5 May 2012, Gail’s trip log

We have now traveled 10834.6 miles since Singapore, or 16,920.9 since we left Sydney. We survived a very bumpy night and arrived about 1000, two hours late. Actually we were at the entrance to the harbor at 700, but pilot was two hours late “for operational reasons”. While waiting in our cabin we saw seals playing around in the harbor. When we got down to the tour area, we were very disappointed to hear that because we were so late our tour had been cancelled because we could not make the ferry to Robben Island for our scheduled tour to see the prison where Nelson Mandela had been held for some 27 years. We had the Table Mountain tour scheduled for Monday, but we asked if we could do it today. They were able to schedule it if we came back in 40 minutes. So we went back up and had more coffee and a little more breakfast while we waited. Bright side – we will save $400 and have nearly a full day free on Monday before we sail to do other stuff – like get our box mailed home. Anyway, at 1045 we were off on the tour. Cape Town is a beautiful city, especially as you approach by ship. Early this morning we could clearly see Table Mountain and a large range called the 12 Apostles as we came it toward the harbor. We had an excellent guide and we got a tour of the “bowl” of the city as we made our way to Table Mountain. It was a bit of a zoo and took over half an hour in line to get on the cable car (which holds 65 people) to go up to the top. The floor of the car rotates one full turn, so you get a 360 degree view as you are going up. The trip to the top takes about five minutes and the top is over 3000 feet high. The views were spectacular – there were some clouds, and it was a bit windy (we have activated our heavy sweater/jacket/jumpers we got in New Zealand) but you could still see a long way in all directions. I think Dan got some good pictures. We had nearly an hour up there, but I got a bit dizzy and came back down about 20 minutes early. Dan stayed and got some ZAR (South African Rands) from an ATM and bought a hat, tshirt, and postcards. At least he confirmed that the bankcard does still work, which was good. Now we have some Rands for other things. We got back to the ship about 215 and grabbed a quick lunch. We just hung out in the cabin and read and then watched a movie before going back for supper about 800. Many people, including the Captain, are getting off the ship tomorrow. We have a “transit tour” to the Cape of Good Hope – will be a long day.

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