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Email: Greetings from 45 Degrees Longitude and 50 Degrees Latitude

«Queen Elizabeth II

Date: Wednesday, 1 October 2003 09:26 PDT
Subject: Greetings from 45 Degrees Longitude and 50 Degrees Latitude

Captions for pictures and sounds:
1. Toasting dinner at sea
2. QE2 horn at noon each day

28 September 2003 – Day #8

We have been at sea for three days now. We are now approximately halfway between New York and Southampton, at about 600 miles south of Greenland. During the first two days of our crossing, we hugged the eastern seaboard. Yesterday, at about noon, we passed the tip of Newfoundland. The entire voyage will take six days.

The Atlantic is uncharacteristically smooth for this time of year. Knowing that hurricane Juan is raging to the south makes us wonder if the seas will turn rough. Even though we have smooth sailing, we are all aware that we are on a ship. There is a slight rolling sensation that makes us all a little sleepy.

Lauren was a little “under the weather” from the beginning. At dinner on the second night, we could tell that see didn’t feel very well (it is usual for her to refuse food). We were prepared for this eventuality. I left dinner to get some medicine we obtained before we left home. The medicine is in the form of an adhesive patch that is applied to the sufferer behind their ear. A few hours later, Lauren was feeling better. By the next morning she was feeling normal.

When on the deck or looking out the windows, it’s odd to not see land. In fact, we don’t see much of anything… just water, the horizon and clouds. At the beginning, we mostly saw sea birds. Later, our sightings were limited to dolphins. Last night we saw a freighter going in the other direction. We had lunch with a couple who reported two sightings of whales in the distance.

The kids’ studies are going well. We have been able to stay on schedule (however, we were compelled to study today on Saturday). We are spending about two to three hours per day. Both kids have five subjects. Kristen has Math, Science, Spelling, Language and History. Lauren has Math, Science, History, Literature and Spanish. Both kids are also required to keep a journal.

Lauren’s teacher for “Lit” assigned 6 books for the trip. The books are: To Kill a Mockingbird, The House on Mango Street, Maus, Habibi, Watership Down and The Good Earth. He also recommended that we select one more book based on our itinerary. Since we will be spending time in India, he suggested a book on either Gandhi or Mother Teresa. We found books on both people. However, we selected “Gandhi: His Life and Message for the World” based solely on weight (a real issue for us). We only brought the first three books plus Gandhi. The remaining books will be sent to us when we visit Sydney. Sandy and I are reading the books along with Lauren.

God’s blessing,
Darren