You must be wondering why you haven’t heard from me, and why I missed Johnny’s fifth birthday party.
I scored the opportunity of a lifetime and am writing you from the Internet Café of the new Adventurer Cruise! I booked passage on stand-by – some poor idiot sliced his leg open scaling Everest, leaving a spot for me. I barely had time to pack a bag and grab my SCUBA gear; they’d told me of my good fortune the morning of embarkation.
Of course, I forgot my cell phone and there was no time to go back for it. Sorry I didn’t call.
We’ve been at sea two weeks now. The food is good and the cabin adequate, but I must admit I haven’t quite had the experience they’d promised. Sure, the VR simulations have been great – on Atlantis Day, the ruins were so real it felt as if I could reach out and feel the barnacles growing on the city walls. But they cancelled the dive planned that day, something about a school of sea sturgeon and some beluga whales lined up in a wall next to the ship. People were ooh-ing and aah-ing as they watched those silly fish through the portals below deck.
I was so disappointed. I was hoping to see something amazing.
I’ve waited three years to walk the decks of this ship – to experience the greatest mysteries of the ocean. And it feels like a bait and switch.
I went out on deck when we passed through the Bermuda Triangle, giddy with excitement. The rain didn’t bother me much (it really was just a sprinkle) and I donned my life vest. Safety first, of course. In the brochure, they’d promised that the ship would stop and linger so we could feel the pull of the Triangle. Instead, we kept going, engines full blast. We listed a bit and some dishes broke, but that crewman didn’t need to be such an ass, kicking me off the deck like he did.
Instead of feeling the Triangle, I got to feel the pattern of the ballroom’s rug stamped into my behind as I sat with everyone else they’d forced inside.
And it was the same with the Titanic wreckage. Incredible VR. But instead of a dive (ice crystals in the water, they’d never seen anything like it before), we got a cocktail hour on deck, complete with an orchestra playing ‘Nearer My God to Thee,’ with some famous violinist.
What a let-down. Besides, I hate that song.
So, my dear sister, I write to you in the event I do not return. I’m off to find ‘Nessie now, whether the crew likes it or not. My SCUBA gear is ready, and the ocean awaits.
I was promised an adventure, and an adventure I shall have.
Give Johnny a big birthday hug from me.
Lisa Fox is a pharmaceutical market researcher by day and fiction writer by night. She thrives in the chaos of everyday suburban life, residing in New Jersey (USA) with her husband, two sons, and their couch-dwelling golden retriever.