Gulf of Oman

Tuesday, March 21. 8:30am. Sandstorm yesterday and rainstorm today. It only rains in Dubai about six times a YEAR and this is one of them. YEA!!! We leave at 1:00pm so no big loss. We’re showing 66 degrees right now. Get out the winter clothes, Dubaians!!! Our big excursion this morning will be to go to a mini-mart just outside the terminal. About 50 yards from the ship. My kind of walk. 290 new passengers boarded the ship yesterday. New faces galore today.
5:00pm. Rain stopped by 1pm. We left at 2:00pm in fog. Still foggy now. Just saw a warship go by us about a mile away. Don’t know if it was American or Iranian. No shot was fired across our bow so I guess we’re alright. We are both holding our weight. Same as when we left although the shower curtain seems to be sticking to my you-know-what more often!! I think my proportions are changing! Not for the good!! Not a pretty sight!!! Ugh!! I think El’s proportions are getting better. She seems to be going north. Whoohoo!! Off to dinner.
March 22. 6:45am. Yesterday morning we took a long walk(half mile)(long for me) down the pier to another cruise ship terminal because we were told it was bigger and had more shops than ours. We were looking for a few items like toothpaste, shaving cream, etc. It was bigger and more beautiful. Everything is bigger and more beautiful in Dubai! Well, anyway, we walked around some and I sat down while El continued to look at the stores. Finally, from about 30 yards away, she waves me over. The entire floor in this place was marble so while waiting for me to hobble over, she spots a beautiful rug with pillows on it. So, to rest her feet, she goes over and stands on it, contemplating whether she should go sit down on the comfortable pillows. OMG!! I get up and start to hurry over and motion to her to get off the rug quickly. She says “what’s the matter?”. I say “El, El GET OFF THE RUG”!!. She says “what?” No movement! I say “El, GET OFF THE RUG!! She says “why?” I say, El, that’s a sacred rug that Muslims pray on during the day. They use the pillows to kneel on when praying to Allah, so unless you convert quickly, you infidel, you better get the heck (I didn’t use heck, by the way) OFF THE RUG”!!! She says “oh my God (Allah, of course) and runs off and we look around hoping no religious police have spotted her. That’s my wife, for you!!
11:00am. Beautiful day on the high seas, today. Sunny and 78 degrees with low humidity. Traveling with the waves , so smooth sailing. We’re headed towards the Red Sea, passing through the Gulf of Aden, the strait called Bab-El-Mandeb, (Somalia or our port side. Oh,Oh! Our ROOM is on the port side. Pirates? Lock the doors, Ellen!), then into the Red Sea towards the Gulf of Aqaba. We listened to a presentation about Stanley and Livingstone today. Really interesting stuff. Here’s your question for today. Livingstone discovers (maybe not the first European to see it) Lake Victoria which is considered one of the sources of the Nile River. He names it for England’s Queen Victoria. Then he discovers Victoria Falls. What did the natives call these falls before Livingstone named them? Ooooh!! Tough one, today!! Signed, Captain, Vancouver