Duncan Writes

Adventures of a part-time traveller.

Marseille, France

10 September 2015

Today we visited Aix-en-Provence from Marseille, had a relaxing afternoon watching the Apple event, and watched some people fight over watches & then be hypnotised (not necessarily the same people…)

In the morning we relaxed with some breakfast before getting ready for an early afternoon excursion to Aix-en-Provence which was absolutely lovely.  The bus ride was much shorter than that to Pisa from Florence, and as well as a very interesting walking tour of the city we also had about an hour and a half of free time where Alex and I had a beer while people watching.  It was lovely!

Aix is a city I can really see myself going back to.  There’s lots to do there and it seems like a lovely place to spend a long weekend.  The tour itself took us around the old town of Aix and told us about the history of the town and how it was formed.  The guide was excellent.  I especially enjoyed visiting the church which has developed over a long time, and features three very distinct architectural styles, as it’s been built on and extended.

Back on the ship we had a very relaxing end to the day.  We relaxed in the main area where we had a hot chocolate and a macaron from the patisserie there.  The macarons were $1.25 each and very nice; much better than I expected.  The hot chocolate was also lovely and finished with some pear drizzle which was unusual but tasty.

At 7pm Apple had an important keynote event where a new range of products were announced which is, of course, important to our company and interesting to us personally too.  We found a lovely spot in the Solarium and armed with a laptop each and headphones, watched the full keynote speech in HD with no interruptions at all!  It streamed much better at sea than it normally does on our home internet, so that says a lot.

After the Keynote we had a very late dinner at Silk again.  Silk is probably my favourite of the included restaurants.  The service was excellent again, and the food very good.  Dinner was at 21:15 (booked late to accommodate the long keynote speech) so we made it a fairly quick one before heading to the show at 10:45.

The show tonight was from a hypnotist who seemed to know what he was doing.  He got the whole audience involved at the start and then invited anyone up to the stage before finally selecting those who he felt would be suggestible or willing enough to be hypnotised.  I liked the fact that he was honest about what he was doing: he wasn’t using any magic power or incredible force, he was just using psychological tricks to put people into a suggestive state and he freely admitted that anyone who was sceptical wouldn’t be able to be hypnotised because participants need to be up for it.

The show was quite enjoyable and fairly typical of a hypnotist show.  There were no really embarrassing things particularly, just some silly bits, and a few things I’ve seen before.  Alex isn’t a fan of this sort of show, but I enjoy them as a guilty pleasure!

That’s all for today.  Sorry the vlog is a bit hastily edited today, I just didn’t have enough time to do it!