QE 2 The View From OnBoard Her Final Year

May 27, 2007
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No biggie that would be something I'd suggest. So ya gonna smooch Boudica?
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Just keep away from her daughters. You know what happened to the Romans after they tangled with her girls!
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John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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HELLO FROM THE SHIP!!!

Wednesday was a full sea day.

We learned that Tuesday night we encountered Force 9-10 gale winds; such was the reason we pitched and swayed so much.

At breakfast, in the Lido, my coffee cup almost slid into my lap; everyone on the ship would have heard me if I hadn't stopped it.

At the theater the tour director gave talks on upcoming tours for Lisbon, Alghero, and Cannes; all sounded interesting, but I think I'll just explore places on my own.

At Noon, we heard the Captain's announcements, including the fact that the Barcelona stay will be extended to 4:30 PM, on the 18th, instead of a 2:00 PM departure.

I did get to join in Wipeout and Name That Tune Contests, but my teams did not win; came in close, though. But "such is life".

Later in the afternoon I was able to do some laundry and get in a quick workout at the ship's gym. I was just annoyed that the gym pool was closed for maintenance (whether that was due, also, to the winds we encoutered, earlier, I don't know).

The winds calmed in the early afternoon, so we had smooth sailing in the afternoon and evening, something everyone was thankful for.

At dinner, I learned that one of my table companions chose to be reseated for the early seatings, due to her age (she is 90 years old).
In replacement, we now have two other women, so my table now has seven people, instead of six.
"Lucky 7" it is, thus.
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NOw it is 6:30 AM on August 14th, and we are coming in to Lisbon.
Will post about today's activities this evening.

CHEERS!!!
 

John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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THURSDAY, AUGUST 14TH

HELLO FROM THE QE2!!!

It is now about 4:35 PM; am back on the ship, and we are scheduled to depart Lisbon at 5:00 PM.

This morning I was up early, and was on the Observation Deck when we sailed in to Lisbon.
It was most interesting to see a submarine escorting us in; guess they were determined to keep us safe. The only thing missing was a certain moderator dressed up in his "U.S. Navy best" to assure us "safe entry"!!
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We docked at the terminal just a ways up from under the Lisbon Bridge; got plenty of pictures as we arrived, from a distant view of the Bridge, plus ship-board views of the Belem Tower and the Discoverer's Monument. I also enjoyed seeing the Christ the King Statue accross the Tagus, and on top of the hill on the other side from us.

I skipped the organized tours, so I, instead walked over to the Discoverer's Monument, and also got a chance to see the Monastery where Vasco De Gama is buried; took a picture of his crypt.
From there I went over to the Discoverer's Monument, and took the lift to the view point on top of the Monument; made for wonderful picture opportunities, including looking over to the ship.

After that I visited the Belem Tower and got to explore there. That includes a basement area that was used for storing various battle items, and housing prisoners; its extremely low ceilings are not for those of us who are "vertically gifted". Also, going up to the top of the Tower, they have only one set of narrow stairs, which can be somewhat awkward when you are heading in one direction, and many people are going in the opposite direction.
I decided to be polite and to call up or down when I was heading in either up or down the stairs.
Again I got some nice pictures taken at the Tower. I also joked to one of the Tower Guides that the builders of the Belem Tower did not have tourists, in the year 2008, in mind, when they had it constructed in the 16th Century; she agreed (the Tower was built for the City's protection).

Near the Belem Tower is a monument designed to honor the aviator who successfully flew from Lisbon to Brazil in 1922.

After visiting the Belem Tower I took the opportunity to soak my feet at the small beach area by the Tower; was a welcome relief, and a good chance to rest a bit. You just need to be careful if you walk the steps down to the water, as there are some algae spots; yes, I nearly lost my balance; would NOT have been a good way to demonstrate "Use Cautuion" by having me go in to the water
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Afterwards I did some walking in the areas near the Tourist areas; found myself in the back neighborhoods, thinking this could be a good place for one to sample the local cultures.

I got back to the Pier areas around 3:00 PM, and had lunch at one of the restaurants in the restored wharf areas. Then it was back to the ship, especially as I did not wish to be the one to delay our departure (everyone was advised to be back on board by 4:30 PM).

