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Day 2: Where and When?

Spatial and temporal awareness are no longer straightforward matters. From navigating around the ship, to wondering where exactly the ship is - I’m not quite sure what’s happening at any one time.


And that’s the other matter: time. We set our clocks forward an hour at noon today. I told my iPhone that I’m in Bermuda to get it correct; who knows where I’ll pretend to be when we advance another hour at noon tomorrow.


Breakfast felt European. Maybe because there were multiple croissants.


At 8AM I arrived at the yoga class held on the dance floor where I would watch a Pas de Deux and a bunch of couples shasaying around 12 hours later at the Red & Gold Gala this evening. The yoga was alright - made a bit more challenging but a gentle sway my abs could definitely detect.


While my mom learned about something in a lecture, I read on a deck chair and stared off the back of the ship, wondering what was beneath us. The water is very dark, navy blue, except from the aquamarine from water breaking around the ship. We seem to be moving very quickly, but certainly I have no idea how fast we are going. I know not the conversation from knots to miles per hour, and I’m too lazy to search.


Lunch was quick and uneventful, followed quickly by that absolutely epic nap. The sort of daytime nap where you realize you can go deep in it - there’s no alarm or activity waiting on the other side. I dreamed, I think, but none of that remains.


I was feeling a bit agitated earlier in the day from my own poor choices on purchasing crazy expensive and poorly functional internet access, from work matters that I know I shouldn’t attend to on a Saturday during a cruise but are nonetheless living in my brain, and from wishing I was writing more. Or more specifically, that past Emily had written more and not left me with insufficient content for my novel.


Evening came, and we attended Mass. I haven’t been in weeks because I’m angry right now about how much I do at Mass (lector, usher, Eucharistic minister) and yet how much my Church does not value me as equal to the men. But I went, and I prayed. The congregation in the windowless conference room was mostly older than me and probably not also pondering the role of women in the church during the efficient, 35 minute celebration.


At dinner, we sat aside an Australian couple on a five-week holiday involving three cruises. They’d been to Alaska, Las Vegas and New York City so far. We bonded over a shared hatred of Las Vegas and then discussed homeless in American cities. On the way out of the dining room we encountered the elderly British couple who had eaten next to us last night, and who seemed disappointed that we were on our way our rather than in.


Next up was a 40 minute, intense musical performance by a dozen or so singers and dancers in an auditorium that had red velvet banquettes instead of seats. Each banquette was probably 30 feet long and tufted, making the groupings of people a bit more haphazard than I’m visually used to in a theater. Big clouds of mist hung over the stage for the performers. Their work was rigorous and enthusiastic as they worked through a medley that included Gloria Estefan, Ed Sheeran, and Adele. I wasn’t expecting that.


Finally we spent an hour at the Red & Gold Gala, watching couples ballroom dance or make attempts at doing so, followed by a professional ballroom dancing couple and then a random performance of Tina Turner’s “Simply the Best.” The waiter complimented my very plain black dress, but I’ll take it.


The first full day I’ve found it hard to relax. But “hard to relax” is an ongoing theme in my life. I always want to do and to be more, so this sensation of being nowhere with time spread before me is taking me off balance. Maybe I need that.

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