Mr. Thipu and I have just returned from a ten day cruise. We are happy to report that there was no behaviour on the cruise worthy of E-Hell. Even though it may sometimes wear flip-flops and a jokey T-shirt, civility is alive and well on the high seas.
We like to take most of our meals in the ship's Dining Room. We're getting older. Why should we carry a tray and hunt for a table when we can sit down in a nice place and be served?
he Dining Room is a formal place. It offers crisp table linen, stemware and fresh flowers in a silver bud vase on the table. It isn't the sort of place you'd expect to see young children. We saw young children there and the kids were almost unnaturally good.
One day at Lunch, we were seated next to a young man and his Mother. the kid couldn't have been older than six but he acted like he was 40. He drank from his big water goblet with both hands and used his knife and fork with aplomb.
The young man did eat a french fry with his fingers but he did it in an adult manner. He delicately dipped the fry into his little bowl of ketchup and carefully wiped his fingers on his napkin afterwards.
As happens on cruise ships, a conversation started up between tables. The young boy's Mom was fine with this. Her son was also very good.
"Are you enjoying your cruise?"
"Yes. I'm having lots of fun."
"What do you like most?"
"The pool's fun but I really like the pizza."
Odd as it may seem, this sort of behaviour was the rule rather than the exception. Outside of the expected meltdowns fron 2 and 3 year-olds, every child on the ship was very polite. We wondered if the cruise line hadn't put something in the water.
P.S. When we were boarding we saw a small girl whose cabin was a few steps along the way from ours. The child wasn't happy. She looked at the cabin and had a near-meltdown. Her eyes teared up. Her lip trembled as she told Mom and Dad that she wanted to, " goooo hoooome!"
Mom and Dad handled it well. They told her.
"We can't go home, Barby. This place will be our home for the next ten days. Get used to it. It'll be an adventure."
Barby did get used to the ship. The next day she was sighted sitting with her parents near the kiddy pool. Barby was wearing a pirate hat. She was later seen eating ice cream with her parents. On a formal night Barby was seen wearing a pretty white dress with a blue sash. She was calm and ate her Dinner in the Dining Room with no problems. Hey, there's something about a cruise ship that soothes young and old.