Adverts only show for non-members



Author Topic: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight  (Read 6371 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline cunardqueen

Hard to imagine that 25 years ago tonight l was setting of on the QE2 for what was to be the start of a long lasting friendship..Forgive me as l recount from my scrawls diary some of the views of a 17 year from Orkney on his first overseas holiday and that of a crossing on QE2

What should have been a 1130 departure with a call at Cherbourg was changed to a 7pm sailing
Staying with friends in London they had taken me to Waterloo St to board the Boat Train and at 3.30 it pulled away. l was off at last to see QE2.
Sitting with some American ladies who it turns out journey on QE2 ever year they were recounting tales of what to do onboard, and who was l sailing with, they took an ever bigger interest when they found out l was travelling alone, as it happens l was see them quite often onboard.
 All to soon we were passing CUNARD at South western House and l was told look out the window and QE2 would soon be visible, after a few moments there she stood, first impressions were that she was very big.
 Met up with a friend who was going to take some pics as QE2 left that night, he suggest when she left to stand near the bridge wings, Anyway up the stairs to the checkin desk for the "Newcomers" formalities completed it was through security, smile for the camera and up the gangway and at last lm was onboard this most famous of ships.
Cabin 4028 XE grade Inside single seemed spacious enough, and information sheets on the desk what with the daily programme,a welcome letter from the newcomers courier and invite to a party and my Tables of the world seating card, quick glance at all these and time to go and explore this ship. Up in the lifts to the boat deck and outside to find l was on the wrong side, cut through again and waved to a friend who was taking photos, already there were folks lined up for our departure.
  Bumped into a couple, Donald and May who were in a cabin a few doors down, they were to become great friends on that crossing. The glorious weather provided for  a superb  evening. 6.50 came and went the crew gangway was taken away the Royal hussars were already playing on the Quayside and a few moments before 7pm the main gangway removed and at 7pm on the dot we were moving away from the berth 38 and as QE2 was turned round to point towards the Isle of Wight ahead lay over 3000 miles and New York, stayed out on deck for a time marvelling at how big a ship l was on, and what exactly l had let myself infor.

 Inside and down to the cabin to quickly change for dinner (informal ) opened the 2 cases and put the clothes away and got dressed, jacket and tie. and back into the lifts at A stairs to the Tables of the World and joined the small line up of people, the guy infront was in jeans and an open shirt and was politely told that he was improperly attired for dinner, it was done with a minimum of fuss and before l knew it l was next handed over my card and a waiter was called over to escort me to my table, how posh was this !! very close to  window on the right hand side it was a lovely table for 4 and already seated was a rather old lady l thought, but she introduced herself as Kate and asked were my parents joining me, she was slightly taken aback when l said oh no its just myself. The waiters came over introduced themselves and called me Sir! which tickled me presented the menu and would be back shortly to take our orders. The food issue was a thing l was most worried about, being a tad fussy what if l didn't like anything.The choice of food was amazing, how on earth could l decide what to eat, l ended up going for the Orange juice, Honeydew melon, Roast Duck a la orange and pudding was going to be just plain ice cream, It had been drummed into me with the cutlery was to work from the outside in, easy enough l thought, But when the waiters started to remove various bits l did panic and wonder what they were doing.
We finished about 9pm over a cup of tea and spoke, she had sailed on Canberra but this was her first time on QE2. During dinner as we sailed past the Needles this really was the stuff dreams were made of, calm seas and glorious views.

Now was the first chance l had to really explore this great ship, First stop the library then the the Queens room where Tommy Hawkins was playing, Then onto the  Double room, still in my view the most beautiful room afloat, and climbed the spiral staircase to the shops where l was determined to buy some souvenirs, it was closed but l could at least see what was on offer. Down to the Casino hideaway where they were serving After dinner coffee so l sat down and before long Donald and May came past, the coffee l didn't like it was much to strong even with 3 sugars but remembering my manners and to leave nothing l drank it... We sat and spoke for a time. they were sailing to NY  spending 3 nights at the Waldorf and back on the Concorde, l suggested we go for a walk outside to see where we were, coming from an lsland community the sea was always important and l never tire of looking at it. Lord knows what we spoke about but l marvelled at them flying back on Concorde, and they were amused at my day in New York holiday.
 The one thing that did strike me was the speed we were going, remember this was in the days of 28 knots all the way for 5 days and the sense that you were going some where.
 Back to my cabin to find it had been changed the bed cover turned down, my cases under the bed my trousers hanging up and everything quite neat!! and there was more papers to look at, a lovely red folder oacked full of information and postcards and headed paper,bar list,emergency procedures a note from my Steward & Stewardess. There was also a small flower display from Cunard ( l never did like flowers !!)
 To me it was very late at 1pm but by the time l put my clock back it was only midnight and so my first day on QE2 was coming to and end.                
« Last Edit: Jun 16, 2011, 07:16 PM by Cunardqueen »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Lynda Bradford

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #1 on: Jun 15, 2011, 08:07 PM »
Myles, I felt I was there with you as I read your lovely story.

  At 17 what made you decide to travel on the QE2?
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline Scott Ebersold

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #2 on: Jun 16, 2011, 06:16 AM »
Great story Miles!  Can't wait to hear more.  Ditto to Lynda's question.  And, I'm curious was it just you and this "older woman" at dinner alone the whole crossing?

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #3 on: Jun 16, 2011, 06:48 PM »
Monday 16th June 1986
Welcome to the QE2 day was the heading on the daily programme under my door when l awoke, quick shower and out on deck to see how the weather was, and it was flat calm, calmer than in Orkney and for being on the Atlantic l was somewhat surprised, still as the saying goes calm before the storm, back to the cabin to get the camera for some photos and then off to breakfast, nice glass of orange juice, bit of melon and the scrambled eggs and American bacon, thanks to Cunard l love the crispy stuff and a morning roll, spoke with Kate the other lady on my table over breakfast. She wanted to see the purser about getting a bigger cabin, and was telling me of her Christmas cruise on Canberra.
 Off to the photo shop but it wasn't open yet and the theatre bar wasn't open either, Not that l wanted a drink, Anyway back to the cabin to to get ready for lifeboat drill. The door was open and my first introduction to Daphne my stewardess,  charming tanned lady, for which nothing was too much trouble. She got the life belt from the bottom of the wardrobe door in its secret compartment and removed it from its own sleeve, and told me how to get to my station, Up the stairs, Walk dont run! and as far as you can go  and its between the Queens Grill and the top of A stairs, so off l went, being a postie l was pretty fit so the stairs didn't pose any problem, Later years and much more cruises l found the lifts were much more eco friendly on my legs...Boat drill didn't last too long, but l did pay careful attention, if only for the fact l can't swim.

