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ellie1145

Come sail with me on a virtual cruise on Majestic Princess to Fiji!

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With the advent of the coronavirus pandemic we must all, sadly, forget going on cruise ships for a while.

 

However, they can take the girl out of the cruise ships but they can’t take cruise ships out of the girl. So if I cannot go on my favourite vacation then I will sail back in time and revisit one of the most magical trips we have ever taken, and I invite anyone who is interested to sail along with me and enjoy the highs and lows of our trip to Singapore, Sydney and Fiji, which took place in October 2019.

 

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It is with some trepidation that I start my first trip report. I hope you will be kind to me as it is the first, and maybe the last review I will ever do. The views expressed are my own and mine alone, and what I describe is a snapshot of what happened to me, and should not influence anyone in their decisions about future cruises. What I love, others may hate, what they hate I might love, so please bear with me. I know, without a doubt, that people’s experiences of the same ship can differ widely, according to their own perceptions and requirements. So forgive me if my views differ from yours, that’s just life.

 

I realise that not all of you can afford the time to take such a long vacation, and the antipodes may not be everyone’s choice, but I hope to be able to give you a few tips along the way. If you have any questions, please ask, and I’ll do my best to answer them.

 

I’m not a cheerleader for any ship or cruise line. I have never been on a cruise I didn't enjoy, even though there may have been parts I liked better, loved more, or disliked more. When I pay for a cruise company for my little piece of cruise heaven I do not believe they feel sorry for me, or want to give me more than I paid for, nor do I feel sorry for them if something goes wrong. Whilst I fully accept that cruising has limitations - cancelled ports, blocked loos, bad weather and rough seas I do believe that the cruise line should do everything they can to give me what I paid for, and if they can’t then they should do their best to make me feel they have tried.
 

I accept that the cruise lines are not my best friends, they are commercial operations with the sole and express desire to make money. As such I know they will pare back all they can, but I still feel that cruising is one of the best vacations ever, and I long to feel the warmth of the sun on my face as I stand on my balcony watching the sea, and experiencing yet another wonderful sunset or sunrise.

 

But perhaps first I should introduce ourselves. We are fit and active (at the moment) over 60s, DH in his early 70s, me getting there way too fast, although in my head I’m still a young and dizzy teenager who fell in love with cruising, and who has been addicted ever since. We both still work part time and this funds our cruising passion - or it did before coronavirus reared it’s ugly head.

 

This addiction actually started in 1966, when my parents took me on my first cruise, on the wonderful old Australis, owned by Chandris, who are now Celebrity (hence the white cross on a blue background on the funnels). The Australis was by no means luxurious, she was by then quite old. I can still remember the ‘ship’ smell - engine oil, kitchen odours etc, which no longer exist on the beautiful new ships, but I fell in love with her the minute we stepped onboard. Australis spent the winter on the lucrative ‘£10 pom’ immigrant run, but in the summer she sailed the Mediterranean, ‘South to the Sun!’


SS AUSTRALIS FROM A POSTCARD GIVEN ONBOARD

 

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As we left Southampton the band of the Royal Marines serenaded us from the dockside, and we threw streamers from the deck. As the brochure said ‘Streamers Stream as the Ship Sets Sail!’ (Try saying that after a couple of glasses of Prosecco!) It was so exciting that we almost felt as if we were emigrating, as people stood on land to wave us goodbye.

 

My sister and I shared a cabin just above the water line with no en-suite, linoleum on the floor, and a small round porthole so close to the sea that the waves would splash against it constantly as we streamed along. Indeed, one evening the steward covered the porthole with a metal cover and we knew we were in for a rough night. We had to walk down the corridor to shared showers and toilets but we didn't care. It was the most exciting holiday we’d ever been on and the sounds and sights and smells of cruising still live in my memory, even now, over 54 years later.

 

OUR CABIN WAS LIKE THE TOP ONE ALTHOUGH WE HAD TWO LOWER BERTHS. THERE WERE SHARED FACILITIES, ONE SHOWER AND 3 TOILETS FOR LADIES AND THE SAME FOR THE GENTLEMEN.

