Northern Lights Cruise with Saga – Chapter 3
Swallows and Amazons for the over 50s
SAGA stand for ‘send a granny abroad’? Just wondered because there are plenty
on this cruise. Granddads too. It is easy to see why. SAGA PEARL II is a
wonderful ship. It kind of gives everyone a warm hug. People love this ship-
they really do. Just look at the faces of fellow silver travellers and staff.
Glowing with pride. Staff are clearly happy in their job. Smiles everywhere and
runs a slick operation. Repeat bookings are phenomenal. No wonder. They feel
totally at home - snug as a bug in a rug. Staff remember faces and names and
even what a passenger likes to eat and drink. It is this attention to detail
that is a winning combination. Happy staff and happy passengers lead to a happy
ship. Simple really. How can this type of cruise fail?
on board are single, some recently bereaved. From the free chauffeur service
from home the company throw a protective blanket around each individual. It
works. It makes everyone feel secure. It is this service that separates SAGA
from the rest of the cruise companies. And it is this security which enables
people to have a spirit of adventure.
is short so they don't just sit. No they get out and do as much as they can.
They don't want to end up in a scare home. As Mollie said on our first meeting "the
greatest danger in life is to not take the adventure".
deep the cocktail of life but make sure that you avoid the dregs. You will not
find dregs on this ship. It is a five star air-conditioned floating palace.
passengers don't want to cruise on a 83-storey high mega city. No so
impersonal. Why would we want to slide down a 3 mile water flume that winds
itself around a ship and then end up in a lukewarm paddling pool? Dodgems - you
can keep them. Casino, kids. No thanks. No those on this ship want peace and
quiet. Englishness on sea. And that's what they get.
have finished their bucket list. But wonderfully they keep going, emptying
the bucket a little and adding new adventures. It is wonderful to be on this
ship - so graceful, stylish and such a warm atmosphere. And unlike on large
ships everyone on board wants to talk.
passenger comfort. Elegant impeccable service. The personal touch so often
lacking in this crazy hurried life. SAGA PEARL II is easy to navigate. No
irritating queues. No waiting 20 minutes for a lift to arrive.
had two days at sea before we hit Norway's coast. Plenty of time to discover
and enjoy the ship. A daily pot pourri of optional events are listed in the
daily bulletin delivered to the cabin the night before. You will never get
bored. Do as much or as little as you wish. No pressure. Read, drink, chat,
sleep and unwind.
laps around the deck is one mile. Off we went every day after breakfast. Many
people are power walking- even at their age! We dawdled. Well it is a
holiday after all. At the end of the day muscles unused for a while ached and
of the day ‘Operation Avalanche’. Probably not the best choice for our winter
sport destination. Fancy bridge? - absolute beginners, improvers and duplicate.
Dancing in and out of line. Trivia quizzes, Beetle drive (old folks love a
Beetle drive), sudoku, jigsaws (no pieces missing), skittles, quoits whatever
the weather-inside and out.
Fancy making jewellery? The Northern
Lights necklace is on day 12. Camera instruction, IT help. Sit and be fit - a
gentle keep fit class all from the comfort of a chair. My kind of exercise.
Tone up bums and tums. Virtual golf and ten pin bowling. Virtual archery. The
art of Zen colouring clashed with a meal. Well maybe next life.
before we left home I read a comment by someone in a national paper who said
that people don't go on a SAGA cruise for the entertainment! Well that is
absolute rubbish. Britain has talent and this ship has some truly wonderful
Anderson was a favourite of ours. Mr Piano Man. Great voice, reminding me of
Elton John in his mellow period. He performed every day in Shackleton's bar and
rapidly had a loyal following. I challenge everyone to listen to his
self-penned song about the loss of his dad and not be moved.
miss you more as the years go on
Even though the memories fade
I know by now that you would have been gone
But that doesn't stop the pain
That’s how I miss you
was witty too. An example. His friend Gavin died the day we set sail. Took an
overdose of a popular pink indigestion mixture. Can't believe Gav is gone.
The young show time resident group
were amazing. Singing and dancing so good that all could be on the West End
stage. Their ‘Music of the Night’ show celebrating Lloyd Webber masterpieces
was superb - a perfect showcase for their talent. Special mention to male
vocalist Jonathan Graham. Such astonishingly mature performances from such a
youngster. Great promise, star potential. Watch this space - Jonathan will go
SAGA are praised for the quality and
presentation of the food on board. Quite simply the best food we have ever had
on a cruise. Our taste buds in a state of joyful panic. Which flavour to
savour first. Oh that's nice but this is even better. The sticky toffee pudding
took stickiness to another level. Oh the tiramisu. Oh the shepherds pie. Party
time in the mouth. Food 24 hours a day if you wished. Steak is my favourite
animal so it appeared large on my wish list. The minute steak i had a breakfast
wasn't small it was full size and perfectly cooked too.
North Sea was playing its unpredictable card. Often a disorderly sea,
uncompromising waves and swells. The horizon often looked lumpy and unsettled.
But the plucky PEARL sped on, fearless in her pursuit of the happiest country
in the world. Tomorrow Bergen and the start of our Norwegian odyssey.
Silver Travel Advisor recommends Saga