 Off then to seek out the photo shop, when l did find it there were hundreds of photos and where on earth do you start, eventually found the embarkation pic and handed over the $5 for a 6x4 photo and threw caution to the wind and bought another one showing QE2 for $7,Now that was expensive. There was a lecture at 1045 which l planned to see called the history of Cunard. Bumped into Donald and May (the Concorde couple) they asked where l had got the photo so l took them to the photo place, In the double room they were serving morning coffee so it seemed a good chance to have some, the mobile tote was doing its rounds and for a $1 a guess you could guess how far QE2 had travelled in the past 24 hours, gave them a dollar bill and picked one of the twenty consecutive numbers.Turns out l was wrong, close but still wrong. Made my excuses as there was a "coke"tail party in the teen centre, Only about seven of us there, young guy Barry who was going onto Disney and the rest were Americans heading home. Julie Grist was the host and offered us all cokes, hence the coketail party, she spoke to every one. There were a few  video arcade games there as well as a video and heaps of board games, Juile said just to come and go as please and if l need any questions answered just ask.
Said to her l was going to the newcomers  welcome party, that was in the Club Lido, Some of the waiters were lined up holding trays of drinks and the Social Directors Peter Mullington and Alexandria Pauli were there to greet everone. Must have been about 50 people there and they were going round with trays of nibbles, but not being sure what they were l avoided them, anyway lunch would be soon enough, Spoke to a charming couple of ladies from Kent who were retired postal workers, they had left their husbands at home because they get sea sick, great fun, Saw the Courier Karen Whitmarsh and her husband Ian, she works in reservations, and her colleague Christine works in staff Personnel, both were surprised that l was travelling alone and wanted to know more my reasons for a QE2 voyage . All kinds of people were there. mostly in the older age bracket but all like myself had wanted to sail on QE2. Towards the end Peter asked for all those sailing solo to raise their hands, which a good number of us did and he told us that each night in the Double down bar aft they would be hosting a gathering for people sailing solo. And with that he said luncheon  was now starting to be served.
Heck breakfast wasn't that far behind, But made my way to the Tables of the world, then l realised just how big it was, and the different themes, (l was in the green and white theme and heaven knows what it was ment to be) Table 430 was far forward as it happens near the kitchen end . Took my seat and Mark the waiter asked if my Grandmother was joining me, I had never assumed people would imagine we were related, other than being on the same table and being singles that was it. The menu came and Kate appeared, putting the world to rights she was moving cabins and seemed happy with it all, Lunch for me was Orange juice, Fluffy eggs on toast (whatever that was) and pecan and hazelnut ice cream and a scoop of pineapple sherbet, something l had never seen before. the fluffy eggs came in a crescent shaped dish and were really just scrambled eggs on toast topped with ham, delicious all the same and the usual cup of tea.
 Kate was going to a silk flower making session and l had set my mind on seeing the video presentation of Harrods, a very interesting video l must admit. Then a chance to nip out on deck to see the weather, still very calm seas and sunshine. 
Back inside into the Double room for the Dance lesson, (I think it was the Rumba) and as that was finishing they were preparing for Afternoon tea, all l was looking for was a  cup of Tea and assumed this would get me what l wanted, went to find a vacant seat, the ladies l met  on the boat train yesterday called me over and insisted l sat with them, having witnessed my dance lessons they were eager to find out how l was enjoying things so far, in truth l had to tell them l hadn't really seen much of the ship as l had been busy with other things, now what the other things were seemed  to revolve round eating, at which point the waiter appeared with a tray of cakes, lots of little pastry cups filled with jelly and fruit, l suppose one wouldn't make a difference so l had one, then came another tray with sandwiches, skipped those as l really didn't want one but the tea was delicious, hot and strong, l suppose another cake wouldn't go amiss when the tray came round with multi coloured meringues filled with cream, but the table next door, the must have missed breakfast and lunch as it was filled with various cakes and scones etc and if they didn't eat it what a waste it would be.

Bingo was being played after and it seemed to be a $ a go with a top prize of then something like $100 depending on how many played.
Didn't hang around there long as l really wanted to let my folks know l was safely onboard, headed for the radio (where the Caledonia suite now is) and pressed the button for attention, the officer appeared and l explained l wanted to send a telex and how much would it cost, roughly $4 for 30 words, so l scrambled down some  words to my dads place of work and hoped they would get it soon. Back to the double room and the bingo was ending, the ladies were about to leave and l suggested we go to the theatre bar for a drink which we did, l remember ordering the QE2 cocktail and they had l think sherry l was about to pay for these and they took the bill and paid for it, mentioning that it was their pleasure that a young man had thought  to buy them drinks,and besides l should save the money for something else, But from my point of view 2 ladies buying me a drink wasn't quite right and l still owed them so to speak, we did laugh about it.
 Leaving to go back to our cabins to change for dinner l pressed the button for 4 deck and they said oh that's our deck as well turns out they were in an outside cabin on the same side as mine.

Tonights dress code was Formal so my black velvet jacket newly purchased would get its first official outing tonight, showered and ready for Dinner, heck l wasn't even hungry but l had to go l suppose!, Off to the Tables of the World to take my seat, first to arrive again it was mannerly to wait for Kate to arrive before l ordered, the table close to mine they were arriving as well and it was manners to say hello to them. Kate arrived and the waiters came with the menu, what on earth would be on it l wondered. Simple choice of the Orange juice and Cantaloupe Melon and for soup l would be adventurous and go with the Chilled Gazpacho Andaluz soup (a Spanish style raw vegetable soup) it even had that on the menu, she ordered that as well and then l ordered fillet steak, well to cut the story the soup arrived we both took a spoon and gave each other  a look of complete dismay l wasn't sure if l could swallow it, Kate clearly didn't like it, and l was firmly of the view l hated it, but to leave it would be a waste, l did add some salt but that only made it worse and there was no way on earth l was going to finish it, the waiter appeared and asked if we were enjoying it, l said it wasn't what l had expected but l really didn't like it, and without a second look the plate was removed, Kate also had her plate removed and we both did have a chuckle over our cold soup escapade. then came the fillet steak and trimmings and pudding was Butterscotch Paraline, ice cream and a scoop of Orange sherbet the waiter poured my cuppa without asking me what l wanted, boy was this service !

