DISCLAIMER: January 12-21, 2012, I went to Florida and then on a cruise to The Bahamas. This post is about my experience on the cruise and in The Bahamas and is more for personal journaling purposes (I'm not hand writing all of this!) than me expecting people to really take the time to read this long entry. I already wrote about my experience in Florida and it was also long. I am not expecting anyone to read these posts in their entirety, but if anyone really is interested in getting the whole experience, feel free to read on!

On Monday, January 16, 2012, Alissa and I got up bright and early to get ready for our cruise. We took our hotel’s shuttle to the airport, and from there we took Carnival’s pre-cruise transfer from MCO Airport to Port Canaveral. The bus ride took about an hour. We took a happy picture of us on the bus because we were so excited to finally be going on our cruise!

I don’t remember what time we got to the port, but it was probably around 11 am or noon. We had to go through security and when I walked through the metal detector it beeped. I couldn’t figure out why, and the lady asked me if I had anything in my pockets? No. Did I still have this or that? No. Did I have any bracelets on? That’s when I remembered my watch, haha. After security we went through all the lines for getting our deck plan and Sail and Sign cards, etc. Then we waited for our embarkation zones to be called. We were zone 15, and when we got to the waiting area I think they were on zone 5 or something. Fortunately they got everyone through really fast. All we had to do at that point was get our security pictures taken and walk onto the ship, which was the Carnival Ecstasy.

Our rooms wouldn’t be ready until 1:30, so basically everyone’s option was to go up to the Lido deck, which is where the pool and buffet are. We weren’t really hungry yet, but Alissa got a salad and I went straight for the soft serve, lol! After that I found some desserts that looked really good, so I had a little of those, and I think I also had a small salad. Then we walked around and relaxed on the lounge chairs until our room was ready. Alissa had been wanting to swim with dolphins for years, but it was $200 so she wasn’t planning on doing it. She started thinking maybe she should just go ahead and do it though, so she called her mom and her sister to get their opinions. They talked her into it, but she was still hesitating when she got off the phone, so I told her I wouldn’t let her back out.

At 5:00 we set sail. Alissa and I sat outside and watched us sailing away for a while, then she went to buy her ticket for the dolphin excursion and I decided to buy the Bottomless Bubbles sticker. Bottomless Bubbles lets you order as many sodas as you want for the duration of the cruise (they’re not part of the free drinks) for only $6.00 a day. The nice thing about waiting until we set sail was there was no longer any tax on anything. Same with in The Bahamas; everything is tax and duty free. I was noticing that the ship was rocking a lot, and when we went back to our room I made the mistake of reading the daily schedule (or Capers, as they’re called), then sitting on the bed and watching the sunset outside of our ocean view window. The combination of those two things caused me to get motion sickness.

Our dinner was at 6:00, and our table was right by a window. I was a little nervous about that, but it was almost dark by the time we got there, so I didn’t have to worry about seeing the water and feeling even sicker. I was also a little nervous about the other people at our table at first, because they were all quite a bit older than us. The youngest person there besides us was in her late 40s or early 50s. I wonder if they try to put people at the same table with similar traveling companions, and by that I mean, everyone at our table was a person traveling with a friend and no one else. The younger lady was there with her aunt (Michelle and Marilyn) from Florida, there were two older ladies who were neighbors (Erline and Berle) from Nebraska, and then there were two men (Frank and Fred) also from Florida, who we later figured out were gay, lol. There were no married couples or children at our table. Anyway, I needn’t have worried about all the older people at our table because they were all really fun.

Our head waiter was Roy Anthony from Jamaica, and our assistant waiter was Bogdan from Romania. Boy, was Bogdan cute, cute, cute! I called him “my boyfriend” behind his back every time I saw him, e.g. “Look, there’s my boyfriend!”

Of course, the food was delicious. They give you a starter, main course and dessert every night, but you can order as much as you want, so if you want two starters or two entrees or three desserts, you can. They also give you bread while you wait for your starter.

