Day 1 - August 7, 2013 - Reykjavik, Iceland
By by Christian Walter, Historian
Co-ordinates: 64° 09’ N, 21° 55’ W
Weather: Mostly overcast and windy
Air Temperature: 12° C
Pressure: 1009 hPa
Today was a day one could have slept in, as “stand-by”-time was only at 9:15 a.m. Nevertheless I could not sleep longer than normal: the bow-thruster was being used early in the morning, when Silver Explorer came alongside in Reykjavik.
We were berthed very close to the center of town, meaning one could stroll easily into the “touristy” area with all the cafes and shops, and even some museums within easy reach. This was really the best location, as everything was close by.
Once all guests had left Silver Explorer by 10 o’clock, I headed into town. Most of the morning was dedicated to the search for “Street Art”, and “The International Enquirer” which was sure to have a nice selection of pictures taken during the morning. I spent a total of US$10 (€20) on a museum entrance fee, postcards, stamps, a cheesecake and a cappuccino. Although I saw several books that I could probably add to my collection (reference material for talks), I withstood the temptation.
One last good-bye to Ricardo and his family – they were staying in Reykjavik for a couple of days - and at 3:00 p.m. I was back on board for whatever duty might come up. Travis, the future staff assistant and my new roommate, had already unpacked and was going through safety inductions and prep talks regarding his work onboard the Silver Explorer.
At 4:00 p.m. Robin West (our Expedition Leader) called all guests to the Theater for the mandatory safety briefing. A meeting was held after the safety drill, and Travis was introduced to the rest of the team.
The guests ventured to the sundeck aft for the sail away party and we celebrated the beginning of our voyage with champagne and hors-d'oeuvres. This sailing marks a historic moment for the company, as Captain Margrith Ettlin is the first female captain at the helm of a Silversea ship. Her first tour of duty as captain of Silver Explorer will extend into October. At 5:12 p.m. the last lines were cast and off we started our expedition to Greenland and the Canadian Arctic.
At 6:45 p.m. it was time for us to meet the guests, this time Robin introduced different department heads from all over the world. Like the heads of departments, the expedition team comes from all over the world: South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Columbia, USA, Canada, Poland, Germany, Holland, and Easter Island.
Tonight we would turn back our clocks by one hour – a special treat to gain some rest for our exciting expedition ahead.
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