After dinner went to the singles gathering in the double down bar aft hosted by Alexandria Pauli and Peter Mullington only about 10 people there, but she had remembered me from the afternoon gathering and asked me how l was enjoying the crossing. There was a film being shown in the cinema at 10pm which l thought would be fun to see a movie on QE2, probably a bad choice it was  a love story involving two ladies who love the same man, in the end he is killed away on business, not the best film l have seen, but the cinema was the same size as my local one the Phoenix it held 500, this one was definitely much better. After the film ended a walk along to the Double down room where Garry Allcock and his band were just finishing up, thought l would treat myself to a nightcap in the theatre bar, before  a walk round the decks on a moon lit evening, this really was the high life for me and l was loving every minute of it, put the watch back an hour to just after 12.30 and off to sleep.                           
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #4 on: Jun 16, 2011, 07:00 PM »
Tonights Dinner Menu
Printed on thick card and what l thought was great was there were no prices..so to my mind it was free  ::)


From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Alistair

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #5 on: Jun 17, 2011, 12:37 AM »
i'm enjoying this. Is there more?  ;D

Offline Bruce Nicholls

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #6 on: Jun 17, 2011, 10:23 AM »
Really wish I had kept a diary of my one & only voyage. I did keep loads of menus etc though & will be forced to find them out soon to go on my own private nostalgia trip.

More please!

Offline Lynda Bradford

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #7 on: Jun 17, 2011, 10:55 AM »
Bruce, if you do find your menus you may want to think about posting them in the Restaurant menus topic. 

https://www.theqe2story.com/forum/index.php/topic,474.0.html

Hopefully Myles is busy writing "what happened next" 

I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #8 on: Jun 17, 2011, 12:29 PM »
Myles, thank you for these wonderful onboard memories. They take me right back there -- except that, sadly, I never knew QE2 at that stage of her life!

Looking forward to the next instalment  :D  !

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #9 on: Jun 17, 2011, 07:49 PM »
Gosh you know its amazing what you forget, going through my old notes about the first trip,i really hadnt intended to put down so much non news and l havent seen these in about 10 years or so, but right away so much of that first trip is so memorable especially the people and while some of QE2 and the way things were done is so different now, back then it all seemed normal
 anyway...
Quote
 Today is QE2 sports day Tuesday 17th June 1986
Woke up today at 7.30 and right away became aware of the sensation of a different movement to that of yesterday, we appeared to be pitching, and quite badly at that. The daily programme  under the door told me it was Sports day, How on earth can they have sports on a ship? as well as that there was the landing card for New York and details of when to go to US immigration. it was for decks 2,3 and 4 between 9.30-noon and 3-5pm in the Midships lobby for all passengers to attend and the daily programme mentioned tonight was the Captains Cocktail party in the Double down room, and we had to check in for the return trip.
 Anyway showered first and got the paperwork ready, breakfast l wasn't sure about. Besides having crossed the Pentland Firth on many a rough crossing surely it wasn't sea sickness,( it must have been the vile gazpacho soup from last night! ) besides QE2 was much bigger than anything l had sailed on before.With the P&O ferry MV St Ola people could be sick before they even set foot on her such was her reputation. (One very bad trip took 5 hours for a normal 2 hour crossing, it wasn't sea sickness that worried me rather the fear we would capsize, something l still have a fear of) Back to QE2... l needed also to cash some traveller cheques. So off l went with the passport, tickets, travellers cheques, still feeling  queasy along four deck l set off, suddenly  l knew l had to get back to the cabin and pretty quick.. well for the first time (and last time) l was sea sick !!! imagine being sea sick on QE2 but then it was the North Atlantic, and rough weather in June how odd. Its was pretty ironic l thought.

 A glass of water might help so l drank some from the tap, funny tasting water l guess, And my Stewardess knocked on the door, asking was l ok? she had seen me returning to the cabin " Yes but l thinks its sea sickness", Dont worry she said take one of these blue tablets and you will be as right as rain and she produced a tiny brown envelope with 2 tablets in them. I never could swallow tablets for some reason,they always refused to go down no matter how much water l took and its still the same to this day.

 Fresh air l thought would be a help, rather than take the lift l would walk it, every stairwell had these little white bags positioned where required, right away l knew these were sprew bags from the crossings on the St Ola, & the little bags were best avoided! Up on deck and l struggled to open the wooden doors leading to the outer decks at A stairway and when l did l couldn't believe how rough and windy it was, absolutely amazing and yet so scary, here was l on the North Atlantic half way to New York and in a storm on the QE2.  A few moments of being blown about l felt it was safer to stay here rather than risk going on deck .Sufficiently  fresh aired back down the stairs and the Tables of the World was very quiet, l peeked inside but went no further. Back to the cabin and felt a lot better gathered up the papers and off l trundled Donald was in the corridor no sign of his wife anywhere, said to him its very rough outside today and l could hear May in the cabin asking if that was the room steward, When she was told it was me l was called inside, and she was there sitting on the seat looking very white indeed, l mentioned that my stewardess had given me little blue tablets to help sea sickness. but as l cant swallow them did she want them, seemed  a shame to waste them, and it might be a help to her. So back to my cabin again  for the little envelope and gave them to her.Told her of the soup escapade last night which she thought was very funny.

We all decided breakfast wasn't an option just now but l was heading off to the immigration and to recheck  in for the return journey, the decided to come along to the immigration as well and of we headed, anybody walking in the corridors looked as though they were drunk in that the movement of the QE2 was making walking harder than normal. Up two decks to the Midships lobby and joined the small lineup waiting to get the passport stamped, the official was very abrupt.Name, purpose of visit and how long your staying  but he stamped the passport and allowed me entry till Dec 16th .Told them l was popping  along to the Pursers office to checkin for the return journey, all they did was remove the duplicate copy from my ticket. and when l came back they were sitting in the sunken area. May wanted to go back to her cabin to get some rest, I jokingly said to them that for what l was paying for the trip l didn't want to waste any time in the cabin and that why not come to the Double room and see what was happening, as it was there were plenty of seats and we sat by the window and watched in amazement as the waves hit the side of QE2, the officer of the watch advised over the tannoy that the outside decks would be closed off due to the adverse weather conditions. The outside sports were also cancelled.

