Sunday December 6, 2009

I slept a lot later than I thought I was going to. I woke up several times, once around 6, then around 7, again around 10. I ended up getting up around 10, which is much later than I expected. I did keep forcing myself to go back to sleep though.

I did computer maintenance on both computers, weighed myself (124 lbs) and then took a shower. I finished the little bit of packing I had left to do and went downstairs to do a few dishes. Time went really fast this morning even though you wouldn't expect it to.

Frank got here a little early than expected but that was okay since we were waiting outside and it was really cold. The drive there was rather uneventful, which is a good thing. A taxi did cut us off but we didn't hit him. I love the scenery I get to see when we drive through downtown Baltimore.

The line to drop off was rather long. We got some pictures of the ship while we were in line though. Last year if I remember correctly, we basically had no waiting at all. I don't remember how early we got here though. We got here around 2 pm, which is when they originally said to get here though they called yesterday and said the earliest was 1:30 pm.

We stood in line for a few and once we got to the door a women said we could go ahead since dad has a cane. We basically got to the front of every line because of it. It went a LOT faster because of this. We probably would have been standing and waiting for over an hour if we hadn't been able to skip.

They came with a wheelchair for dad and pushed him on the ship. Royal Caribbean didn't do any o this last year. There was no going to the front of the line or getting a wheelchair. Though, like I said earlier, there was hardly any line last year.

We went up to deck 9 which is the deck with the pools and the food on it. I called aunt and let her know we were on the ship. Then I went to find food. I found a warmer place so dad and I moved all of our stuff inside and I went and got food for both of us. The guy behind the counter was commenting on my alumni sweatshirt, saying I was a young alumni. I told him I was there the whole 4 years. I obviously don't look like I'm old enough to have graduated college. I got us cheeseburgers and sauteed onions for him and chicken fingers for me. It was very good. Cruise eating has begun!!

We finished eating and then made out way down two deck to our rooms. It's a lot like the one we had last year. I unpacked everything and got everything organized. It didn't take long. I was a lot better organized and packed this year.

By this time it was about time for the emergency drill so we headed down to deck 3 to wait. We took a few pictures and then went inside to wait. It was 30 minutes later than what they said it would be but since dad has a mobility problem, we were allowed to wait inside. I gave up my seat to someone else who has a mobility problem

After the drill, we went up to deck 10 to watch us sail away. It was pretty dark by this time so we didn't get many, if any, good pictures. We should be able to get good ones when we come back since it will be 10 am and light then.

They were having the sail away party on deck 9 so we went down and I joined in with some of the dances. It was fun. I didn't do that last time but I want to take advantage of as much as I can now that I have better idea of what's going on.

The gym is actually pretty nice. There are lots of cardio machines, which is to be expected, but they also have a lot of machines. I think they have all the basic machines and you can get in a pretty good workout using them. What I don't like is how you have to walk through the spa to get to the gym. I don't think that's very well thought out.

We went back to our rooms for a little while. After the shops opened, I went down and looked around. I bought a T-shirt and a bag to use around the ship and onshore. The bag is really for kids I guess as it came with a kids' sized T-shirt. I got the largest size they had and tried it on when I got to the room. It fits just fine. I already spent around $40.

Shortly after I got back, dad and I went to eat. We went to deck 9. I had tilapia, linguini, green beans, lemonade, and milk. I didn't really see any desserts that looked good though. After we ate, we went down to deck 3 and asked if they had batteries that would fit dad's camera, which they didn't. We took some pictures of the atrium, which is BEAUTIFUL, and then went back to the room.

When we got back, they had done our room for the night and left tomorrow's itinerary. There is a LOT to do here at almost any time. It's amazing how much stuff is going on. Tomorrow I might go to a putt putt tournament. That sounds like fun!

Dad and I both got hungry so I went up and got us both ice cream. It was really cold, but good. I'm still rather hungry but don't feel like going back upstairs for food, especially since I have to walk outside to get to where the food is. It's REALLY cold out right now.

Monday, December 7, 2009

I didn't sleep well last night. I kept tossing and turning and waking up. I woke up around 6:45 and decided to get up and take pictures of the sunrise. Dad came along too. From there, we had some breakfast, just cereal for me and yogurt fr him. Hot breakfast doesn't start until 8 am.

We went back to the room and I found the channel on the TV that had a video on one of the decks and also the map of where we currently are along with information on the time, wind speed, and ship speed. Both will come in handy.

After doing some more channel surfing, we went up for breakfast. I had scrambled eggs, hash browns, milk, a pancake, and part of a banana. I have gotten sausage links but just couldn't eat them. I was too full. It probably isn't a good idea to wear jeans to meals. Need to remember that.

