Better Days

The Costa Concordia On Better Days

I’ve been traumatized this week by the Titanic misadventures of the Costa Concordia. Just over one year ago, WE were on the Costa Concordia. It’s not just a tragic nautical accident. For some reason I’ve take it very personally and have suffered much distress.  Yes, all of those pleasure-seeking passengers have had a nightmare of a ride. (The boys asked me if they would be offered refunds.)  My heart goes out to every one of them. But I think what really worries me is the thought of the crew.   Yes, we took a cruise to see all of the famed cities at the ports of call, to be carelessly whisked across the Mediterranean in the lap of luxury. What we ended up doing was loving the time we spent interacting with the crew (our servers, cabin crew, Mariachi band members, pushy photographers, et al) who truly made the cruise memorable and eye opening.  To begin with, most of the crew, aside from the captain and the other ship officers, are citizens from third-world countries. They usually live in the bottom of the boat, in tight quarters, and don’t get to get off the boat when it stops. They work long hours, without holidays, and probably rarely see their families, to whom they faithfully send their paychecks. The worst part is that they have to deal with uppity cruise tourists, like us. They have to cook, clean, sing, wait on, smile endlessly, and much more, for probably pennies, (still more than they could make at home) and so they carry on. And now, the ship has sunk. So much lost.

Our dinner server, Marcus, from India

On a happier note…Each day I complain about the kitchen. I have strong words for it.  Hate is one of them. It actually got pretty cold this week. It really snowed…like two inches!  That was enough for me to put on my new snow boots.  Well, back to the kitchen. The cupboards, like the sink, were designed by a man, who apparently had night vision, because about 50% of the storage space receives NO light whatsoever. There could be a body back in there, and I wouldn’t know it. Anyway, since it was cold, the cupboards got cold. After finding a headlamp, I discovered that my olive oil had fogged up…in the cupboard. I hate my kitchen.  Only a few more months left!

Topic #3 The boys have started basketball. They are on the same team. Gus is the youngest, but he isn’t the smallest. I think he is doing quite well, though he still has an attention problem and is often staring off into space or goofing around when he shouldn’t be.  This brings me to our other sport d’jour: racquetball.  Thanks again to Liz, Matt and Jackie and Kelly for outfitting us with the needed things. Bryce has found something, other than Risk, to love!  I can’t stop laughing long enough at Andy to actually play. He is as proud as a peacock of his sweatbands. 

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