CRUISE: Hamburg, Main Embarkation

3 May

Once again I only start working at noon, and again I fail to get any decent sleep after scrambling back into bed after breakfast. Not that I mind, really. The next few nights I will only be standing in the gallery, trying not to drift off into sleep while showing fresh passengers to their photos.

Yes, it is Embarkation Day, that magical day on which ravaging hordes of new cruise guests storm our swimming hotel, searching for excitement, and agreeing to the demands of portrait photographers. Over three thousand passengers left our cruise ship in the morning, and about the same number embarks in the afternoon. That means I may finally get to shoot willing people, as they are yet unaccustomed to our photo practices.


Hamburg town hall

Hamburg is a pretty city

With mediocre astonishment I realize that the garbage piles have vanished from our crew cabin. The bathroom is still a shared smoking parlour, and Pancho’s clothes still cover most of the walls and furniture. But at least I can cross the three metres between door and bed without feeling the crunch of empty plastic bottles, waste paper, or snack packs under my gently moving feet. I have made it a point to stuff what little garbage I produce into my pockets, and eliminate it in the crew mess. That way Pancho can’t ask me to participate in his hauls of junk removal, regardless of how long (or short) it will take him to acquire a new pile of recyclables. Judging by his latest efforts the waste paper basket will be refilled by the end of the week.

Where is Pancho even getting all that garbage? He does not strike me as the kind of charitable person who walks around and collects refuse. Besides, the ship probably has personnel for that. Likely the garbage just sticks to his fingers whenever he leaves the ship in a port. Or people stuff it into his pockets as he walks. Like an eco-friendly version of the old Kick-Me stickers. Or his body holds electrostatic charge, thus attracting plastic garbage from across the road. On the surface he does not appear to be a very energetic person, but I will try to keep my electronics away from him.

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