25.03.2012 - 25.03.2012
So, from the time we left Sri Lanka, until we arrive in Sharm El Sheik, we are technically in “pirate waters” and subject to special “Pirate Precautions”. The Captain keeps warning us not to be misled and for the ladies to stop getting excited and prettying themselves up in anticipation. He assures us Johnny Depp will not be scaling the side of the boat. Anyway, the first safety measure was picking up heavily-armed guards or military personnel, or so they tell us, just in case pirates get on board. Next, from sunset to sunrise, we aren’t allowed on the level 7 promenade deck (see picture below, where you can walk outdoors around the ship there). On top of that, there are crew watchmen standing there 24/7 (with night vision goggles at night). The cool thing with these guards is that they are armed with super-frequency loudspeakers, the sound of which can be so highly focused that is inaudible outside of the “sound-ray”. Apparently it can be tuned high enough to rupture ear drums if they get close enough, and has a dozen or so warnings that can be broadcast in over 40 languages.
There’s also been a guest speaker from the Royal Navy who was heading the British fleet in the area for ensuring shipping lanes and he gave some very interesting presentations on the pirate’s techniques, strategies and international state of affairs. It was all very interesting and great to get some first person perspective and his experiences. Ultimately, he says that cruise ships are too fast, with decks to high and too many personnel to be a good target, not that we are worried.