 

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There were no buffets, all meals were taken in the dining room, and apart from a Greek bouzouki group, the Athenians, the entertainment was mainly by a small entertainments crew. We relaxed on the enclosed Promenade Deck on wooden loungers and every morning a trolley would arrive bearing bouillon, served from an urn in little cups. There were a few midnight buffets served on the Promenade Deck, where the creativity of the pastry chefs was highlighted, with wonderful sugar models of the ship and Sydney Harbour Bridge. We dressed for dinner each night and we often stayed in ports until late.

 

Since then I have enjoyed over 60 cruises, many of them with my husband, who accompanied me on our first cruise together, and his first cruise ever, when my parents took us on a cruise on Chandris SS Britannis the year after we were married - 1973. In fact my parents had cruised on honeymoon in 1935, so it must have been in the genes.

 

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We are Elite with Princess, Diamond with RCI and have sailed with Celebrity, NCL, P &O, Cunard, and even one Carnival cruise where we experienced our first balcony. Every one different, but each one had things we loved. We love the ‘big girls’ such as the Oasis Class of ships, but equally we are happy onboard the Vision Class ships, and had three lovely cruises onboard the old Monarch of the Seas. Each ship had its own magic. Princess is, perhaps, our favourite cruise line as somehow when we step onboard its like coming home. We love the wonderful staff, the amazing food, the calm ambience, the afternoon teas, the calorific desserts and of course the soufflés. But for entertainment and amazing mind blowing ships it has to be Royal Caribbean which comes a very close second.

 

With the arrival of our three children, cruising took a back seat, until in 1997, we took two of them on a Christmas cruise on the brand new Enchantment of the Seas, and they were ‘hooked’ too. (In case you are asking if we accidentally left number 3 ‘Home Alone,’ she was a stubborn teenager who thought cruising was for decrepit over 80s, and she preferred to spend Christmas with her friend’s family).

 

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Enchantment of the Seas was sparkling, full of white marble, crystal and brass. All meals were taken in the dining room, and tablecloths were different colours for lunch and dinner - pink for lunch if I remember rightly. Our nighties were draped into exotic shapes each night, a starfish one night, a rose another, and there were towelling animals too. The children thought they’d died and gone to heaven. This is the only cruise where we got upgraded on embarkation day, when DH and I were given an outside cabin opposite the children’s inside cabin. What luxury!

 

There were amazing midnight buffets each and every night, culminating in a spectacular buffet in the main Dining Room with ice carvings, wax statues and all manner of beautifully presented food. Those days are long gone of course. Our daughter later went on to work for a British cruise company as a Food and Beverage Manager, following her degree course. Since then we have cruised regularly.

 

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Posted (edited)

If there is anyone still reading this long epistle, well done you! 

 

So let me tell you our itinerary, and get this show on the road! This is our third experience of long haul flights with Singapore Airlines, and we are pleased to be flying with them again. On the return leg we have decided to stay overnight in Singapore as last time we flew from Sydney to London with only an hour between flights in Singapore and for us, at our ages, it was a real killer. We hope that breaking the journey will make it a little more comfortable.

 

Sunday October 6th overnight at local hotel

Monday October 7th Crowne Plaza Heathrow

 

Tuesday October 8th - LHR to Singapore Changi with Singapore 

Departs 11.25. Arrives Singapore Wednesday 9th October at 07.30

Staying at Holiday Inn Atrium

 

Sunday October 13th Singapore to Sydney with Singapore Airlines

Departs Singapore 20.20. Arrives Sydney 06.55 (Monday October 14th)

Staying 4 nights at Sir Stamford at Circular Quay

 

Friday October 18th board Majestic Princess for 14 night Fijian cruise

Saturday October 19th At Sea

Sunday October 20th At Sea

Monday October 21st Lifou, New Caledonia  09.00 - 18.00

Tuesday October 22nd Port Vila,  Vanuatu. 09.00 - 18.00

Wednesday October 23rd At Sea

Thursday October 25th Dravuni Island 07.00 - 18.00

Friday October 25th Suva, Fiji.  07.00 - 18.00

Saturday October 26th. Savusavu 07.00 - 18.00

Sunday October 27th Lautoka 08.00 - 17.00

Monday October 28th At Sea

Tuesday October 29th. Noumea New Caledonia  08.00 -18.00

Wednesday October 30th At Sea

Thursday October 31st At Sea

Friday November 1st. Disembark Sydney

Overnight at Sir Stamford

 

Saturday November 2nd Fly to Singapore with Singapore Airlines

Depart 12.10. Arrive Singapore 17.35

Overnight at Crowne Plaza, Changi Airport

 

Sunday November 3rd Fly with Singapore Airlines to London Heathrow

Depart 12.45. Arrives LHR 19.00

Overnight at Heathrow Hotel

 

Monday November 4th

Home!

