A few weeks ago we went on a cruise. Me, the wife and our kids and her parents and a few friends and their kids and their parents. Everyone was there except the president and our dog. But he missed his grooming session the week before and refused to be seen in public. So we left him at home. The dog that is. We didn’t invite the president.
It was a round trip to nowhere, which is NOT an analogy of where my life is at the moment. It just means you get on a BIG boat, cruise into the sunset, and twenty-four hours later you turn around. Fun, fun, fun.
We embarked in Durban, where the humidity was as heavy as a slum in Rio. It felt like I was being stuck under the armpit of a Sumo wrestler, in Singapore, in Summer. When we finally made it onto the boat, about an hour after our arrival, I almost French-kissed the first air-conditioner I saw. Why has no-one built a monument in commemoration of this wondrous marvel of human achievement?
When I finally could breathe again, I remembered that the ticket I bought for this cruise includes all the food. This implied that if I wasn’t going to puke from motion sickness, I was planning to puke from gluttony. There was a buffet. And it was free. It resembled a scene from Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs. Think of a food, and you probably would find it somewhere on that display. (Unless you were craving some liver and fava beans) The variety of food was actually borderline ri-di-cu-lous. We tried our best not to think of all the starving people in the world, but finally gave up when we pushed our semi-full, fourth servings aside, suffering from hyper-swelling of the abdomen. A serious condition for which the only treatment is to go and lie down on the deck. On sunbeads. In the sun. Which we did. Yes, my life sucks.
Anyhow. The excess food serves as compensation for the teensy-weensy, tiny sleeping quarters you get. To call it a cabin would imply that my wife’s closet should be rebranded as a penthouse. Never mind that you wouldn’t be able to swing a cat in that small space, good luck just getting one in there! Fortunately our pompous little French poodle decided to stay home. The cabin has space for four people and a TV, the size of a toaster. By casting the Harry Potter-camping spell, the designers also managed to fit a shower, toilet, basin and towel rack into the smallest space I have ever been in. You could literally crap and puke and wash yourself at the same time, if the need ever arise.
We enjoyed a small theatre production that evening, with some gorgeous girls dancing around on stage. Yes, they kept their costumes on, it’s a family cruise for goodness sake. We ended up in the second row, as Princess and her friends wanted to sit right up front. It’s what fathers do, sacrificing our own preferences for the sake of our beloved children. The fact that the ladies had little buts and big boobs had absolutely nothing to do with our seating arrangement. And the fact that they got off stage and flaunted their toned bodies right there in front of us, annoyed us too.
I felt sorry for the wives, for the male dancers had to wear the most ridiculous outfits, this side of the galaxy. Some of those pants were so tight, you could actually see if they were Jewish or not. I kept on crossing my legs in agony. Didn’t expect that at all. I think I cried a little. It was just too much, too close, too tight.
After the show we had to fight the Sandman, for dinner wasn’t served yet. He was shoving shit-loads of sand into our kids’ eyes and we were hungry again. Besides we paid for it, and there was no way we would miss more free food, that we didn’t have to prepare ourselves. Needless to say, Sandy is a scheming bastard. We lost. In the end we had to wake our little angels again, resulting in zombie-like little people, hovering through a three-course meal. Yes, we will burn in hell for that.
But we eventually got to bed where the swaying of the ship resulted in me sleeping in the world’s biggest cot. It was blissful and yes, all together now, I slept like a baby. I know, I know, my life sucks.To make a very long story short, the next day was more of the same. Giving us time to venture between different restaurants and sunbeds. The weather could not have been better and as we were going nowhere, we decided to get there very slowly. The kids had more than enough to do and watching them swim and play was all the exercise I needed. I must admit, it got a bit tiresome and I couldn’t help but slip away to the land of flying hotdogs and fountains of wine. It was tough, lying on that sunbed, soaking up the smiling sun, cruising along the glistening, turquoise waters of the South Atlantic Ocean.
The best thing about the trip was that I didn’t puke. I ate like no human ever should, and I didn’t suffer from vertigo. Neither did my family. Which is always a bonus on a sea-trip. I did however, find evidence of other passengers who were not so lucky, and those visuals would have been better unseen. I also regret the volume of pizza I ate, for I never want to see another slice again. I seriously don’t think there is an immediate risk of that happening; for I consumed all the dough produced in Italy in those two days.
On the opposite side of the “moments-to-remember-spectrum” would be my viewing of the Mother of all Cracks and the Four men who were so camp that they made the Kardashian sisters look like men. One day when I’m fully recovered, I might even write a post about it.
I’m just sorry I never got the opportunity to say “I’m the Captain now.” Not even once.