April 24, 2012
It was day four of our passage though the internationally recommended transit corridor into the Red Sea and whilst the crew and guests of Queen Elizabeth began to prepare for an exciting day visiting the Valley of the Kings and Luxor all minds in the Royal Court Theatre were focussed on one result – who would win the Maritime Mastermind Final. Four of our guests had come through the qualifying heats unscathed and earned the right to tackle the intellectual might of Captain Burgess and his Senior Officers and the showdown promised to true meeting of the giants.
Early on Deputy Captain Aseem Hashmi’s quick reflexes ensured that the battle to be quickest to the buzzer was dominated by the self proclaimed defending champions. Round one ended with the Officers 70 points clear. 10 minutes later and Chief Engineer Jason Truman finally hits his buzzer to correctly guess at the catchphrase – spanner in the works…. this was quickly followed by murmurs around the theatre of how appropriate!
By the end of round two the guests seem to be struggling and there is almost a glint of victory in the eye of times crossword fanatic Hotel Manager David Hamilton…. could this turn into a whitewash?
Round 4 determines that our teams pick a subject for the other team – its all about a good tactical choice and the Officers attempt to trip the guests up by forcing them to roll back the years and choosing ‘Its Kids Stuff’. This is their first big mistake of the contest as the guest team secret weapon 15 year old student Georgia comes into her own and gives the guests a valuable 50 point life line.
By the time Round 5 arrives the guests have finally fought themselves back to a level pegging and it’s anyone’s game as we start the final round – punch line! The task is to give the punch line to a series of classic one line jokes. Doctor Doctor I feel like a pair of curtains…….. I’m sure you get the idea!
After both teams show just how many Christmas crackers they must have pulled the final scores are in and although the Officers are 10 points clear, I am forced to deduct 11 points from the officers for being smug. The final result –
Officers 339 – the Guests 340!
It was a great result all round and the Guest Captain Genevieve’s emotional acceptance speech was of Oscar proportions! The four winners were treated to lunch in the beautiful Verandah Restaurant and a day pass for the Royal Bath House whilst the Officers simply won a chance to go back to work onboard Queen Elizabeth with the knowledge safe in their hearts that they knew who really had one – Queen Elizabeth’s World Voyage Maritime Mastermind 2012!