ONE hundred years ago the Titanic set off for New York. As a band played, excited passengers waved from the decks. The self-styled ‘most luxurious liner in the world’ was never to return to Southampton.
The story of the Titanic still fascinates us, although we all know that it hit an iceberg on April 14 (which happens to be my birthday) and sank the following morning.
As a very small, impressionable child I felt a particular connection with the doomed ship, and even thought it shared the actual year of my birth. That would make me 100 too.
Mr F and I have just returned to Southampton following a three month world cruise on a ship which is a similar size to the Titanic.
While we were sailing, another liner, the Costa Concordia, sank and more than two dozen people lost their lives.
We were glued to our cabin TVs as the news unfolded, and you can be sure that there was much greater attention to any safety drills on our ship after that.
Sadly, I still can’t seem to master the business of putting on my lifejacket and always end up with bits trailing on the ground.
Lifejackets have altered little since 1912 but technology has come a long way.
Thankfully we were able to immediately text close family who we knew would be worried when ‘Cruise Ship Disaster’ hit the morning papers.
It has also meant we’ve been able to communicate in vision, as well as sound, with our daughter.
Mr F and I were childishly amused at being seen on screen when we Skyped Fisher Junior (FJ) and so made a point of wearing dark glasses or silly hats for maximum effect.
However, we never quite mastered the long pauses which often resulted in overlapping gabbling.
At other times we hoped we looked cheerful, well and healthy, as befitting world cruisers.
Sadly we were a little disillusioned when we heard FJ comment to her husband as she signed off: “They looked knackered.”