We went back to our rooms until aroud 10 am and then went up to the sports deck so I could play Putt Putt. I got two hole in ones but most of the holes were awful. It was so windy on deck and controlling the ball was difficult to say the least. I had fun though.

Dad went back to the room and I went down to deck 1 and took pictures of the decks 1-3, walking all the way from the bow to stern on all three decks. The next 4 decks are only cabins so I went back to the room when I was done. I do the last 2 decks later today or tomorrow. They're the ones I spend the most time on anyway.

When I got back to the room it was time to leave for the shore excursion talk. It wasn't really anything that I didn't know about the shore excursions BUT there is an “shore” excursion on the ship, a behind the scenes tour. It can only be booked from Shore Excursions, which is where we went directly after the talk.

It was a lot cheaper than I had thought it would be. It was around $95 each. I told dad I'd pay for it because I really wanted to go, and I know he does also. It will all come out in the wash one way or another. But considering there are only 32 seats for the tour, I'm glad we have two of them.

We ended up also going to Guest Services and getting dad a wheelchair to use on board and on shore excursions. From there we went to lunch. I had some macaroni and cheese. It wasn't great, but it was edible. Dad and I both had ice cream for dessert.

With less then 30 minutes until the ice carving demonstration, we decided to stay up on deck 9 instead of going back to the room. The demonstration was really neat. It only took about 15 minutes to turn a 300 lbs block of ice into an angelfish. He was really fast as it normally takes around an hour to do something like that according to the MC.

We finally got back to our room and the rest of the shore excursion tickets were there. For Port Canaveral, we somehow have to get off the ship and out of the terminal in under an hour. I have no idea how this is going to work, but it better work. I'd be so angry if I missed Kennedy Space Center.

I took a roughly 3 hour nap. It was badly needed. I was exhausted. That's what happens when you barely get 6 hours of sleep. When I woke up, I went down and looked at the photo backgrounds for today. I'll more than likely get dressed up and get photos taken, but only after I ask how much they are. They one photographer I asked said $8-$21, with the picture she takes being $21, and one of the ones I wanted. I don't know if I'll get that one taken. I know if I get it taken, I'll want to buy it.

Then I went up to deck 9 and got a piece of pizza for myself while I waited for the pizza dad wanted to finish. I got him 3 pieces like he asked for, which happened to be ¾ of the whole pizza, and then headed back to the room.

We stayed in the bedroom for a bit until it was time for dinner. We went up to deck 9 and then dad's leg started hurting too much so I went back down to the room and got the wheelchair. I had a baked potato and milk while dad had yogurt. I tried some salad but didn't like the dressing that was on it.

After dinner we went back to our room. I'm still debating on whether I want to get pictures taken or not. I'm not really in the mood to get dressed up but the backdrop was so pretty. It was a sunrise/sunset over the front of a ship. I have some time to decide.

I decided to get dressed and went down and got 3 different pictures taken. The one I mentioned above, one with the backdrop of the ship light up at night, and the third a moonlit balcony scene. I don't know which, if any, I'll buy tomorrow but I want to have options.

I went back to the room and changed my hair into a high bun for the dance party tonight. I don't want my hair down if I'm going to be sweating and dancing. It gets hot really fast, at least it did last time. I put on my costume I was going to wear for the fitness routine. It should be fun.

I left around 9 or so and went to Starry Nights and listened to karaoke until 10pm, which is when the dance party started. You had to be 18 or over to get in and I was STILL carded. It was slow to get moving, but once it did, it livened up. I stayed until around 11:30 and then headed back to the room.

I was starving I got changed and dad and I headed up to deck 9 for some food. I didn't realize things other than the pizzeria were open but they were. I ended up getting a hot dog with chili and relish and dad got a cheeseburger. I also had a brownie. Meal number 6 tasted good.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Since we went to bed so late and I was so tired, we didn't set an alarm today. Even so, we both woke up around 7 am. I tried to go back to sleep but it just wasn't working. We watched the shore excursion talk on the television and went up to breakfast around 8 am. I looked for the temperature before leaving and I'm glad I did. I was going to wear pants but it was over 70 degrees outside.

The eggs were kind of runny this morning. I had a bagel and milk along with the eggs. I wasn't very hungry, probably because I ate so late last night. While we were eating, they had a machine that was washing the windows. It was neat.

We decided to walk around the deck and found a great place to take pictures all the way at the bow. It was beautiful. It's definitely a place we'll come back to to get more pictures later. There was a deck down around deck 4 that is literally the bow I want to go on that deck. We called about it later and it's for crew only. Maybe we'll see it on that tour we're going to take.

