Sunday 19th June

This was spent cruising back down the coast, and our last day in the Arctic Circle.

There was the usual varied programme of activities on offer, interdenominational church services, several lectures, various fitness activities and games, art classes and, of course, bridge!

I went to Captain Bray’s lecture on the Naval war of the Atlantic and  JW  went to his art group. The lecture was only for one hour so I spent most of the morning at my favourite occupation, watching the ever changing scenery, tiny islands magnificent snow topped mountains, isolated farmsteads and the occasional power station.

En route to Olden

Some people were watching from their loungers by the pool and combining their sightseeing with a chance to top up their tans in the beautiful hot sun.

I tore myself away from the deck to go in for a quick coffee and was delighted to see that there was a vacant seat facing one of the large windows. As I was sipping my coffee I was startled by the utterance from the lady opposite, (who sat with her back to the window), “Not very pretty is it?”

Amazement kept me (uncharacteristically) speechless, for a few moments, then I said, “It is far more than pretty. It is magnificent.”

Ignoring my reply she said, “They said the scenery was beautiful, but there’s only sea and mountains!  When we went to Switzerland there were pretty chalets with lovely flowers! There are no flowers in Norway!”

When I pointed out that there were lots of tiny flowers at the North Cape she grumbled, “Nobody showed them to me.”

Aren’t some people strange?

More coastal views

The inner passage is very tricky to navigate so we had several different pilots, each with his own specialised local knowledge.

A new pilot arriving

High point of the afternoon was a “Chocoholic Tea Dance” and raffle in aid of the RNLI. The chefs had put on a magnificent spread of cakes and chocolate fountains. I was very restrained and only went round the table once :), but it was wickedly tempting.

After dinner we went to the evening show and then back on deck for our last glimpse of the midnight sun. To my great joy, as we gazed at the sun, someone shouted, “Whales” and, sure enough,  a pod of whales had come to put on a show for us, just as the whales had performed as we left Iceland last year and once again they were tantalizingly near enough to see but too far to photograph.

It was the perfect end to a wonderful day.