A message from Judy Sanis
Allan and I were very pleased to return to the Celebrity Line’s “Eclipse”. We had the same attractive bridge room with full length windows overlooking the sea. The weather was lovely and guests needed shorts and sunhats to explore the interesting ports of Spain, Portugal and the Canaries. Our own favourite is Madeira and I think everyone enjoyed the scenery, the cable car or wandering through the streets of the old town of Funchal. Others took it easy and had tea at the famous “Reids Hotel”. The surprise was La Coruna, our last stopping point. It was delightful; a maze of cobbled streets hosting a variety of shops and a wonderful square appealed to all.
The Eclipse is a beautiful ship. There is a full range of restaurants, sundecks, pools and shops and we all loved the shows and entertainment which were truly spectacular. We also enjoyed the hidden quiet areas; a well-stocked library, a park with real grass on the top deck, a peaceful room at the front of the ship with iced water and soft beds, and a marvellous salad bar offering wholefoods and healthy sundaes in an adult only sundeck.
On our last evening we had a prize giving and enjoyed the atmosphere of a friendly and relaxed last game of bridge.
Allan and I are due to return to the ship early next summer to explore the Fjords and Iceland. I think that promises to be a momentous trip.
PS Just a tip for my fellow directors. Don’t tell staff on the ship that you are running the Bridge from the conference room as they will look at you most peculiarly.
Bridge comments from Allan Sanis
I gave a number of seminars during our time at sea. They were very well received and one guest described a seminar as riveting! This hand tested our guests’ ability to bid a grand slam and was the subject of some discussion. The suggested bidding is as follows:
East and South both pass. West opens a disciplined 1 Heart. North passes. East now reviews his passed hand. He has recently attended First for Bridge seminars on Losing Trick Count and Splinter bids. With a 4 card fit he first counts his losers (2 Spades, 2 Hearts, 2 Diamonds and 1 Club) and with a 7 loser hand knows he wants to be in game. He then recalls the seminar on Splinters and confidently bids 4C showing a singleton or void Club and a four card support for the Hearts.
South passes. West wants to explore the possibility of a slam and bids 4NT as Roman Key Card Blackwood. North passes and he hears his partner bid 5 Hearts (2 out of the 5 controls of Aces and King of Trumps).
Now West can count 13 tricks. 2 Spades, 6 Hearts, 2 Diamonds, 1 Club and knowing that the splinter bid tells him that his partner has at the most 1 Club he knows he can rough 2 Clubs and he can confidently count 13 tricks and bid the Grand Slam. Easy!