They were serving morning coffee and horseracing on the dancefloor (to this day its a game l never really liked) The mobile tote was again doing the rounds and as usual l didn't win, but it was a fun thing to do.
The whole ship seemed quieter but you were aware of the speed and we were certainly ploughing through the waves. I was going to the shops for a look round, the china shop had everything bluetacked down but even still the rattling was unnerving, the souvenir shop had  a good range of stuff but there was still plenty of time left to buy souvenirs before the voyage was over.

Lunch time was calling and we decided to risk eating something, Donald and May were in one of the other  sections so l headed to my section, Kate turned up and like me she had missed breakfast and wanted something to eat, But not quite sure what, but l ended up with Orange juice and a soup with a couple of rolls and the ice cream again, no main course this time.

After lunch l really wanted to see what Harrods had for sale, Boy was l in for a shock, at the time it seemed very expensive but to be fair everything had the lovely QE2/Harrods logo and it was all only for sale on the ship (to this day l still have a small tin of Biscuits,unopened...)  Realised l only had travellers cheques and do they accept them, thankfully they did l splashed out and bought one of the Captain Door stops, some tins of biscuits and a box of Tea, and there wasn't much change from the cheques .
 Back to the cabin to drop the purchases off and thought it would be fun to call home, l read it was $12 a minute for a satellite call and it was very quick or a call via the shipping links was much less but would take 40 mins to set up, decided on a satellite call and spoke to Mum for a minute with the news all was well, QE2 is out of this world and the folk on board are so friendly,but it was a very rough today and l had been sick (there was no time to explain the soup escapade) and with that ended the call. To be so far away the call was very clear, it was still expensive mindyou !!
 Back to the Double room to get ready for Afternoon tea, l was starting to feel a bit peckish and l knew the cakes would be ever so good, and sure enough they were, there were quite a few spills of trays and tea pots as things went flying but they were very quickly cleared away, Bingo again was being played but the  stakes appeared quite low, spoke with the people from the next table in the restaurant, lovely couple Margaret and Bill and a good sense of fun, they were loving QE2 but this bad weather was putting them off . They asked my how my Aunt was enjoying the trip,They were a bit surprised to learn that we were not related and indeed were just two solo travellers, and why not come and join their table, they had three spare spaces and there was only three of them at the table. Thanked them for that and l would see what Kate said.  

Time was marching on and tonight was the Captains Reception in the Double Room at 7pm. Showering was fun with the movement of the ship. as l was getting ready The stewardess knocked on the door, she had a letter for me an needed a signiture, wrapped in a big towel l opened the door and signed for it, A telex message from my parents and here we were half way to New York, amazing.
 Once l was ready off l headed along four deck, The boat train ladies were in front so we took the lift up and went to the theatre bar, It wasn't Captain Portet but Staff Captain Roland Hassle who was shaking hands, The ladies just said oh follow us and you will be ok, they went first and as we joined the line up everyone seemed so friendly, Where you from?Been Before? bit rough isnt it and before l knew where l was the officer was asking my name. Myles Devin, l replied then he repeated my name to the captain, Shaking hands "Welcome aboard QE2" the photographers were there to capture the event and then on into the party, one more photo at the stairs and there stood a line up of waiters with drinks on the trays, looking around it seemed quite busy with a lot of folks sitting down we were still moving quite a bit, spied Kate sitting down went over to say Hello, she had saved me a seat ! it wasn't long before we were joined by two other ladies, One from Kent and one from New Zealand, and both obviously out for a good time, the waiters were going round with the trays of canapes, they seemed to feature all sorts which didn't appeal to me, we were all excited about the whole days weather, one of the ladies was doing the round trip and the New Zealand was head back home. We did seem to hit a few big waves during the party and before long it was time to head off to eat,

The restaurant didn't appear to be as full is it was the night before and indeed our section was much quieter, the couple from the next table came over and asked us did we want to eat with them and perhaps make a full table, asked the waiters if this was ok and we moved across even closer to the windows, Dinner was for me orange juice, no soup and onto the Chicken main course and pudding was Coffee/Vanilla ice cream scoop of cassis sherbet and some fruit and the usual tea served by the waiters, this table was more lively with Peggy Bill and Eileen all newcomers as we even Kate seemed to take on a new life, but l did like her very dry sense of humour, something that we both had.
After Dinner headed down to the singles gatherings in the Double down bar aft where Peter and Alexandria were hosting the bar, it wasn't so busy so it was quite nice to chat to them about the QE2 and all sorts of things, Then off to the cinema to see the comedy film Volunteers with Tom Hanks at 1015, This watching films at sea was to me quite nice, the local cinema had uncomfortable seats where as these were lovely to sit in.Strangely enough the cinema seemed quite full, but given the weather the seats didn't move and we didn't move, the only thing moving was the ship and it was quite pronounced in the movement, there were a couple of times we must have hit some deep troughs as you could fell the sensation of the ship going down, shuddering and then rising up again, quite a lovely sensation when you got used to it as you were sitting there, but it was nice when you could fell her coming back up again, it was tempting to nip out on deck, but the last thing l wanted was to be blown away   the rolling motion wasn't so bad, probably her fins were out, But rather like the local Orkney ferry the MV St Ola had fins and on bad days no one was ever sure if they were working or not. Certainly on bad days the spew bags were everywhere, even on good days they were on display for those that were not good sailors
The only casualty we heard through shipboard gossip was a lady who broke her arm, But bearing in mind we were still travelling flat out so to speak.

After the film was over went for a little walk about, Quarter deck was for First Class passengers, well the Midships bar and Queens Room were, and there was something exciting about being in a place where you really shouldn't be. The Midships was lovely all done out in green velvet and the big lampshade, and the Queens Room with the funny seats. Took a slow walk back to the cabin and all around everything was quiet.
Opened the cabin door and Daphne had placed the  tray with the ice bucket glasses etc on the floor, Turned the clock back and away to sleep.  
                                            
  
   
« Last Edit: Jun 18, 2011, 10:17 AM by Cunardqueen »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #10 on: Jun 17, 2011, 08:02 PM »
Tonights menu was interestingly printed on normal paper not the usual thick card.
** OLD DEAD LINK REMOVED **img32/2285/img348i.jpg[/img]

 
« Last Edit: Jun 18, 2011, 09:29 AM by Cunardqueen »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Lynda Bradford

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #11 on: Jun 17, 2011, 08:09 PM »
Absolutely Brilliant.   ;D

It was interesting to read that travel cheques were accepted in the shop.  The days before plastic swipe cards I guess!
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #12 on: Jun 17, 2011, 08:19 PM »
The embarkation photo