From breakfast we went down the library/internet cafe to ask about the special today. If you buy 10 minutes, you get 10 minutes free, but it has to be used in the same session. I guess I get 20 minutes of internet time today. It will cost around $12 or so.

We went and looked at the pictures I had taken last night. I ended up buying the sunset one, which is the one I was talking about yesterday. The other ones just weren't as good. I also bought two photo albums, one of the ship and one of the ports of call. It was buy one get one free so all in all, I paid under $30 for everything.

We changed into our bathing suits and went out to deck 9 aft. There was an adults only pool and whirlpool. We both got in the whirlpool for a while. When we got out we put sunscreen on. I tanned for around a half and hour while dad had ice cream.

When I finished tanning, I walked around the deck and took some pictures. Then we made out way back to the room. I loaded up the pictures from today on the computer and dad tried to figure out if I have all the pictures he has taken

We headed out to lunch at the Normandie Restaurant. Since it's lunch, it's casual. It was really good and filling, which is something I can't say about the food in the restaurant on Royal Caribbean. I had Jamacian Black Pea Soup for an appetizer,followed by Spinach and Ricotta Cheese Ravioli for the main course and ice cream for dessert.

When we got back to the room, we both took naps. I blame the sun and heat earlier today outside. It really wiped me out. We slept until around 4 pm and then the alarm we set went off. Dad wasn't going to get up but I wasn't sleepy so I got up. He did soon after.

I did end up using the internet. I had what I wanted to post pre-typed out so I did a lot of copying and pasting. I also checked the weather for the coming days. There's a possibility of rain at all our ports except Nassau, but the chance is very small. We'll just cross our fingers.

I messed around for around an hour waiting for dinner. I wore my skirt and sparkly purple halter top so dad and I could get pictures taken. There wasn't really anything I wanted at dinner so I ended up getting a piece of pizza and a salad with salami. Then I had hot chocolate. It was the perfect mix of chocolate to water.

From there we went down to deck 3 and looked in the shops. I originally just went down for the pillow, but ended up buying shorts as well. Dad got an around the neck card holder to take on shore. I was going to buy Benadryl to help me sleep tonight but was it $11. I'll take my chances on staying awake tomorrow.

We looked at the picture backgrounds and decided to get one on the lower level. It was a beach in the background and we help a surf board. I got 3 taken with dad and 2 by myself. I hope these pictures aren't as expensive as the one I bought today.

We came back to the room and loaded up the pictures. I put them in their respective folders. I should go through and rename them and sort through them to figure out which ones I want on my website, but I just haven't been in the mood.

There was a towel animal waiting for us when we got back. We both immediately turned on our cameras and took pictures. They are just so darn cute!! I want to learn how to make them. Great thing for YouTube when we get home.

The shorts I bought are too big. I thought they were a large but they are an extra large. Since we were going to the show tonight anyway, we'll exchange it either before or after. I got it out of the large pile and didn't even think to check the size and it fit over my shirt okay.

The show was okay. It was a juggling act called the Village Idiots. It was a combination of comedy and juggling. I did like them in that they were real and had goofs so they weren't perfect like so many juggling acts. It probably didn't help that the ship was really swaying too.

We exchanged my shorts and went back to the room. I finished getting things ready for tomorrow. The plan is to get up at 5:45 am and be up on deck by 6 am. We're supposed to dick at 7 am and I want t get pictures as we're docking. Then, we go down to deck 1 to disembark since dad is using a wheelchair. Here's to hoping it all goes as planned.

My stomach is not happy with all of this swaying. On the last cruise we either didn't sway as much or it didn't bother me. I hope I don't have a problem getting to sleep tonight. It's going to be a long day tomorrow, made longer by the fact I'll be pushing dad in a wheelchair for 7+ hours.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

So much for getting close to 8 hours of sleep. I did go to bed relatively early, around 10:45 last night. I didn't have as much trouble falling asleep as I thought I would BUT, I woke up a little before 3 am and couldn't get back to sleep. I ended up watching a lot of different things on the TV until around 6 am.

We went up to deck 9 to get some food for breakfast. I had some milk and abut half a small box of Fruit Loops. By this time, we were already in Cape Canaveral, slowly making our way to the cruise terminal. It was still dark so we didn't get many pictures coming in but should get them when we leave this afternoon.

When we docked, dad and I went out on the bow and took some pictures. It was lighter by this time so the cameras were doing a better job. It's really beautiful here. There's so much water and so many birds flying around.

We actually saw some dolphins next to the ship. I heard a splash in the water and looked down Then I saw a dolphin coming out of the water and going back in. I yelled over to dad that there were dolphins and some women were out on their balconies and said there were two of them. We stayed ther for a while watching the dolphins and taking pictures.

