Today the ship will be at sea. Donita is feeling better and want to explore the ship. Sandra is reading the daily newspaper to her.
Sandra: Tonight is formal dress. We have to wear
cocktail dresses or formals. Captain Rolf Draper
will give a champagne toast party before dinner.
Donita: I'd like to take a class or play some
games. What is there to do today?
Sandra: Here's the paper, if you want to check it
Donita: O.K. There's a cooking demonstration,
bingo games, a port and shopping talk, movie, and
another lecture. Tonight the dancers are
presenting a show at 8:30. What do you want to
Sandra: I'd like to do it all!
Donita: (Laughing.) We can try! I would like to
make a hair appointment in the beauty shop for
Sandra: We should do that first; a lot of the
women will have the same idea.
Donita: (Still reading.) This is interesting: The
nautical term of the day is Scuttlebutt
Sandra: What does that mean?
Donita: The cask of drinking water on ships was
called a scuttlebutt and since sailors
exchanged gossip when they gathered at the
scuttlebutt for a drink of water, it became U.S.
Navy slang for rumors or gossip. A butt was the
wooden cask which held liquids, and to scuttle is
to drill a hole for tapping a cask.
Sandra: Anything else of interest?
Donita: Yes, there's going to be a 5K walk around
the deck to raise money for the Cancer
foundation. Each participant will receive a
wristband and a t-shirt. More detail will be
delivered to the staterooms.
Sandra: I'd like to do that! It would be amazing
to find a cure for cancer.
Donita: I hope we see it in our life-time. Are you
ready to go?
Sandra: Yes. I have my purse, key, sun-tan lotion
The women make appointments in the beauty shop, go to the
library, sit by the pool and read until it is time to attend a
lecture about the next port; the ship will visit, St. Thomas,
Lecturer: Good morning, everyone! Today, I would
like to tell you some interesting facts about
St Thomas. I will be happy to take questions
from you at any time. (Points to map.) In 1593,
Sir Francis Drake stopped at St. Thomas and St.
John on his way to attack the Spanish at San
Juan. Can anyone suggest a reason he wanted to
Passenger: To get more provisions?
Lecturer: That is certainly a very good reason. Food
grew in abundance in the islands and water from
inland streams was very clean. Sailors were
beginning to understand the relationship between
eating citrus fruits to avoid scurvy.
Passenger: Is that the disease when the teeth could
Lecturer: Well, the symptoms are gum swelling,
bleeding and loose teeth. There can also be
internal bleeding, fractures, and weight loss. It
is a fatal disease.
Passenger: Isn't it fortunate that people don't get
that disease anymore?
Lecturer: Actually, it still exists. Babies who are
fed only cow's milk during the first year of life
are at great risk. Elderly people who eat toast
and tea are also at risk. Then there are also
disadvantaged people who can not afford to buy
foods high in vitamin C.
Passenger: Just one more question, please, when was
this discovered? I mean, is this an ancient
Lecturer: That's a very good question. As far as
medical records show, scurvy was first described
in 1541 by a Dutch physician. He thought it was
an infectious disease. Before then, a French
explorer learned of a cure from Native Americans
in Canada to cure the disease by boiling water
with needles from Pine trees.
Passengers: And it worked?
Lecturer: Yes, it did. Another interesting thing I
want to tell you, and then we'll get back to the
All names used in this story are fictitious.Buy these lesson plans at English-test.net
How does this episode strike you? Please use the forum to get in touch with the author of the story and your fellow readers. Here is the right place to do so A Travel Adventure (reviews and comments)Table of contents
If you have any English grammar or vocabulary questions,
please post them on this English Grammar Forum.