Night 1, I got:

Starter: Smoked Hudson Valley Duck Breast served on Thai glass noodle salad
Main course: Cinnamon, Pumpkin, Squash, Yam and Cheddar Pot Pie
Dessert: Warm Chocolate Melting Cake served with vanilla ice cream

I also ordered a Diet Coke, and every night after that, almost as soon as I’d sat down at the table, a Diet Coke was placed in front of me. I never had to ask. They took pictures during dinner that first night. They took normal ones, and then there was a pirate walking around holding a fake sword to people’s throats. I tried to make a scared face for that one, but I’m pretty sure it just turned out like something more of a grimace. Unfortunately, we never could find the pictures of us from that first evening, so I have no idea how they turned out. I could also feel the ship rocking quite a lot at dinner, which wasn’t fun.

After dinner we went back to our room and saw our first towel animal. I’m not sure, but it looked something like a stingray, and it had little chocolate mints for eyes. It made me laugh. We got in our swimsuits and went up to one of the hot tubs. We didn’t stay in very long because I had a full stomach and still wasn’t used to the rocking. I felt soooo sick that night. We went to bed pretty early (around 10, I think), and I did alright with the rocking. I had originally picked the bed by the window, but it faced the same direction as the ship, so I could feel the movement going from side to side. Alissa said we could switch beds if the other one was better, so I laid down on it and it was much better. It was facing perpendicular to the ship, and the rocking in that direction didn’t bother me one bit. At one point during the night I woke up feeling incredibly sick to my stomach, and felt like I was going to throw up right then and there. Luckily, I didn’t. Unfortunately, there were some pretty loud people in the rooms next to us, and I’m pretty sure they came down around midnight after spending some time drinking. They were so loud and someone kept yelling “Hey!” in this really obnoxious voice. It was seriously one of the most annoying sounds I’ve ever heard. I think they were up til around 1:30.

The nice thing is that the bedding they use is the most comfortable bedding I’ve ever used in my life. The beds had nice cotton sheets and down comforters. I’m very sensitive to the way covers feel against my skin, and I can’t stand scratchy or fuzzy blankets. The bedding at our hotel in Florida was terrible, but this was SO comfortable!

Day 2, Tuesday, was our Fun Day at Sea, which means we were on board all day sailing toward Half Moon Cay. Fortunately I had no motion sickness that day. The rocking was still noticeable, and a few times I felt like I better be careful or I might feel sick again, but I avoided any real sickness. That morning I went to the launderette to wash some clothing. When I went down there I saw that it was $3.00 to wash a load and $1.00 (in quarters, of course) to buy some detergent. I saw the washing machine had some sort of card swiping slot, so I thought I’d be able to just use my Sail and Sign card. I don’t remember all the specifics, I just remember that the events that followed caused me to walk back and forth between our room (at the back of deck 4) and the launderette (in the middle of deck 6) multiple times. Basically, I forgot something (my clothes or my money) and had to walk back to our room. I couldn’t actually use my Sail and Sign card, so I had to go to the guest services desk and change $3.00 for quarters. I had to walk to our room and get one more quarter from Alissa for detergent. All in all, I probably walked back and forth at least 4 or 5 times and it was pretty ridiculous. We went to breakfast after that, and after breakfast I went back to the launderette to get my clothes, only to realize I’d forgotten the bag I needed to carry them in, so of course I had to walk back to our room to get that.

At some point after that we went back up to the Lido. I think we were just planning on sitting outside, but I ended up getting ice cream (no surprise there) and eventually went to the deli and got an Arugula sandwich. I have no idea what Arugula is, but the sandwich was delicious. After that Alissa decided to get some food. I’m pretty sure I got another ice cream after that, lol. After eating, we ended up just sitting in some chairs and watching the ocean, and eventually we dozed off. After a while, we got cold because the sun wasn’t shining on us, so we went up on the Verandah and found some lounge chairs in the sun. While we were up there, I decided that was the perfect time to go find some sunglasses, because the sun was so bright. I walked inside and turned a corner and there was a shop! Incredible! AND they had sunglasses! I ended up buying the first pair I tried on. Well, I tried on several more pairs, but I ultimately went with the first pair. I went back outside and we dozed a little longer. I think we ended up spending about 2 or 3 hours outside. Then we went to our room and napped a little longer, while more people were loud outside our room.

