Day 9. Bonaire.

The flat little island of Bonaire proved to be a delightful surprise. The touting and conning ubiquitous to most of the ports so far was obviously in evidence. The family was quoted the price of a small car to take a tour of the tiny island and less than politely refused. They were alive to the rip off merchants and tore into them for their unjustified behaviour – Andrew especially. Telling one taxi driver he could buy his car a new engine for the price he’d quoted to take them […]

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Day 7. Barbados & Day 8. At Sea.

Paul woke in his cabin after a hilarious dream in which Gracie had been thrown off the ‘Brittania’ due to her revealing outfits. Hordes of disgruntled pensioners cheered her as she was made to walk the plank in a minuscule yellow bikini. She wasn’t at all bothered. She walked with dignity giving a stylish finger to the jeering crowd. Paul imagined the dream had something to do with the reception he’d received the previous day in Bridgetown. But wasn’t sure – he was no Carl Jung. He made a note […]

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Day 6. Barbados!

Paul’s mother, Linda Thrussell, had been born exactly 70 years ago on the 1st February 1949, in the London borough of East Sheen. She had met Paul and Tina’s father, Raymond, on a caravan park in the exotic Essex resort of Jaywick Sands. From there she set sail on stormy seas on a journey that was to last nearly thirty years. T’was called being married to Ray! Paul and Tina’s father had possessed great charm but had not been the easiest of men. Perhaps being diagnosed as a having bipolar […]

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Day 5. Dominica

As the ship sailed towards the rugged island of Dominica, Paul stood on his balcony keeping watch and marvelled at the ‘King Kong’ landscape which revealed itself as the ship got closer. Apparently, as a way of describing the island’s formidable topography, Christopher Columbus had crumpled a piece of paper in his hands and tossed it onto the King of Spain’s table. As Paul gazed at the spectacular geography before him he wondered if this old anecdote might actually be true. He even imagined a pterodactyl might swoop along the […]

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Day 3. St Maarten. AND Day 4 – At Sea!

Day 3. St Maarten. It was the 29th of January. The day of Paul’s sister Tina’s birth. She was forty-something and the boat docked on the Dutch side of the beautiful island of St. Maarten. The family made their way to ‘The Peninsula’ restaurant in the bowels of the ship for a birthday breakfast. It was no mean feat. The ‘Britannia’ was not easy to navigate. Whoever had designed her had made it quite impossible to go from front to back and side to side in a logical manner – […]

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Day 2. Antigua.

When Tina was just twenty-one, she had left chilly Blighty to begin her career as an artist on the stunning island of Antigua. She had stayed for more than a year on the island turning tricks at a local pottery as many a Caribbean boy attempted to turn tricks on her. As Linda’s crew hit the island almost thirty years later not much had changed. The place was still gorgeous; the weather wonderful; the men quite insatiable! They headed away from the main crowd – always a good idea on a cruise. […]

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Day 1. At Sea.

Andrew woke before the rest of the family and made his way towards the gym via the smoking deck and the coffee machine. By the time the rest of the gang met up with him he was higher than Daniella Westbrook on a night in! The rest of them were lagging behind somewhat – Paul was most definitely not yet on ship’s time. His mother was in a slight daze. Tina had yet to cast off the flight and Bill’s brilliant brain, which had won him a top notch maths […]

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