Archive for the ‘my views’ Category

Visiting the Falkland Islands by a Cruise ship

June 1, 2012

The ships had Already visitedIt’s not often, the Falkland Island’s issues affect holiday choices to most mainland UK people planning a holiday.

In reality, you could actually say that the last time there was an issue was back in 1982, when Argentina invaded the Falklands under their military Junta government.

However, that is over thirty years ago, so why would UK passengers be affected now, so long after the conflict.

Well, unfortunately, Argentina has effectively installed an economic blockade on the Falkland islands, in an effort to force the UK government to hand over the islands, into Argentine sovereignty .  Unfortunately for Argentina, the Falklands are self governed and have mandate from the UK to make their own decisions, and without being included in any conversations with Argentina, there will never be a discussion.

The passengers were only able to see this from onboard

Unaccessible land

The problem this causes, is that recently some cruise ships have been turned away from docking at Ushuaia, which is based right at the southern most tip of Argentina on the southern shore of the island of Tierra del Fuego.  Ushuaiais the furthest south town in Argentina and indeed the world, which makes it a popular destination.

Recently, the cruise ships, having already visited the Falklands, were refused permission to dock, leaving the cruise company in a position of having a ship full of passengers, and no place to land.

Luckily, Chile has always had good links with the Falklands, and the ships were able to dock  in Punta Arenas.

The two ships in question were the The Star Princess, Princess Cruise Line and the Adonia, P&O Cruises.

At the end of the day, although the passengers were offered a solution, it must have been upsetting for those passengers who wished to view Ushuaia, and who may have chosen that particular cruise just for that destination, just because of politics.  It’s also a shame for the Argentinian locals, who rely on cruise ship business for their livelihood and this was taken away from them.

In the future, whilst Argentina continues to undertake its economic blockade, potential cruises should be weighed up, would you prefer to visit the Falklands or Argentina, as it would appear Argentina are making you choose.  Alternatively, you could check that the cruise visits Argentina first, before the Falklands so you can do both.

Further reading on the matter of the ships being refused can be found here and here

Do prostitutes operate on cruise ships?

May 22, 2012

Well, it’s all change of direction for me.  The blog has not been updated for a while due to personal circumstances.

So, to start things back on the right track, I thought I would re-launch with a nice punchy subject.

Many people choose cruising as  a holiday choice for many different reasons, be it the constantly changing surroundings, or the lavish food and drink options.

Other people do not choose cruising, some from personal preferences, but unfortunately, some do not choose cruising due to misconceptions

The Website www.cruising4holidays.com  offers a complete overview of most of the ships currently sailing and is due to also include previous favourite ships too.

The place you may want to check out is the help and advice.  The rather direct question of this blog post is actually answered on the site, here.

The moon landings were faked, were they?

September 16, 2009

Well, that caught your attention.

In my blog before I have mentioned my problems with believing the moon landings were actually real and have often commented on this. This is however, only my own opinion.

I did however, read the news on the BBC website and saw, much to my amusement, that two Bangladeshi newspapers, had published a story regarding the faked moon landings along with statements from Neil Armstrong.

Much to the newspapers embarrasement, the researchers had found the story shown in “The Onion”, a satirical online news channel, and took it as fact without researching further.

Such matters as this really made me laugh.

Andy
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Have you ever been to Folkestone, Kent?

September 16, 2009

Have you ever visited or traveled through Folkestone.

As a man of kent, I would love to hear what you thought of the place.  Personally, I find it embarrassing about the condition the town is in, much the same way as Dover has become.

I’ve mentioned in my Dover article, (read here) that as a cruising man, I expect quite a lot from a port, especially if it is a cruise port.

Well, Folkestone may have some saving graces, I believe they have aspirations to attract the cruise ships, but will not offer them until they have redeveloped.

I was reading an article today about Folkestone now being redeveloped. If this does happen then we could be seeing some drastic changes in the near future, all of which could be great for the local area.
Let me know what you think, either of Folkestone or of the redevelopment plan.

Andy
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Ahhh, what a nice description of my lovely old cruise ship

April 27, 2009

Visit this website, called cruise cyprus and hear how the locals are describing the age old beauty that is S/S The Emerald.

