We have now arrived at the Pacific entrance to the canal. Last night was black tie, and after the theatre, it was up to the Crow's nest to watch Serendipity, www.serendipity.eu.com an outsanding duo who joined us in Singapore, and have become good friends. The sea life during this passage has been amazing, with many sightings of turtles, dolphins and whales. Today, in the approach to the canal, we are watching crocodiles. The canal itself crosses the isthmus between Central and South America, a distance of 50 miles, which saves 20 days sailing. The first attempt at building a canal proper was in the late 19th. Century by Ferdinand de Lesseps for the French. This ended in failure due to bad engineering concepts and disease. The successful attempt was by the Americans, and was completed in 1914. Rather than a sea level canal, it utilizes 3 locks at each end, just big enough for this ship, and the cost of today's passage will be in the region of $300,000. Our first call once in the Caribbean will be Curacao.