That night was our Elegant Night at dinner. I woke up about 2 hours before dinner and curled my hair, which didn’t take long. When I pulled out the clothes I was going to wear, I discovered my shirt was sooooo wrinkled! I knew there was no way I was going to wear that, so I walked BACK up to the launderette to iron it. It was a good thing I went when I did, because as I was finishing up a line started forming because everyone wanted to iron their clothes for formal night.

Night 2, I got:

Starter:
1. Baked Stuffed White Mushrooms with spinach, Romano cheese and fine herbs
2. Strawberry Bisque—chilled creamy strawberry soup with fresh mint
Main course: Duet of Broiled Maine Lobster Tail and Grilled Jumbo Shrimp with roasted broccoli roses and Yukon Gold potato mash
Dessert:
1. Bitter and Blanc: Dark and white chocolate pudding (a bread pudding)
2. Ice cream sundae

That was the first night the staff danced for us. Since it was Elegant Night, they were playing more classical and opera themed music, and the dance was a slow dance. I did notice the ship rocking at dinner again, but it wasn’t bad.

After dinner we went back to our room and saw our towel animal was, we think, a dog wearing my new sunglasses. Of course, it made me laugh.

I don’t remember if we went to the comedy club that night or the next, but we went to the family show and it was hilarious! My favorite joke was at the end of the show. The comedian was a black guy, and he was talking about how black people will name their kids anything. He had been talking about Kwanza and he said that sounds like something a black person would name their child. “Kwanza, get over here!” Then he started throwing out hilarious names, like Propecia. My favorite was, “Nyquil, stop running, coughing and sneezing so you can get some rest!” And then he ended with “Where’s Lunesta?” “She’s upstairs sleeping!” I was crying by the end.

We went to bed early again, and this time the rowdy crowd outside was up until at least 3:30. And of course, there was more “Hey!”

Day 3, Wednesday, was our first port day. We went to Half Moon Cay (pronounced ‘key’), which is Carnival’s private island, and it is BEAUTIFUL! Picture sugar white sand and turquoise water, or pretty much any tropical beach you’ve seen a picture of or on tv, and you have HMC. The sand on the beach was so powdery soft! Unfortunately, the water was kind of cold, but we got used to it pretty fast. However, I didn’t actually go to the beach until later. First of all, the island was too small for our ship to go to the shore, so we had to take a smaller boat to the actual island. I had booked an Eco Bike/Hike combo that started at 9:30, so Alissa went to the beach while I went on that. It was so much fun! We rode on beach cruisers and stopped at a couple of places. We stopped at a beach where people who had booked the horseback riding excursion went. We got to see them coming down the beach on the horses, but what we didn’t see is the part where they actually ride the horses INTO the water. Then we rode to a little inlet where our tour guide told us they don’t allow swimming because of the stingrays, barracudas, etc. that breed there. Then we started our little hike to the highest point on the island, which was a whopping 60 feet above sea level. It was definitely not a strenuous hike, and we got to see so many cool things! We saw a lot of cool plants, animals and even old ruins from the people who lived there in the 1700s. We saw Blue Tailed Lizards, a Solider Crab, Lignum Vitae (the national tree of The Bahamas), the bush they use for sewing/straw and a huge termite nest, just to name a few things. Then we went back to the inlet and got back on our bikes, which we rode to the Stingray Adventure and watched for a while the people doing the stingray excursion. Our tour guide told us stingrays are pretty much like underwater puppies; they like to be petted and fed, and they only sting when they feel threatened. She said their barbs are in the middle of their tails. I think they had 5 stingrays—4 females and “1 lucky male,” lol. The oldest stingray had been rescued after her tail was bitten off by a shark. After that we rode back to where we started, and I changed into my swimsuit and met up with Alissa at the beach.

