You Asked, We Answer

Day 17 – Guayaquil, Ecuador – Find Insignia now on CruiseMapper

As a result of losing all our Peru port calls to the country’s civil upheaval, we were becalmed overnight in Guayaquil, Ecuador, a perfect pause for taking up the questions our faithful friends and followers have posted to Partout.

We are going to start with Carol B’s questions because, super-achiever that Carol B is, she asked many questions others echoed, thank you very much, Carol.

Five Questions

  1. Have you seen any marine life?
  2. What are the menu offerings (related is Pete/Sandy’s request for details of the “elegant Jacques Pepin cuisine”)?
  3. Is the pool heated?
  4. How much of the day is spent on deck? 
  5. Did Doris play bridge before learning onboard?

Five Answers

  • Marine life: Sea turtles (some with birds hitching a ride on their backs) and dolphins have been spotted alongside the ship in addition to innumerable shore and sea birds. Proving that, despite all appearances, we did not pack everything we might need to go around the world in 180 days, we are not traveling with a bird guide to identify all the marvelous avian creatures swooping past our balcony. We are considering an rendezvous in Buenos Aires to address the problem.
  • Menu: This subject requires a blog all its own, during some future lull. To whet your appetites, take a look at a typical tabletop before the food arrives. Each dining room has its own signature china pattern.
  • Pool: Yes, the saltwater pool is heated. At only 3-feet deep, it’s more of a wading pool than a swimming pool, but it still has lots of users, including Louis. The constant 78.8 F temperature is not very refreshing here in the tropics but should be delightful in the Antarctic. The fresh-water whirlpools that flank the swimming/wading pool are heated to 105. When the seas are rough, pools all develop waves of their own.
  • Deck time: Decks come in a variety of sizes and uses on the boat. The majority of the staterooms (ours included) have private balcony decks big enough for two chairs and a side table, i.e., happy hour! We use ours daily, weather allowing. The photo at the top of the blog was taken from there.

    Elsewhere, a fitness deck offers a track we both spend time lapping (13 laps = 1 nautical mile). Just below as you can see from the photo is the pool deck that Louis visits regularly, and Doris has no plan of ever gracing. The pool deck also contains a ping-pong table where Louis cuts a mean ball. Two of the ship’s six restaurants offer al fresco tables where we spend an embarrassing amount of our days and evenings.

    But those long iconic decks lined with chaise lounges facing the ocean, the ones we see in old movies? There are two of those decks, each holding maybe a half-dozen lounges. Doris uses these decks to get fresh air while navigating the ship end to end (“bow to stern” in boat talk), and Louis has napped on them. When the weather is wet or windy, they are closed.
  • Bridge (the card kind not the ship kind). Doris went through a bridge period in her 30s. She figures there will be no better time of her life to return to it, and her friend Rose is not letting her forget that. 

Final Four

Karen wanted to know “what’s going on inside and on deck.”

We want to know, too! Stay tuned for a future Partout with the lowdown on ship operations once we know more about them. So far, we are impressed there is a crew of worker bees scraping, painting, polishing and otherwise maintaining Insignia day and night. We have absolutely no idea what the guy in photo below is doing, but all the worker bees are similarly dressed and equally intent.

Susan T asked about evening wear for captain’s dinners and the like. We are extremely happy to report the Insignia practices a “relaxed elegance” dress code; there is not a single formal event nor any that require even a necktie. Doris is under the vague impression Louis packed a just-in-case sports jacket (it was definitely on a list), but Louis says it is being held in reserve for colder weather.

Lizzie asked what the air temps are outside. Since leaving the storms that cooled the Mexican Riviera while we visiting, temps have been mostly tropical: 90-ish by day, 70-ish by night, and humid. At sea, it is a little cooler but not much. We expect all that to change in southern Chile when we turn into fjords the crew has already warned are so remote and deep and steep that no satellite signal will ever reach them.

Olivier pled for “more photos.” With Louis on board, how can there not be? All in good time.

Coming Soon!

The City That Cacao Built

9 thoughts on “You Asked, We Answer

  1. OK! We are left to ponder the mysterious task, but know the crew uniform uniformly. Thanks for your reports. We’re tailing you! Bon voyage!


  2. With no experience on cruise ships all this information is welcome.
    Especially all those marvelous avian creatures swooping past your balcony trigger us.


  3. Absolutely marvelous! Dankeschön for taking us on yet another one of your happy adventures. Now, I have a question, too. Does each dining room come with its own music theme playing in the background matching the individual signature china pattern?


  4. Yikes Louis and Doris. Two years ago the Guayaquil prison riot was the worst in modern history. More than 100 killed. Heads were being chopped off. No shore tours of that place! We were there a year before the riot and had nothing to do with causing it. We swear. Bob Hurst


  5. Love your blog! Was there a ceremony when you crossed the equator? Dave’s granddaughter, who is a junior at Point Loma is doing a semester in Quito Ecuador! She’s been there 3 weeks now and looks like she’s having a great time. We have 70 pictures from her so far.
    We love cruising and have thought about an extended one… so we love following your adventure! Love, Candy and Dave


  6. Loving the posts!! Sorry to hear about Peru but am sure you guys are making the best of it all. I am thinking worker bee in the picture is painting?? Keep enjoying!


  7. Wondering if placed on a spreadsheet who would tip the scale as to who has met more intriguing persons… Doris or her beloved? Who has been the most unusual conversation to date ? What has been the funniest interaction so far?


  8. Love your humourous (witty) writings. Reminds me of a great Mark Twain book: INNOCENTS ABROAD.

    Chaise is a French word, of course, and chaise longue means long chair. I always feel annoyed that North-Americans would borrow an expression that they don’t grasp and turn it into a non-sensical chaise “lounge”. This has been around for over a century, I suppose, and I wouldn’t blame you for it. The fact that someone would “lounge” in it certainly adds to the confusion…


  9. Wonderful details! I feel like I’m there. I will be there, sort of, on another product of common ownership, the Norwegian Sun. We will be cruising out of Lisbon on Sunday for 11 days in the Canary Islands, Southern Spain and Gibraltar.


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