Monday, November 15, 2010

Rumors of Spam

I happened to be in San Diego when the Splendor was brought into port (with the help of several tugboats.) Much to Carnivals' despair the newest jewel of their cruise line had a small "issue" in the main engine room several days before while sailing in the Pacific. Now, when I say small problem, I mean something akin to the day my friend realized her husband still liked to date other women while they were married. But I digress.

After all was said and done the "issue" in the engine room was a fire and when the smoke cleared, the crew realized the main engine no longer worked and left the ship powerless to sail . . . or cook the meals . . . or cool the ship . . . or even worse yet - cool the beer. Suddenly things were no longer Splendorous, shall we say.

A cruise ship is a wonderful place when the elevators work, the cabins are cool, you are not in the dark, the beer and liquor are cold, the food can be prepared, and the boat is making its way to your destination. Suddenly walking up 9 flights of stairs to a buffet of dry cereal, vienna sausages, and crackers loses the "Love Boat" feel. (Trust me, I can assure you, there were no pictures of this is the multi-color brochure.)

Meanwhile back at the dock, we were standing there with the world's media (literally) jostling for a front row space. In many different languages you could hear the same monologue, over and over, "We are waiting here for the Carnival Splendor to come in. You can see it over my shoulder as the tug boats assist it in. After an accident in the . . . " Every five minutes or so, a reporter or producer would approach us and ask if we were kin to anyone on the ship.

Of course being honest people we said, "No, we just happened to be here." - the first 6 or 7 times. It was then I suggested that our line should be, "Well, I am waiting for my sorry ass husband to get off that boat. He and his hussy girl friend decided to take a little "business" trip on the Splendor. I can assure you that being on a boat with no power, no toilets, and rotten food are far better than what he has in store when I get a hold of him."

Heck, if we were going to stand here, we may as well participate in the melee. After all that was much more interesting than the rumors that the Coast Guard had shipped in pallets of Spam to sustain the passengers on this ill fated cruise, quickly followed with a story of packs of Pop Tarts being sent for additional nourishment. Comments were made world wide about the insult to injury for the passengers - they had to walk up 9 flights of stairs in the dark heat for Spam.

Some folks down here were confused and took offense, asking "What's wrong with Spam?" "Wonder if they got the Original flavor, Hot and Spicy, or Hickory Smoke?" "I bet because it was a fancy cruise they got Spam with Bacon and Spam Spread on white bread!" "But I'd be mad if they only had warm beer." I guess there are some things that cross all lines. "Thank God, they got back to port before the Sunday, after all with no electricity they would have missed the NASCAR race in Phoenix."

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