And the Captains reception
In the Double Down Room

When l think of those days and a black velvet jacket... :-[
In fact a whole new set of clothes were purchased for that trip
But then it was QE2, and thinking back, her name when  mentioned to people where l was going, i suppose it did seem a very odd holiday destination for someone so young  and what on earth could you do all day onboard a ship. There were times before l sailed even l doubted if l was doing the right thing.... But thats history ;)
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #13 on: Jun 18, 2011, 10:50 AM »



Wednesday 18th June
THE ONLY WAY TO CROSS DAY

Up early again about 7am and all seemed calm compared to yesterday, which was a blessing the daily programme was under the door and a letter addressed to me! Opened the lovely envelope very carefully and read the contents, My folks had written to the Captain before l left and here was a reply from his secretary,  l was being asked to tea this afternoon  Heavens.. it read that l was being invited along to her office for tea this afternoon and to have a chat over various points which may be of interest and to arrange a couple of exciting things that only the "chosen few" (her quote not mine) get around to doing while on QE2. And to get in touch at my earliest convenience via the bureau on 2 deck....  Well l had no idea what on earth to expect but it seemed a great way to start the day.
 But first shower and breakfast, l was starving but needed to go out on deck to see how the weather was and everything was calm. no sign of any storm today. walked along the boat deck, it was open today, saw the golf thing and the deck quoits, l guess that's what it must have ment when they spoke of the sports day yesterday . The sky was clear and the Atlantic air was so clean and fresh,it even felt warm. Noticed the little notice that stated five times round the deck was a mile, to stand by the railings and be aware of the power and speed was quite amazing and yet nothing in sight, no ships no nothing, it was something l was aware of was the total isolation of the Atlantic it was almost creepy being so far away from anything, it even seemed a different colour.

 Off to the Tables of the World for breakfast, it was busy already took my seat at the new table, Eileen was already there and we debated do we wait or order, we ordered and hope that Kate,Peggy & Bill wouldn't mind, they arrived shortly afterwards anyway. The whole place was so much more alive today, perhaps having a bigger table made a difference but breakfast whizzed past, l had orange juice, some melon  a mushroom omlette with the American bacon, hash browns and a sausage. Couldn't resist the fresh croissants and strawberry jam and of course tea, though with all the chattering its a wonder any of us managed to eat anything, told them of my letter which caused a stir, quite what could be planned was anyones guess.

 Off to get the camera and take some pics then down to the Double down room  to watch a video on the Queen Mary, then at 1030 a QE2 quiz, some of the table appeared and between us we won a pen each of us. The photos taken last night were on display but where on earth do you start looking, there were four taken which l bought, & one photo showing the waves crashing over the bow, Expensive but great souvenirs.    

 Morning coffee was being served so l found a quiet seat, Donald & May were on the other side waving me over and introduced a friend they had met from Dallas he had flown over on Concorde and was taking QE2 back, they were of course eager to know more about Concorde, of course he was happy to tell us all about her, the checkin, how cramped it was, but shes an experience he said !

Showing then was  a video "Inside the QE2" l just had to buy this to show everyone at home what QE2 was like,( how l never wore it out l dont know!) The mobile tote board was again doing its rounds we all picked a number but again no one won. Remembered my letter and that l had to make contact with the captains secretary, May offered to look after the photos and video while l went to two deck. showed a lady on the desk my letter and she would call her right away for me to speak to her. Spoke to the Captains secretary and she suggested we meet right were l was at 4.15 and lets take it from there,very cheerful lady. l asked l had  a copy of a QE2 book (warwick & Flayhart) and might the Captain be able to autograph it? Oh yes, bring it round and we will see what he can do. she asked was l enjoying myself and was l enjoying the QE2, a big yes on both questions. with that give the phone back to the lady and headed back to the Double room to get my stuff l left with May.

Lunch time already and there wasn't time to go back to the cabin so l took the photos into the Tables of the World with the video. The five of us had  a nice leisurely lunch, l ordered the Orange juice and chilled mandarin fruit cup then the Entrecote steak and french fries and Cherry ice cream and of tea.
After lunch dropped the stuff in the cabin, Daphne had been in and worked wonders, having my bed made and tidied up (not that l made much mess) was nice.

Off to the teen centre, there were about 11 there today only Barry and myself it seemed were from the UK  Played trivial pursuit which took forever. Headed back to the Double room this afternoon tea lark at 4pm really was quite fun  (in fact in all my voyages l could safely say lv only missed afternoon tea at sea twice)
Didn't really have long as l was meeting the Captains secretary at 4.15 and l needed to get my QE2 book hopefully for the captain to sign.

Turned up at the Bureau and mentioned l was meeting the Captains secretary here. Oh yes shes just coming round, and with that Pauline appeared, a very tall glamorous lady in officer uniform, introduced herself and together we headed to her little office, tucked away in the Midships lobby, tea made she had the letter there from my parents ! lord knows what they had written, But Pauline was interested to know how l was enjoying myself, was l bored, did l like QE2 what made me want to travel on her as she wasn't exactly a cheap holiday. I must have been there for an hour. a throughly interesting lady to speak to. The book l handed over and the Captain would sign it for me, Would l like to visit the bridge !!! Oh my God yes l would love to, is that really possible, well she rang the bridge and it was set for 3 pm tomorrow. Of course she added not many people get to see the bridge, but you will love it.. and take your camera. And what else can we do, oh yes the Wardroom party you will get an invite to that. She explained its private Officers party in the Wardroom below the bridge and only for the select few, Boy did l feel honoured. How did all that sound. l of course was bowled over and it was left that l was to meet her in the Midships lobby tomorrow at 2.55pm and we would go to the bridge. The Wardroom party l was to meet her here again at 7.25 and she would take me up there. I left her office feeling on cloud nine and the thought of  seeing the bridge was really something else.

Back to the Double room where l saw Donald and May, the had been looking for me at afternoon tea but obviously missed each other. told them of my afternoon and they were excited for me as well with  the Officers party . The voyage was getting better and better each day. Must have sat and spoke for ages with them. Eileen from the table walked past and joined us.  dinner would soon be here and she suggested  why not lets meet for a drink before dinner. we agreed to meet. Dinner was from 7.30 so it was suggested 7pm in the Theatre Bar . In that case we had better be getting ready it was after 6pm already.
 Back in the cabin there was a small envelope with the invite from the Officers to the Wardroom tomorrow night.