We went down to deck 1 where they said people in wheelchairs would be departing from but didn't see anything so we went up to deck 2. Dad asked abuot where to get off and we get off there with everyone else. Whoever told him we got off on deck 1 was wrong. I'm glad we went up to check.

We were the first people off the boat. We made our way through the terminal and outside, where there was a Kennedy Space Center bus waiting for us. I took a picture of the NASA sign on the bus and called aunt while we were waiting. We talked for a little while and I told her I'd call her this evening around 5 or so.

We left around 8 am and had a beautiful drive over to Kennedy Space Center. We saw turtles crossing the road and alligators also. It's so neat to see these things that I usually only see in zoos. They are so much more at home in their natural habitat.

On the way, the tour guide was asking us trivia questions about the space program, most of which I had no clue as to the answers. She also gave us some facts and told us stories. It was an educational ride to say the least.

When we got to Kennedy Space Center, the first thing we did was watch an IMAX movie about landing and walking on the moon. It was really neat. The 3-D effects are so real looking that you really “saw” the moon up close.

From there, we got on another bus to do the NASA Up Close tour. This is the tour that went on NASA property and got up close to some of the sites, including the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) and the launch pads.

The first stop was where people could watch the shuttle launches. The tour guide said when tickets go on sale, they sell out in under 2 minutes. That's unbelievable fast. Considering how few launches are left for the shuttle program, I imagine they will go even faster, if that's possible.

Next we went around launch pad A and B before going to a site where we could see both of them. During a launch, no one is within a 3 mile radius because of the shock wave and heat. The tour guide said that if someone was inside the fenced in area, they would die.

The next to the last stop was in front of the VAB. It doesn't look that big on its own because there are no buildings around for reference, but we can see it from the ship, so that tells you how big it really is. The ship is around 6 miles away I think the tour guide said.

There is a US flag painted on the VAB and the tour guide each star is 6 feet from point to point and the blue area is the size of a basketball court. The stripes are wide enough that the bus could drive on them if they were on the ground. You'd never know it from looking at it.

The bay doors on the VAB open to let the space shuttle in and out, as well as Saturn 5 rockets. We got to see a crawler as well as the path it takes to the launch pad. The crawler is HUGE. What looks to be at least the width of a 4 lane highway is all for the crawler.

The last stop was at Saturn 5. They have two mini-shows you watch, roughly 10 minutes each. The first one is about the history of the space program while the second is about the Apollo missions Then, you go into the main portion and there is a Saturn 5 rocket hanging. It's HUGE. There is no way to adequately describe it, other than HUGE. It's 36 stories high and it's just laying in this building. It's an awesome piece of machine.

I touched a piece of the moon. It felt like smooth rock. I don't know what I was expecting but smooth rock wasn't it. There were a lot of information next to the various displays. If I would have tried to read and/or take pictures of it all, we would have never made it back to the bus.

On our way out, we got our picture taken in front of green screen. The background is the inside of a capsule and it looks like we're floating. It was really neat how they did it. They position you on these steps and then basically photoshop us in the picture. We ended up buying it. It's a once in a lifetime picture.

We were on the wrong bus to go back to the Visitor Center but luckily before leaving the bus driver asked if everyone knew where they were going and when he said the bus was going to he International Space Station building, we got off along with at least one other person.

The wait for the bus back to the Visitor's Center wasn't too long. We went and looked on the replica shuttle and orbiter. I went in the shuttle and took some pictures. I also had dad take pictures of me standing between the shuttle and orbiter. Hopefully we can stitch them together with his new program.

From there we looked at the memorial for astronauts who have died and then went over to the Rocket Garden. The Rocket Garden was amazing. The rockets are so incredibly tall. I got a picture with me standing in front of all 6 of them and I look like a dot next to them.

I went in the gift shop and bought a shirt and then we waited in the shade until it was closer to 3 pm which is when the bus back to ship left. We didn't take many pictures on the way back. I was exhausted. Pushing dad around in a wheelchair outside in the heat took a lot out of me. I also hadn't eaten since around 6 am and was hungry and probably dehydrated.

We got back to the ship with no problems through security. We dropped everything off in our room and then went up to deck 9 and had pizza and ice cream. That made me feel a lot better. When we finished eating, we went out on the stern and bow to take pictures of the port again in the light.

I decided instead of tanning to take a short nap. I had dad set the alarm for 6:30 pm. Dad went down to the infirmary and got some crutches s he can walk tomorrow since the tour isn't wheelchair accessible and it's a 10-15 minute walk to the bus. I was asleep when he came back but the door closing woke me up.

