Saturday, November 28, 2009

In Memory

Here’s to you, my wonderful Little Red Ship!
She was the MS Explorer, and oh my! She was wonderful!

I sailed on her in 2000 and again in 2001. Those two “adventure cruises” were the best vacations I’ve ever had. Maybe the best I will ever have.

The first took us from Dundee, Scotland to the Orkney and Shetland Islands. And from there to Norway and up the coast all the way to Svalbard in the Arctic. You cannot imagine what a beautiful sight this little ship was when we were surrounded by ice and cliffs and not a living soul but ourselves anywhere in sight. She represented safety and warmth. She was the loveliest sight imaginable.

We dined in her little dining rooms with people from all over the world.

The second cruise again began in Dundee, Scotland to the Orkney and Shetland Islands – but turned back west this time and sailed to Fair Isle and to the Hebrides and the Isle of Man and to the Scilly Isles. We even stopped in Dublin and Waterford.

She carried only 100 passengers and we were treated to lectures on the marine life and tundra and many other things by highly qualified educators. Here is her cozy lecture hall:

We had wanted to take her "transition" cruise. That was the one that took her from the Arctic to the Antarctic. It took more than 30 days and it would have been wonderful. It stopped at several little islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. But we never got the chance.

And then - Disaster.
On 23 November 2007, she sank in the Antarctic.

I was stunned when I heard the news. And I was riveted to the television and the computer trying to find out everything I could about what had happened. I was beyond saddened to know that I will never get to sail on her again.

You can read about my Little Red Ship here:


otin said...

That is really sad :(

I hope that no one was hurt or killed?

Sandra Leigh said...

The interior of the ship does look lovely, Angel May - but between my seasickness and my loathing of all things wintry, I'm afraid your cruise wouldn't suit me. My rule-of-thumb when planning holidays is, if they don't have palm trees, why would I want to go there? ;>)

lettuce said...


but how fab that you got to travel with her before her demise

CatLadyLarew said...

R.I.P. Little Red Ship. How sad that she went down when there were so many more adventures to be had.

Harnett-Hargrove said...

This reads like a children's story, without a happy ending.... She will remain in the ocean of your memory! -J

Brian Miller said...

and we are glad you were not on her when her day came...

AngelMay said...

Otin: I'm happy to report that everyone survived.

Sandra: I grew up with palm trees. But I can tell you that the Arctic is a really special place. Truly the best vacation I've ever had.

lettuce & CatLady & J: Yes, I'm really glad we had the chance to take those two trips. She wasn't an elegant ship (no nightclubs or fancy dressing up) but she treated us to sights and places most big ships never go. It was fabulous.

Brian: Thank you for that thought. I always wanted to go to the Antarctic, so it's lucky that I wasn't on her -- I certainly could have been.

Baino said...

Aww shame that she is no more. I've often wanted to cruise down to Antarctica but I think the ships that do this are a little more 'industrial' than cruisy these days.

Jessie said...

she was indeed a beautiful ship. i'm sorry for those whose lives were lost on her that fateful day, but glad you were not among them.


Megan said...

Oh no! It sounds like she was such a lovely gal. RIP, Little Red Ship. :(

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