 Off to the Theatre bar for 7pm wasnt to busy but Eileen  was there and had saved seats, drinks ordered and paid for, Tonight we were having the drink of the day, A Pina-Colada of all things, nice and refreshing, but very sweet. Before long it was time for Dinner so into the Tables of the World we all went, and for once everyone arrived at the same time. As our table crew gelled it really became a happy table, Bill & Peggy seemed to do their own thing between meals and the rest of us just did whatever.Mark and Peter the waiters were great fun and presented the menus. Tonight the menu was The only way to Cross. I ordered the Orange juice , Caviar with fresh toast fingers, then Roast chicken a la Anglaise and pudding was Orange chiffon pie. Everyone had the Caviar and out came the plates, the waiters spooned  a small amount onto our plates there wasn't much else with it other than this very dry toast fingers, personally l hated the stuff but given the fact that everyone else seemed  to like it, l cleaned my plate,Mark the waiter must have sensed my dislke and asked quietly did l want more, lm just glad l had water to wash it down. Turns out nobody was exactly raving about it. But at least l know now l don't like it.  

 Everyone was doing different things tonight but  l was going to the movies, the film tonight was a comedy Macaroni with Jack Lemmon and again the cinema was quite busy.It was really nice to be able to see a quality film.  After it finished headed to the Double down bar. Met up with Elieen from the table and the social hosts were still there. She was telling me that she recently widowed and had made plans to travel the world with her recently retired husband, already she was booked on a Banana boat to Bermuda, but quite liked CTC lines, and travelled on Canberra a few times, But this QE2 was something else, l agreed with her on that point, This cruising lark was pretty fun stuff, and the people you met were so friendly and so nice.
It was a late night tonight, but a turn round the deck, All calm on the Atlantic again tonight, and nothing in sight but New York was getting ever closer, tomorrow would be the last day before New York. Clocks put back an hour and of to sleep.
                        
« Last Edit: Jun 18, 2011, 10:52 AM by Cunardqueen »
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Twynkle

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #14 on: Jun 18, 2011, 03:26 PM »
Oh WOW, Myles!

Have you thought of joining the enriching 'team' at Cunard?

Rosie.
QE2 had been waiting alongside in Dubai for what seemed like ages...Please don't leave her looking more like a Hotel-with-a-Hull than the greatest Liner afloat - Please restore her Lifeboats and Tenders to where they truly belong - she looks naked without them - please spare her this ignominy.

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #15 on: Jun 19, 2011, 07:43 PM »
Wednesday Menus


From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #16 on: Jun 19, 2011, 11:16 PM »
Thursday 19th June 1986

Today was "QE2 Goes to the Movies day" or so it said on the Daily Programme. Information on disembarking in the USA and the ships news paper. Up early again at 7am and showered up on deck to find the sun shinning and it was pretty hot, still nothing but the ocean However the USA was just so much closer and tomorrow was it. The bit below the bridge was closed, and had been closed all week. 

Breakfast was again Orange juice, melon, the American bacon, scrambled eggs, mushrooms a few Danish pastries and of course tea. the table were in good spirits and looking forward to New York and our tour. There was a quiz in the theatre bar, name the movie stars around the bar, something l failed at. The group from Newcastle who were next to our table in the Restaurant. they were loving the crossing and were sailing back as well, again all newcomers,  They couldn't figure out who was who on my table, they had just assumed we were all one family, They were quite surprised to learn that wasn't the case. A Video was being shown The 1986 world cruise on QE2, which we watched, The boat train ladies were passing by and as it was the last day felt it was best to say Goodbye, It did seem strange saying goodbye to folks l had only just met and we were still at sea, but they hoped l enjoyed the homeward crossing, But to take care in New York, stay with the group and do go wondering off. Told them l was going to the bridge later today for a tour which they found amazing, nobody they had even met on the ship had been allowed there.

 There was a Book Bonanza sale in the library.Not much in the way of shipping books. So back to the  Double Room for morning coffee. it was the last day of the Mobile tote board, another $1 wasted. As it seemed such a nice day we headed outside to play shuffleboard and deck quoits, l was hopeless at both, but it was nice to be on the open decks racing to New York, the sea was pretty calm as well.

Lunch was nearly upon us, but breakfast didn't seem all that long ago. Orange juice and the fruit cup for me,the egg dish l had at breakfast, steak for lunch didn't seem right today so l would be adventurous and have the Crepes A LA Reine (the description said pancakes with  diced chicken,mushrooms and sweetbreads) Chicken was a safe bet for me, but when it arrived it wasn't what l expected, but best to see how it tasted, the first few bites were very nice, but it wasn't like Grannies pancakes, Peggy asked me what l thought, l said it was ok.. then she asked did l know what sweetbreads were? No l didn't know what they are , It was then she whispered in my ear "Lambs testicles" l could feel eveyones eyes upon me, and oh my God the thought was enough to make me vomit (but l didn't) There was no way l was going to have any more, l suppose that will teach me for trying to be adventurous, But at least l hadn't paid for them, it was still this idea that the food was free! Peter the waiter asked was it ok, l just said I was until l was told what l was eating. He did offer to bring something else, l said thanks and that l would probably have an extra scoop of ice cream. As it happened he bought me a bigger size American Apple pie, and the usual tea.
Years later recounting this tale l was told it probably wasn't actual testicles but another part, Either way iv never seen sweetbreads anywhere else, nor do l wish to.

 After lunch a quick look round the shops, got some travellers cheque's cashed in case l bought some souvenirs in New York, But given the warnings l was expecting to get mugged as soon l disembarked, that combined with the TV programme Cagney & Lacey New York didnt have a very safe reputation.

 Back to my cabin to dig out a bottle of special whisky, Dad had insisted l take this should l get a chance to give it to the Captain, how l was going to do this when he packed it in  my suitcase l had no idea,but obviously with the letter they had written this was what he was thinking about! so it made sense now.
Whisky in hand l went along to the Mid ships lobby to meet up with Pauline and asked her if this would be  ok. She was sure it would be ok so we headed off to the Bridge. Up to the top of A stairway, she told me this was where we would come later tonight, But first lets see the Captain ! and no sooner than we were in his dayroom and there was Captain Portet, a very tall man indeed and his powerful voice,Pauline introduced us, Now that's what l called a Captains reception, he returned the book that l wanted autographed and l gave him the bottle of Old Orkney whisky as a small thanks for everything, He sent us on our way to the bridge and that he would be up later.