I don't remember hearing the alarm go off at 6:30 though dad said I woke up and told him to turn it off. I ended up sleeping until 8 pm. I didn't get to call aunt or take pictures of the ship leaving. I was too tired to care much abut he pictures though, which really tells you I was tired.

We went to deck 3 so I could buy a neck wallet for tomorrow. I also ended up buying a tank top that goes with the shorts I bought yesterday. I'm going to wear it tomorrow. Dad bought a polo shirt. Then we went and looked at the pictures we had taken last night. I ended up buying one of the ones with both of us. It was $21.99. I just have expensive taste in pictures I guess.

We went up to deck 9 and had dinner. There was hardly anyone there. This might be a good time to get dinner. When we finished, we went out on the stern to look around but it was too dark to see anything except for darkness.

When we got back to the room, there was another towel animal, an elephant this time. We took some pictures and then I made a spreadsheet of everything I have bought so far. I'm quickly approaching the $300 mark. So much for only spending what I already had. If It wasn't for the behind the scene tour of the ship, I would be fine though.

Around 11:45 pm I went up to deck 9 as there was a deck party and Mexican buffet. I didn't stay long. I took some pictures of the party and of the food layout. They had fruit carvings which is really cool. It amazes me how much time goes into the display of the food, let alone the preparation.

I had a taco, got dad and me something to drink and headed back to the room. Then I took a shower. Taking a shower while going through the continental shelf is interesting. It takes a lot of balance and fast reflexes, as does walking around in general.

I loaded up the party pictures and finished getting ready for bed. Another long day tomorrow, but no where near as long as today. The excursion is only 2.5 hours, not 7. Hopefully I'll be up when we dock and get some good pictures.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I set the alarm for 9 am this morning but woke up around 7 and got up. Dad and I went to the whirlpool and then to breakfast. I had eggs and French toast along with milk. I couldn't finish the second container of milk so dad drank it.

We went back to our rooms and got out of the wet bathing suits and got dressed for the day. Around 9:30 I'll head up to deck 10 to tan until we get closer to Nassau. Then, I'll take pictures as we dock. It's light today so I'll be able to get some good pictures hopefully.

Tanning didn't happen. When I got up there we were already within picture taking distance of the port so dad and I started taking pictures. We saw the resort everyone was talking about and also two more cruise ships in the harbor.

It was a beautiful day. It was already hot when we got in, which was a little before 10 am. We checked to make sure the time wasn't different since dad's cell phone said it was an hour later than our watches did. The cell phone was wrong, which was a good thing.

We took a lot of pictures of the port as we docked. We did a 180 degree turn, which was great for getting lots of pictures. I saw another Carnival cruise ship in the distance that was making its way in. I wanted to stay up on deck 10 to watch it dock but didn't think it would get here before we wanted to be on shore so we headed down.

It didn't take long to get of the ship at all. We took some pictures and then decided to go back on the ship as dad had forgotten his spare battery and I wanted to go up to deck 10 to take pictures of the ship coming in.

It probably took longer to go up than it did coming down. We went up to deck 10 and took pictures of the Carnival Fascination coming it. It did a 180 degree turn as well, which is really awesome to watch, as well as the ship backing in the dock. Backing up 90 tonnes can't be easy.

We got off the ship again and waited for our excursion to set out. It left a little later than it should have but we got there. We had to walk around the dock area and through a building to get to the tour bus. Dad managed to get there with the crutches.

We drove around Nassau for a short time. The driver took us through the slums as well as the downtown area. There were a lot of stray dogs and really rundown houses. He said a lot of people don't have running water or toilets.

We got to Ardastra Gardens earlier than we were supposed to but that meant we could feed the parrots and see the flamingo show. It not a big place but it has a lot to see and a lot of great photo opportunities.

We walked through most of the zoo and gardens first. I was getting my picture taken next to a parrot and I told it not to poop on me and it squawked at me. The people in the near vicinity laughed and I backed up some. I still got a picture though.

They had goats that you could feed. We didn't bring any change but another person did, Lucy. She was at the dance club the other night and recognized me. We fed the goats and they all came running when they heard the sound of the food machine. It was cute.

I also fed the Lorry parrots and was scared at first. One of them was really sinking its claws into my fingers. It was fun though and dad took pictures. They should make for some interesting viewing later on as I'm sure I look terrified at the beginning.

We looked around some more and then dad sat down in the flamingo show area and I finished seeing and taking pictures of what we missed rushing to get to feed the parrots before going and sitting down as well.

The trained flamingo show was really cute. They would “march” and do “right face” and “about face” as well. I got to go in the arena with them and they came up to me and one of them was rubbing my back. It was a very interesting experience.

