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Peace Boat: The First 41 Days

June 17, 2012

According to my Peace Book Daily Planner, I have been traveling on this boat for 41 days. Tonight I will spend the evening in San Sebastian, Spain with several of my follow GET teachers in what will mark our first official full night sleeping off the boat since this voyage began. It’s sure to be a raucous celebration!

At this point, it’s safe to say the Peace Boat has far exceeded my expectations. It really is a very gratifying experience sailing around the world, dropping by a country for a day; just long enough to hit up the sights and take in some local cuisine. As you may or may not recall, I have previously mentioned in my blog the enormous satisfaction I find in the journey itself. Every day I grow and learn new things. For instance, recently I discovered the capacity to learn some Japanese. I scored myself a great intimidating Japanese instructor who refers to herself as My Master. She drills me like a soldier and it seems to be working.

Everything isn’t always rosey though.

Sometimes, I struggle to stay positive. Sometimes, I find it difficult to be kind. Sometimes, I really can’t deal with all the people and have to hide in my cabin or get lost in a book. Sometimes, I hate the food on board and eat too much of it anyway. Sometimes, I feel so full of love and admiration for the people I am sharing this experience with that I cry.

Overall I feel more connected, present and understood than I have in years.

Now for some facts:

Approximately every four days we cross a new time zone which is referred to as Gisan in Japanese. This means that every few days we roll our clocks back at midnight, effectively scoring an extra hour of sleep. My GET colleague Gen refers to these days as Christmas. It’s Christmas on the Peace Boat A LOT! It really does surprise me how quickly my body absorbs that hour though. The sound of the waves crashing along side the boat lulls me into a deep sleep, much like a strong thunder storm every night. It’s kind of romantic.

My days on board the ship are busy; far busier than I anticipated. With the exception of a 3 day quarantine following a mysterious virus that struck the GET staff leaving us retching in our cabin toilets, my time on board is spent teaching, planning, dancing, singing, laughing, reading and swimming. Sometimes, I sit in the hot tub reading, singing, dancing, laughing and planning simultaneously. Honestly, I’d really like to hold regular class time in the hot tub but my students have yet to take the bait.

In addition to several other responsibilities, I teach 2- 80 minute intensive classes on board the ship.

I never realized how fond of each and every one of my students I’d become.

I will share some pictures of my travels so far but detailed descriptions will be limited. When I have more time following this voyage, I intend to expand on my experience. But for now please enjoy a glimpse into my journey around the world. I highly recommend it!

May 12th, 2012 Xiamen, China

Stripes are the national pattern of China:)

May 17th, 2012 Singapore

I spent the day with 4 GET students on a challenge activity. My students were fantastic and allowed me to photograph them each getting fitted with an Indian Sari.

May 19th, 2012 Phuket, Thailand

The majority of the time in Thailand should be spent at the beach and eating curry. That’s what we did!

May 23-24th, 2012 Colombo, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka wasintesnse. Unfortunately, following this port, I became horribly sick for like 10 days. I blame the enormous dosas I consumed with my hands just minutes before getting back on board the ship.

June 4-5th, 2012 Cairo, Egypt

Following a well publicized revolution, Egyptians are just now in the midst of a pseudo-democratic election; pseudo in the sense that neither candidate offers much hope for a country badly in need of unification. Thus, Egypt is still rather unstable and we were ‘advised’ against parting from the group. A few of us dipped out of a museum tour and decided to just ‘take a peak’ at Tahrir Square, the origin of the revolution. (as seen above) There are still active demonstrations.

I mean, of course we still made time for some sightseeing after visiting the revolution. Priorities!

June 7th, 2012 Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos is a gorgeous little island, small enough to traverse on foot for a day. This was the first port I toured on my own. IT WAS FANTASTIC and I ate my weight in hummus, musaka, gyros, and baklava But I swam after.

June 8th, 2012 Athens, Greece

What can I say about Greece? There are a lot of ruins in Greece.

June 10th, 2012 Catania, Italy

I had wanted to visit Italy since I first heard such a place existed. Catania was extraordinary but the real reward was Taoromina. I’d advise everyone to visit Taoromina! And Catania! Just go to Italy!

June 15th, 2012 Lisbon, Portugal

 I am amazed by the beauty. We walk up and down streets, in and out of alleys, each with more character then the last. Every city in Europe seems more impressive than the last.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. June 17, 2012 12:55 pm

    I LOVE IT, Chance! Soooo happy for you that you’re getting to experience the world of travel! FINALLY, freedom and no more horrible principals who don’t want you to turn your AC or heater on!

    Love the dress you have in Greece by the way. Very romantic look!

    Rock on and continue to enjoy the world.

  2. mary alberg permalink
    June 17, 2012 2:19 pm

    I love the blog! It really gives me a glimpse of how amazing this would be. I love your smiles, your clothes, and YOU. I guess I used the word “love” a lot in this reply. I just have no other word to describe the happiness and amazment I feel after reading this. I guess I can say “WOW”.

  3. June 17, 2012 8:10 pm

    Hooray! Been waiting for a report on this worldwide adventure! Looks like such an awesome experience! Good luck with the upcoming travels, Chance!

  4. June 18, 2012 12:54 am

    Wow Chance, looks like you are having an amazing time!

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