Pewter Pounding, Snorkeling and Passover

March 31, 2010 - Malé, Maldives

March 31, 2010

After Thailand we had 2 sea days.  We haven't had a show in forever since this segment is so long, but we are working on the show we are putting together ourselves.  It's going to be called "Sailing Through Broadway".  I choreographed a dance to Seasons of Love from Rent and am also doing a solo from Riverdance.  We are doing the opening tap number from 42nd street, Hairspray, Chicago, Fosse, and A Chorus Line.  It should be good, it's just a lot of work to put together a show, especially when we have port days and other duties so we end up doing it all late at night.  It should open on April 8th- all of the dances are done, they just need some cleaning and then we need to tech the show and have some dress rehearsals.  It should come together nicely though!

-Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia-
In Kuala Lumpur I got to escort a tour.  The tour was "Countryside and Handicrafts" which seemed pretty fun.  It left at 8:30AM and the first place we went was this temple that had a gigantic gold Buddah in front.  It was just a photo stop, which the passengers were not happy about because they wanted to climb the steps to top of the temple.  After we took some pictures the tour guide, Siti, gave me some change so I could go to the bathroom.  Lately I'll put some toilet paper in my bag because it's not usually in the stall but I forgot this time and all of the toilets were holes in the ground with a hose.  I wasn't brave enough so I decided to hold it, but some of the other ladies and I had a laugh about it.  I rounded our bus up and then we headed to the Pewter Factory. 
This was the best part of the tour.  We got a tour of the factory and learned about Pewter.  They used to use Pewter crocodiles as currency until it got too cumbersome and then they created a money tree where you snap off coins.  It was pretty interesting.  We got to see the workers making mugs and bowls and trophies which was very cool.  Most of the more ornate items are cast in molds and then shaped by hand.  Then, we all went to the "School of Hard Knocks" where we got to make our own pewter dish!  First, you took these little metal letters and pounded them on your flat pewter circle to write your name.  The on the wooden block you had to use the mallet and pound the pewter into the mold.  The first side was shallow and then you'd flip the wooden block over to pound it into the 2nd mold to make it a little deeper.  They gave us a little box and goodie bag and the passengers were very excited that they got to keep their apron too!  It was a loud process and people were getting annoyed when other people wouldn't stop pounding when the instructor was trying to explain.  I thought it was kind of amusing because it seemed that everyone needed to let out a little aggression.
After that, we got to browse the gift shop.  Then we went to a shopping place that had Malaysian gifts and things.  We stayed there for about 20 minutes, which was pretty short, but I got some little things and my usual purchase of a magnet (our walls are magnetic and I've been getting a magnet from most of the places we've gone).  Beckie and I got to hang out a little at each stop since our tours were the same just on different busses, which was nice.  We had about an hour ride back to the ship in which I slept for most of the ride.  I'm not used to waking up before 10am...

-Penang, Malaysia-
We had a pretty calm day in Penang.  Beckie, Erin and I took the shuttle to town and one of the passengers we know, Liz told us where to go shopping.  It was kind of a tacky mall, but gigantic.  We tried to get some McDonald's McFlurries but they wouldn't take cards and we hadn't exchanged money.  We hopped back on the shuttle after about an hour, we had to be back by 1 anyways.  Malaysia was very pretty and tour guide on my bus in Kuala Lumpur was very knowledgeable and super sweet.  I wish we had more time in port!

After Malaysia, we had 3 sea days.  Pretty usual days, Bingo, some socializing, no show... argh!  We are going through pirate waters so things are interesting on the ship.  Lots of rumors and things that we aren't supposed to discuss, yet the passengers always seem to know more than we do.  It's pretty funny.

-Male, Maldives-
We were told before we left the ship that women had to be covered from neck to wrist to ankle and if we were going to a temple we had to have a head scarf.  Guys on the other hand really could wear whatever.  We saw that once we got on to land with our long dresses and Pashminas that it wasn't as big of a deal, which was great because it was VERY HOT.  If we had been going to the beach on the main island, us ladies would have had to swim in a t shirt and shorts instead of our bathing suits, luckily we had other plans.  About 18 of us (the cast plus some stragglers we found) got a water taxi to an island called, Kuda Bandos.  The island was very tiny but breath taking.  The water was clear and there was reef everywhere.  Me, Beckie, Erin, and the Ballroom couple, Igor and Natalia, slapped on our mask and snorkel and swam out to look at fish.  They were amazing, the best I've seen while I've been a snorkeler (not very long, but still...).  They looked as if they had been painted with neon colors. 
After my first snorkeling swim, I laid out for a little while, but got too hot and sat in the shade.  Good thing too, because all of us got burnt, I wasn't too bad, but if I had laid in the sun any longer I would've been a lobster.  I went back out to snorkel with Erich, Soren and Vanessa.  We went even further to where there was a drop off.  There were even more fish and huge schools of fish everywhere.  They would just swarm around by the surface to eat, it was amazing.  Some of the fish had a weird thing poking out of their heads and some swam sideways.  It was just amazing to see and made me wish I had an underwater camera!  It was a really nice day, relaxing and exciting at the same time.  I had never heard of the Maldives before, so I didn't know what to expect, but it was really awesome.

When I came back I had to get ready for the Passover Seder.  I was asked by this really sweet couple to do the 4 Questions since there are not many young people on the ship and out of the cast I was the closest to being Jewish.  They rented out half of the restaurant, La Veranda and did a beautiful seder.  I sat at the ladies table and had a great time.  Apparently, last year's seder food wasn't very good, so everyone was raving about the one this year.  We had charoset, brisket, matzoh ball soup, and I actually ate the gifillte fish...  The made up all these songs to popular tunes like, "Our Passover Things" to the tune of "My Favorite Things" and "There's No Seder Like Our Seder" it was fun, but made me miss home even though the couple running it made me feel very, very welcome.  All in all it was a really great day!

We are in the Seychelles starting tomorrow for 4 days and then Africa!  My life is crazy and I am very, very lucky.  Especially since my parents get on for about a week on May 7th!  Can't wait!


Pictures

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1 Comment

Nancy (Auntie):
April 3, 2010
Hay Kelsey, when I was in Kuala Lumpur I didn't see what you saw. I vaguely remember the niteclub I worked in and being in a city. Very different and a long long time ago! Love your journal, what a great time you are having. love you, Nancy
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