Monday, September 21, 2009

Cruisin' the Caribbean...Day 3

Day 3
Sept 9

Grand Cayman
After a day and a half at sea we finally docked at our first port of call, which was Grand Cayman Island. I have always wanted to go to the Cayman Islands, so my wish finally came true. We had a more limited amount of time in Grand Cayman so we decided not to do any excursions and opted for good old fashioned sightseeing and shopping instead.
We docked at 8:00 am but we decided to wait until closer till 9:00 to get off, so I wouldn't be so crowded. Before we headed over we went to the top of the ship for some pics.

Our first stop was Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville. We had been to the Margaritaville in the Turk Cacaos Islands several years ago, so we knew we couldn't go wrong. From there we did a little shopping. One of the places we went was The Tortuga Rum Company they have a huge selection of liquor at excellent prices but they are know for their Rum Cakes. There are probably 12 different flavors and they have them all available for you to sample. I did my best to try them all and not look like a total pig. My favorite was the Coconut Rum Cake. It was sooo good, of course I bought a small one. It wasn't until we were back home and Heath kept trying to eat it all that I realized I should have gotten more. We will be ordering more because they are EXCELLENT!

Next we headed on over to an open air market where locals were selling handmade crafts. While we were there a man was selling fresh coconuts. He would cut the top off, stick a straw in so you could drink the milk. Then once you were done if you brought it back to him he would cut it open so you could eat the insides. Heath couldn't resist he had to try it. Here is a little video...Please excuse the swine flu commentary in the background.

I tried some of the milk and it was SUPER sweet, too sweet for me. I tried a little of the insides too but, I DID NOT like that, it was a little like jelly...ugh! I thought it was going to be like the little shredded coconut that I like so much, for the record...ITS NOT!

After a little more shopping along the waterfront, we headed over to the Hard Rock Cafe and Senor Frogs...which I love! Here is what greeted us at Senor Frogs...
I thought is was so funny I had to get a pic. Ok, so maybe I am the only one who thought it was funny! I am easily entertained, what can I say!
After we had been on the island for awhile we decided to head back to the ship because we thought it was getting close to time to leave. Well apparently we were wrong... we were about an hour earlier than we thought getting back on. Which in the end turned out to be a good thing because as soon as we got back on the ship and went to lunch it started to pour down rain. Glad we weren't stuck on the island in it!.

The rest of the afternoon we took it easy. Lounging by the pool and then later taking a nap. After arriving back on board in our room was a pretty little invitation, requesting our presence at a past guest reception at 5:00. We went and of course got more free drinks...WOO HOO! Several blue margaritas and a glass of wine later we went back to our room to get ready for dinner (Don't worry, I snagged another glass of wine to take with me for dinner!) Dinner was yummy as per usual. That evening after dinner they had a party out on the adult lounge deck. It was a Mojitos and Cigars under the Stars Party! We went for a little while and then eventually headed to bed. Cruises really take it out of you or maybe it's the drinking, who knows ?!?

Here are a few more pics from the day...

The water was so beautiful...

Shops along the shore...

Our ship, from the island...

Heath with his coconut!

Heading back to the boat!

Towel Animal: When we opened our door that evening, there was a frog on our bed! A towel frog at least...of all the animals he could have made.... I took my picture with Kermit, it tuned out a little more cheeky than I had anticipated...must have been the free drinks...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Cruisin the Caribbean...Day 2

Day 2:

Sept 8

Tuesday morning we woke up, well I woke up, and headed out to the pool. We were at sea and could see nothing but beautiful blue ocean in every direction. Heath came out to join us a little later.

We spent the day soaking up the sun, eating, and enjoying all the fun activities on board. Heath was the official grand champion at the bean bag toss, he was quite proud of this. He felt the need to defend his championship later in the day at the doubles match, so of course he needed a partner. Let's just say, maybe he should have picked a different partner.

The rest of my day pretty much looked like this....

Around 4:30 pm we passed right by Cuba, you could see it from the boat. It was kinda neat! I took so video of it but you can't really see it in the video. We were very close, close enough to see little houses and the beach, it was really neat!

Tuesday evening was our formal night, which I was super excited about because I love to get dressed up. I found this dress on a clearance rack at Macy's for $15 and was immediately in love. I wore it for as long as I could that evening even though after dinner it was so tight I almost couldn't breathe. It is one of my all time favorite dresses.

Before dinner was the Captain's Cocktail Party, which basically is code for FREE DRINKS. The party is only 45 minutes long so we were trying to drink as much as possible in that amount of time. I managed to get down 4 whiskey sours and snagged two glasses of wine to carry over to dinner with me. It's a wonder I could even stand because I was STARVING! I was so hungry I was eating the olives out of the martinis!

Whiskey sour #1, Cheers!

Oh, besides drinking we did get in a few dances...

Heath was super excited about dinner because lobster was on the menu. I don't care for lobster so he ate mine too. I ate all the shrimp though! Yummy! Here are a few pics from the evening!

Heath and his Lobster Our Formal Picture
Us being silly! Waltz Pose!

Still standing despite all the drinks...

After dinner we went to the show which was really cute, they had alot of great costumes and good music...Here is Cindy and I waiting for the show to start...

After the show we finally went to change, my dress was really tight after dinner! We headed out to the "R" rated comedy show. Where I had my third glass of wine which I proceeded to spill all down the front of me as soon as Heath handed it to me. Thank goodness they gave me a new one at no charge! Drinks are expensive! After the show and the wine I was ready to pass out, so we headed off to bed.

Towel Animal: Well if you have been following the story here you will remember I have had a good bit to drink, so I don't exactly remember what the animal was but, I have a faint memory of a rabbit!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Cruisin' the Caribbean...Day 1

So finally after 8 long months of waiting, we set sail on our cruise. There is so much to tell, I've had to break it down into several smaller posts. I have tons of pictures and some videos. The videos aren't the best they are kinda fun. Mostly we are just being silly, and most of the videos are of Heath...hope you enjoy.

Day 1: Tampa, Fl
Sept 7

We left on our cruise out of Tampa, Fl so we decided to drive down on the Sunday before. It takes approximately 6 hours to get from our house to Tampa. The drive seemed to take forever. Eventually we got there and grabbed some dinner at a great little local Italian place.

Monday morning we got up, headed to the mall for a quick stop and some lunch and then headed out to the port, armed with directions from Mapquest given to us by our hotel. Let me just say for the record I have never had directions from Mapquest that actually got me to the destination. They are ALWAYS wrong, I would also like to point out that I made this point before we began following these direction. As per usual we got lost! Thank you Mapquest, yet again! The ladies then took over and we eventually found our way there.

Check in was a breeze and we hoped right on the boat. We had amazing sunny Florida-ish weather for our send off. So, we headed straight for the pool and the bar of course!
Here is a little video of us heading out of port in Tampa!

We were all super excited for dinner. Let's just say that is one of our favorite things each day! Dinner of course was yummy, just as expected. After dinner was a welcome aboard show which was kind of cute, but cheesy. They also had a really funny comedian. After a little walking around I headed to bed and of course Heath had to stop by the casino. We were officially ready for our first day at sea.

Here are a few pics from our first night at sea!

For those of you who haven't cruised before, each evening while you are at dinner your room steward comes in to turn down the bed and makes a little animal out of your towels. It always fun to go and see what you I thought I would share this each day...

Towel Animal: Well guys, for those of you that were on our last cruise with us, wouldn't you know on our first night, you guessed it...the who-ha! Which I can only assume is perhaps a swan!?! Of course I didn't get a photo! So it still remains a mystery, like Big Foot, you have to see it to believe it!