Are we there yet?

Following on from the fire alarm fiasco at the hotel we set off to Southampton a bit bleary eyed and knackered.

We stopped at a Little Chef somewhere outside Southampton for a bit of caffeine to keep us going. As we sat and sipped in silence I gazed around me at the hoardes of people scuttling round like ants, apparently having no purpose or direction just scuttling. Or maybe that’s just how it appeared to me because I was so tired.

After a couple of minutes it became really obvious to me which people were heading for the cruise ships and which were not. It also became very apparent to me that there was a dress code, one which  Boofuls and me weren’t following. Tut tut.

Most of the ladies (and a few men) over a certain age  were wearing various combinations of ‘cruise wear’,  nautical blue and white striped outfits, usually finished off with a pair of deck shoes. I’ve never seen so many stripes in my life!  The male half of these couples tended to be decked out (hahaaa decked out – geddit?)  in chinos and checked  shirts with ties that didn’t quite match.  We felt quite out of place in our casual clothes.

Of course people watching and eavesdropping is the best part of being in a place like that so we watched and listened in amusement. I half expected to hear cries of ‘ship ahoooooy’ we didn’t hear that, as the ship was still quite a way off,  but what we did hear was a woman bragging very loudly about how she ‘managed’ to get a balcony suite.

Ooooohhhhh Missus!  Balcony suite eh?  Lucky sod.

No butler and balcony for us, our cabin was at the arse end of the ship and way down in the bowels.

It reminded me of one of my favourite photos, it’s by Alfred Steiglitz called ‘The Steerage’ taken in 1907 which showed the divide between first class and steerage passengers.

The Steerage. Alfred Steiglitz 1907

We know our place!



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