Saturday, July 16, 2005

Europe 2005 - The boat to Greece

After driving down the peninsula of Italy the last thing we wanted to do was drive back up. Also since the next country on the list is Greece it would require us to drive through former Yugoslavia countries which are the only European countries that our car is not insured for. Instead we opted to add traveling by boat to the list. We can’t fly because of the car but this is not the ordinary car ferry I got used to living in Washington. The boat we are on can hold 800 cars and 1500 people and has a swimming pool and casino- it is closer to a cruise ship then a car ferry.. It is a 15 hour trip from Bari Italy to Patras Greece at 23 knots. This is a big enough ship that we did not know when it had started moving which is a good thing with how seasick Leslie can get. Since we finished up early in Naples we decided to try to get the ferry that night instead of the next day we had reserved since they sail every night at 8 P.M.. They did not have any cabins available so we paid for airline type reclining seats which is apparently one step above steerage otherwise known as unreserved deck chairs. I’m glad that we were tired and sat in our chairs because once underway a lot of people that had paid for deck chair seating came into the cabin when they saw how windy it was. There was a definite language barrier for the people trying to tell them they had reserved that seat. The vibrating of the engines made the seats vibrate and as long as you did not touch your ear to the seat it was relaxing. I went for a walk on deck and a lot of people had set up air mattresses and sleeping bags for the trip. When I woke up during the night the ground was covered with people sleeping that I had to step over to get to the bathroom.

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