A Photo A Week Challenge: Water

Water, Water Everywhere

When you live on an island it is not terribly hard to find water to photograph. Here are some waterside scenes in Tasmania.

Derwent River, Hobart Tasmania
The Derwent at Bellerive with Mt Wellington in the background.
Bellerive Beach, near the cricket ground, Hobart Tasmania.
The beach at Stanley in north-west Tasmania.
Table Cape, north-west Tasmania
Strahan
Early morning view of Strahan taken from our hotel in the Strahan Village.

 

 

 

Our Cruise Holiday Part Three: Entertainment Afloat

Introduction

In this post we’ll talk about some of the entertainment venues we visited on Ovation of the Seas.  We don’t tend to spend a lot of time in bars as we are not big drinkers nor did we want to go to all of the themed nights and entertainments but there were plenty of choices for those that did from game show type entertainments, to theatre performances, live bands and movies.

We did not take a lot of photos in the entertainment venues while performances were on but on our walks round the ship by day we were able to get a few so we can give you some idea how they look.

The Music Hall

The outside of The Music Hall.

Vanda

On our first night at sea Naomi and I were keen to find something to do after dark. The ship’s newsletter had a list of what entertainment was on and we were pleased to see that there was an INXS cover band playing in the Music Hall, a small theatre/dance venue, so we decided that we would go and see them.

The band was excellent, they really sounded like INXS and we enjoyed them. Naomi has a story about this band so I will leave her to tell it. During the course of the voyage there was also a Queen cover band and an Elton John show but we did not see either of these.

Naomi

While we were at the airport in Sydney getting our luggage Vanda met a friend of hers and they started chatting. I was watching all the other passengers as I usually do. I wonder where they are going or where they have been. I even make up stories about them in my head sometimes to pass the time away. Airports can be boring if you have a long wait for your flight. While we were at the Hobart airport I saw a married couple obviously going on holiday. The man had on one of the best Hawaiian shirts I have ever seen plus the straw hat etc. I half expected to see him turn up on the ship but he didn’t. Back to Sydney and I noticed some young guys collecting a large amount of luggage. I was sure they had musical instruments. I could see what looked like keyboards and guitars as well as sound equipment. One guy had long curly hair and sunglasses. He was standing back a bit and looked really cool. They must be a rock band I said to Vanda when she introduced her friend. Look at them I said they have got guitars and stuff. I wondered where they were heading and then said as a joke. Wouldn’t it be funny if they were on the ship? I didn’t expect they would be as you usually get some pretty ordinary entertainment and nothing like them. Well I was very surprised to see that we were going to have an INXS tribute band on board so I said let’s go see what they are like. We can leave if we don’t like them. We had to sit in the upstairs part as it was very crowded. We could not see the band from where we were on the second level. I said to Vanda I really have to go and see if it’s that band from the airport. I looked over the balcony and thought the singer looked like the cool guy at the airport but he was a bit far away to see properly. I said to Vanda “It looks like those guys but I am not 100% sure.” Well, half way through a song during the instrumental break up comes this guy and sits down at the table right next to us. He spoke to us too but I was too surprised to answer him. I got my answer though. It was the same band. Who would have thought and how cool was that. Sadly they got off at Darwin but they were really really good.

Casino

Casino, Ovation of the Seas
Looking down into the casino which had gaming machines, poker and blackjack I think.

Vanda

We also visited the Royal Casino which was on the same deck as the theatre. We do enjoy playing the “pokies” but we are sensible about it and always have a budget.  The ones on Royal Caribbean ships are different from the ones we play on at home. American style machines are harder to win on, you have fewer choices in how you play and of course they are in US currency so we had to be mindful of the exchange rate.  I did OK though. I had a few small wins, enough to keep playing for some time without going over my limit. Winning money is great of course but I don’t gamble expecting to win. I just enjoy setting off the feature on the machine to see what it does. For me what I spend is the price of entertainment the same as for a movie or some other event.

Naomi

I love casinos and having a bit of a gamble. I don’t go to the tables as I am not so good at cards so I stick to the slot machines. I love to play on the slots so I couldn’t wait to visit Ovation’s casino. It was nice and big and there were plenty of machines. I was pleased to find plenty of Aussie machines there as I prefer the pay lines on them to that of the American machines. I think the Aussie ones are easier to win on although I know everything is to chance here. I met some nice people while I was playing to chat with. One older gentleman had won over $500 bucks while I was chatting with him. I ended up losing but I won it all back later in Singapore at the casino there. That was way cool as I was able to blow it at the shops.

Theatre Royal

Theatre Royal, Ovation of the Seas 2018
The Theatre Royal is quite large but not easy to leave once a performance has started.

Vanda

This was the largest entertainment venue, a theatre that spanned two levels. It is used for both live performances and movies.

