EIGHT OF NINE – GIZZA JOB

Most of the day has been spent consoling passengers coming up to us asking why there has been no class today. We’ve had to explain that the final decision on these things is not up to me, or even the Entertainments Office, but much higher up. Once prepared, the daily programme is sent off for scrutiny and verification by the Hotel Director and others. Under the current circumstances, it has been decided that having so many people all crammed into the craft room is not a good thing. So I’ve told them that, temporarily at least, I’ve been made redundant and am on the dole.

Naturally, I’m hoping that the ‘current situation’ is going to be resolved very soon. The Captain made an important announcement along with his noonday address, in which he clearly explained what the ‘current situation’ is. He explained that while there had been several reported cases of Gastroentoritis on board, none of them had tested positive for the norovirus. The good news is that the numbers appear to have peaked and that they are now on their way down, with no reports of new cases today. This is significant because any ship approaching a port with illness on board have to declare those figures. Once those figures reach a certain percentage of the overall manifest, then it is possible for a port authority to refuse entry.

There is a wider worry, of course, but not one that should affect Tracey and myself, as we, along with many other passengers, will be leaving the ship in Sydney. Beyond Sydney, the ship is bound for China, Hong Kong and Singapore. The Captain explained that the current state of affairs regarding the ongoing cronovirus in China is being closely monitored (and makes me rather glad that I chose to only go as far as Sydney), and that any changes to the itnerary will be announced as soon as they are known.

The good news is that we’ve finally had a bit of internet today. It remains intermittent and stubbornly slow, but after almost a whole week without any connection at all, I’ve been happy to take advantage of anything that’s going, however crummy.

Once again, the bistro will be closed for dinner tonight (and almost certainly tomorrow night too), meaning that we will have to eat in the restaurant again. To be fair, having to eat in the restaurant hasn’t been too much of a hardship. Last night, we got to share a table with Chrissy the Creative Writing tutor and her friend Carol, and another couple. Another bonus is that I get to eat a bowl of vanilla ice cream for afters (which is never available in the Bistro).