It is 2am and sleep currently eludes me, so I am writing my report of the day with only the sunrise and a bright star for company.
The star is probably a planet, I’ll be able to look up which one when I have a better internet connection. And yes, I am so far north that sunrise is at 2am. The last fading light of the day is visible at 11:30pm. On the horizon I see lights from two other ships. One is definitely another cruise ship. The other may be a freighter. Between me and that horizon is water gently reflecting that early light with the tops of the waves and looking black where the light doesn’t touch. I feel the motion of those waves and the vibration of the ocean. It is a gentle rocking that I don’t notice unless I’m paying attention. I like the feel of it, and watching the water flow by is deeply peaceful. This moment was part of what I longed for: water, peace, rocking, and solitude. Though I didn’t need it to occur at 2 am when I am supposed to be sleeping.
The day just past was a sea day, which meant more classes and teaching because no one exited the ship. I have to consult my devices to confirm that it was Monday. It is so easy to lose track when I’m detached from my usual life patterns. This ship does not have the days of the week helpfully printed on the floors of the elevators. I miss that. I miss other things about the prior ships as well. This one has some questionable furniture choices. These chairs were obviously chosen for appearance not comfort.
And I’m not even sure what to say about these. I think that the silver loop is supposed to be used as a back to lean on. It doesn’t quite work.
There are many lovely things about this ship, one of the things that I prefer is the way our venues are clumped together in close proximity to my room. Every place I need to go is aft. I haven’t been to the fore of the ship since the first day. Which is good because the pathways between fore and aft still feel more convoluted than necessary.
Sea day was the day I taught my family class, which went well. I’m glad of that. I was worried before the class because I was unfocused at breakfast time. In the evening we had our formal night & costume party. I had a beautiful flowing dress that had some unfortunate design flaws which I did not realize until the third hour of wearing it when it began to be significantly uncomfortable. I ended up leaving the dinner table to go change. Fortunately the flaws are things I can likely correct before I wear the dress again and I have a different dress I can wear for the second formal night.
In a few hours we’ll make port in Stockholm. I have tickets to a tour, but right now I think I might skip it and stay on the ship. I think I need an introvert day where I re-center myself rather than filling my head with even more new input. There is a part of my brain that says I should go, I may never be in Sweden again. This is true, but if I my effort not to miss everything pushes me into exhaustion and overload, I will enjoy everything less. It is better to simply wave at Sweden from the ship and recharge for further adventures than to end up in a crying heap who just wants to run home and hide. I miss home and my familiar things. And I love being here away from my usual responsibilities. Both of those feelings co-exist without needing to fight for primacy.
Sun rise is gradual. It is 3am now and the sky is only marginally lighter. The band of red is thicker than it was and the planet is higher in the sky. I’ve attempted photographs, but the quality is poor with my cell phone camera.
I would pull out the better camera, but it beeps every time I push a button and I don’t want to wake Howard. He managed to find sleep and I don’t want to disturb him. According to the navigation notes that are placed on our bed each evening, the sun will rise above the horizon at around 4:20 am. Around 3:30am we are supposed to enter the Stockholm Fjord which the paper says have spectacular landscapes. At this point I’ll probably stay up to see them. I can sleep later since I’m skipping the tour and will have all day available to me. We’ll go back through the Fjord again in the evening, which is likely when most people will watch the landscape.
For now, I’m going to post this and wait for the Fjord.