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Tuesday, July 31st 2007 : "From the middle of the Atlantic"
I'm writing this from the Queen Mary. At noon every day the captain makes an announcement and he's just told us we're half way between Southampton and New York City. It's more than a thousand miles in each direction. I'm here with an Elderhostel group of mystery readers: we met up at the crime-writing festival in Harrogate, we did Oxford for Morse and Dorothy Sayers, London for Dickens and Conan-Doyle and now they're on their way home. I provide a lecture a day on board ship and in return get a free trip to New York. A good gig.
The ship is enormous and this crossing it's full. There are 4 swimming pools, a spa and lots of places to eat and drink. Each day there are lectures, movies and shows. It's a surreal experience; we're sailing above 4000 feet of water but there's hardly any movement. Some people never venture into the open air. My group members are a delight - they promote my books shamelessly to the other passengers - of course the food and service is fantastic and because the prices are in dollars the drinks seem very cheap.
All the same this isn't really my scene. Imagine a classy holiday camp from which there's no escape. Give me the Northlink to Shetland any day.
Posted by Ann at 03:17 PM GMT