WECLOME TO LUDERITZ, NAMIBIA
Thank you Wili for your nice comments.
We wanted to begin by mentioned that after we posted yesterday we watched the lectur given yesterday by Daniel Silke about Africa. In terms of sheer size he noted you can fit the USA, UK, Japan, China and India inside Africa. In fact, the UK would fit inside Madagascar. He mentioned that Sengal represents the change to the modern Africa and that in many countries the infrastructure is improving. Some of the economic investment comes from China who is making major investments. At the same time he noted there are stability challenges in some of the countries with political unrest.
Many foreign countries are investing because of the high growth across Africa. At the same time tourism continues to increase with many foreigners visiting the continent in record numbers.
Foreign countries are building Embassies with China having Embassies in 52 of the 54 jurisdictions.
Trade with China is up 226% in the last ten years and trade with India has grown even greater. Other countries investing include Turkey. At the same time USA trade is down marginally. China is looking to have power in the continent. He also explained that many of the countries have large amounts of debt with country relative to all other countries. This is something to think about as China continues to have influence on the continent in the coming years.
Economic growth in Africa is second to Asia although it starts with a much smaller overall GDP.
About ten countries are experiencing high growth but some countries such as South Africa are doing poorly economically and have other issues such as power outages.
In terms of population Africa will overtake Asia by the end of the century. In fact, 37% of the projected growth in population will occur in Africa.
At the same time there are major challenge. For example, Africa as a whole will need to create 18 million jobs per year to keep up with the growing population. They will have to add significantly greater infrastructure. The question is can they do what other countries have done such as creating an environment for foreign investors to come in far greater numbers to increase their manufacturing capabilities similar to what China has done.
Our takeaway is three-fold. One is that in our own country we are not covering much of what is taking place around the world with Africa as an example. Secondly, while other countries are making investments in the continent and focused on trade our country appears to be sitting back. Third,while Africa has many challenges we are reminded that China faced some of the same issues before countries like our own began trading with them which helped to spurn major growth in their country. Will they achieve similar successes economically? Time will tell.
Switching gears, last evening was Black Tie Optional (BTO) night. We began the evening by attending the Captain's Reception. On most voyages there are now one reception which is the Crystal Society Reception. This voyage is unique in terms of its overall length and it being the last segment of the World Cruise so it was very nice that the reception was held. In addition, Captain Birger has returned to Serenity as Captain Giske went on a well-deserved Holiday.
One can enter the reception from one of two entrances. If they come through the main entrance they will be greeted by Crystal Society Hostess Alissa and they can say hello and have a photo taken with the Captain and see some of the other senior officers such as the Hotel Director and Cruise Director.
The other option is to use the other entrance to expedite getting inside.
We enjoy these receptions. There is a live band on-hand and the opportunity for guests to dance.
Captain Birger spoke with everyone which is always nice. He also introduced the Senior Officers; Vice Captain Juan Fernandez, Chief Engineer Robert Bayfield, Hotel Director Scott Peterson and Cruise Director Rick Spath. The doctor was introduced but we didn't get his name. This is his first time with Crystal Cruises.
Anne Marie with Crystal Society Hostess Alissa.
We dined at Waterside for the third consecutive night.
We enjoyed a wonderful meal. Caviar for Keith and an Eggplant Appetizer for Anne Marie followed by a salad and lobster as our entree.
Photo of the two of us with Sommelier Donovan.
We tried a Cabernet that Crystal just brought on board from South Africa which we enjoyed.
The headline entertainer was Steffan Mullan, a Classical Crossover Artist, who performed two shows at 7:45 and 9:30 PM.
We slept very well as we continued sailing to Luderitz, Namibia.
We kept to the regular routine of an early morning workout for Keith followed by Coffee and Breakfast in our room.
We arrived to Luderitz, Namibia in the morning.
We have been to Namibia on two prior occasions but this is our fist visit to this town. The town is small with a population of less than 15,000 people
Major attractions include:
Luderitz Museum founded in 1966 which provides an extensive collection of artifacts relating to local history.
Felsen Church constructed in 1912 and was proclaimed a national monument in 1978.
Grober Haus which was originally the home of Lieutenant Hans George.
Bismack Street which is the town's Main Street with many historical buildings and shops.
Kolmanskop which is a ghost town located six miles from Luderitz.
We took the tender ashore. Within tour planned for today we walked around for awhile. We went into a couple of places including a local food store and went by the church.
Anne Marie with the local Penguin (LOL). We also turned the table or is that the camera onto Photography Manager Neil Roberts.
Enjoyed the rest of the day on-board Serenity.
This included walking together, paddle tennis, lunch at Waterside and having conversations with fellow guests and the wonder members of Team Crystal Serenity.
While walking we ran into Journalist and 2009 Pulitzer Prize Winner Eugene Robinson and his wife Avis. We spoke with them for quite awhile. This is their first time on-board Crystal Cruises and he is on-board as part of the enrichment program.
We wanted to close by saying that the last two weeks Anne Marie began her first knitting project of this cruise and made a shawl. She is now working on her second shawl of the cruise.
This is the daily Reflections Program for today.
Anne Marie & Keith