Au Revoir

A cyclist zips past the Viking Forseti in Bordeaux in the early morning hours of November 28, 2014. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

A cyclist zips past the Viking Forseti in Bordeaux in the early morning hours of November 28, 2014. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

“No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow.”

– Lin Yutang

November 28, 2014

Can a bill make you teary-eyed? Yes, certainly. The end-of-cruise statement is never pleasant to get, though I got a bit misty today over a different part of it: the quote listed above is on the inner flap of Viking River Cruises’ Viking Forseti ‘s new account folders that come delivered to your stateroom as we wrap up this Chateaux, Rivers & Wine itinerary.

Viking Forseti maneuvers away from the pier in Bordeaux in order to bunker fuel in the nearby industrial port. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

Viking Forseti maneuvers away from the pier in Bordeaux in order to bunker fuel in the nearby industrial port. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

The gorgeous Viking Forseti on an equally-stunning day in France. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

The gorgeous Viking Forseti on an equally-stunning day in France. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

It sounds odd, sure, but I did really choke up when I opened the bill at breakfast this morning and saw that quote. It’s perfect. It’s beautiful. It’s exactly how I feel about travel. Why do we travel? To see something different. To appreciate the amazingness of the world around us. To meet new people.

To me, this cruise has, more than any other, changed my outlook on life and travel for a variety of reasons. Firstly, everyone is here because they want to be here; this is a terrible cruise for those who don’t absolutely fall head-over-heels in love with wine, because you’re going to drink a lot of it. Most guests have joked about needing new livers, and it’s only said half tongue-in-cheek. The vino does flow on this cruise, and Viking has brought on some of the very best of Bordeaux wines for guests to enjoy.

The Bordeaux Promenade is where Viking Forseti docks - and it's great for strolling on. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

The Bordeaux Promenade is where Viking Forseti docks – and it’s great for strolling on. Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

Photo © 2014 Aaron Saunders

In fact, Viking Forseti is the only ship in the Viking fleet to have a full-time Sommelier. You can learn an amazing amount just by talking to Frank – he knows everything. The man is un-stumpable. But more than the knowledge of how wine is produced, though, the onboard atmosphere encourages guests to appreciate wine. Sure, it’s a bit of a social lubricant, but it’s not a drink you drink to get drunk; wine is something you drink to appreciate life.

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Our Live Voyage Report aboard Viking River Cruises’ Viking Forseti has come to a close –but tomorrow we fly to Budapest to start our next Live Voyage Report aboard Viking River Cruises’ Viking Baldur along the Danube Christmas Markets! Be sure to follow along on twitter by following @deckchairblog or the hashtag #LiveVoyageReport.

 

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