Queen Mary 2 Day 17 Part 1

Written by Safarigal
April 23, 2023

April 23rd, 2023


Well there was an 8:00 AM announcement from Captain Hall. He told us how far the world voyage passengers had sailed, and wished all of the disembarking passengers a safe journey home. Phew! No bad news. I was told by a passenger that my dress fabric pattern was very similar to the Centenary World Voyages logo. She’s right! What a bizarre coincidence.

We got ready for our day out with our driver to go to Portsmouth. My father’s family came from there, and Brian, the genealogist, had prepared an itinerary of streets and cemeteries for us to visit.

Armed with wet weather gear for the rather soggy day we headed down to deck 3 to disembark. It was 9:45 and we were meeting our driver at 10:00. Then Captain Hall said he had a very important announcement. We listened. Apparently the engine fix is going to take longer than expected. That means we are not sailing today, or tomorrow, or as it happens at all. The voyage to New York has been cancelled and we all have to go home.

This sounded all too familiar. It was March 2020 in Fremantle all over again. Still it was only 7 days, and we had had 16 fantastic days, and there wasn’t a pandemic going on. I just hate it when cruises end this way. This cruise was meant to finish what we started. That is not going to happen, alas.

I tried to find out what was going on from the pursers desk and the check in ladies in Ocean Terminal, but no one had a clue. There were no plans as to our fate as yet.

We decided to go on our tour of Portsmouth anyway, but I was very preoccupied looking at alternatives for flights home, and contacting friends who were meant to be joining us on Queen Mary 2. All of the houses my family had lived in are gone, now they are blocks of flats. But we did get to see the cemetery where they are all buried. We had planned to go and see the Mary Rose, but I was anxious to get back to the ship.

On our return to the ship we realized that although this was annoying for us, it was awful for other folks. What about the couple who were planning to get married? Or the folks who were relocating to the US with all of their possessions and their dogs? The world voyage people with 17 suit cases? It was a mess. And what’s more there were no updates as to what was to happen to us. What about all the Veuve Clicquot and Laphroig that needs to be drunk? What about the Cokes and snacks, the biltong? Boy, this felt all too familiar.

Eventually we did receive a form asking us where we were planning to go and on what airlines, so that is a start. It had to be handed in by 6:00 PM tonight, so hopefully they will process it soon. I would like to know when we will be leaving Mary. I want to be on board for as long as possible! We are getting our fare refunded, and 20% in future cruise credits. As this booking was made with future cruise credits from March 2020, brought forward to the cancelled 2021 and 2022 sailings, now to the shortened 2023 voyage, I wondered, will they ever get used?

There was nothing more to do on board, so we took the shuttle bus to West Quay and purchased some items for our coronation picnic on Sunday, May 6th. I was surprised at how little there was, but possibly it is already all sold out.

We returned to the ship, still heavy hearted. Petr Jakes was playing the guitar in the Grand Lobby. I always love the Grand Lobby on embarkation days, there is always the best music, and it was welcoming the passengers who had transferred from the Queen Victoria world voyage, who were in a much worse situation than we were. Except he was playing “A Time to Say Goodbye”. What? Did, he know what we were all feeling? That did it. I burst into tears.

So now we are heading up to the Commodore Club to have drinks with our friends who have joined us from the Queen Victoria world voyage. Who know what the rest of the day will bring – but whatever it does, we have really had a great time already, so no major complaints.

Post Discussion


  1. Christine Davison

    I went to Asda supermarket this morning and they had lots of Coronation items in fir sale.

    • Safarigal

      Thanks for the heads up. We did indeed go to Asda and stock up!

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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.