One night we decided to go and see “The Greatest Showman”, a film supposedly about P.T Barnum. We thought this might be OK as it was a period film but it turned out to be not our sort of thing at all. We probably should have realised that it was a musical. I don’t mind musicals but I felt that in this case the music swamped the story, what there was of it. I did not like the way the scenes jumped around and while I do accept artistic licence in a film I had been expecting it to be a biographical film and this was anything but. Both of us felt that the music and costumes were not appropriate to the era the film was set in. Had we been at home I would have googled the reviews of the film before we went and tried to watch a trailer. As it is we were trapped in a very crowded venue in the dark so we didn’t feel we could comfortably leave. We would have if we could have.

Theatre Royal Ovation of the Seas
I took this at the end of the Farewell Show when performers, officers and guest services staff assembled on stage.

Most of the movies being shown were fairly recent ones so I’m sure other people enjoyed them. I probably would have watched “The Darkest Hour” at home on TV but not on the pool deck, it didn’t seem quite the place to be watching a film about Dunkirk.

Naomi

If you are a fan of the PT Barnum picture or the music you will not like what I have to say about it. It had to be one of the worst pictures I have ever seen. I am not a fan of musicals and I would not have gone if I had realised that. While I had been taking some film of the ship I met two men who had told me they were going to go and see it. They thought it would be quite good. I suggested to Vanda that we go too. I couldn’t stand the music to be honest. Much too millennial for me. I soon recognised it as the awful music they played every single day in Windjammers. Why does everyone have to sound as if they were churned out of the Idol machine? They all have such dreadful whiney voices. The film was very obviously not shot on location either. The scenery was all very computerised looking. No one looked like they were really where they were. Last of all the fire scene and resulting injuries to the man who went back to save his girlfriend! How farfetched was that? They hardly had any burns and as for smoke inhalation? Give me a break! They could all still sing! The worst picture I have seen in a long time.

I did like the idea of the big screen outside and if you want a top spot to relax at night by the pool grab a deck chair lay back and enjoy a movie and a drink from the pool bar.

 

The big screen on the pool deck. You can also see the Sky Bar and North Star Photo by Naomi

270 Lounge

270 Lounge Photo by Naomi
270 Lounge Ovation of the Seas
Looking down from the library area into the 270 lounge which was used for talks, games and multi media presentations. Photo by Vanda

Vanda

This is a multipurpose room which we’ll talk more about later. We saw a show there called “Pixels” which was quite clever technically although dance is not really my thing. The show combined singers, dancers and aerialists against a background of computer graphics

Naomi

I did like this area. It was nicely decorated and very spacious. This is very good venue for all sorts of entertainment. I think they could have given up some space for the poor library. Maybe they could have had more books and games then. We had a lot of trouble finding a place where we could sit with a game or something. Vanda wanted to write and I wanted to draw and colour. I had to go to Windjammers to find a table where I could use my pencils or play a game of Scattergories. I was very thankful for Windjammers and the fact I had taken my own stuff for my entertainment. The ship does not supply much at all by the way of games, books or things like that. You really must take your own along. The 270 Lounge got used for quiz games, lectures and shows. I didn’t go to see much of it as it didn’t interest me very much. I am not into lectures or docos. I spent much of my time just enjoying the ocean. I will say that the entertainment areas were all nicely decorated, comfortable and easy to get around. There is also the robotic bar that I really loved. Two robots serve you your drinks. They looked a bit like funny animals and they were very clever. I enjoyed watching them. We’ll probably talk about them later but to me they were entertainment also.

A View of the 270 Lounge

 

Conclusion

So there are just a few things you can do on a cruise ship in the evening. In another post we’ll share photos of the bars including the Robot Bar which we both thought was a lot of fun .

RDP#26: Navigate

Finding Our Way

As a non driver my job on road trips has always been to navigate. Despite all the stories about domestic arguments over giving directions David and I rarely fought over it. If we were going on a trip we’d both look at the map before starting out and decide on a route and where we might stop for breaks. Once we were on our way it was my job to let him know when we were getting close to an intersection where we’d need to make a turn in plenty of time. Usually I could do this but occasionally if we were in a city, usually Melbourne, and I was not quick enough with my instructions or there was too much traffic to change lanes we might miss our turn.  When that happened I would have to figure out what to do next. Was there another turn we could take to get back to our original route or were we going to have to turn around and back track. I never liked making these decisions in heavy traffic when we couldn’t stop because reading in a moving vehicle always makes me feel a little nauseous. I remember one occasion driving back to Adelaide after a holiday when  we ended up on the Westgate Bridge and decided that it would be easier to go to Ballarat via Geelong than try to figure out the maze of roads in the morning peak traffic. It made a change from the usual route anyway.

One habit of David’s that I did find irritating was that even when I’d already said I thought we were going the wrong way he’d keep on driving instead of stopping so we could figure out where we had gone wrong. Things did get a bit tense on those occasions.

