Back in the Lap of Luxury — Independence of the Seas

Independence of the Seas

The first week in July saw perhaps the most gruesome task yet on Emma Jo – Ole wrestled with 50 feet of 23-year-old sanitation hose, replacing it with the newest, heaviest duty hose we could find. I’ll spare you the pictures. We’ve vinegared, perfumed, disinfected, and aired both heads since we bought the boat in 2004, from a broker who SWORE he had replaced all the sanitation hoses…but in vain. When Ole removed the hoses, we understood why. Suffice it to say that when the opening is only the size of a knitting needle in most of the 50 feet, there is not enough perfume, disinfectant, or vinegar in the world to deal with the aroma. After a sh*tty day’s work, the difference is miraculous. Lesson learned: NEVER trust the broker on a used boat.

We left Emma Jo in the good hands of Brian Swann, our boat-sitter and cat uncle extraordinaire on July 9, heading for Rome via Bocas del Toro, Panama City, and Madrid, arriving Rome Airport in the late afternoon of Friday, July 10. We met up with a couple of the guys from the ship and had a wonderful buffet Italian dinner and the most expensive martinis ever (at 11 Euros). When we arrived at Independence in Civitavecchia on Saturday the 11th, Captain Teo was waiting for us way up on Deck 5, hollering a welcome.

Ole settled back into the work routine, and I settled into the reading routine, punctuated by a few self-taught watercolor painting lessons. Figured that since I’m relatively idle and alone while on Independence, I’d use the time to explore self-expression.

It was wonderful to see Europe again!


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