、担当部隊のキリスト教の兵士は勿論だがキリスト教でない兵士も担当する。またEliさんがやっていたChief Chaplainは、キリスト教の従軍牧師もキリスト教以外の宗教の従軍牧師も部下に持つそうだ。従軍牧師が他を受け入れる広い心を持つのも当然だ。興味深い朝食だった。



 世界一周の航海は5月5日にFlorida州Ft. Lauderdaleで終わる。しかし一部の乗客、ほとんどは西海岸の人だが、船に残ってLos Angelesまで行く。パナマ運河を通り数箇所の寄港を経て17日間の旅だ。加えて、比較的安い料金設定と短い旅で気軽に参加できるため、Ft. Lauderdaleで多数の人が乗ってきて船を満員にするらしい。定員490名のところに480名の乗客が入ると聞いた。僚船のSeven Seas Marinerが急遽推進器の軸受交換のためドック入りして客をこちらに振り替えたことも満員の一因と聞く。Puerto Rico以降現状では、乗務員はスムースな交代のために交代要員を含めて二重体制になっており、乗務員用の部屋はオーバフローして一部は我々のフロアに泊まっている。


 今晩は"Formal"だったので、スミヱは茶系紫の着物に白い帯を締めた。我々2人は船のStaff CaptainのGianmario Sanguinetiのテーブルに招かれていた。言わば副船長でNo.2の人だ。もう1組のご夫妻Bob & Berylと、2人の若い士官がテーブルについた。重悳は隣に座った「副船長」に意味のある真面目な質問をし勝ちだったが、反対側に座ったBerylさんは真面目な話は楽しくないようだった。Staff Captainはこの2種類の相手をうまく扱ったので、重悳は彼の社交性に感服した。そうでもないと客船の幹部は務まらないのだろう。

 重悳は3つの面白いことを学んだ。この船の士官はほとんどイタリア人だ。船長がイタリア人だから彼がイタリア人を雇ったのかと思っていた。しかしStaff Captainの言うには、船長が好きな人材を採用できる良き時代は終わったそうだ。この船の建造時にイタリアから補助金が出たので、船会社Radissonはイタリア人の士官を採用しなければいけないと感じているらしい。船長がイタリア人なのも原因ではなく結果だと分かった。
 重悳もスミヱもパスタディナを食べた。クリームで仕上げた米飯に大きな海老を乗せたものだった。夕食の後The Peter Gray Terhuneの歌とダンスの最後のショーを楽しんだ。何時もながら素晴らしい。

May 4, 2002

    The ship was cruising along the coast of Cuba towards Florida. The waves were fairly rough and whitecaps were seen. But the ship didn't roll or pitch because the wavelengths were short enough. There were two lectures in the morning. The first was on American literature, and Sue, a BS in English literature, attended with enthusiasm. The lecturer asked the audience, "Name great novels written by Americans in the 19-20 centuries", and commented on each novel which the audience raised. Back and forth were titles of novels unfamiliar to Shig who didn't like novels first of all. The next lecture was by Radisson's VP, Operations and VP, Planning. They talked about a new ship "Seven Seas Voyager" under construction now by Radisson, and its cruising plans, and welcomed Q&A. In service now is a cruise ship "Seven Seas Mariner" which was based on our 490 passenger ship "Seven Seas Navigator" but expanded to 700 passengers. "Seven Seas Voyager" seemed a minor modification model of "Mariner", thus very similar to "Navigator", too. Some cruise companies put into service big cruise ships of several thousand passengers. But Radisson turned back on this trend and seemed to have concluded that the size of 700 passengers was the compromising point between econopmy and services. The Radisson executive whom we talked with last evening was found Paul Goodwin, VP, Planning.

    Shig did the last contribution to the jigsaw puzzle and left the rest to friends who would go on to Los Angeles through Panama canal.

    The last evening was a "Casual" evening. We dined with two new couples; Gerald & Florence Bell from Florida and Mr. & Mrs. Huntley Stones from Colorado. Sue ate chicken and Shig took spaghetti with meat balls.

    We put out of the door 3 pieces of luggage directly to be sent to Japan, and 2 pieces of check-in luggage, so that porters could carry them out during the night. In addition, we each had one hand-carry baggage.

 船はFloridaに向けてCuba沿岸を航行中だ。波はかなり荒く白波が立っているが波長の短い波なので船は揺れない。今日は午前中に二つの講義があった。最初は米文学の時間だったので、英文学士は張り切って出掛けた。講師は「19・20世紀の米国文壇の偉大な小説を挙げよ」という命題を設定し、聴衆から候補を募って一つずつ論評した。小説が嫌いな重悳にはほとんど耳慣れない表題が行き来した。次の講義は、Radisson社のVP, OperationsとVP, Planningが、社が建造中の新造船Seven Seas Voyagerとその航行計画を話して聴衆から質問を受けた。本船Seven Seas Navigatorをベースにそれを490名から700名に拡大したSeven Seas Marinerが今就航しているが、それを少改良したものだ。だから本船"Navigator"にも非常によく似ている。一部のクルーズ会社が定員何千名もの巨大船を就航させているのにRadisson社は背を向けて、700名が経済性とサービスの妥協点とRadisson社は結論を出したようだ。夕べのパーティで立ち話をしたRadisson社幹部はVP, PlanningのPaul Goodwinだったことが分かった。彼は昨日面白いことを言っていた。クルーズの日程が長くなるほど乗客の年齢が上がり、短い安いクルーズほど年齢が下がるそうだ。ごもっとも。

 Jigsaw Puzzleに最後の貢献をし、残りはパナマ運河経由Los Angelesまで行く人に託した。船の或る場所に常に広げてあって誰でも参加できる。食後の休憩に丁度いいから時々やってきた。今までは大体順調に仕上がって来たのだが、今広げてあるのは難物で、真っ黒な部分が30cm x 15cmほど残ってしまい、1時間に2個ほどしか進まない。欲しいパタンが無い場合が多く、そういう時はどこかで誰かが間違って配置したのを修正しつつ進めるから時間が掛かる。。

 クルーズ最後の夕べは、もう荷造りしているだろうからということで"Casual"だった。我々がテーブルを共にしたのは新しいカプルで、Gerald & Florence Bellと、Mr. & Mrs. Huntley Stonesだった。スミヱは鶏肉を、重悳はSpaghetti Vongoleを食べた。

 直接日本に送る荷物を3個、米国旅行中はCheck-in baggagesになる荷物を2個ドアの外に出した。夜中じゅうに運びだしてくれる。香港で布製ケースを一つ買ったのが正解だった。その他に我々は一人一個のカバンを持つ。

'02/ 5/ 4 十年早かったかな    67日の航海は楽しかったが、十年早かったかなと思う。

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