From there we got on the bus and finished the tour. We went to the Queen's Staircase but didn't walk down it so the pictures aren't all that great, and we missed the waterfall at the bottom. I was looking forward to seeing the waterfall too.

Then we went to Fort Fincastle. The view of the port is AMAZING and I had dad take a picture of me with the ships in the background. The tour guide works for tips and we didn't have anything to give him. Dad felt kind of bad but we just didn't bring much cash with us.

We got back on the bus and started back to the ship. It tok FOREVER because they were havinga parade and so many roads were closed. Everyone was getting annoyed and kept telling him to drop us off but he wouldn't listen. He eventually dropped us off near Straw Market, which is a lot of shopping. Everyone was so happy to be off the bus. I felt bad for him but I am glad he wasn't working for tips as I'm sure most wouldn't have tipped him.

We took a few pictures as we made our way back to the ship. I got another picture of me with the ships in the background. I went in a store and bought a tank top I might wear it tomorrow, I haven't decided. A lady stopped me and wanted to braid my hair and I said no.

We had to go through the same building we went through to get to the tour. They check your ID and cruise ship card before letting you out. We made our way through the port area to the ships. I gt my picture taken in front of a Bahama sign. Some people form the Royal Caribbean ship were walking behind us and stopped so we could take the picture. One of them said she was going to take the picture also and one of the men said I should do a naked one next when I was done. I told them it was too early for that.

I had dad take some pictures of me with the resort and a really neat bridge in the background. Hopefully we will be able to stitch the pictures together with the program he has. That's the plan anyway but plans never work the way they're supposed to.

A crew member saw us coming and since dad was on crutches, let us use the crew only entrance. We were both happy as the line to get back on the ship was really long. We went up to our rooms. I was so happy to be back. What was supposed to be less than 3 hours turned into over 4 hours.

We up to deck 9 and got some ice cream, then set out on the stern and took pictures. It had a great view of the resort and a beautiful bridge. I had two cups of ice cream and dad had at least 3 cups of yogurt. He seems to really like it.

We went back to the room for a while and loaded up all the pictures. We took over 1,200 pictures today alone. We went to dinner around 7 and I had a plate of stir fry rice, mashed potatoes, pene pasta with tomato sauce, and chicken parmigiana. It was ll so good. I also had a roll. To finish it off, I had a cup of hot chocolate.

We saw Lucy as we were finishing up and asked her if she got in time to catch her Sunset Cruise excursion and she did. She sat and we talked for a little while. We are all doing Garden of the Groves tomorrow so we'll talk again then.

We went out on the bow and took pictures as the Bahamas Celebration and Voyager of the Seas left the port. The Voyager passengers were waving and cheering as well as taking pictures. I assume our side was doing the same thing. It was fun.

We came back to the room and I sorted all the pictures from today into their correct folders. The folder with pictures of the port has the most I think. Since a lot of the pictures were of the other ships, which is something the other ports didn't have, it really added a lot of pictures compared to what we normally take the port.

I got thirsty and went up to deck 9 to get some lemonade. I filled my water bottle with it as well as brought down a cup for dad. We're not having the steward come in tonight so I already have my Carnival Caper for tomorrow and the alarm is set for 6 am since we dock around 7 am. It's going to be another early morning.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Dad woke e up at 5:30 this morning. He thought the TV said it was 6:30 instead of 5:30. When he realized what time it really was, we both went back to sleep. He woke me up again when he was taking a picture of me sleeping. I went back to sleep after that also.

We got up at 6 with the alarm. As soon as we both got dressed we headed up to deck 9 as we were already getting to the port. We have gotten to all of our locations a little early. I hope we don't get back to Baltimore early. I want to stay as long as possible.

I have a rash where my bathing suit was and have figured out what it's from. My bathing suit top has metal rings on it near the top and I'm allergic to metal. It didn't even cross my mind when I bought it. I wore the bathing suit all day yesterday so it's not surprising I have a rash. What is surprising is that my hips don't have a rash because I had my bottoms on all day yesterday as well.

It was still dark but we tried to take pictures anyway. There are other cruise ships docked a short distance away. I thought there were two of them but there are actually 3, two of them are just really close and when it was dark, looked like one ship.

We stayed outside until it got light and then went inside and had breakfast. From there we went back to the room and got our things ready for the excursion. The skies looked threatening and I'm hoping it doesn't rain on us.

We went down to deck A around 8 am like we had planned. I had dad take a picture of me in front of a welcome to Freeport sign as well as some backgrounds that a man had out. All he did was ask for a tip for letting us use his backgrounds.

