Sunday, 16 February 2014

Genealogy Notes 11-16 Feb 2014 - last genea cruising days

The genealogy cruise is over and we traveled home safely only for me to have a fall in the dining room. I have spectacular bruises and a few sore spots but nothing broken. However it has meant I am a bit tardy finishing up my cruising reports.

I missed reporting on Maria Northcote's (from Genies Downunder) talk on Using Free Podcasts on Day 4. This was an interesting session but due to a massive failure on Royal Caribbean's staff no one came down to open up the theatre and turn the equipment on. Maria had to give her talk in the dark with the help of a torch and we had to try and view her laptop screen instead of the theatre screen. I would have liked this presentation repeated at another time as it was really dependent on the equipment.

Our bus trip to Port Arthur penal establishment was good and there has been a lot of restoration and interpretation work done since I was last there in the late 1970s. We did not really have enough time to see everything although we raced around the various buildings as quickly as we could. There was a Rootstech presentation after dinner but I was really too tired to attend.

Day 8 was the last day at sea and it was another full program of talks. I went to Jan Gow's talk on how she uses Treepad to organise all her research. Next was Thomas MacEntee explaining Wolfram/Alpha for genealogy which was interesting although US centric at the moment. I need to have a play and see what Australian data is in there.

I skipped out then to attend the Captain's Corner which is where you get to meet the Captain and senior officers and find out interesting things about the ship. For example, it is 42,000 tons larger than the US Navy's largest aircraft carrier and it's ice skating rink doubles as a television studio. The ship weighs more than 70,000 cars or 30,000 elephants and if it were standing upright on it's bow, it would be slightly taller than the Eiffel Tower. For foodies, 105,000 meals are prepared each week (that's a lot of dishes) and 28,000 eggs are used, 8,000 gallons of ice cream, 18,000 slices of pizza, 1400 lbs of lobster, 20,000 lbs of beef, 600 lbs of berries, 1500 gallons of milk and so on are consumed each voyage. All a bit hard to comprehend because when you are on board you actually forget you are on a ship (unless you look outside)!

This session was followed by a history of the Royal Caribbean line and it was an interesting look at the development of cruise ships and trends on cruise ships over the years. We had to miss the end as the group photo was being taken. Due to the size of our group, we ended up having it taken on the Promenade Deck (or the main street) with the photographer looking down at us.

After lunch I listened to Kerry Farmer's talk on DNA and then it was my last talk for the cruise - Lost in Asylums: Missing Ancestors which is the subject of my new research guide My Ancestor was in an Asylum: Brief Guide to Asylum Records in Australia and New Zealand. Available from Gould Genealogy & History along with all my other research guides.

As a cheer up for being sick, Max booked me into a wine tasting and it was a nice way to finish up the day and the cruise. After dinner everyone went to Cleopatra's Needle for the prize draws and Chris Paton's final talk on British Civilian POW's in the First World War. Then there were speaker photographs and final farewells with everyone. The nine days went so fast.

There were other Geneabloggers on the cruise and here is a list that will give you lots of good reading.
Jill Ball –
Pauleen Cass –
Maggie Clarke –
Kerry Farmer –
Kirsty Gray –
Victoria Green –
Lee-Ann Hamilton –
Shauna Hicks –
Tiggy Johnson –
Noeline Kyle –
Thomas MacEntee –
Maria Northcote –
Chris Paton –
Helen Smith –
Alona Tester –
Maureen Trotter –
Sharn White –
Jackie van Bergen –

My suitcase handle was broken somehow so that made walking to the train station after disembarking a little more tricky but getting to Sydney airport by train is so easy. Then it was a bit of a wait for our flight back to Brisbane and then we take the Bribie airport service to get home.

I will be doing an overall review of the cruise which will appear on my SHHE Genie Rambles blog (soonish) and I will also be doing a report on the future of genealogy panel session. There are lots of things to catch up on (both genealogy and around the house and gardens) but my immediate priority are my talks for Moreton Bay Region throughout February. Full details on the Events page of my website. So until next time, happy researching.


  1. Looking forward to seeing you very soon ! :)

  2. See you on another geneacruise soon?

  3. I thinnk I am going to have to plan to do one of these cruises. Very interested in your book on asylums too.

  4. Thanks Alex for the warm welcome today at the Arana Hills Library for my Google Tools for Genealogy talk. It was a great session. Jill my next geneacruise is the one in October out of Sydney then the optional extra to Norfolk Island, another place I simply love visiting. Claire, you would love a geneacruise - always great speakers and presentations plus networking with new friends and no housework!.