I thought we'd go shopping until I found out that the Mall was a $50 taxi ride away (each way). So we decided to walk over to Mud Island which was a museum on the Civil War. As we started to walk over the bridge we were met with a steel gate.. It was closed for the winter! So we walked back to the hotel to see if we could get an earlier bus to the boat but they were all filled so were told we could get a taxi if we wanted to go over earlier. So several hours to still fill in until 3pm when we could board so we thought we'd walk along the Main Street Mall. Saturday morning and you could shoot a cannon down the street and hit no one.
Not only was the city deserted, there were so many shops that were empty. And yet we were told the place is doing so much better than 15 years ago. So we came back to the hotel to have a coffee shop as we couldn't find a decent one on Main St and met up with Bill and Diane. We decided to ride the bus around the part of town we hadn't yet been to as we had a free pass. Not much better than the rest of town that we had found unappealing for most of the way and then we passed some new looking units to the south of downtown but that was it. Back to the hotel for a bite of lunch and then we decided to take the free bus to the wharf. That worked out great as we got there before any of the hotel busses and could board without the crowd as they were expecting 400 on the boat! They had a brass band playing as we boarded and we were met by the captain and about 15 staff offering some savory snacks.
We thought we would be next to Bill and Diane as we have consecutive cabin numbers but it turned out they were on opposite sides of the boat.
After the obligatory fire drill practice
and after I unpacked, we went to explore what was on the boat. The interior of the rooms (dining, lounges and saloon) is beautiful! Our cabin is a decent size with doors out to the deck and nicely decorated.
We have opted for the early sitting for dinner at 5:15 which is a bit early but better than the 7:45 which is certainly too late! Dinner was 4 courses and several choices of each. Everything was excellent. I had the best, most tender steak I've had in a long time. But we decided we can't do 4 courses each night!
After dinner we went to the Grand Saloon for a Bluegrass show...2 groups of sisters performing together and they were terrific!
We sailed at 9:30pm for Vicksburg, Mississippi. I don't know how far it is but we will be cruising the river all day Sunday.
We woke up to a rainy and foggy day...a good day for lazing around! After breakfast we had a tour orientation to give us an overview of the procedures for docking and the Hop on Hop off bus. They also gave a short description of the optional tours and costs.
We then got in line to book one of the optional tours before heading for the dining hall to have a small lunch. I had a half cup of delicious cream of broccoli soup, a very small salad and the smallest brownie I could find! Rob had a bacon and cheese hamburger...I don't know how he did after the huge breakfast we ate.
Headed for the room to read for awhile but when I went to the bathroom, the room had a couple centimeters of water over it that was seeping onto the carpet. So, rang the pursers office and it only took a few minutes for someone to come. Evidently the toilet needed a new water pump so the guy went off to get the new part. After he finished another guy came to vacuum up all the water and disinfect the floor. We now have a blower drying the floor!
Dinner again was great, Rob had 4 courses (again, don't know where he put it as the rest of us only had the main meal with dessert. Hard to resist as the desserts are so good!
After dinner we watched the "Bourbon to Beale" show, "a musical journey from New Orleans to Memphis to celebrate the musical heritage of these cities." Again very good!