 

CAMERA INFORMATION

I have to admit to being a complete novice. I see something I like and I take a photo, or lots of photos. At my age it’s a wonderful way of remembering exactly what I did. Occasionally they are good, sometimes they are bad, with a lot in between. But, hey, I enjoy it, so please forgive my photos if they don't reach the dizzy heights of some of the wonderful photographers on CC, whose photos I can only drool over, and which I’ve so enjoyed looking at.

 

As far as cameras go I have a wonderful Nikon camera with a separate lens which unfortunately now is too heavy to transport on a plane, so I rarely take it with me. I now have a Sony Cybershot which is easy to use and which has an amazing built in zoom lens, but I find that on the automatic setting it varies enormously, and I’m often disappointed. I only wish I was young enough to learn how to use the proper settings.

 

I also have a Canon IXUS point and shoot which is very lightweight, and which takes surprisingly good photos, especially close ups of flowers or food - very necessary on a cruise!

 

But to be honest, these days I rely more and more on my trusty

I-phone 6S which is quick, takes some very acceptable photos and is SO easy to use. Big downside is that my phone often gives up the ghost at a most in opportune moment so I do now take a power bank with me wherever I go. Good tip!

 

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One word of warning, to give you a chance to ‘jump ship.’ This is going to be long. I have thousands of photos (some good, some bad and some downright ugly) and this trip consists of 3 parts, two of which are land based, with the cruise in the third and final section. So if you don't want to wade through pages of description of Singapore and Sydney I will wave you a sad goodbye.

 

But I promise that eventually, I WILL tell you all about our wonderful Fiji cruise onboard Majestic Princess. And I hope that along the way I may be able to help with some information about Singapore, Sydney and the Pacific Islands of Fiji.

 

I’d love to know if anyone is actually reading this, and for the stalwart who gets to the end there is a prize - a free cruise.....virtual of course, I can offer Hawaii or Allure  of the Seas Caribbean. But if my verbal and photographic diarrhoea gets you down then I apologise and wish you a fond farewell.

 

But we have a few mini suites left onboard Majestic Princess so let me know if you want to join us!

 

If you are prepared for the long haul then pack your bags, grab your passports, and jump aboard. I’d love to have you along. Singapore is waiting!

 

MY SUITCASES ARE PACKED..... ARE YOURS?

 

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JUST TIME TO PUT THE LABELS ON..... NOT FIRST CLASS I’M AFRAID!

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Edited by ellie1145

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It’s rather late here in the UK and its taken me an absolute age to upload everything so far, so I’ll be back tomorrow with the first day of our amazing holiday.

 

 

 

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We were on the same cruise with you!  Looking forward to reliving our wonderful adventure.

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2 hours ago, ellie1145 said:

It’s rather late here in the UK and its taken me an absolute age to upload everything so far, so I’ll be back tomorrow with the first day of our amazing holiday.

 

 

 

all that, and not even the first day of cruising yet ??? 

 

sorry - I'm ready to look to the / a future ... but congrats on a great cruise you had, I guess ??

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I see that your cruise goes to Dravuni Island.

One of our favourite cruise stops.

You can hardly call it a port but that is what is so charming about it.

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We did this cruise on this ship in January 2020. Can’t wait to read your thoughts and see your pics. Thanks for taking the time to do this!

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Our September cruise with HAL was supposed to go to Fiji and  New Calidonia.  It has not yet been cancelled, but will likely be in the next few days.  So I will live my vacation through your lens.  Thanks

 

Don

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Will be following along.  We were on a 12 day leg of the Majestic's maiden voyage (from Dubai to Singapore). We're currently booked on the Majestic for Nov. 28, 2020 (Sydney to Auckland) but I think we're going to cancel and not cruise this year. Looking forward to seeing your photos and hearing about your experience.  Have always wanted to go to Fiji. 

