If you read my last post, you know about our cruise saga. When we finally got back on a ship in September 2021, we thought the ad nauseum cycle of cancellations and re-bookings was over.

The second phase of our attempt to finally use up the cruise credit—i.e., the interest-free loan that Norwegian Cruise Line has been enjoying on our behalf—was going to be in January of this year. The plan was to drive down to Orlando, Florida, for a few days, including a day at Discovery Cove. Then we would drive to Tampa, Florida, to embark for a five-day Caribbean cruise.

We were already in Tampa when Norwegian informed us—a day and a half before embarkation—that the cruise was cancelled. The basically-harmless “Omicron” variant of COVID-19 was to blame. Sheer absurdity. So we still haven’t been able to use all the money we paid Norwegian in 2019.

Melissa and I love cruises. Our first was our honeymoon—a seven-day Alaska cruise on Holland America Line in 2005. Since then we have tried to go on a cruise every two or three years. So far, our longest was a fourteen-day cruise for our tenth anniversary in 2015—back to Alaska on the same ship from our honeymoon.

We ended up on a charity cruise to New England and eastern Canada in 2016, then had a big non-cruise trip to Taiwan and Hong Kong in 2017, so we took it easy for a couple years. But 2020 was going to be a big travel year; we got our “TSA Precheck” and “Global Entry” cards and everything. It would start with our embarkation on a fourteen-day Hawaii cruise in April.

That cruise was in the second round of cancellations by Norwegian Cruise Lines in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

April Fools Site: Robots Only; No Humans

For April Fools Day 2022, Off on a Tangent became a “robots only” website that required you to fail a “CAPTCHA” test before viewing the site. You can see the prompt and how it worked by clicking here. Here’s the message that appeared on the site:

For security reasons, Off on a Tangent is now a “robots only” website. Human use of the site is prohibited. I’m sorry that it has come to this.

Visitors attempting to access the website will now be given a security prompt and will have to disprove their humanity by failing at least two “CAPTCHA” tests before being granted access.

I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.

Random Photos

I need to make posts of my “random photos” more often. It has been almost five years since the last one, and so I’ve built up quite a backlog. Sorry.

If you’re friends with me on Facebook you very well might have seen some of these before. Some are just “artistic” photos, some are cute or weird pics of my pets, and some are just funny or unique things I’ve found while I have been out and about. Enjoy.

Scott Bradford has been putting his opinions on his website since 1995—before most people knew what a website was. He has been a professional web developer in the public- and private-sector for over twenty years. He is an independent constitutional conservative who believes in human rights and limited government, and a Catholic Christian whose beliefs are summarized in the Nicene Creed. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from George Mason University. He loves Pink Floyd and can play the bass guitar . . . sort-of. He’s a husband, pet lover, amateur radio operator, and classic AMC/Jeep enthusiast.