Melbourne often seemed to present challenges as it was the only large city we ever visited by car. I always felt pleased with myself whenever we  arrived at our destination without getting lost. One time, travelling without a street directory I navigated by following the numbers of the tram stops, lower numbers meant you were going towards the city, higher ones away from it. Another time that my carefully laid plans were messed up was driving home from a visit to Canberra. I had a road map and a map of the inner city and knew where we needed to come off the highway and how we would reach the ferry terminal in Port Melbourne. Nearing the suburbs David felt tired so we pulled off to a fast food place and he had a nap and then we had a snack. When we left there instead of going back to the highway as I expected he set off on one of the local roads which naturally was not on the map I had. I didn’t even know what suburb we were in but once we worked that out I was able to navigate us back to Melbourne on a road that ran parallel to the one we were supposed to be on.

Neither of us really liked the idea of using GPS when it became more common though. We didn’t really trust it  and honestly I think we just liked reading maps better.

Of course we got lost sometimes, we got lost in Leningrad and we got lost trying to find Hadrian’s Wall in England, getting lost when you need to be somewhere is bad but if you are not in a hurry it’s often when you make interesting discoveries.

Driving home from Adelaide in 2012. We coulddo this route in our sleep almost.

 

 

 

 

 

Snapshot Sunday: Cartela

I was wondering what to do for today’s photo when I read an article about the restoration of the MV Cartela. She is about to go into a specially made dry dock for further restoration before being reunited with her original steam engine.

I looked amongst my photos and discovered one I had forgotten about from 2009 when she was still based in Hobart. This was taken during the Wooden Boat Festival of that year. The interior photo two years later when we were fortunate enough to cruise on the Derwent with her.

Then she came down to Franklin via Port Huon in 2014. That is one of my favourite photos.

Recently while on our “Yukon” trip I was able to photograph Cartela from the other side.

I hope that I’ll be able to photograph her fully restored one day and enjoy a trip from Hobart to New Norfolk.

Links:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-06-24/bold-plans-to-restore-the-cartela-to-river-derwent/9898216

 

Penguin Church

When I saw Vanda’s post on the old church I thought I would see what I could do with a church photo. I have taken a lot of pictures of churches. They range from little chapels to grand looking cathedrals. I also have new software to try out so I thought I would have a bit of fun and do a post using a church too. This is what I did.

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Columns and Vertical Lines

The wet weather has certainly ruined my weekend off as far as going out was concerned so I am stuck here at home. Of course I had seen the forecast but was wishing I could put the dogs in the car and take off for the day. It would have been great to get out of the house but we would not have been able to walk about much due to the rain. It has really set in here so decided to get on with editing some photos and some of my other hobbies. I am also using a trial photo editing program that I recently downloaded from the Microsoft Store. I’ve played around with most of these photos a little bit. One or two have been left alone as I like them as they are. Others I changed more for the fun of it rather than because they were too dark or whatever. I always try to find photos that I have not used in the past but this is sometimes hard as I have not been taking pictures for very long. Here are the shots I picked for Columns and Vertical Lines today.

Railway Workshops Launceston
Railway Workshops building Launceston
Public Trust Office Napier
Public Trust Building Napier
Memorial Napier
Memorial Napier
Memorial Napier 2
Memorial Napier
KL Building 2
Tall building in KL
KL building 1
Another tall building in KL
House on the Brisbane River
A posh house on the Brisbane River Brisbane very obviously.
GEDC3917
Old Majestic Theatre Singapore

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Columns and Vertical Lines

Vertical Lines & Columns

As it is too wet to take photos today I’ve chosen a variety of pictures from all over the place starting with one of the many new office blocks going up in Brisbane. These pictures were taken between 2007 and the present with a variety of different cameras from my old point and shoot Kodak Easyshare, Fujifilm point and shoot I think, Nikon L120 and Pentax K10 for the Brisbane one. I’m doing a free trial of Adobe Photo Elements 2018 so edited my pictures with it today to help me decide if I want to shell out the money for it or stick with Photo Elements 9, Picasa and the Windows photo editing program which are the three progams I use currently.

One of the newer buildings in Brisbane. March 2018

New Zealand in 2016. I knew Napier would not disappoint, it has some wonderful old buildings.

The Public Trust Office , Napier NZ

In Auckland we liked the interior of the old railway station building.

Columns at the Railway Station in Auckland..

I took this one in the Myer Centre in Adelaide in 2011. The upper floors were empty and deserted which I found very disconcerting in a building I remembered as a busy shopping centre.

The Myer Centre Adelaide

Still in Adelaide one of the older style buildings in Rundle Mall which I photographed in 2011. I won’t guarantee it is still there now.

An old building in Adelaide SA

On a trip to Canberra in 2007 we stopped off at Gundagai, NSW.

An old building in Gundagai NSW.