As some of you know, I recently went on a cruise with three of my friends; Cardine, Sarah, and Joy. We flew out of SLC just before midnight on the 11th, had a 6 hour layover in Atlanta, and arrived in San Juan around 3:30 EST. Our ports for this cruise were St. Thomas on Monday, Dominica on Tuesday, Barbados on Wednesday, and St. Lucia on Thursday. We were supposed to go to Antigua on Friday, but Hurricane Dean got in the way. Instead, Carnival tried to let us go to Tortola on Saturday to make up for missing Antigua, but once again Dean got in the way, and we ended up having two days at sea.
It was a great vacation. On our last cruise, I didn’t spend much time relaxing, but I made up for it this time. Granted, last time (four years ago), I was working part-time and was on summer break from school. Life was easy! Now, I’m a lot more stressed and lots less relaxed.
Anyway, here are the best parts of my cruise: (in no particular order)
1. Nodding off every time I opened my book. I really needed to catch up on my sleep, so this felt wonderful! Took forever to finish the book, though.
2. Compliments about my eyes. Multiple men told me how beautiful my eyes are. It’s always nice to hear people say nice things about you, though the last guy, Henry in St. Lucia, was a little overboard in his praises.
3. Winning a print of a beautiful painting. The print is worth several hundred dollars, so can you imagine what the painting must be worth? The print I won is entitled “D’or et de rêve” and is painted by Emile Bellet. I fell in love with some of his other works displayed on board, so I was thrilled to win this!
4. Getting kissed by our head waiter, Sunil. Please don’t read too much into this. He was an extraordinary flirt – just ask my friends! One day I was eating lunch alone, and we ended up talking for a long time, and at one point he kissed me right above my jaw, right by my ear. He held it for a few seconds! What a flirt! He probably just hoped for a better tip.
5. Hanging out with friends. I have wonderful friends. We get along amazingly well considering how different we are. Maybe because of how different? Anyway, life is leading us along different paths (sorry for the cliché), so it was good to spend a week together, just playing.
6. Someone else making my bed. I love having my bed made. I really love having someone else do it for me. Pampered. That’s how I felt.
7. Great food. Four years ago I stayed so active that I actually lost weight. Not this time! I gained 4 pounds, but considering how lovely the food was and how little I did, this isn’t horrible. Seriously, the food was fantastic! My favorite meal was the Indian platter with the curried chick pea mash. Sigh. Divine. Absolutely divine. My one complaint would be that I felt there wasn’t enough time in-between meals. I was rarely hungry or even ready to eat once dinner came along. That didn’t stop me, of course, but I would have preferred to have the later dinner sitting.
8. St. Thomas. This was my favorite port; not necessarily my favorite island, but my favorite port. That’s because I feel like we were able to see a good deal of the island (very important), see something specific on the island (Blackbeard’s Castle and several old homes), do a little shopping, and eat at a local restaurant. The complete experience. I like the other ports, too, just not as much.
9. Hurricane Dean. Though it cost me a trip to Antigua and to Tortola, I’m grateful to Dean for providing me with some really good moments. Friday night Cardine and I spent several hours on deck getting blown away. I slept a little, read a little, thought a lot, and enjoyed the solitude that major gusts can afford. Saturday afternoon I was on deck, basking in the sun (the only guest there not wearing a swimsuit – yes, I got funny looks) when it started to rain. The decks cleared, leaving just a handful of people, none of them even close to me. Again, solitude. I got to have the wonderful experience of watching the rain hit the ocean water (which was the most beautiful blue I’ve ever seen).
10. Enjoying my job again. I admit it; I had major burn-out at work. It feels great to enjoy being at work again. I really needed a vacation.
That’s the quick highlight-version of my cruise. I probably won’t ever go into further details because a) I don’t want to (it took me 5 ½ hours to write the details in my journal and I don’t want a repeat) and b) you’d get bored. Trust me, you would.
However, you may want to check Cardine’s blog for added details, once she posts about the cruise.
GO ON A CRUISE!!
It’s lot’s of fun.