Now I will head out to the swimming pool, and enjoy some leisure time before dinner.

Yes, I do have pictures of me in front of the Monument and the Tower, and with my feet in the water; my coworkers will love seeing that one.

CHEERS!!!

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John Clifford

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quote:

Yes, I tried to make it in time, but was unable to get an early flight out.

Then we could have had 2 E.T. Moderators dressed up in the "U.S. Navy best" to assure us "safe entry"!! That would have, definitely, been a memorable sight.
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Right now we have left Lisbon (departed on time) and are heading south along the Portugese Coast.
I had a pleasant time in the Deck 1/Pavillion Pool, even though I did not expect it to be filled with sea water, a good way, IMHO, to entice us to drink the mineral waters given us, or order drinks from the Sun Deck Bar.
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However, it was a nice way to cool off, then enjoy watching the Lisbon sites go by, as we headed out.

The Harbor tug behind us gave a friendly toot on their horn to bid us farewell, and many of us in the rear of the ship waved back, in return.
We also got to wave goodbye to some crew members of a container ship, The Norosea, which was docked next to us.

I also wondered how many people on the local beaches, and nearby were taking pictures of us, as we left, as for many of those people this might be their final opportunity to see the QE2 (presuming they won't be in Lisbon on November 13th).

Tomorrow morning we will pass through the Straits of Gibraltar; estimated time is 6:30 AM.
I'll schedule an early wake-up call so as to be on deck when do enter the Mediterranean.

Now I have to prepare for dinner, at 8:30 PM.

CHEERS, EVERYONE!!!

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Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
>>Then we could have had 2 E.T. Moderators dressed up in the "U.S. Navy best" to assure us "safe entry"!! <<

A safe entry? (Sends message to buddy on submarine to start working up a firing solution)
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Seriously, I'm aware of one women who's pretty much lived on the ship for quite a long time now. Any clue as to where she's going once the QE2 ties up for the last time?
 

Russell Smith

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Jun 18, 2009
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Google is Your Friend....

I found a story on her HERE

Maybe John can hunt the old broad down and snap us a pic?

QE2's longest-serving passenger Beatrice Muller seeks new home

Beatrice Muller is looking for a new home. Ideally, it should be within easy reach of shops, a ballroom and a community of committed duplicate bridge players. She does not need much space, nor is she fixed on any particular location. Indeed, her chief wish is that her new home be perpetually floating over the ocean between one location and the next.

In other words, she is looking for a new home that is almost exactly like her present one: a cabin on board the Queen Elizabeth 2, in which she has lived for the past nine years.

In November the ship will make its final voyage to Dubai to be moored beside a man-made island in the shape of a palm tree, and recast as a floating hotel. Even at the age of 89, Mrs Muller refuses to contemplate such a stationary life. “What would I want to do that for?”￾ she said this week, while her home was moored at Southampton. “I was married to a wonderful man for 57 years. I have done my penal servitude — I want to travel.”￾
 

John Clifford

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Beatrice Muller???
Perhaps I might catch sight of her, providing someone is able to definitely identify her.
I wonder what cabin she is in?? If she is in an upper cabin, I will probably have little chance of seeing her, as we'd be at different dining assignments.

This morning we passed through the Straits of Gibraltar. I was one of the many persons who got up early so I could be out on deck when we entered the Straits and the Mediterranean. It was a glorious sight; same with the views of the sunrise.

Now I have the rest of the day to myself, as we are at sea today. Tomorrow we will dock at Alghero.

Last night the Golden Lion Pub really "came to life" when we had Karaokee Night: it was a great time had by all!!
I, myself, sang four songs: "The Gambler", "Return to Sender", "California Girls", and ended the evening with "New York New York", at which point the Hostesses asked everyone to stand and either sway or do a kick-line. The people in the Pub joined in; made sure to say "Great Job Everyone"!!

