Thursday, May 11, 2017

Monday - Running On Fumes

Are you ready to go on this crazy cruise adventure with us?

It was amazing. I'm not even sure the best way to document something like this. I guess we'll just start at the beginning. Nope...too much. We'll just jump in somewhere and pick up any vital info along the way.

For instance, Jonny was amazing at finding sweet deals. He got us tickets down to Florida for only $160 a person. (That is crazy!! I can't even fly to WA for that amount.)

Tyler was uber efficient at packing. He looked up so much info and had lots of crazy tips for the road. I enjoyed letting the boys plan most of it, but I did my fair share of packing and sorting of gear before hand. For the record, we took two large suitcases (checked) and two carry-on suitcases, although by the time we left, one carry-on had practically nothing in it. (How did we leave with less stuff, even after buying souvenirs??)

Like all big days, it finally arrived. Same day as Easter actually. (Yes...that was excellent planning on our part.) I told the kids to hold their horses and we would do Easter festivities when we got back. Instead, dad and mom were going on a cruise.

We opted to fly overnight. This meant that our sleeping time was limited to what we got on the plane. Beth's brother Matt was very kind to take us to the airport in the evening. We had some time to kill, so we broke out the monologue jar*.

*funny story about the monologue jar. When we were discussing cruises, we looked into ones sailing out of CA. We decided that if we chose one of those, we might drive down to save money? Jonny and Beth (who we had never traveled with before) asked what kind of car people we were? You know...sleepers, music listeners, audio books, etc.? We said that we usually liked to talk. Just talk, they asked? Well...Jonny is not a big talker. He is more of an interjector. We threatened to create a monologue jar and someone would have to pull out a topic and speak about it for 7 minutes!

Well, true to our word, Tyler searched and found a hoard of questions. He printed them all up, and they were a highlight of the trip. They weren't in a jar, but we would pull out a list of questions now and then and go to town learning all about each other. Sometimes we answered for ourselves and sometimes we answered for our spouse. It was great fun. Here we are at the airport with our first list.

Then it was time to board the plane and fly to Florida. Because it was an overnight flight, they gave us masks and earplugs. I really liked mine. I put it over my eyes and dozed right off. (I manage to sleep in most environments.) Tyler slept lighter, not sure about Beth, and Jonny didn't sleep at all. He knew it wouldn't work well, so he just watched two movies on the flight over. That seemed crazy to me, but if you know you aren't going to sleep, might as well enjoy your flight another way. Look how cute Tyler looks in his sleep mask.

Upon arriving, we went through the usual stuff. Rode the subway to get our baggage.

Got a rental car. Did I mention that our amazing flights didn't go Miami, where the port was? Instead, they went to Orlando and we drove down from there. This is not something we would do again. Although it saved us some money, we decided all the extra driving, long evening flight and bazillion toll roads were not worth the savings. Beth and Jonny were troopers and drove the almost four hours to Miami. We did stop for breakfast at this mall in the middle of nowhere. Literally, it was in the middle of the freeway, in the middle of nowhere. Guess they knew people would get hungry out there.

The sky was beautiful and the scenery was lovely. There was so much mist across the landscape as the sun rose, it was really awesome. Here is the sun peeking behind a cloud.

Time flew by....well, I slept a bit...and after many tolls, we arrived at the dock. Our boat was called The Enchantment of the Seas. We decided on Royal Caribbean cruise line. I think price factored into it, although some cruise lines we wouldn't have chosen even if they had been cheaper.

We waited at check in for just a bit since Jonny had to drop off the rental car. Good time for a selfie.

Inside we got our SeaPass. This is a card that opens your door and you take it with you EVERYWHERE. Behind us are the lanyards that we should have purchased to carry the card. We did fine without one, but it would have been very convenient.

Almost there.

This is the view we had of the ship while boarding. I guess this is really happening. We are going on a cruise!

Naturally, we did some exploring first off. We had lunch at the buffet. We found the pools and Solarium. We located the Spa, theater, shops, dining room, and the upper deck. Here is a station where you can stop to do some exercises. (For the record, I never saw anyone running around the deck.) you go. A picture of the entire ship. It may only be a model, but it gives you a pretty good idea of what it looks like. (On the outside at least.)

Rooms didn't open until later, but we found those as well. We had to do the emergency drill where everyone reported to their muster station. Oh, when we finally got into our rooms, Tyler found his soda cup. He was so excited. Here is a strange mix of elation and sleep deprivation on his face.

Eventually, we were under way, sailing away from the Miami shores. If you look extremely close, you can see the skyline back there on the horizon. (Really, you have to get out the magnifying glass.)

Dinner was amazing in the evening and was a highlight of every day. We dined in My Fair Lady. We had a set table based on our reservation. The menu changed every night and we were able to choose a wide range of interesting entrees and hors d'oeuvres. Most of the food was simply amazing. I think the first night I had a steak salad that I am still craving.

One last picture before we hit the hay. The deck was lovely at night. And with full bellies, we were ready to head off to dreamland, especially Jonny who probably needed a good night's rest.

Ready to wake up in the Bahamas??

1 comment:

meganmushrat said...

It must have been hard to believe that you were actually starting your cruise after planning it for 3 years. Bet you slept well that night!