 

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all that, and not even the first day of cruising yet ??? 
 
sorry - I'm ready to look to the / a future ... but congrats on a great cruise you had, I guess ??


Thank you so much for joining us, even for a short time (I did warn you it would be long! ).

I agree, I am looking forward to the future, too, but at the moment it seems a long time coming. Re-living this amazing adventure has given me a purpose during these sad times, as I mourn the loss of my cruising days. But I hope that eventually I will enjoy more cruises, and I sincerely hope you do, too.




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I see that your cruise goes to Dravuni Island.
One of our favourite cruise stops.
You can hardly call it a port but that is what is so charming about it.


It’s one of my favourites, too! And an amazing experience to see how life once was, although civilisation is changing it all too quickly.

Hope you get the chance to return one day.


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Will be following, also looking forward to many pictures.  Thanks for posting.


Lovely to have you along. Hope you’ve got a lot of stamina ha ha!


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We did this cruise on this ship in January 2020. Can’t wait to read your thoughts and see your pics. Thanks for taking the time to do this!


You’re welcome! Hope you enjoy reliving this fantastic cruise.


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Our September cruise with HAL was supposed to go to Fiji and  New Calidonia.  It has not yet been cancelled, but will likely be in the next few days.  So I will live my vacation through your lens.  Thanks
 
Don


Am so sorry to hear that Don. What a disappointment.

Well, come along for the ride, and when you do eventually go you will, perhaps, have a few ideas about what you want to do at some of the ports.


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We were on the same cruise with you!  Looking forward to reliving our wonderful adventure.


How lovely to hear from you!

Yes, it was a wonderful adventure, wasn’t it?

I know that I could happily do it all again - in real time, not virtually.
We considered booking the February 2021 Fiji cruise on Majestic but I’m afraid we got cold feet, as at our ages we need to be sure the pandemic is at least contained. We were also unsure about whether the islands would actually be welcoming us back by then.

Great to have you along. Hope it brings back some happy memories.


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Will be following along.  We were on a 12 day leg of the Majestic's maiden voyage (from Dubai to Singapore). We're currently booked on the Majestic for Nov. 28, 2020 (Sydney to Auckland) but I think we're going to cancel and not cruise this year. Looking forward to seeing your photos and hearing about your experience.  Have always wanted to go to Fiji. 
 


Welcome! Lovely to have you onboard!

How wonderful to have been on Majestic’s maiden voyage. She’s a beautiful ship.

Here’s hoping we will both get to sail on her again, sometime in the future. I’ve got everything crossed, and mighty uncomfortable it is too!


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Yep! You’ve got me following along. Was fascinated by the way it started. Made me look up the Chandris cruise lines saw the Logo. Was actually able to imagine your time on the cruise.   I’m looking forward to reading more about your cruise and waiting patiently for ours to return . Had to rebook for 2021. 
 

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Monday, October 7th, 2019

 

So are your bags packed? Have you got your passports? Well off we go then!

 

We have booked a hotel and parking at London Heathrow, so we are up early on the Monday morning to drive to London. I have cleaned the house to within an inch of its life, done every bit of washing I can see, and finally reached the end of my huge list of 75 ‘Things To Do’ before we leave. We spend the night of the 6th at a local hotel so that I have everything done at home and we can simply drive up to London in the morning, once I’ve done online check in for our flight with Singapore Airlines, and packed our suitcases in the car.

 

The drive is uneventful, and after checking in at the Crowne Plaza, I unpack our overnight bags and get everything laid out for the morning.

 

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We have stayed many times at the Crowne Plaza and it is one of our favourite hotels at Heathrow. She’s a grande dame, and like us ‘seniors’ is showing signs of her age, but its comfortable and clean and very convenient.

 

Our son, who lives in London, has invited us for a meal, so we wait until he is on his way home from work in central London, before leaving for his flat. He cooks us a delicious meal and my daughter (now a midwife at a big London hospital) also arrives to say goodbye to us. We have a lovely time together, and return to the hotel to shower and get ready for tomorrow. I can’t tell you how excited I am! I can hardly sleep!