A few other items I forgot to note:
1. On Wednesday, a flower arrangement was delivered to me; it was from my three friends from the September 2007 Eastbound QM2 Crossing. Now I am glad I bought them some "QE2 1967 - 2008 caps they can wear, for the October 16th Crossing;
2. A friend of mine said that since I am in Cabin #2003, I can be the one to yell "Iceberg, RIght Ahead!!", though I doubt I will see any icebergs in the Mediterranean; and
3. On Tuesday, during the Muster Drill, someone complained about the walk up the stairs to the Boat Deck; my reply was, when looking down the stairs, "At least you don't see water on the bottom of the ship". The other person noted I was thinking about TITANIC, and she managed, then, to muster up her energy; she was soon up at The Queen's Grill; and
4. I have noted that Stairways A, E, G, & H, are built to resemble Titanic's main staircase, not something to mention to one's fellow travelers.

CHEERS!!!
 

John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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Hello from the QE2!!!

From my last post:
quote:

4. I have noted that Stairways A, E, G, & H, are built to resemble Titanic's main staircase, not something to mention to one's fellow travelers.
Yes, I admit that Ken Marschall's painting, from "Titanic: An Illustrated History" comes to mind when looking down from the winding staircases.

Today was a laid-back day. For me it was a good time to just rest up, and do some laundry.
We entered the European Time Zone, this morning, so that, along with an early morning wake-up call, has left me rather tired.

At least I enjoyed being on the Observation Deck when we passed through the Straits of Gibraltar, and then saw the sunrise, which was quite beautiful.
Actually, yesterday's sunset, this morning's sunrise, and seeing a full sky of stars (something diminished by living near cities with the superflourescent street lights) were all quite enjoyable.

Also, today people were allowed to go on the Observation Deck, and look ahead, something often, if not always, prohibited during the North Atlantic crossings.
The wind, though, was, and is, rather strong; made for a good way for one to imitate the "I'm Flying!!" scene
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A few pictures have my pull-over jacket either flapped, mercilessly (same thing happens to people carrying shopping bags). The other effect is having the wind come through in such a way that certain jackets and some shorts, and loose-fitting shirts seem to inflate; all this while walking becomes a task in itself.
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Now what I need to do is see if there will be a lecture about the what the QE2 will look like, after it is delivered to her new owners.
Today I heard the funnel will be taken out, and replaced with a glass fixture, complete with a light, or set of lights, inside it.
That information came from someone who was on the previous voyage, to Scandanavia and Iceland, where speakers discussed the ship's future.

I will let everyone know if such a lecture will be given on this voyage. If not, I will ask that anyone going on a later voyage do likewise, and attend any lectures about the Dubai project.
That may include finding out which items may be taken out, and hopefully returned to Cunard. We will see.

Now I will be heading to the Captain's Reception, for the Mauretania Restaurant passengers (set for 7:45 PM for those of us in the late seatings).

The next four days will be our other port visits: Alghero, Cannes, Barcelona, and Gibraltar. Alghero and Cannes will involve the use of the tenders to take us in.
If the tenders slow up midway, I'll have to wear a bathing suit under my clothes, so I can say "While we're waiting, I think I'll take a swim", like some of us imagined during the tender trips in Maui, in 2006.
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I won't be doing any organized tours; will enjoy the various cities on my own (will probably buy a City Bus Tour ticket for Barcelona, and will may see about independent bus trips to the Rock of Gibraltar).

CHEERS!!!

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Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
>>I found a story on her HERE<<

For some reason, that link didn't work, but yeah, Beatrice Miller. 89 years young and still on the move. I hope she can find another ship to hang her shingle on. I wonder how she'd feel about either the QM2 or the Queen Victoria?
 

Tom Roesser

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May 14, 2007
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I remember talking to Beatrice Muller on the QM2 several years ago. Although she enjoyed the QM2, I believe she enjoyed QE2 even more. John, Mrs. Muller lives in a very small, single inside cabin, so her assigned restaurant should be Mauritania. Despite her age, she looks much younger. However, she looked a little more worn and tired when I saw her last month on the QE2. She's very kind, and I hope that she finds another place she enjoys to live.

Sincerely,
Tom
 

John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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I heard that Ms. Muller is in a cabin on Deck 5. I am on Deck 2.
I may look for someone who looks like her during afternoon tea, but will accept it if I don't see Ms. Muller; this is a fully booked cruise, so there are many elderly people on board.

