Sloshers are in evidence from the first moment that you enter the cruise terminal. They of course are the people who, although given an embarkation time, turn up three hours early 'just in case' and are easily identified by the foil wrapped egg and cress sandwiches, packet of plain crisps - 'we find flavours a bit harsh' - and a thermos of tea. No sugar!
Once on board, sloshers are so keen to experience the full cruising must do events that they will queue for absolutely everything. If you stop to admire a particularly fine painting displayed upon one of the passageway walls it will not be long until a line of sloshers has fallen in behind to find out what you are waiting for.
They dress in their finest regalia to shake hands at the Captain's photo call opportunity. 'Forty five pounds for an eight by four print. Such good value for money you know and he's such a pleasant young man. He called my Reg, Reginald, so refined. Of course if young Damien passes his exams we're hoping that he might have his own ship one day.'
That's not to degenerate grandson Damien, dragged along to endure this seven stages of hell, but who has cut loose and together with his new best mate, Jayden, has figured out how to reprogram the in screen on the pool deck so that they can play 'Gore Quest' in full blown HD. Everyone else watching is thinking, as another monster disintegrates in front of their eyes, how much better this is than the first Hobbit film.
Meanwhile the sloshers, now finished with the Captain and having queued and eaten in 'The Seven Seas' restaurant, - 'the soup was a bit tepid' - are now into the shows. Hence the name. Craftily cruise lines know all about sloshers and have scheduled their entertainment so that as one gig finishes in the aft Tahiti Room another begins in the forward Showcase Theatre with just enough time to 'slosh' backwards and forwards between the two venues. And, note this, they may stay up beyond ten o'clock to catch the last one, it is after all a special occasion.
It’s like some giant hand picks up alternate ends of the boat at forty five minute intervals and pours the people from the blunt end to the pointy end and vice versa. Believe this or believe it not but I swear it's true, sometimes they even drink alcohol! A chap I overheard had quite a Victor Meldrew moment. He asked for, 'A Dubonnet please.' and when the waiter couldn't understand what he was talking about came out with the classic, 'Never heard of Dubonnet - I don't believe it!'
Cruising is great - if you haven't done it already you've got to try it (see the previous Geiranger blog!), but please, try not to slosh - it can make you look like a right pratt!
I hope that you've enjoyed our look around Norway, it's been great to have your company. Please come back next time we go off on our jollies or just dip into the blog now and then - I will be trying to update it weekly, interesting stuff permitting of course.
Meanwhile, here's a photo of me post-sloshing. You can tell 'cos I've taken my tie off, but I will agree that you are correct, I do still look like a right pratt - it's my default setting. Still - the sunset was nice!
Now, does anyone know where I can get some egg and cress sandwiches, we need to be up at four a.m. - we're supposed to disembark at seven thirty, but you never know...