A surprise overnight in a foreign and exciting country is like Christmas to most crew, accept for maybe the gangway attendants… But for most of the rest of us it’s an exciting way to experience the nightlife and enjoy the evening without the steel confines of the ship. And enjoy the nightlife we did! Despite the fact that our special gift landed on a Sunday night, the streets and clubs were packed, as there was a music festival and a bank holiday Monday, not to mention the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. And Newcastle is full of university students.

To make the most of our rare night of freedom, about ten of us met up with about twenty to thirty more crewmembers at a place called tiger tiger. Overall the fun was in the friends, otherwise the slow service and wall-to-wall clientele would normally have chased me away. Through the dancing and alcohol haze my main observation is that Northeasterners be crazy. Hoards of drunken students stumbled from bar to bar together dressed in outlandish getups. Amongst the many, I recognized the following: male brides, priests, cheerleaders, female “Where’s Waldo”s, and many more that were completely indistinguishable. Upon initial surveillance, I am unable to currently determine if this is a common practice among the locals. Further observation of the species in their natural habitat is required to form a conclusion. That said, we were all completely entertained albeit disgusted with some of the fashion choices – shorts so tiny that the word doesn’t even describe them anymore; heels so tall that the girls look like cartoon characters trying to walk around; and hair and makeup so ridiculously done they could have been men in drag. Shame on you, Newcastle. What would your mother say?!

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