So after a week relaxing in a house in Sembawang, Singapore, we headed down to the harbour front and boarded our home for 3 days and 2 nights – The Super Star Virgo, the largest ship ever to sail (with us aboard). It was in fact huge and our cabin the product of some clever photography but certainly it was sufficient for us with a nice balcony for a bit of extra space to escape to.
We expected the main group of passengers to be Singaporean families – bzzt, wrong. We soon learned that for one reason or another, this cruise is very popular with Indian couples, Indian honeymooners and Indian families – in fact there was even an Indian school group on the ship with what could only be called the bare minimum of supervision. Of course that is a positive tone I use as I type this………young boys from Bombay need there freedom (I thought it was Mumbai now but they were telling the staff they were from Bombay??).
The ship pulled out from the port (should that be shipped out? Maybe sailed or steamed?) just as we settled into our lounge in the Galaxy of the Stars room to watch the introduction show. Lots of singing and dancing with a little bit of boot scootin’ – yeehaa!! Molly was the first passenger invited up onto the dance floor and she did a great job of joining in with song after song. She did a wonderful dance to YMCA by the Village people but appeared to have forgotten everything she had learnt at her Nanny’s Line Dancing afternoons and was a little bit lost during Achy Breaky Heart.
We didn’t get to 6 meals a day – supper at midnight seemed a little excessive and the morning and afternoon teas clashed with our other onboard activities. We were not leaving the List-O-Rama quiz just to have some tea and biccies.
We were the only people who turned up for carpet bowls and the quiz was looking shaky for getting off the ground until the wandering Indian school kids turned up. Due to the difficulty level of the quiz it was done in teams – more fun for all I say! Our little team of 3 didn’t fare as well as others – I think the problem was that the answers had to be the same as the quiz-masters, not necessarily correct! We didn’t even think that there were 5 primary colours, let alone that they included Black (the Absence Of all colour?) or White (the presence of all colour?). We did worse on “name 5 shoe manufacturers – lacoste was not on out list but it was on the quiz-masters! Our concept of board games was so wrong as well – the quiz-master included Uno, Jenga (brick towers), Cards and Chess. Perhaps he saw our dismal effort in a sympathetic light as he discreetly came over a gave Molly a Star Cruises medal for playing, usually reserved only for winners! Molly thought it was because she was the only “white kid” – we explained that it was probably because she was the only quiet kid!
Fortune shone on us again when the same teams stayed on for the next game – Celebrity Heads!! The lady running this game was a bit nervous about the outcome given that her prepared cards were for Hollywood celebrities, not Bollywood. The first contestant clearly understood that it would not be a Bollywood celebrity so started his questioning in a rather cunning way: “Am I a Hindi Character?” Um…., no. Oh, wait a minute, his team mates told him that yes, he was. Perhaps that is why his next question was “am I a Bird?” Well, this time his team was unanimous, yes, yes, you are a bird…………..well….now I’m not a Hindu, nor am I an Indian, but I can safely say that Bugs Bunny is not a Hindi Character and apart from a friendship with Tweety-pie, there is nothing bird like about him!! Celebrity heads then concluded for a fairly accurate attempt at word-jumble at which point we went back to watching the scenery.
So meals were great, although you don’t want to get in front of some of the other passengers – apparently queing is a new concept in parts of South and East Asia. The staff were very patient and I would have to say that there were no exceptions to their positive friendly persona’s.
On the third day we woke up not at the port in Phuket town as we expected, but moored in the bay of Patong Beach.
After a little voyage in a ship’s launch we were docking at Patong Beach jetty and walking along the beach front in Thailand! No customs, no immigration and until we got to a hotel we didn’t realise that all passport administration had been done for us on the ship – very clever and convenient.