Queen Mary 2 Day 14

Written by Safarigal
April 21, 2023

April 20th, 2023

At Sea

First thing this morning we went to clear UK immigration. There are 2 delightful young immigration agents on board, and once we have all seen them, the ship will be cleared to dock in Southampton. It is so great when they do this on board, and you are not stuck in a queue for hours before you can disembark for the day.

In honor of the coronation I decided to make my final craft project a union flag tapestry pin cushion. Maybe it’s something else. Anyway I think it will be nice. I have really enjoyed Louise, the craft lady on this segment, I will miss her when she disembarks in Southampton.

At noon the ship’s whistles sounded loud and clear. The noon whistle hasn’t been blown every sea day which is a huge disappointment, but today we got to hear that wonderful sound. Captain Hall announced that one of the guests, Jane, had won the opportunity to press the button for the noon whistle. Clearly she was an expert. Then he said that another guest had won the privilege of making the noon announcement. David did a splendid job at updating us on our current position, and miles to go before Southampton. Then Captain Hall gave us the weather forecast. Today is our last warm day, there is a cold front moving in tonight, which will accompany us on our way to Southampton. No more lazy afternoons at the pool or on the promenade deck alas. Well, that’s the north Atlantic for you.

Then Captain Hall gave us an explanation as to why the bell in the lobby on deck 3 is rung 8 times at noon – at last a nautical explanation from him at his noon announcement. I have always enjoyed the other captain’s nautical anecdotes at noon, and have missed that Captain Hall is all about position and weather, but nothing else. It was a pleasant addition.

Ship’s bell time originated in sailing ship days, when the crew of a vessel was divided into watches, each on duty four hours, then off four hours.  One stroke of the ship’s bell indicates the first half hour of the watch. Then an additional bell is struck for each succeeding half hour. Thus eight bells indicates the end of a four-hour watch. When the time calls for two or more strokes, they are sounded in groups of two. So there you have it.

We decided to take advantage of our last sunny day by having lunch at the Boardwalk café. It was too windy for the umbrellas to be up, and the sun was quite fierce, but it was great to be outdoors.

We were amused that the crew was busy putting another coat of paint on. The whole ship is in desperate need of paint, but this was one area that actually didn’t look so bad.

It was laundry time again, but it was pretty uneventful thank goodness. They have newish machines (we saw them for the first time in December) which seem to be much better than the old ones, and I have not seen the “out of service” sign being used yet. They have done away with the powder, and now you use a sheet instead. I can’t say I see any difference in how clean the clothes get, or difference in the feel of the fabric, so if it’s better for the environment that’s great.

Today was the final World Cruise party for the world voyage folks getting off in Southampton, and Alfie Boe was there, causing much excitement. Hopefully we will get to hear him sing tomorrow. It was also the last formal night for these folks. It was billed as the “Centenary Gala Evening” and we were asked to toast 100 years since the first Cunard liner, the RMS Laconia, completed a world voyage. It was to be a night of regal glamour at the red and gold themed Centenary Gala Evening.

Well I must say that most people we saw embraced the theme, and there was a lot of red and gold filling the night. It really looked lovely.

How about us? Well Brian looked as wonderful as ever in his tux and red and gold bow tie. However, the hemming of my red dress was not the success it could have been:

So I had to resort to my black dress, and brought along the fan I had made in the craft group.

We each had a glass of sweet sparkling wine with which to make the toast, and we had an excellent dinner – I had duck liver parfait, chateau briand, and a new kind of souffle that included cherries – it was delicious, so despite the lack of a red dress, we did have a wonderful evening.

The show was a 4-man group called the Bluejays. They were quite good, and played music from the 50s and 60s. I would have got up and danced, but no one around us did, so I sat still and applauded loudly.

Even though we are not disembarking in Southampton, I have a sense of sadness for those who will be. Despite the issues in Singapore, which get discussed at every opportunity, everyone I spoke with is so sorry that their much-anticipated world voyage is coming to an end. I empathize with them. This ship is amazing, and the crew are fantastic. Getting back to reality will be a problem. I feel that as well and I have only been away from home for one month!

Post Discussion


  1. Sylvia Jean Boecker

    I am glad you are staying on to New York. I love your daily posts.
    We board in NY for two months. We love the QM2.

    • Safarigal

      I will be so sorry to disembark in New York – I’m glad you have your time on board QM2 to look forward to 🙂

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I love to share my adventures with others, and hopefully give them some insight into what to expect on their own exciting travels. I hope reading my blog will be a useful resource, and inspire others to follow their travel dreams. As a travel advisor, I get great pleasure out of being able to help folks fulfill their aspirations by translating my experience in safari adventures and ocean voyages into memorable travel experiences for them.