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21 April 2024
Alan Morris on the balcony of his cabin on the Costa Toscana in the Mediterannean.

I awake at around 6 am today. I take my tablets & go back to sleep till around 9:30 am when I get up & go for breakfast.

At sea in the Mediterranean.

After breakfast, I look for somewhere quiet to sit with a coffee. This is harder than it sounds, once again many bars & cafes are understaffed or closed. When I do find an open cafe my quiet is quickly broken due to rowdy kids or loud passengers all packed into the places that are open.

After I write some of my notes up & have a Marocochino, I think it's a combination of coffee & chocolate, I then order a ginger mojito. It is very nice & after I have finished it, I again move because I'm annoyed by noisy kids. The highlight of my morning is when a noisy, annoying child, that is running around & keeps bumping into my leg, trips over my walking stick & falls onto a table. Apparently bursting out laughing isn't politically correct but I am not politically correct when it comes to adults who let their spawn run riot as long as it doesn't bother them.

I can't find an open bar or cafe that hasn't got children running around in it & as it has gone 1 pm I go for lunch at the Vignetio Astoria restaurant. It has a set menu that is not bad & has table service.

I have noticed that the service on board the ship is hit or miss. It appears hugely understaffed for so many passengers. My food is ok but the service today was not so good. With all the people onboard today the noise in a supposedly upmarket restaurant, sounded like a noisy canteen. Why is it that both Spanish & Italian people can't speak in a normal voice but instead feel they must shout at each other? I sat with some quiet French ladies but the noisy restaurant was not a pleasant experience. After lunch, I visit the tour desk & get an incorrectly billed trip removed from my account before going back to my cabin for some peace & quiet.

This evening I join Lynda & Michael, & Sue & Bryan for dinner. My friend Frouk in Spain had asked me to send photos of the food & I remembered to take some more photos of dinner tonight. Unfortunately, it was a very ordinary meal tonight & was the poorest meal I ate on board. You can see the photos of it by following the photo link at the bottom of this page.

After dinner, I go to watch a show at the Colosseum bar. It starts slowly & I am not sure if I will watch it all. It is the story of how a boy becomes part of the computer game he is playing. The show gets better after the first set & reminds me of all the computer games I played as a young boy & how engrossed I got in them. I did video this show but on watching them back I realised that the show was better for the memories it produced in me rather than the show itself, so I will not post the video. The three Kiwi cocktails I had may have had some assistance in my enjoyment of the show as well.

When this show finished I walked to the Poltrona Frau Arena to watch another show. This arena is very poorly designed, there are many many seats that give you a very poor sightline to any shows here. I did see an empty chair right next to the stage in the front row so I sat in it. An Italian man with his wife & three very young children took up the rest of the front row, preventing anyone else from using the rest of the seats. This would have been fine if the children were awake but they weren't, one was asleep & sat in a chair the other two were stretched out across multiple chairs fast asleep. None of the children was over 4 years old & the ship has a babysitting service. My question, therefore, is aimed towards both, the parents & the people who run the ship. To the parents I ask, why do you not use the ship's babysitting facilities or take your children to bed at a normal hour which would allow paying adults on the cruise to watch the shows? To the ship's crew, I ask why are you not preventing the parents from taking sleeping children into shows in bars that don't start until 11:45 pm & why you constantly allow children to run riot all over the ship without speaking to their parents about it.

The Italian man for some reason took offence to me sitting in the only spare seat & complained to me in Italian. I just looked at him growled & gestured to him that I neither understood what his complaint was nor cared. I waited for the show to start & noticed after the show had started that the man's wife did eventually wake up her sleeping children to take them to bed. Too late for any adults who wanted to see the show to use the seats. 

The show was by the ship´s girl band Ultramarine & was very good.

After this show finished I got a bottle of water & went to bed.

  Photos from today.