Eight hours in #Bermuda. The #Meraviglia was approaching the King’s Wharf port facilities as I headed into Waves for breakfast. Out the stern window the weather didn’t look wonderful – heavy skies abound. Seated with a Canadian couple from Montreal, I had a fruit plate with a glass of OJ, followed by oatmeal with fresh berries and decaf coffee. This healthy breakfast met with smiles from Camille, while Jean thought I might need some protein. Our conversation jumped back and forth from English to French (albeit I was having a challenge with the Québécois dialect) as we shared our histories, and plans for the day. They had hoped for a beach day, but the weather wasn’t cooperating, so might just take an all-island tour. I’d be off on my hunt for the two local cathedrals.
I was able to jump the line and debark at 9:15 – I really should have waited until about 10 when my section was called, but I knew that the ferry to Hamilton left at 9:45, and then at 11:15, and I really didn’t want to hang out at the cruise terminal. A five-minute walk, and I entered the ferry waiting area, and boarded shortly after it tied up. Fare was a crisp $5 bill, as they only take cash. Pushing off on time, we were across the Great Sound in 20 minutes. This mode was much preferred to the hour-long trip by road.
We pulled into the pier at Front Street. Pulling out the phone (and killing airplane mode), I found that I was about 4 blocks from the Anglican cathedral.
The #CathedralOfTheMostHolyTrinity is a fairly large stone block edifice surrounded by tall palm trees. Bermuda limestone was used for this Gothic Revival cruciform structure, with a large square tower over the crossing. It has the traditional east-west orientation. Entering from the West Entrance through a pair of wooden doors, the nave soars about 3 stories with clear clerestory windows above the side aisles. A three double-panel stain-glass window filters the western sun, and the fixed uncushioned wooden pews fill the nave to the crossing. A simple altar sits in the crossing, with the high altar along the east wall behind the quire, with a statue-filled reredos. A marvelous pipe organ fills the wall of the north transept. With a small monetary donation, I was allowed to climb the tower which gave a stunning view of Hamilton harbor.
Leaving the “Bermuda Cathedral”, I walked a bit west on Church Street to the corner at Cedar Avenue and turned north. Three or four blocks (depends on which side you walk) along, I came to #StTheresaCatholicCathedral. St Theresa’s is a beige stucco-covered building with white trim and a formidable bell tower on the Eliot Street corner. Leaving the street, I passed through an arched gateway, meeting three sets of double doors, with the center being closed. With a north-south orientation, the main altar sits at the north end of the long nave down a tiled center aisle. A single altar sits on a carpeted dais, with the bishop’s cathedra located on the north wall below a quarter life-sized crucifix.
Not quite noon, I had about 90 minutes free before returning to the ferry terminal. Not wanting to roam too far, I decided to head over to #FortHamilton, built in the 1870s and now a beautiful public garden. Set to the east of the city on a rise, it was a relaxing vantage point, despite the overcast. After taking the obligatory picture of one of the cannons (something my father would do on each of his trips), I wandered back to Front Street and poked into a few shops. Finding my next hat pin, I had my souvenir for my first visit to Bermuda.
Catching an early ferry back proved to be wise, as the next, at 3:15, was crowded but got everyone back to the ship and onboard on time. By arriving about 2:30, I had an easy walk on, and headed to the buffet for a light, late lunch. Walking the uncrowded buffet, I got a cheeseburger, potato salad, some cantaloupe and an enchilada, along with a few confections to sample. I got a vodka tonic from the bar, as I was disappointed with the beer choices. I tasted my food selections, but found most wanting and left them on my plate.
Heading downstairs to the cabin, I dropped my camera and journal, but not before I filled two pages with observations of this island nation. I took an hour nap, waking as returning cruisers loudly returned to their cabins just as the ship was preparing to depart. It was Magic Martini time again, so, journal in hand, I climbed a pair of flights and headed to the bar. Ramon had created two “vegetable martinis”, one with a roasted garlic clove and the second with tomato – paste and cherry tomato. The Rob Roy was definitely the hit this evening. Snagging a second one, I wandered a bit until I found a seat, and relaxed into conversation.
My dinner was the second of my reservations at the Butcher’s Cut. I was a bit early, but the staff seated me quickly, again on the banquette by myself. A Burrata and Beet Salad to start, followed by Lobster Chowder, accompanied by a nice New Zealand sauvignon blanc. My main were three double lamb chops for which I selected sides of asparagus and jalapeno creamed corn. A large pour of a Mondavi reserve red blend matched the lamb perfectly. Too full for dessert, my waiter pressed me to take a peanut butter and chocolate chunk cookie away for a late-night snack. I’ll have it for breakfast.
Deciding to scope out the Carousel Lounge, I headed to the stern and checked out after dinner digestifs that the bar might offer. Not interested in anything cloying, I perused their brandies and whiskeys. At the bartender’s suggestion, I opted for a Glen Breton 10-Year-Old Ice, a single malt Canadian whisky finished in an ice wine cask. With a slightly sweet ginger and caramel nose, the peat was light but smoky. Smooth with a pleasant finish, it was a drink that I could nurse for a bit while watching the dance floor slowly start to fill up as the music blared. After a good half hour, I returned my glass back to the bar and headed down to my cabin for the night.