For years this was the most popular of the TUI ships and many passengers are not booking with TUI after their thoughts and feelings were ignored, when it was annouced that the Emerald would be dropped from the TUI charter list, even though she had two years left sailing before the SOLAS laws either stopped her sailing or forced Louis Cruise lines to refurbish her.

At the end of the day, its nice to see the old girl appreciated

Andy

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24 hour Vulcan Scramble

February 4, 2009
Help Save XH558

Help Save XH558

Father and Son, Robert and Steven Lowe, from Newark on Trent, have conceived a brilliant way of raising funds to help keep the Vulcan, XH558 flying.

The father and Son team, who will be accompanied by crew chief Taff Stone, have set themselves the target of visiting all 15 exisiting Vulcan airframes in and around the country within a 24 hour period.

They would be starting at East Fortune at 00.01 with XM597.

They will be joined on different legs by surprise guests and staged events to encourage them on their way.

Fellow club members will be acting as coordinators at each location, liaising with the museums involved, creating a presence on the day to welcome the team, as they stop by to change drivers, snap a picture and carry on with their challenge. Supporters will help explain the event and our plight to all the visitors, backed up with promotional posters and leaflets explaining the Pledge fund and the many ways people can help save the aircraft. With 850+ miles to cover, 18 hour 50 minutes journey time, it only leaves 15 minutes spare at each location – and that does not allow for traffic.

The time remaining, progress details and pledges or donations received, will be updated for all to see, together with links to partake in sponsoring of the event.

On the day, a central control room at Bruntingthorpe, “Scramble HQ” will track the team and give updated details as they progress along the route. Staff there will process Pledges collected en-route and enter onto the on-line system. You will be able to watch the progress of this event, add additional sponsorship or pledges and see the results as they happen. Official collecting tins and any donations received on the day will be added to the running total.

At all times, speed limits will be observed. It is the challenge and raising of public interest in XH558 that most appeals to the team.

By the early hours of Monday 23rd February, the club aim to have not only raised a significant level of interest, but a not too insignificant level of further funding!

But why should the public help keep this plane flying?

XH558 is the only airworthy Vulcan in the world. Restored to flight after nearly 15 years at a cost of £7million. She now faces grounding forever, unless an additional £750,000 can be raised in February enabling funds for another full air show season. Last year, she appeared in front of over 1.5 million people.
She inspires immense pride in all who see her. A full education programme is built around her, not only telling the story of the cold war era, but the value of science and technology in inspiring future engineers.
She was the “mother of concorde” – Can you help us save this iconic British Aircraft?

Andy
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Cat with 1000 faces

January 30, 2009

I was looking at random cat videos when I came across this random video.

Watch the cat get more and more fed up with its owner behaviour. I predict a riot here later.

I wonder if they got scratched afterwards

Andy
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Cat in the bath

January 30, 2009

Now you’ve probably read that and are expecting a cat sitting or going toilet in the empty bath.

Nah, that’s normal, no this cat is playing in a few inches of water and enjoying it.

Little fella really seems to be a happy bunny

Andy
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Its a cat that thinks its a slinky

January 30, 2009

I know cats are mad but this one takes the biscuit.

Most will run up and down, and bite your feet, or steal your socks

Andy
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S/S The Emerald

January 29, 2009

Now heres a bit of news I know alot of people were waiting on.

The S/S Emerald, formerly charted by Tui cruises from Louis Cruise Lines, is soon to be back on the cruising market.

Louis Cruise Lines confirmed that the ship will be sailing from Cyprus for mini cruises.

There is no information on their website so far.

This is good news for the thousands of passengers who travelled with this ship under the Tui colours for 10 years and formed a close association with the graceful lady of the seas.  Enjoying her small but comfortable lounges and fantastic sailing conditions.

Of course, the future may not be bright for the last sailing ‘American built’ cruise ship.  Tui dropped her charter before the 2010 intorduction of the new SOLAS regulations, where ships like the S/S Emerald, will not be allowed to sail.  Dependent on the popularity of the S/S Emarld sailing under Louis Cruise Lines own cruises, will we find out if the company will invest in an upgrade.

This is not completely out the question.  In 1987 the ship was refitted to include extra decks, which guaranteed her extended life for another 13 years.

The Emerald is now 50 Years old , only time will tell if she is allowed to make 53.

On behalf of the passengers and fans of the S/S Emerald, our hopes go on that she will be successfull in her new life sailing for Louis Cruise Lines direct.

Andy Skinner

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