Author Topic: Fin Del Mundo - the unofficial DDF Exclusive TR  (Read 11409 times)

Offline marduk

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Re: Fin Del Mundo - the unofficial DDF Exclusive TR
« Reply #20 on: April 11, 2019, 06:27:22 PM »
Awesome TR and adventure! Gonna read the report again at home.

Offline chff

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Re: Fin Del Mundo - the unofficial DDF Exclusive TR
« Reply #21 on: April 19, 2019, 12:07:24 PM »
Dec 10 - Day 1 - Departure from Ushuaia
We walked up the gangway to Deck 5 and entered the ship. We settled in the lounge while groups of 5-10 were called to the reception to check-in. Coffee & tea were setup on one side and on the other side there was a table with a “Kosher” plaque (but was empty ;-0.)

After a few minutes we were called & headed to the reception desk to do the check-in formalities. They scanned our passports (and then kept it for the duration of the cruise [in case of abandoning ship a crew member has the responsibility to grab the box with everyone’s passport]), took our pictures and gave us a cruise card (on the big ships the card serves as a room key, charge card & embarkation/disembarkation card, but as this was a small ship it was only used to go on & off the ship. For any charges such as the bar you just gave your room number). When I got the cards I asked “is this my room key?” and was then told the “open door policy” (which I mentioned above) but was offered physical keys which I took but never actually used them. No credit card was requested or a hold charged. We then went to our cabin to unpack (our luggage was already there).

About 1550, (from here forward I will write in 24hr time format as the ship was like that), the captain made an announcement on the PA, that in 10 minutes he will sound the "general alarm". It iis 7 short rings followed by 1 long one. And at that time everyone needs to grab their life-vests from the cabins and head to their “muster stations”. Everyone’s muster station is listed on the cruise card & on the room door map. The "muster drill" which is required under international maritime law. Since it was my first time on a cruise, this did give me a small shiver, more than watching the safety spiel about seat belts on an airplane. 10 minutes later the alarm sounded and we put on our life-vests, made some scary looking selfies and headed to our muster station. We settled comfortably, which was the forward library on deck 7 (2 flights up) and settled down on the couches there.

Image Credit Jason Ransom/One Ocean Expeditions

After a few minutes the cruise director stood up in middle of the room and started his safety drusha and explained the safety protocol, the muster plan and alarms etc. He told us when we take a shower the door has to be closed as the sensors are very sensitive and the vapor from the shower can activate the silent alarm and the fire crew will come for a visit ”ladies please don’t do it too often…”. Then we put on the life-vests ”I promise you by the excursions we have more comfortable & glamorous vests”. We then headed out in single file - hand on the person in front - to the lifeboats ”hopefully the only time you will get to see these boats”.

The photographer was there to take pictures and then we were all dismissed, returned the vests to our cabin and headed to the bar for the welcome briefing.

Around 1630 everyone gathered in the bar lounge and the stewards were serving Champagne. For a few minutes all we can do was envy them, but it didn’t take long for the Kosher Wine to appear. Corks popped and the “L’chaim” kicked off.

At 1700 the lines were let go and the ship was on its way.

Gangway retrieved

Lines removed - Image Credit @moish

At this time the welcome briefing started by the “Hotel Manager” Romana Calvetti welcoming everyone.

She introduced the Captain who came down from the Bridge. He welcomed everyone with a glass of champagne in his hands saying “it’s not my glass, I’m on duty now so I just borrowed it from someone…no worries”, after he finished he gave back the microphone and returned the champagne from whoever he took it from and he went back to the Bridge.

Image Credit Jason Ransom/One Ocean Expeditions

Next up was the “Cruise Director” Boris Wise who introduced himself & the rest of the “staff”.

Image Credit Jason Ransom/One Ocean Expeditions

His briefing was on safety, rules & guidelines for the cruise in general, and then the “daily briefing” (which followed everyday “tomorrow’s news - today”) which is about program planned for the next 24 hours. Given the antarctic environment & conditions, they have many plans, but rarely execute “Plan A or B”, but rather “Plan E or F”. He gave us a heads up about the drake “it’s coming” & now is the time to “put on the patch, take the pill, eat the brownie ;-)”.

We were shown a weather map forecasting the weather for the following day and the tomorrow’s schedule, and with that over we headed to dinner.

Ship's position around dinner time

Ship's position around dinner time

Dinner was served everyday both in the Bistro (Deck 6) buffet style, & in the dining room (Deck 4) restaurant style. We had our meals in the dining room with the starboard side tables reserved for us. For dinner this night was only a Main Course & Desert. Throughout the cruise the Kosher Group had complementary wine & soft drinks (vs the non-Kosher people had to pay for it).

After Dinner we headed down to the Presentation Room on Deck 2 where @Something Fishy & @Dan welcomed everyone onboard, briefed us on what our own program will be.

We had had a “meet & greet” where everyone introduced themselves to the other travelers.

We then davened Mincha &  Mariv, followed by the never ending debate when we should daven Sharcris (as one said “2 jews 4 opinions”).

note the “mechitza” on the right

Then I lounged around till I ended up on Deck 8 (which is the forward observation deck) and just took in the beautiful views of the ship exiting the Beagle Channel. 

Ship’s position (UTC 0300 11DEC19): 5503'01.4"S, 6535'34.9"W
Distance sailed (10DEC): 180 Miles
Times @Something Fishy bumped his head: at least 4 times

Timelapse from Day 1

« Last Edit: April 19, 2019, 12:50:33 PM by chff »