 

Although we did the same itinerary in January of 2018, on Diamond Princess, and had  a wonderful time, I feel even more excited this time knowing we have so much more to explore and see, especially in Singapore and Sydney, plus Majestic Princess is a nearly new ship.

 

Singapore has a special place in our hearts, as I will explain later.

 

But for now, its time for some shut eye. See you in the morning, bright and early!

 

 

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12 minutes ago, CrazyIrving said:

Yep! You’ve got me following along. Was fascinated by the way it started. Made me look up the Chandris cruise lines saw the Logo. Was actually able to imagine your time on the cruise.   I’m looking forward to reading more about your cruise and waiting patiently for ours to return . Had to rebook for 2021. 
 

 

Welcome onboard! Great to see a fellow cruiser joining us.

 

Things were VERY different in 1966, but the magic was there despite not having all the glitz and glamour of the new ships. And maybe best of all, when you went on vacation you could actually get away from EVERYTHING as we had no internet or cell phones in those days. 

 

Here’s hoping that 2021 will bring us both more happy cruising!

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Posted (edited)

Tuesday, October 8th.

 

Come Fly With Me!

 

5.00 am and the alarm shrills. I have to admit that DH and I like to be early to the airport. Unlike my children, who are happy to turn up at the last minute, we like to savour the time at the airport, as for us its when the holiday truly starts, so its a short night’s sleep.

 

It’s time to get up and start our great adventure. I can hardly wait, but let my DH use the bathroom to get ready first so I can steal an extra few minutes in my warm bed. But then its all systems go! Clothes all laid out on the bed, toiletries packed away, bag ready for DH to take out to the car, hand baggage ready and 3 suitcases stowed on a luggage trolley outside the door. Why three suitcase you might ask? Well, as we are of a certain age (decrepit) we decided to take 3 suitcases weighing 20K each instead of 2 x 32 kg, as its easier for DH to drag them off the carousel at the end. Don’t want him getting a hernia just as we arrive in Singapore, do we?

 

We wait in the foyer for our taxi, ordered for 6.50, and get a text message to say our driver is on his way - hooray!  Then there’s a second message from another driver, followed by a third message, but nobody turns up! Panic! Quick call to the taxi firm and they assure us someone WILL turn up. We’ve used this company successfully for years but recently its been a little fraught as we think they now seem to offer the job to other companies.

 

But just as we have given up hope our driver arrives and doesn’t bat an eyelid at our mountain of luggage and off we go. He’s driving a Prius, and is very polite and helpful. We arrive at Terminal 2 just as the sun is rising above the buildings. It’s a glorious morning, although still quite dark, and I have that excited feeling in my stomach. The sky looks amazing, with a mackerel sky, that beautiful cloud formation.

 

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Terminal 2 is an amazing terminal, known as the Queen’s Terminal, it is only 6 years old. I’m sure London Heathrow Airport is familiar to many of you but if you haven’t had the pleasure of T2, I’ll explain a little about it. The original Europa Building  was actually opened in1955 and was the first terminal at Heathrow. This new building has been designed to produce 40% less carbon dioxide emissions than the original building due to its high level of insulation, LED lighting and reduced need for artificial lighting due to the large windows which flood the building with natural light.

 

We gather our luggage together and I grab a luggage cart, so we trundle it across the road and over the bridge into the Terminal building.

 

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There is an amazing sculpture as you enter, called Slipstream, which is supposed to resemble a stunt aircraft in flight. It is, apparently, the longest permanent sculpture in Europe. There is another one inside, suspended from the ceiling, called Emergence, so look out for both of these should you ever visit.

 

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Through the doors we go and, after a quick scan of the boards, we make our way to the check in desks. Well, actually you go to automatic machines which spew out your luggage labels, and thankfully there’s a helpful gentleman who gives us assistance. It’s at this point I seem to be all fingers and thumbs so its a help to have someone to oversee us. I have to admit that our children sometimes think we shouldn’t be let out on our own, but we’ve done pretty well so far!

