If there is one thing I was born to do, it is to travel the world. Travelling, having new experiences, meeting people and making new friends. Seeing amazing sights, learning how others live and have lived adds so much to my own life. It influences my work too. If you need proof, simply open one of my cake decorating books to see where I have gained my design inspiration. This need to explore the world, I believe is in my genes. Many of my ancestors, going way back, have set sail for foreign shores. My great grandfather was even born at sea off the coast of Mauritius. His middle name, as a result, was Maurice!
Why I am telling you all this? It’s because I’m back teaching on the MSC Magnifica world cruise for another cake decorating adventure and I’m feeling right at home!
MSC Magnifica World Cruise – last leg
Singapore to Rome, via Malaysia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, The Maldives, UAE, Oman, Jordan and Greece. A trip of unique contrasts. From a beautiful colourful Chinese temple in Malaysia, a fascinating Wat and giant Buddha in Thailand, a Hindu temple and mosque in Sri Lanka, tropical fishes galore in the Maldives, a stunning royal palace in UAE, to the surprising ‘fjords’ of Oman with more colourful fish than I’ve ever seen. What a trip what an adventure. All because I love what I do – teaching cake decorating and sugarcraft
(Find out about my experiences on the first leg of this world cruise by reading my blog: Cake decorating cruise enrichment classes onboard the MSC Magnifica World Cruise.)
New ports…new classes
15 sea days teaching, 14 ports of call, 30 classes. Classes for all ages, many nationalities and mixed ability! Sounds a big ask? It was certainly a challenge to plan and organise. But the second time around everything has been much easier in so many ways.
I knew what my students were capable of, what they enjoyed, which techniques worked well. I’d also visited a number of these ports before, so choosing themes has been more straight forward. So far we’ve created Chinese dragons, tigers, Buddhas, Arabian coffee pots, camels, frangipani to name a few.
Easter onboard ship
As a cake decorating teacher I often work weekends but I’ve never worked on Easter Sunday before. At Easter, as is our family tradition, I’m usually at my parents helping set up chocolate Easter egg hunts etc. This year was different. I taught two classes. Sugar Easter egg decorating and modelling Easter bunnies. My classes proved popular as always but I think most people were missing real chocolate Easter eggs. Chocolate in the Middle East is not the same as at home in the UK and the rest of northern Europe. The melting temperature of the chocolate here has been raised. Chocolate usually melts at 34 degrees. A rise in the melting temp above average body temperature of 37 degrees means you don’t get that same melt in the mouthfeel. Ahhh…
A fabulous cake decorating adventure
After the first leg of this cruise, one of my friends asked me to summarise. To give her 5 good points and 5 not so good about my latest cake decorating adventure. My answers this time around haven’t really changed…
- Seeing, exploring and learning about new places is thoroughly enjoyable. I, however, do miss a good old fashioned HOT cup of ‘builders’ tea.
- Meeting people and making new friends from around the world is fabulous. I just wish that I could speak more languages so I could get to know everyone better.
- Teaching sugarcraft to eager students willing to learning is wonderful. But I would like to teach my students how to cover a cake. I have demonstrated how but it would be good for everyone to have a go in class too.
- Being on board is a wonderful holiday from all the mundane everyday things we all have to do. No cooking, cleaning, washing etc. However, sporadic, extremely slow satellite internet is a huge frustration!
- Sampling authentic foods and fresh fruits from the places we’ve visited has been a delight to my tastebuds…I’m especially going to miss all this wonderful fresh ripe fruit. However, being on board a multinational ship has meant no hot cross buns on Good Friday and no Simnel cake on Easter Sunday. I guess you can’t have it all!
Cruising a wonderful way to travel
Before I joined this world cruise, I had no idea if I’d like cruising. I didn’t know whether only being in port for a day or so would be enough. I quickly discovered however that cruising is a wonderful way of experiencing what the world has to offer. It makes it easy to compare and contrast places and countries. I now know where I’d like to re-visit and I can fully appreciate why so many people go on so many cruises, it’s addictive.
I’m keeping my fingers crossed that another opportunity to experience a cake decorating adventure on a cruise ship comes along again before too long! In the meantime, if you are interested in taking a class with me or you would like to host a session, please don’t hesitate to get in touch
‘Bringing world-class sugarcraft into your kitchen’