It has taken me almost a whole day to only sort of sort out my missing UNESCO list :/ And now the overall numbers just don't match...depending whether you count the sites per se or by country, or e.g. a group of monuments separately or as really just a group...this stuff is not simple! There are similar dilemmas and trilemmas re: missing countries and territories, and I could extend this plight even to the countries I've visited - I am never sure how many. Esp now after working on a ship - some people count stepping with one foot onto the soil (read: port area) as actually being in a country. And all I can say is: seriously! ( I have noticed lately this has become my main reaction to most situations. I am not sure if this fact says more about me or the situations. )
While sorting out the UNESCO list I (sadly) had to remove about half a dozen 'coming' signs (and a few in the missing countries), which means these cards were due to arrive at some point but never did. That reminds me of the reason, well its a part of it, why I slowly drifted into disinterest in any exchange - people were just becoming more and more unreliable. Perhaps its a faulty wording - there were more and more unreliable people joining the game. The list of things that could, and were indeed going wrong in swaps, was becoming ridiculously long. The stamps-stealing postal worker was just a cherry on top. Too nice a comparison.
Another thing (or two) that occurred to me while sorting was, I have been to or near quite a few UNESCO sites without sending a postcard. On the other side of the spectrum I was convinced for a few places that they are UNESCO and have sent postcards 'for my collection' lol.
Overall working on a ship is not the best way to travel. I am grateful for the 1st contract as it enabled me to do cool stuff, that is to visit the Amazon (though the absence of critters was very odd! Better to say I am odd for wishing I have seen some for a more authentic feel? :D), see the northern lights, and sail around the Caribbean. Once we got stuck in the Mediterranean things started to get a bit tedious...but not just because of the route, more so because my immediate management changed and nothing felt right anymore. I struggled with my equipment for the whole of the 2nd contract, I struggled with appreciating a manager so incompetent I could have done a better job than him (now thats bad!) and the realisation that I can only move forward if I suck up to people...I think not, thank you very much. And suddenly there was less free time, shore excursions became a chore...I rarely got the ones that I wanted. It is enough to say we were docked near Vesuvius/Pompei three times and I didn't get to see either. On the other hand I was sent to some tours twice, which made a lot of 'sense'. Once I made a remark about this (because the time off you have is precious) I was regarded as ungrateful and trouble.
Oh well. Let me enjoy the fact that right now, even though unemployed and in debt, I am sitting here in the living room of my parents' house and NOT taking photos of some passengers having dinner, salute!