 

Then its over to the check in desk, where our suitcases are weighed and our boarding cards are given to us. As a parting shot our check in lady says ‘well you’ve certainly got your money’s worth today!’ I guess that’s because we were on the money for weight. Now I’m sure all you ladies out there will understand that a girl has to have a certain amount of shoes!

 

But in my defence, we were carrying some things for the children on Dravuni, and I had also packed washing capsules and fabric conditioner for use on the ship so I don’t  have to traipse around Singapore looking for them. Although we have free laundry on the ship I prefer to do my own as I’m really fussy about sorting whites from coloureds and I don't really trust the ship’s laundry not to boil them all up and shrink them.

 

You’ve no idea how quickly clothes seem to shrink on a ship at the best of times, even without using the laundry ......I’m sure you have all experienced that!

 

Anyway, you meet some lovely people while watching your ‘smalls’ dancing round the washing machines onboard. I’m always really impressed with all the men who turn up to do the ironing. Not my DH I’m afraid!

 

Check in completed we are on our way to security, which is absolutely jam-packed. Now I have to tell you that I am the kiss of death to security. I don’t know whether I look like a terrorist or whether I’m just darned unlucky, but you can bet your bottom dollar I get searched. We stand in line for ages, shuffling forward like some down and outs waiting for free soup at the soup kitchen, until we finally reach the trays.

 

Now I’m a bit paranoid about losing my iPad, so I absolutely hate having to put it in the tray, so we have a routine. I leave my iPad with my husband, we put all the other luggage in front of it and then I trot off in hopes that by the time I’m through, my iPad will be safely gliding towards me. I once saw a programme about things being stolen in security. I have little faith in them telling me there’s lots of cameras so it can’t happen, as I know that with a flight to catch you don't have time to wait around for them to check security footage, and locate the thief, so I have to admit to being a tad anxious. Well, not just a tad, I’m spitting feathers!

 

Of course I am right, I set the alarm bells off as usual (must be the underwired bra I joke with the security guy but he doesn’t seem to find it funny) so I have to be X-rayed and patted down, all the time with me anxiously peering over my shoulder to see if my tray has gone floating past and my iPad’s been nicked. They must have thought me a right nutter, hopping up and down and wringing my hands. It’s a wonder they didn't haul me off for an internal search, as I must have looked like a drug trafficker. All of this has taken an hour!

 

Then I notice my hand luggage is sailing past - down the wrong side. Oh no! It’s going to be examined. Now I always look around at all the other people’s luggage being searched and nobody, and I mean NOBODY, has their hand luggage crammed as full as me! It’s embarrassing! But I watch as a lady carefully goes through it with a fine tooth comb, and my electrical items are swabbed and tested, but all is good. I know its necessary and I have no problem whatsoever with any amount of checks, but I really should learn not to pack so much! Of course I prefer them to be as thorough as possible - they have a very vital job to do after all.

 

At last we’re through, and its time for breakfast! We glide through the duty free shop, stopping for nothing, and aim straight for Wetherspoons for breakfast. Not the most gracious of eateries but its quick. We join a short queue, and are soon seated. Food at Heathrow is pretty typical, fast and overpriced but we’re hungry so we don't care.

 

DH orders scrambled eggs, and I have bacon, egg, beans and a tomato. It’s nothing fancy, edible and fills a gap, plus the drinks are unlimited, probably due to their extortionate cost!

 

 

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Edited by ellie1145

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The Big Bird is Waiting!

 

After that it’s a quick shop at Boots and Smiths for a few essentials, and suddenly our gate comes up. Gate 42 and it’s a long, long walk. It’s quite a quirky terminal, you have to go up and down huge escalators and along travelators, but finally we make it.

 

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Our Airbus 380 is at the gate, and I take a few photos of this behemoth. She’s a beautiful sight. Her wingspan is enormous.

 

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It’s 10.36 and boarding will start very soon.

 

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In fact we don’t even have time to sit down - apologies for the reflection on the photos due to the window.

 

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We board immediately. It’s absolutely huge, and it’s difficult to understand how on earth it ever gets off the ground.