 I couldn't believe l was on the bridge and it seemed massive to me, so much space and the view, it was the first time l had seen straight ahead, and still there was nothing but sea, Introduced to the officer on watch and Pauline said she would see me later for the Officers party. The first thing you notice is just how small the wheel is, and what l noticed was there was no old fashioned engine telegraphs to clang back and fore, in fact l didn't see telegraphs anywhere.

The officer of the watch was great he explained in detail about the watertight doors, the radar,some of the consol controls, pointed out the horn ! and the stabilizer controls, How l had enjoyed the storm, told him l had been sea sick for the first time, but where better than to be on QE2, mentioned about one or two rough crossing on the Pentland Firth, But this Atlantic was something else. they had reduced speed slightly to lessen the effect but were still making good progress. The chartroom he said contained some amazing machines that help them. showed me the different zones and they can close the watertight doors from up here. Next we went out onto the bridge wing, Boy was it windy but the view not only looking ahead was stunning but looking back to see QE2 in all her glory and the smoke from her funnel, the wake in the distance and still nothing but ocean everywhere. Standing on the bit of the wing that sticks out over the edge knowing that there was nothing below you was scary, but fun!

Back inside the radar showed a few blips  which were other ships in the far distance. the white buttons were the engine telegraphs, push buttons ! Nothing at all like the MV Orcadia she had brass telegraphs lovely things and kept polished every day.  My father used to work for the local shipping company and as such knew the captains, anytime we travelled on that boat the Captain would always ask him onto the bridge, l went along as well and always loved the time in his domain, One such time he asked did l want to ring the telegraphs, of course l jumped and said yes l would love to, all l had to do was move them from full to standby, which l did, nothing happened, then they clanged and the little arrow moved to standby, l marvelled at this, then shortly he asked to move them to half ahead, again l moved the handle and again they clanged and the arrow moved, Not only that but the engines changed tones and we started to slow. As a young teenager this to me was highly exciting, only once did we see the engines, it was hot, very noisy and yet only doing 12 knots the sheer experience was incredible. The only trouble was the radar on the Orcadia, l could never see anything, l think mainly because the screen was closed in and to see the screen you had to put your eyes over the top and if you didn't get it right you never saw anything. Ted Scull as a matter of fact did a review once of this ship, small world isn't it, Anyway lm off topic again ...

 The officer of the watch also mentioned about her refit later in the year, the  steam conversion when her speed would be increased and she would be refitted inside, all within six month. The Captain then came on the bridge. He asked me what made me decide to sail on QE2, told him that it was  watching Alan Whicker Fast Boat to china that set my interest, and that originally l had wanted to do the 3 day English Channel cruise but by the time l had the money saved the ship was full, But then this cruise for newcomers was advertised and that it would be fun, l didn't want to say that l had nearly booked on the Canberra had it not been for this newcomers cruise. Captain Portet had such presence about him that he put the fear of god in you. Having been up there for about an hour and learned such a lot it was time to leave, thanked the officer of the watch and thanked the Captain for allowing me to visit the bridge.

 Made my way back down stairs out of officer country and down to the Double room for Afternoon tea. The boat train ladies were there, and it was funny to have tea with them having said goodbye earlier. They were enthralled with the news of the Bridge visit, and for the second time we said Goodbye, but this time it was Goodbye, never saw them again

 Saw Donald and May they were eager to hear about the bridge visit and pleased that it had gone ok, They were going back to the cabin to pack as they were finally leaving in the morning. Hopefully we would see each other at Dinner. tomorrow did seem a long way away and much to soon to be saying Goodbye to a couple who were great fun to be with, reminded me of my Grandparents, same ages and same outlook on life. A remarkable couple and l truly valued each and every minute with them, sadly as May was to tell me long after the voyage ended their Grandson died quite suddenly and was about my age, and strange as it sounded they saw a lot of him in me.Even now after all these years her story does tug at my heart strings. Though we never met again we always kept in touch and indeed when l returned home they had posted me the most wonderful gift of a QE2/Concorde grey shoulder bag which they had bought of a lasting reminder. Such kindness by strangers was to me unusual, but then l guess l had never been in this sort of environment before so it was new to me.

 Getting ready for the Officers party was exciting and off l headed to the Mid ships lobby again to met with Pauline. And this was to be my introduction to the Wardroom Parties,These over the years were  lovely soirees and l enjoyed each and every one. Tonight the Captains room had been changed around and l was introduced to the Chief Officer,Purser, Staff Captain and a few others The Captain called me "Young Myles" which l thought was funny compared to parties in later years the early ones were much quieter and you had more space. The newcomers courier Karen was there with her husband Ian, she survived  the rough weather but poor Ian was out of it, Christine and Neil arrived and were asking how l was enjoying everything, where on earth could l start but say it was fantastic, and that covered everything. She was advising me that if l wanted to be up to see the New York skyline  to be up about 4-4.30. It wasn't quite the middle of the night, for me but it was still a lot earlier than starting for my postal round, and that sailing up the Hudson has to be seen to be believed. All to soon and it was time to head for dinner.

 The gang were there waiting and had already ordered and tonight's menu was "Discover America"  The rest of the table had ordered and started by the time l arrived. l ordered the Orange juice,Melon and pineapple with rum, Split Game hen and rice. It wasn't going to be a late night as America was only a few hours away but l really did want to see Peter Gordeno and his dancers, but having seen them l knew there would be no rush to see them again. the Casino hideaway was serving coffee, but l was able to get a cup of tea no problem, l went to the casino not to take part but to watch and saw one guy place bets of serious money and mostly he lost.

 The last singles gathering in the Double Down bar, and then a walk round the decks.It was quite strange to think that we had left only on Sunday and here we were just into the early hours of Friday and had sailed all the way across the North Atlantic  New York it seemed was even closer now, the corridors were full of luggage waiting to be collected, and some of the cabins seemed to have a load of luggage.. The club lido which l hadn't really explored was winding down, and not being a disco dancer l wasn't about to start now. Back to my cabin, clocks put back again and phoned the operator for a wake up call at the ungodly hour of 4 am This cruising lark was pretty good fun but there was no chance for a long lie in bed and l was starting to feel tired, New York lm sure was just on the horizon.....     
                         
