Posted by Rainer Brockerhoff (away):
I’m at a public library in Rostock (Germany), on a shore trip. Internet access is free here, unlike at London public libraries, where it costs about 4 GBP/hour – four times the usual Internet Café rate!

So far the cruise has been marvelous. We were upgraded to an external cabin and it’s very comfortable. The Norwegian Dream’s amenities and restaurants are excellent, and we’ve been busy exploring the ship and chatting to people. Due to a problem with the ship’s motors, the stopover at Tallinn (Estonia) has been canceled and we’ve received a $100 refund for that, which we’ll put to good use by getting on a better shore excursion at St. Petersburg later on.

Shore excursions, as usual, are much more expensive than you can get ashore. An extreme example is the bus trip back to London from Dover, which costs $75 when booked at the ship, and only 10 GBP ($18 ) at the coach station! So we plan to do our own excursions, except for St. Petersburg, where visa restrictions apparently make travelling with a tour guide mandatory.

Tomorrow we’ll be at sea, Saturday at Stockholm (Sweden) and Sunday at Helsinki (Finland). More later…