We are at sea today, and almost finished with our cruise so I will reflect a bit on some of the aspects of the cruise, both positive and negative. Post cruise, I will recap and do the highlights, but for now this post will concentrate on particular events or impressions.
1. Weather can certainly dampen spirits and spoil plans — our first day in St Petersburg was almost a total washout because of the heavy rain during the afternoon (in the morning when we were at the Hermitage, the rain was light and occassional).
2. After becoming aware of many of the excesses of the privileged class in some of these countries, one begins to resent them. They could do so much good with their wealth, yet they simply squander it on “things,” the bells, toots, and whistles of extravagance. On the contrary, look at a man like Alfred Nobel who seemed to feel guilty about the use of his invention (dynamite) by societies for malevolent purposes. At least he gave back to mankind by creating and funding the Nobel Prize.
3. This particular cruise is wonderful for people like me who like to get off the cruise ship and enjoy many ports of call. We visited seven (7) different countries over the past ten (10) days. Also, these are exciting cities, so different from other parts of Europe. I was particularly impressed with the elegance and beauty of the architecture, especially in St Petersburg, Berlin, and Stockholm.