|Our boat is the big one with the pretty lips.|
"I have a problem with my shoul--"
"This isn't going to be a medical massage," the woman dressed (at least) like she could give a good massage says. She says it like she's said it a hundred times to make sure no one expects her to be good.
This should be my cue to leave, but I don't. I'm nothing if not optimistic. She does move her hands over my muscles, but it feels more like a person consoling me after the death of a puppy than someone interested in delivering me from my pain. The 40 minutes is certainly not worth the "special" price of 80 dollars. You live; you learn. And sometimes you do not get what you pay for.
At around 11:00, we hike through the port of Funchal, Madeira to . . . wait for it . . . wait for it . . . McDonald's. Yes, McDonald's. Why? you ask with a scowl. I see the scowl. I don't feel guilty about the trip to McDonald's. They have free Wifi. See, on board the AIDA ships, Wifi costs 180 dollars a week. At McDonald's it's free. Say what you like about Maceedees, they have free Wifi and . . . wait for it again . . . now gluten-free bread! You won't believe this either, but it's true.
For the first time in eight years, I have a burger at McDonald's. Yes I do. Oh, yes I do. It is not horrible.
Afterward, we walk to the park on the hill overlooking the port. It's a nicely manicured park with lots of tourists and Madeirans enjoying the rare bit of sunshine. Here are a few impressions of Funchal, Madeira:
Have you ever been on a cruise? I've always associated the entertainment on cruise ships with mediocre singers and corny shows that appeal to the sort of crowd who's a little bit country and not very rock&roll at all. The first show--the signature show--"Fata Morgana" (mirage in English) is ridiculous. Maybe there is a plot, maybe there isn't. There are lots of costumes and effects and one soprano killing me with her razor-like screech right below the pitch. I don't like it; I want to leave, but Alexander the Pool Shark is tapping his foot and humming along with the singers. I look around. Other people are staring at the stage in wonder. Really? I hail the waiter and get another caipirinha.
|The Theatrium from Deck 11 -- where the magic happens|
This post is shaping up into the post where I dissed AIDA, but I promise to say really nice things later in the week about the shows. There are actually some mighty fine actors on board and at least one good singer.
Tomorrow Day 4 of my Eight Days in the Canary Islands.
I must be off,
Christopher Allen is the author of Conversations with S. Teri O'Type (a Satire), available from Amazon Anything.