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #17 on: Jun 19, 2011, 11:28 PM »
Thursday Lunch menu 19th June 1986


From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #18 on: Jun 19, 2011, 11:33 PM »
Thursday Dinner Menu

   
   
         
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #19 on: Jun 20, 2011, 08:55 PM »
June 20th 1986

Today was the day we arrived in New York.I was up at the ungodly hour of 4am to shower and get ready for the big day ahead. Quickly up on deck but there wasn't much to see so back to the cabin to get my passport landing card and the other bits required. It wasn't until about 5am that we glimpsed land and this was America, It didn't seem to be all that long until we were sailing under the Verrazano bridge and then ahead lay the Statue of Liberty, both most amazing sights and to actually sail up the Hudson river and see New York was the stuff dreams were made of.
 Breakfast was at 7.30 and having a window view on this glorious sunny day in June only enhanced the view, Breakfast was Orange juice, Ham/mushroom omelette with sausages & American bacon, toast and croissant and the usual Tea, everyone agreed it was wise to have a bit extra, as there would be no morning coffee and lord knows when or what lunch we would get.

The docking process was really quite swift and we were tied up shortly after 8am. the intransit passengers were called to disembark shortly after 9am and we hit the deck running, the noise of the traffic, terra firma and the excitement of New York, my first time abroad  here was l on American soil, of course it had something of a reputation, and fully expecting to get mugged or robbed it was exciting stuff for me anyway.

 Down to the ground level and there the waiting coaches were  to take all us Newcomers on the city highlights. The bow of QE2 was towering above us, and really this gave us a chance to see how big she was. Into the waiting coaches and each seat had a news paper with stuck on the front a notice "Cunard Welcomes you to New York with this copy of the New York Times"  we had been given vouchers to hand over for the bus tour and vouchers for the lunch which were handed over, and we were on our way. The street names stood out, 5th Ave, Broadway,Times Sq, The Waldorf Astoria, 42nd Street.Ave of the Americas The driver stopped at Trinity Church and about 15 of us went to stretch our legs, Then it was back onboard minutes after. In the distance we could see the Empire State building, we passed Wall street and onto Battery Park were everyone got off and we could see the helicopters doing tours as well.

 Lunch was set for noon and we headed to The Water Club at the South Street Seaport. No time to stop we were ushered inside and seated, right away came this plate of cold pasta and peppers, both alien to me, and by the rest of our tables comments l wasn't the only one to dislike it. The main course was a lump of meat with gravy, carrots potatoes, some thought it was beef, others thought it was lamb, either way it wasn't well received. And dessert was strawberries,cream set in a pastry cup which was so tough it required a knife to cut it, However they did serve us all tea (we had no choice) it really was warm coloured water and Tea it may have been, but it wasn't what we were used to. The whole lunch seemed to be one long disaster, either that or we were spoilt by QE2. Speaking with folks later and during the journey back home it wasn't only us who felt is was a disaster, And the service was very slow.
 At 1.30 back to the coaches and away to Macys Dep store, we only had half an hour there and couldn't see much, again it was stressed to us hold onto you wallets, leave the cameras on the bus etc and watch for pickpockets. Then we were taken back to the QE2, we could see the Funnel in the distance, and it was a welcome sight, Disembarking from the bus the driver and tour guide very kindly were at the steps with a box of money, That was for their tips ! l had a $5 note and much as though they were good, l really didn't want to hand it over,, but everyone else was doing so and l really didn't want to appear mean.

Eileen was on the other bus and they had also had a bad lunch, back up the escalator seemingly most of the other passengers had checked in it was only the In transits left. Showed the intransit pass, through security, they even x-rayed the camera and wallet and before long l was reboarding QE2. By the time l had gone to the cabin and re appeared for sailing it was 4.45 and we were leaving New York.
The sailaway was equally stunning, but only about 20 people on the quayside seeing us. I stayed on deck for ages as we sailed down the Hudson before going back to the cabin to shower and get ready for Dinner.

Still seated on the table for 6 Eileen, Bill and Peggy we were one seat less, turns out not only had Kate moved cabins she had upgraded to the Columbia. Dinner was Orange juice, Melon, Soup !, Coq Au Chambertin and Strawberry cream pie, after the lunch in the Water Club  we were all hungry.
 The excitement of the day in NY kept us all chatting, then it was away to the Singles gathering in the Double Down Bar after some new faces, Alexandria asked had l registered for the repeaters party, Of course l said No as this was my first QE2 cruise, then she explained that as l had sailed out, that counted as my First voyage and technically l was now able to go to the repeaters party ! They were eager to know how l enjoyed the day, l mentioned that a lot of us didn't enjoy the lunch, But it was nice to be back onboard again.
 The gathering lasted longer than the ones on the outward crossing The Double room was alive with entertainment, l headed out on deck and already any signs of land had vanished and we were on our own again.
Went to the Club Lido tonight not that l was disco dancing but it made for a nice change, the shops onboard were having a party night and that was fun. Headed back to the cabin via the Bureau and colleted some American QE2 cruise brochures. And away to bed quite tired after the very long day and my trip to New York, and no mention of any clock changing tonight.                             
 
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #20 on: Jun 20, 2011, 09:00 PM »
Ashore in New York
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #21 on: Jun 20, 2011, 09:36 PM »
Tonights menu was the same as the outward sailing night, the rest of the voyage menus all had slight changes


** OLD DEAD LINK REMOVED **img200/9444/img364g.jpg[/img]


From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline cunardqueen

Re: QE2 June 15th 1986 My first voyage 25 years ago tonight
« Reply #22 on: Jun 20, 2011, 09:37 PM »
The diary l didn't continue much with, mainly due to the fact that there wasn't  much time for it, Some highlights were noted roughly down, but becoming much more aware of what there was to do on board l just wanted to enjoy it all, and with the 5 days crossings there was just so much to do, and not all that long to do it in. It was the speed that impressed me, out on the open decks you were very much aware you were going fast.

Friends made on that crossing among the passengers, sadly most have passed on But the people l encountered were really a joy to be with and in a sense made this crossing just so memorable. The fact that we were all newcomers perhaps added to that fact. Of course being so young and this being my first time abroad everything was new to me, In the safe environment onboard we were all in the same boat so to speak.

Looking back It was a big undertaking to do a voyage of this kind, and l can understand why some thought it was a bit of a mad thing to do  l was perhaps too young to appreciate the food and in that side of things  l wasn't adventurous enough.
But there you have it, that was my first ever trip on what was for me the most amazing ship ever. If someone had said to me at the time l would have gone as often as l had done. Really l wouldn't have believed them.
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!