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March 15, 2020
Good-bye Esperance, Albany and Busselton… Hello Fremantle

Russell writes…

Last evening Gail was still feeling so miserable, she went back to see the ship doctor. An hour later, she returned with a bag full of medications. It turns out her bacterial infection from a few weeks ago never went away. So Dr. Mauricio has given her his strongest antibiotic for a 10-day regime.

This morning started out promising enough. We arrived at Esperance early this morning as scheduled. We are anchored here and would need to take tenders into port.

At 8:00 the Captain came over the loudspeaker. The wind and waves are so strong, he can’t lower the tenders into the water. He will provide a further update soon.

The wind and waves are strong this morning

It is too dangerous to lower the ship’s tenders into the water

At 8:40 the Captain came on again. We will not be tendering into Esperance. Furthermore, when he communicated with Regent headquarters in Miami, they had a new directive:

“Proceed directly to Fremantle (Perth).”

This means bypassing our remaining ports in Australia: Esperance, Albany and Busselton. We suspect there are several reasons for this. First, all three ports were going to be anchors and tenders. It would be a waste of time going to these destinations if we can’t lower tenders in any of them.

Second, Regent has announced they are suspending all operations. We are one of their last ships still at sea, and they probably want to close things down as soon as possible. The captain tells us we can be in Fremantle as early as tomorrow afternoon. It is unclear yet whether we will need to disembark immediately, if we will still have any excursions in Fremantle, etc.

On the positive side, we had previously received notice that our chosen excursions in Albany and Busselton had been cancelled anyway. (We believe it was due to operational issues unrelated to coronavirus.)

In the meantime, we have an extra day and a half at sea. More time for Gail to start feeling better.

Good-bye, Esperance

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