Election day

It’s Election Day, or more precisely it’s November 8th here in the Arctic, the day that will be Election Day in about six hours in the eastern US, and nine hours from now in the western US. All told it will be at least twelve hours before I can get any reasonable news about the elections. Frustrating, that.

No one really seems to know how things will turn out – pollsters and prognosticators don’t seem to have a clue. From my POV, we have two opposing forces. One, the expected push from reasonable people (mostly female) who get out and vote D because they want Roe restored in some way. And two, the relentless rise of the clueless and fascist Trumpers, whose only goal seems to be autocracy. Which force will prevail? That’s the morbid drama unfolding over the next 24 hours.

While we’re at sea we can watch news and see how things unfold, but once we dock all the news and sports channels are blocked by some god-forsaken contractual requirement of the satellite service. For some reason the satellite service (or the content provider) thinks it’s to their advantage to not allow cruise ship occupants to view their content while in port. I can’t imagine why, but the net of it is that we must fall back to cellular-provider Internet links for any information while in port. Madness.

Our next stop is tomorrow morning in Trondheim. We don’t have any excursions there, so it will just be a walkabout in the city. I haven’t done any research about the place, so it will all be a surprise. My paper-thin plan will be to find the inevitable fish market at the docks and have a good seafood meal there. Around the world in 80 meals, I suppose.

Now that we’ve accomplished the main objective of this trip, the rest is simply resting, observing, and hopefully enjoying the 3-4 stops remaining before we launch on KLM from Amsterdam to LA. Shipboard life for me is not much different from home life – just a smaller room and an ever-changing view out the window. While there are allegedly lots of things to do onboard, none of them really interest me. Call me a dullard, but reading, writing, watching movies, the occasional walk and a good meal are what I do. I miss the rest of the family, but I’ll see them at voyage’s end, or shortly after. But at this moment I’m quite sure that longer cruises are not for me.

One saving grace is that I’ve discovered a new (to me) author who writes the kind of thing I love to read – Neal Asher, who writes long-winded space operas, complete with detailed world building and scenes spanning galaxies. I realized while reading his second Agent Ian Cormac book that he writes very much like Ian M. Banks, and that’s heavy praise. He’s not as erudite as Banks, but the basic ideas and world building are the same. I love the idea of a post-scarcity economy spanning star systems, and what all there is to discover “out there”. With Banks gone, people like Asher can fill the gap and give us a little glimpse of what that world(s) could be like.