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A Californian man, well into his sixties, approaches me after dinner and whispers into my ear: “Excuse me, but I was wondering if you would like to share a little something I picked up in Amsterdam?”

Surely he doesn’t mean what I think he means.

We arrange to meet on the ship’s top deck in ten minutes, but it still comes as a surprise when I see exactly what I had expected: the orange glow of a pipe – and not the kind my grandfather used to smoke.
In that unforeseen moment, under moonlight on the Rhine, I am relieved of all concerns that cruising is only for boring old people.

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