 

The Singapore Airlines girls are waiting to greet us, smiley and gracious, so very slim, and in traditional outfits which appear to be moulded to them. There is a video onboard about Singapore Airlines in which it says that if a Singapore girl marries, has a baby and wants to return to duties she must fit their original uniform. If they can’t get into their uniform they don't have a job. They are slender and willowy, though how they remain so I cannot imagine. They are utterly charming and always make you feel that no request is too difficult.

 

We wait to see who our third passenger will be and its a lovely gentleman who is going to Bali to visit his daughter and grandchildren, who live in Oz, but holiday in Bali. He has an hour’s connection in Singapore, and is a bit worried as we are in a queue for take off, over half an hour late.

 

At last the doors are shut, we are safely belted up, we pull back, and this behemoth glides swiftly down the runway, lifting off so quickly I hardly realise we have left terra firma. She glides smoothly into the air and it still gives me a thrill to see the earth below us. Bearing in mind that as a young girl I was terrified of flying I feel it is an achievement to now love flying so much. How different she is from the lumbering Jumbos, though I have to say I have a soft spot for that old plane.

 

It’s just after 12.00 midday and the plane is completely full, not an inch of space.

 

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We’re On Our Way!

 

(at long last I hear some of you say!)

 

Our son lives right under the flight path of Heathrow so I always look out of the window in case I can see his block of flats. We used to fly over my daughter’s previous house quite regularly and our little grandson would wave and clap when he saw our ‘plane going over.

 

 

 

 

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The screens are amazing, and the map is very interesting as it shows you a video of the whole route as a movie first.

 

 

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Peas and Crackers???

 

As soon as we’re up they bring hot flannels, and my goodness they ARE hot.

 

Menus are brought round and we can see what is on offer during the flight.

 

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Then very quickly they serve drinks with those most weird of snacks, Peas and Crackers. They really do have peas in them, though I have to say they are quite tasty.

 

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The only annoying thing is that there seems to be this horrid high pitched whine all the time, and we can’t work out where it’s coming from. (We will finally find out, when we board a later flight, and the same high pitched whine occurs. When we ask staff on that flight what is making it they say the refrigerator unit, which we are sitting right beside, but thankfully they are able to switch it off) No such luck on this flight as we endure 12 hours of it, but we should have mentioned it, so it’s our own fault.

 

We have strong tail winds, of 216 km per hour (700mph) ground speed, and an airspeed of 898 km per hour. 

 

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One of the beautiful and very charming ‘Singapore girls.’

 

Lunch arrives and I choose the hamburger.

 

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There’s a pasta salad, a roll, some crackers, a portion of butter and one of cheese, plus water. The meal actually looks quite appetising!

 

Apologies for the quality of this photo, I hadn’t realised how out of focus it was. 

 

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There is broccoli, carrots, mashed potato with a large hamburger sitting on top. It’s really quite tasty and I manage to eat it all, though not the pasta. The roll is warm and soft which makes a change from the usual bullets most airlines serve up.

 

 

 

 

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Movies, naps and more food!

 

After the meal is served they bring round a large pot of chocolate ice cream and more drinks. It’s delicious, and I’m not a lover of ice cream.

 

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Lunch cleared away, its time to watch a movie. The screens are really big and it’s very easy to change channels, all touch screen. It was impossible on the Lufthansa A380 when we flew to LA en route for our Hawaii cruise in April. Singapore Airlines certainly earns its title of the world’s best airline, as they obviously spend money on the seating and the entertainment. The seats are pretty comfortable and leg room is adequate, much better than on Lufthansa.

 

My first choice of movie is the wonderful ‘Rocket Man,’ which I missed seeing in the cinema.

 

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It’s a brilliant film, and I enjoy watching it, but now I’m feeling tired, as we were up really early this morning.

 

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They’ve turned off the lights and its really dark as they ask you to keep your blinds shut. As we travel east we move further towards night time so there won’t be much to see out of the window, unfortunately.

 

We’ve done just over 3,000 km and we have nearly 9,000 km to go. It’s minus 55 C outside and the tail winds have dropped to just 50km.

 

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So I’m off for some shut eye. If there is anyone still left out there, maybe its time for you to take a break, too. We’ve a long way to go!

 

 

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