We waited until we were told to get on the bus and were one of the first people on since dad had crutches. Lucy got on with us as well. We had a nice tour of part of the island. Our driver was funny and kept telling jokes.

We had a guided tour of Garden of the Groves and then had almost an hour to wander around by ourselves. I went in some of the craft shops and bought some shells and other souvenirs. Nothing ofr aunt specifically as she said she didn't want any more nicknacks.

We were heading back to the bus area when another couple found a path to go down. I went with them while dad went to the bus area. It was really pretty back there. I also went over to the playground are and took some pictures there.

The bus was right on time. Next we went to Lucaya Market and did some shopping. Some many women asked if I wanted my hair braided and I told them all no. I did end up buying some shirts though. They were 3 for $10, which is a good price anywhere you go.

We were at the marketplace for around an hour and then got back on the bus. We went through some of the more upscale places and saw a mansion. We got back to the bus about 15 minutes later than we should have, but that's nothing compared to yesterday.

Freeport and Grand Bahama island seem much nicer than Nassau did yesterday. The roads are better, traffic is lighter, and the houses and areas where we were looked better as well. It was hard to believe the two islands are the same country as they are radically different from each other.

We got back on the ship and went up to get some food. The lines were too long everywhere so we just got some ice cream and yogurt. Dad ate yogurt while I took some pictures off the stern of the ship. One of the three ships that were there this morning was gone. I wish I could have watched it sail away.

We went back to the room for a while and then went back up for food and to get in the hot tub. The lines were better this time and I had some Mexican food as well as penne pasta. We took some pictures waiting for people to get out of the hot tub and then got in. It felt so nice.

It was kind of chilly when we got out of the hot tub. We waited until the ship sailed away to take some pictures and then headed back down to the room for a nap. We slept until 4:30 pm and then used the Internet as t was basically 50% off between the hours of 4-6. I checked the weather for the big storm that's supposed to hit Baltimore Sunday but didn't see anything on the map.

We headed down to deck 3 to look at all the pictures we've had taken the past two days. I didn't buy any of them. I have better pictures of me in the Bahamas than the ones taken getting of the ship. Not to mention they are expensive.

Dad wanted to see how windy it was so we went up to deck 9. I got some hot chocolate and he got coffee. He never did go outside to see how the wind was, not that I mind as it had to have been even more cold than it was earlier.

When we got back to the room, I put the pictures we took today on the computer and sorted them into the right folders. We took over 1,000 pictures today and over 5,550 total so far. This is far more than we took last year which is interesting since we took a lot of pictures at the shows last year and have only been to one show this time around.

I decided to get some pictures taken tonight since it's elegant night and I have a dress with me I haven't worn yet. I got dressed and headed to deck 3. I got 3 pictures taken with different backgrounds. I know I'll probably end up buying one tomorrow. That will be my last purchase.

I went back to the room and changed into something more comfortable and then dad and I went to eat. From there, we went to the show. The singers and dancers are very good. I would love to dance on a cruise ship, or perform somewhere, for a living. I'm just not that talented.

When we got back to our room we had TWO towel animals waiting. We took pictures of them and me with them. I looked over the things to do tomorrow and we are going to miss a couple things: the towel animal demonstration and the debarkation talk. We have to talk to Guest Services about debarkation anyway though.

I decided to do some packing so I wouldn't have to do it all tomorrow. I put all of my supper clothes away except for my Carnival shorts and tank top. I also organized all of my souvenirs. I don't think they are going to fit in my Arnold bag so I will carry them out separate.

The ship is really rocking tonight. It's making me a little queasy. I know I'm not going to get sick but it's still not comfortable. There's a lot of wind outside too. When we went up to eat they had all the outer deck areas closed off with signs saying it was dangerous due to high winds. The winds combined with the speed of the ship is over 40 mph.

The alarm is set for 7 am tomorrow. So much for sleep in on vacation. Hopefully I'll be able to sleep in on Tuesday. Monday I have to get up early to get my physical for my job at the hospital. I will probably sleep for the rest of the day when I get home.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I woke up a couple times through the night. Frank texted dad back saying he got the message about picking us up around 2 am or so. I got up few minutes before the alarm went off. I changed the time for 5 am and will have to remember to change it to a more reasonable time before going to bed.

We went upstairs to breakfast and then back to the room to drop off our cameras before going on the Behind the Fun tour of the ship. It was really neat and I would definitely do it again if I had the chance and the money.

We got to see the engine control room, the galleys, behind the stage, the dressing room, laundry facility, and crew dining facilities, among other places. Best of all, we got to see the bridge. We also got our picture taken in the galley and on the bridge. We'll get our pictures tonight. The bridge was AMAZING!!!! It was also neat to meet the captain and hear him answer questions.

