On April 28, 2019 Sisters at Sea left for Bermuda on the Norwegian Escape.
V and I went to JFK to pick up Liz and drive her out to Elvira’s. Picking anyone up at that airport is really a two person job. I was the wheel-man, and V went into the terminal to meet Liz at the baggage carousel. Of course, with five sisters in the house this turned into a pre-cruise party.
The boarding process was much like getting through an airport, but we had a lot of fun on the ship on our way to Bermuda. “It’s got to be the going, not the getting there that’s good.”
Great sights as we sailed down The Hudson, and through our hard working harbor. Once we went out to sea, I found I totally loved seeing the open ocean. My roommate, Liz, kept teasing me for “taking pictures of nothing.” Nothing? “The ocean is the opposite of nothing!” She didn’t know that this was my first cruise trip away from land.
In the hot tub just about every night, under the stars. Amazing! We were sailing through the Sargasso Sea, the only sea on the planet that is bordered by water on all four sides.
Here’s what NOAA has to say about it: The Sargasso Sea is a vast patch of ocean named for a genus of free-floating seaweed called Sargassum. While there are many different types of algae found floating in the ocean all around world, the Sargasso Sea is unique in that it harbors species of sargassum that are 'holopelagi' - this means that the algae not only freely floats around the ocean, but it reproduces vegetatively on the high seas. Other seaweeds reproduce and begin life on the floor of the ocean.
Sargassum provides a home to an amazing variety of marine species. Turtles use sargassum mats as nurseries where hatchlings have food and shelter. Sargassum also provides essential habitat for shrimp, crab, fish, and other marine species that have adapted specifically to this floating algae. The Sargasso Sea is a spawning site for threatened and endangered eels, as well as white marlin, porbeagle shark, and dolphinfish. Humpback whales annually migrate through the Sargasso Sea. Commercial fish, such as tuna, and birds also migrate through the Sargasso Sea and depend on it for food.
While all other seas in the world are defined at least in part by land boundaries, the Sargasso Sea is defined only by ocean currents. It lies within the Northern Atlantic Subtropical Gyre. The Gulf Stream establishes the Sargasso Sea's western boundary, while the Sea is further defined to the north by the North Atlantic Current, to the east by the Canary Current, and to the south by the North Atlantic Equatorial Current. Since this area is defined by boundary currents, its borders are dynamic, correlating roughly with the Azores High Pressure Center for any particular season.
We were playing RummyCube and had lunch delivered right to our game. The kids up in the Vibe Beach Club took great care of us.
As soon as we went onshore in Bermuda we found all sorts of wildlife. The big one is a Yellow Crowned Night Heron fishing for lunch in some shallows, and of course Liz found some flamingos. This little one is a Ruddy Turnstone.
We went snorkeling over and around these patches of reef. A fantastic habitat for numerous types of corals, and tons of fish. I was alternately wishing I had an underwater camera in my hands, and grateful that I could just float along on my pool noodle, watching the show. All those nights watching Jacques Cousteau on PBS, I never really dreamed I’d one day have an opportunity to do this!
I saw brain coral, fan and staghorn coral, sea fans and tube sponges. There was a school of Jacks that flew right past me, as well as a school of these little guys I saw at the aquarium called Liza, a type of mullet. (No, not the haircut.) The photos above are from the aquarium, but I saw all these fish, and many more from the card on my snorkel trip.
On Saturday night, our last night at sea, we had a pajama pub crawl. There’s not much I can say about it because what happens on the ship, stays on the ship. Here’s a video showing how many sisters you can fit into an elevator though.
I dunno. I guess Gena was Liz’s designated driver? Holy Moly!!!
Here we are in the photography shop trying to choose (by committee) which of the group shots to buy.
Pranks were played. And played. And played.
RummyCube was played. And played. And played.
There was a rainbow at sea, looked like a stairway to heaven. No thanks. I’m not ready.
”I got bettah, I feel Happy!”
All-in-all it was a great trip. Thanks to Elvira for our hand-beaded lanyards. Brilliant way to keep the room key handy! Thanks SO much for hosting, herding cats, and pulling the trip all together.