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Friday, 19th July 2019
There were several firsts about this Icelandic holiday cruise. This is the first time Virginia and I cruised on a ship we had been on before. We cruised to the Western Mediterranean on the Arcadia in 2016. For me the ship we cruise on is as much a destination we visit as the ports of call. A cruise ship is more than a place to stay or be transported in, it has restaurants and theatres and shops and gyms and art galleries. I didn't remember the ship that well, no sense of deja vu or thinking I was a P&O captain in a previous life.

We both recently acquired smartphones, and I used mine instead of the digital camera I normally take on holidays. It performed well, and was more convenient and simpler than the digicam. The digicam let alone the expensive cameras some of our fellow passengers toted around might take better pictures, but the iPhone images were adequate for my needs and there was less risk of my wasting pictures by having the wrong ISO adjustment or the wrong picture ratio as has happened. I did take some pictures accidentally and need to check how the iPhone Camera app works with the buttons on the side of the phone. Using the iPhone also meant I could instantly upload to Facebook, no worrying about SD cards or keeping the digicam batteries charged up.

I also used my iPhone instead of the Wifi package that P&O offer which is relatively costly and unreliable and low bandwidth. My iPhone is dual sim and I got a temporary eSim from GigSky which worked reliably. I have not surveyed other eSim vendors to be able to compare them. The other devices we had between us were easily tethered to the iPhone (one opens up a personal hotspot).

Another usage of the iPhone was as a sort of Satnav. There were major road problems in the Southampton area on the day we sailed, and we used Google Maps on my iPhone to get us to Mottisfont and from Mottisfont to the cruise terminal despite roadworks and congestion and crashes. Google's technology is very impressive. All in all this was a test drive of the iPhone for a future holiday I have planned to Japan and New Zealand.