Regular but staggered mealtimes allow you to play table tennis, swim, linger in the Double Room and ogle pretty service staff or just cavort with fellow passengers. Jog around the deck. Learn to dance and Yoga. Go to the movies or read that brick thick classic off the library shelf. It even has a radio station of its own, WQE2. The multiple bars and lounges featuring live bands and loud discos to keep you twisting and shouting. You can switch from one venue to another and not ever go to sleep, if you so choose.

The only problem is: I have never seen such a vast sea of grey hair roofing the leathery wrinkled faces. They are mostly rich and retired Americans. Heavily made up women wearing mask like faces, dressed in their double knit pantsuits clinging their flabby flesh. The men in their loud striped and checkered pants, also double knit, wide white belts tightened around their protruding waists, white shoes worn under their floods. Even I too had worn similar rags years earlier. But I am totally Europeanized. I am 35 years old and don’t see how to fit in with the majority of them. I would have as hard a time even now at 74!

There are some young people on board – most of them kids. But the lounges, the bars, the bands and the music they play are all oriented to American night club music, Lawrence Welk, Frank Sinatra – the kind basically patronized by the middle aged expense account executives. Not a pleasure or swinging stuff here for young and horny – sorry Nikolas!

The most exciting thing that happens on board is a harp recital by Mary Ann Sherman– an oval faced plane Jane with thick tortoise shell glasses, the teenager traveling with her parents. She is dressed up in conservative below the knee length navy blue velour dress, while her mother sits next to her in her black floral frock, assisting her with the score. Something probably arranged by her parents to show off their talented offspring. But the daughter doesn’t seem much into it and you can see how nervous she is. Good thing is; she has a built in appreciative audience in her co-voyagers. Sort of solidarity of the onboard community. In all fairness, what she plays is pleasant – especially in the backdrop of a spacious cocktail lounge. She is appropriately applauded.

But I am enjoying the trip. It’s stress free and relaxing. The ship isn’t full, though there are enough people onboard, whenever I feel like running upstairs. But I seem to prefer spending most of my time down in my cabin. Reading, writing or just doing nothing.

On the second night I join the group of young set. After initial exuberance and animated conversations, most of them drift away, leaving behind Elayne – the woman I had a drink with the night before. Tonight, she looks fresher and in her long cocktail dress quite appealing. To her tall and slender framed glamorous blonde, the brunette Amy is more down to earth. Both in their early to late twenties are the center of our attentions. That is, the remaining four of us males hovering around the two pretty females of the species. Trying to outsmart each other. To impress them. The girls seem to be enjoying our attentions.

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