Icebergs prevent us from getting right up Tracy Arm but we still have beautiful views to admire. It is too chilly to sit outside for long so we spend the morning in the Windjammer again, as breakfast blends in to coffee and then into lunch. Great to relax and chat as the scenery and icebergs flash by. I later realise that I spectacularly failed to get any close up iceberg photos. I seem to keep missing out on this trip.
An afternoon of lectures. A double dose of Michelle, firstly on getting the most out of our DNA matches and then a really brilliant talk, ‘The Facts, Fun and Fiction of Family History’. Maurice follows on Y DNA projects. We have certainly been well informed about various aspects of DNA. Having scoffed pizza and chips for lunch, I restrain myself with a small vegetable curry for tea. Allegedly, the average weight gain whilst cruising is a pound a day. The amount of food that is consumed and wasted on board is obscene, one of the aspects of cruising that makes me uncomfortable. Another is the servility of the lovely staff. I am not better than them but they clearly feel I am. I can’t quite define what gives me this impression but it definitely goes far deeper than a customer/employee relationship.
The evening is spent with Michelle, Maurice, Helen and Cyndi contributing to a DNA ethics panel, leading to some very interesting discussions. It seems that the northern lights were on display last night. No one warned us to look, so that is something else we have failed to experience. The problem with watching for the northern lights is that it involves the unappealing combination of being somewhere cold and staying up until way past my bedtime; we missed them when we were in Finland too. Bravely, we wrap up in multiple layers and join several other hardy souls to see if they will reappear tonight. It soon becomes obvious that it is far too cloudy so we give up.
We work out a cunning way of accessing the balance on our sea pass cards using our TV. Our refunds from the bear watching trip have arrived in our accounts. We have benefited from currency exchange rates, which have fluctuated heavily in our favour since booking the trip, so the dollars we have received back are worth significantly more than they were when we paid for the trip. This will be a good start for our Mediterranean excursions next year.