To our surprise we were subjected to a security control on boarding the boat. Other passengers were also surprised, but the officials Orwellianly insisted they had had security controls for a long time. Our bags and jackets were X-rayed. A placard listed a number of items that were not allowed on board, including “sharp objects” (as we weren't metal detected my Victorinox was undisturbed in its pocket), “food obviously to be prepared onboard” (but cold food must be OK) and any alcohol. Yes really, the biggest alcohol purveyor on the Baltic Sea does not allow you to bring any alcohol of your own on board. This was enforced using a sink with sharp spikes where we could see a number of beer cans emptying. What their previous owners had to say about the matter we did not find out.
We had a pleasant journey over and watched the sunset from the top deck. A later attempt to go out and watch the stars was thwarted by the access stairs being closed off. Presumably the company does not want any drunk people stumbling about in the dark. (Wherever they might come from, since the consumption of both shore-bought and taxfree shop-bought alcohol is forbidden—the guy chugging from the 24-pack of beer must have received it straight from the heavens.)
When reboarding the ship after our Helsinki visit there was nothing in the way of a security control. Must be because it is impossible to buy booze in Helsinki on a Saturday. (snort)
On the way back the wind picked up and we got bounced around a bit, but we sailed through and arrived in a calm but cold Stockholm about ten minutes ahead of schedule.