Monday, April 1, 2013

First Full Day in Cape Town

March 25, 2013

We had a relatively sleepless night.  I woke up every couple hours to check on our laundry, and we ended up getting up at 6am.  We were awake, so it made no sense to continue to lay in bed and miss the only chance we would have to film the ship pulling into a port.  Our next order of business was figuring out where the ship was going to land.

Matt poised and ready for the ship.
With a limited amount of internet, we searched maps and finally figured out where the ship would dock: directly outside of our hotel room.  It was basically over a road and a couple rows of shipping containers from our balcony that the berth E on Duncan docks lied.  We laughed at the hours of preparation we had taken, made some coffee, folded our clothes and waited as the sun rose over Cape Town for our ship to come into dock right in front of our eyes.

The sunrise was beautiful.  We watched the men rearrange shipping containers and wondered what it was like on the ship.  And then we saw the big Semester at Sea logo on the top of the ship peek out over the other side of the docks.  We began texting our friends on the ship telling them we could see them and waving.  We saw many students outside watching the ship come into port, and we got some great shots of the ship pulling in via tugboats.  I’ve never been so excited to watch my home pull up and park outside my hotel door.  That’s truly what it felt like: seeing home again.  I never thought I’d feel that way about the ship, but I suppose it’s the only stasis we have in our lives right now.

Shawna in stake-out mode waiting for the ship.
The ship docked and we knew that immigration would take another couple hours, so we headed down for breakfast at the hotel.  They had a smorgasboard of fresh African fruits.  I loaded up my plate with smoked salmon, cheese and pineapple, mango, papaya, passionfruit and guava.  It was a fruit binge that I don’t feel bad about.  If there’s one thing I crave while we’re on the ship, it’s fresh fruits and vegetables.

We caught a taxi to the docks after packing up our room and waited outside of the ship until immigration cleared us.  We were absolutely exhausted at this point, but we saw all of our friends getting off to start their adventure in-country after fourteen days at sea.  It was funny how all Matt and I wanted to do was to get to our cabin and take a nap.  We grabbed lunch on the ship then did just that.  We woke up in the evening, finished up some loose ends with my India episode and logging our footage and ended up having dinner on the ship, too.  It made for a weird day, but we needed so badly to catch up on sleep that I don’t regret the lost time in South Africa.

Ship hoooo!