Today we docked in Ashdod, Israel. The port looks essentially like a cargo port, all cranes and cargo containers. There was nothing nearby you could walk to, so I elected to remain onboard, since I wasn't going on any tours.
I spent part of the day exploring - I found the crew laundry room, and discovered that one of the two washers is currently broken, so it'll be tricky to get my wash done easily. I also watched DVDs (so far I've watched the extended versions of "The Fellowship Of The Ring" and "The Two Towers" and I've started on "The Return Of The King"), and relaxed.
As the guests started returning to the ship from their various tours, the show band (called the "Orchestra" on ship) set up on the dock to play for the passengers as they re-embarked. I watched them set up and sound check from the lifeboat deck before heading upstairs to get set up to play.
My show this evening on the stern deck at the Windows Cafe started at 6pm, and at first I was playing to only the wait staff - but the tables had nearly filled up by 7pm. I played straight through for two hours, took a 10 minute break to eat (the food at Windows Cafe* is always delicious), and finished up at 9:30. I had some really attentive listeners, talking with me, suggesting songs. It made the time pass quickly, but I was pretty exhausted when I was done.
After my set, I put my gear away, and felt the ship begin to move, so I went out on the lifeboat deck again to watch as we pulled away. I had a great conversation there with one of the guests about playing music and going on cruises. He used to play guitar and bass professionally, back in the early 60's, and has recently begun to get back into playing music more. He hadn't yet had a chance to see my show.
Afterwards, I went by the ship's gift shop and bought an Azamara Journey polo shirt to wear early (before six) when I'm out and about where guests can see me (I can wear t-shirts and jeans in the bowels of the ship where only crew are allowed). I have been wearing dress shirts, but I needed something more casual while still looking sharp. I also checked to see if any of my CDs have sold - none so far. Drat.
I finished the day by descending into the smoky Crew Bar to buy a can of soda and a candy bar, and retreated to my cabin to do some email and watch a bit more of the DVD, before finally turning in for the night.
(For those of you who have asked about pictures - yes, I have taken photos of significant things, but our on-ship internet is a bit slow and rather expensive, so I expect no more pictures will get uploaded until I happen upon a place in port somewhere with free wi-fi.)
Tomorrow: Port Said, Egypt