As for dinner, Ms. Muller may or may not, from time to time, take meals in her cabin.

I also heard that her son travels with her, as much as possible, as Ms. Muller's mobility is limited.

CHEERS EVERYONE!!!

We're 75 minutes (1:15) from Alghero.
 

John Clifford

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Nov 12, 2000
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HELLO FROM QE2!!!

Saturday, August 16th

Today the majority of us on the ship found ourselves with an unplanned "stay on board" day.

What happened was that we had somewhat strong seas when approaching Sardinia.
The shipped dropped anchor off the coast of Alghero, and it looked like things would be okay for us to, soon, get on the tenders.
Unfortunately, we received word that the local swells were about a meter-and-a-half, which ended up making it such that loading the tenders, from the ship's pontoon, became "scarier than most e-ticket attractions".
I think one tender was safely loaded, and departed, but then they suspended the loading of the craft; this after they announced that the loading process would be need to be orderly, i.e. "slow moving", and that some of us could afford to do other things while waiting our call.

After the announcement that the loading of the tenders was suspended, the gentleman who had been giving out tickets for my group (another crewmember took his place) came in and said he saw how difficult it was trying to load the tenders.

Everyone was then advised to go have lunch, and wait for further announcements.
I figured, at that point, that any later excursions to the shore would have to be very brief; thus resigned myself to staying on the ship.

During lunch the announcement was made: "All Alghero Tours have been cancelled". Later on, the bridge staff made it official: "NO tenders will be going to Alghero".

Thus, most everyone took the opportunity to relax, and I, myself, spent a little bit of time at the Pavillion Pool and the whirlpools.

Later in the day I had afternoon tea on the Sun Deck, then went to the Catholic Mass at 5:30 PM.

The prevailing mood on the ship was disappointment at not being able to go ashore, for those of us who wished to do so.
One person I spoke to said she hopes that tomorrow will not be the same situation, when we get to Cannes.

What I will have to do is fly to Rome, and take either a short flight or a ferry to Sardinia; can do both Cagliari and Alghero, then.

For Cannes, I plan to be up early, as we are due to arrive at 7:00 AM. I also hope to get an early tender ticket, so that I can be able to go ashore, and not be prevented from doing so because of tidal conditions.

In Gibraltar and Barcelona we will be docking, so off-ship tours and excursions will be guaranteed.

Other notes:
1. Like on the QM2, I have noted the practice of the many art pieces up for auction, though it is not as jammed as it is on QM2 (i.e. areas aren't crammed full, every day);
2. On some of the ship portraits there is a small corner icon that reads "Farewell Celebration/2008";
3. In addition to "40th Anniversary" Items, there are also "Farewell" items, such as a small magnet which notes the basic trivia, including the date of the first voyage, and the upcoming last voyage. They also sell hats that read "QE2/1967 - 2008". TO: Kyle, Jim, and Jerry: you may wish to look for these items during your respective voyages; and
4. I am still waiting to hear if a lecture about the ship's future look and plans will be held.

Last night at the Captain's Cocktail Party, the Captain pointed out that being sold to a Dubai Conglomerate was better than being taken apart in Alang. He could not, though, seem to persuade anyone, as many of us still are disappointed that the ship will be leaving service.
I did not, though, point out what President Franklin D. Roosevelt said, about the scrapping of the Mauretania: "It would have been more dignified to tow her out to the middle of the ocean and sink her".
Yes, economic necessity prevents that from being an option.

Now I need to work on postcards; started a few this morning, then did not wish to do so in the afternoon. I'll have to aim to have cards written before the ship reaches Gibraltar.

CHEERS EVERYONE!!!

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K

Kyle Johnstone

Guest
Hello John

Thanks for the "view from on board"

I'm very glad you're enjoying your time on QE2.

>>"QE2/1967 - 2008". TO: Kyle, Jim, and Jerry: you may wish to look for these items during your respective voyages;

They've had these for some time now... personally I'm not purchasing any of the QE2 grave-marker items.
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though I know they're doing brisk business...