June 10th

I spent the morning packing and just thinking about this voyage coming to an end. I will find a time for reflection in the coming weeks. For now, I feel a sense of accomplishment and that feels good enough for a while.

I will have lunch and sit out on the deck for the last day, enjoy the sight and begin the lookout for landfall. Our heading is due East, straight into the Sound.

I passed on the lunch, I just ate the avocado. The lunch was an enormous slab of liver. Not to my sensory appeal, the smell, the taste, the overall presentation just made my stomach roll. The organ meat thing I was talking about. The rest of the crew loves the stuff. Then again, the Ukrainian guys eat absolutely everything that is served to them and then complain it was not enough. I passed and will have the spaghetti Bolognese tonight as my last real meal on the ship.

We are scheduled to have the pilot come aboard around 0100 in the morning, that will mean a 0300 docking or thereabouts. There are a few guys who want to go ashore tomorrow so maybe I can catch a ride into the city with them and figure out how to get to the airport. My flight is not scheduled until 1900 but I am going to go and do the stand by thing. I was upgraded to first class on the scheduled flight but that would never keep me from coming home sooner. I will be antsy to get back to San Diego as soon as I can.

I am packed and ready, just a shower, shave and clean change of clothes in the morning and I am set. I have to settle my ship store purchase and my internet fees today. It is a sort of amazing thing that I can cross the ocean and have internet, isn’t it? On that topic, let me say that cell phones are the most robust business on the planet. I know living in America it seems everyone has a “personal device” (aka cell phone). Now to an old guy who remembers when the technology did not even exist, or the internet for that matter, a cell phone is a rather rudimentary tool. I use it as a phone, send texts and check email. I don’t really do much else with it but they are capable of so many crazy things. I just never wanted to be too attached to it like I see most of the younger generation is. They are wiz kids and have so much information instantly accessible it is astounding.

I have been traveling around the world for a long time and have been many places, some distant. I was not prepared for the complete and total dominance of cell phones in the world. Everywhere I went on this trip, people had their phone in their hands. In public, on the train, on the subway, everywhere. Business people talking, kids texting, housewives playing games, they were glued to their phones. The subway is a joke, almost all the faces are staring at a phone, the amount of human interaction is almost zero. This was a shock to me, especially in China. I think cell service is expensive in the USA, it must most certainly be less in China but everyone has it, so the cell phone expense is pretty high on the “must have” list of all those people. I think the cell phone business is the largest business on the planet simply in that it touches everyone no matter their age, position in life or any other restriction. It amazes me in many ways but also makes me sad that people will spend time on a device rather than talk to one another. XTC once had a song titled “Don’t need another satellite”. I most certainly agree.

We are cruising in choppy blue water, wind is up and the sky is riddled with puffy white clouds. It is a fair day on the water.

I am going to take a nap, the sleep has been difficult the last couple of days. My body clock is messed up and the anticipation of coming home has me amped and thinking about a million things. Dianna has always called this the “re-entry”, when I come back to the day to day realities of home after a trip. We have been through many and she knows my somewhat surly mood swings when I return. I have many projects that need to be done and business that has been neglected so I have thoughts running through my head as we approach.

Not many people have the time or the opportunity to do what I have just done. I am thankful for that and thankful that I can dream of something and then actually make it happen. That is a gift.

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