We went back to the room to drop off the bag we got from the tour and watch the debarkation talk that we missed while on the tour. Then we went downstairs and dad returned the wheelchair and crutches while I looked at the pictures I had taken last night. I couldn't decide between two of them so I bought them both. Photos are probably the most expensive single thing I've bought this time.

We went back to the room and did some more packing. I am almost all packed now but will still have a few extra bags I'll have to carry off the ship. Not everything will fit in my Arnold bag. Considering how much extra room I had in there on the way out, I am having a hard time fitting in the same things on the way back home.

We both ended up taking a nap. Since dad packed his computer, we set the room phone to wake us up at 7 pm. We didn't need to set it though because around 10 til 7, the phone rang saying we had a delivery and it was some food that we saw being prepared during the galley tour. Dad ate most of it. I tried some of it and didn't really like it. I guess I have less expensive taste.

Soon after the food arrived, so did our pictures. They are okay. The did a pretty bad job photoshopping two of them though. Whatever was behind me was photoshopped out, along with some of my head. While it's amusing on some level, on another level it's annoying as I did pay for this tour, which included the photos, and you'd think they would have positioned us better, or did a better job photoshopping.

We went up to deck 9 so I could get something to drink and ended up eating. I must say I wasn't hungry when we went up there and was way too full when we left. I had steak fries, soup, a roll, fettuccine, and some milk. The second cup of milk is what pushed me over the limit though. Oh well, that's what vacation is for.

We came back to the room and continued packing. Our room had been cleaned for the night as well. I read over the debarkation papers and it appears we should be getting off around 10:15 am tomorrow if all goes as planned. Dad texted Frank again to let him know. I hope we don't get a reply at 2 am again.

I went down to deck 2 for the show around 10:25 and got there just in time. It was pretty good, and funny also. During the cruise they had karaoke and cast guests as certain singers for this show. Most of them were really good. It was really short though, around 30 minutes.

From there, I saw Lucy and we went own to the Beauties but didn't like the music so we went up to deck 9 to get some ice cream. Surprisingly I wasn't carded at Beauties this time around. I told her about taking so many pictures and she asked what I did with them all and I told her about my website. Then we went our separate ways to go back to our rooms. We'll probably see each other tomorrow before we get off.

I got back to the room and then went up to deck 9 to get dad some lemonade. I figured out before leaving that there was ice in our room. I wish I would have realized that earlier in the cruise. They were out of lemonade but I didn't realize that until I had already gotten two cups full. I brought the water down anyway.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

I was up before the alarm again today. The alarm was set for 7 am and I woke up around 6:30. I tried to get everything together and wake up while waiting for it to get light enough outside to go up on the outer decks and take some pictures of us coming in to the port.

Once it finally got light I was up and down on the decks for a while. It was cold and raining and I'd come back down the room to warm up some before going back up and taking more pictures. The rain made it hazy and hard to get good pictures, but I tried anyway. I had dad take a picture of me in front of the Carnival Pride sign on the ship as well.

We ended up docking an hour earlier than we were supposed to. We docked around 8 am. On the web, it said we were supposed to dock at 10 am, but on the papers they gave us on the cruise it said 9 am. Either way, we were still way early in docking.

We went down to the Taj Mahal with all of our stuff and waited to debark. I had two little boxes of cereal, one Fruit Loops the other Cheerios. They were good but made me thirsty. There was no way I was going to go all the way to deck 9 to get a drink either. I did go up to deck 3 and bought the Voyage Video and the Bridge and Engine Room video. 

We were the 4th deck to get called but it wasn't taking long at all. From the time the ship got clearance to the time we got off was probably less than 40 minutes. The Arnold bag was hurting my hands and I kept having to switch which hand was carrying it but we made it out.

When we got out, we called Frank and waited for him to get there. It took about 30 minutes. Considering the rain and everything, that's not too bad. We stopped to get gas and the battery wouldn't turn over. It took a while before we found someone to give us a jump but we got one and got home.

We got everything upstairs and I weighed myself. I gained about 2 lbs or so. Considering that I haven't been going to the bathroom very often, that could change once I get empty. I'll weigh myself again later in the week and see if things have changed.

We made some tortellini and pet all the cats. Boy were they happy to see us. We had the tortellini and then both of us took a nap. We slept for about 3 hours, which isn't that bad. When we woke up, I unpacked and took pictures of all my souvenirs. There were more than I realized. In all, we took almost 6,000 pictures, 5,777 to be exact. That's including the short movies I took also. 

I started going through and picking out pictures to put on my website and got through 4 days worth of them. I'll finish tomorrow. I ended up making spaghetti and having some before going to bed around midnight.