I went in the water a little ways, but didn’t go very deep and didn’t stay in very long. After that Alissa and I walked along the beach looking for shells. We didn’t find any big ones, but we found some small ones. They were hard to collect because the waves kept coming in every time you thought you saw a good one. We walked down quite a ways, and at one point we even saw some little white fish swimming right at the edge of the water with the waves. It was strange that they came in that close; I was wondering if they meant to or if the waves were just too powerful for them, lol! After spending a good half an hour or so walking up the beach, I could barely see any more from staring so long at the white sand with the sun shining on it. We walked back to our chairs and I laid down for a while. Alissa went in the water but when I tried it was just too cold, so I finished drying off and then we went to look for food. We had seen signs that said “Island BBQ” so we walked for a while until we found it. Since the food was provided by Carnival it was pretty dang good – burgers, potato and pasta salads, fresh fruit and, of course, some sweets. We ate, and I don’t think we really did much after that. I think we just got our stuff and got on the boat that took us back to the ship. I think we got back around 2:00 or 2:30.

That night they had the sushi bar from 5:00-8:00 or something, so we went when they opened, since our dinner was at 6:00. I didn’t want to eat much since it was so close to dinner, so I didn’t even eat much of the sushi. They gave us three pieces, and I only ate one of them. The second one fell apart because the rice wasn’t sticky enough, and the third one I think I just had one bite of it. They weren’t bad, but I just wasn’t in the mood for sushi. After that we went to dinner. I decided to mix things up a bit and sat on the other side of the table. The advantage to this was that I could watch Bogdan all night as he worked.

Night 3, I got:

Starter: Mango Cream—iced mango cream soup, spiced with fresh ginger
Main course: Gourmet Burger
Dessert:
1. Hot Chocolate
2. Old Fashioned Apple Pie with vanilla ice cream

Of course, they danced for us again. I don’t remember what song they played that night, but it was some poppy hip-hop song, I’m sure. Bogdan asked one of the ladies next to me (I can’t remember who) if she wanted to dance. She declined, so he turned and asked me. Being completely self-conscious and not liking to dance, I said no. I really should have said yes though. I could feel the ship rocking again, but I don’t think I noticed it much. I had absolutely no bouts with motion sickness that day either. After dinner we went back to our room, and our towel animal was what looked like a llama wearing my sunglasses. Yep, it made me laugh pretty hard.

Day 4, Thursday, we ported in Nassau. I absolutely LOVED Nassau! For Alissa, that was swimming with dolphins day! She wasn’t sure when she’d be back, so we planned to meet at the entrance to the city at 1:30. I went into the city and walked down the street until I found a boat that said “snorkeling.” I asked how much it cost and they told me $35 but that the boat wasn’t running that day. The guy walked me down to another boat that could take me. When I got on there were only workers on there. I paid and sat down to wait, and after a while a whole bunch of other people got on. I’m guessing they booked in advance because nobody paid. This boat did snorkeling and kayaking. They gave us a very entertaining demonstration on how to use all of the equipment before we were on our way. At one point the guy talked about making sure any loose strings or hair was tucked away if you were going to be using the power scooters, because they can get caught. He said just the other day a woman’s strings from her bikini top got suck and she couldn’t come out of the water, so he had to cut her loose. He said “That was a beautiful day. Yeah mon.” Haha! They showed us pictures of a lion fish, and the guy told us that lion fish didn’t used to be in The Bahamas, but that over the last few years they’d shown up somehow. He told us to be careful because they are deadly, and that they wouldn’t come up to the top where we were. They also said they had bags of fish food for $1.00, and that you’d get a lot of fish that would come up to you if you had food.

Getting in the water was terrible! It was soooo cold and we had to just jump in all at once, and I wasn’t used to breathing with the tube in my mouth, so the result was me spending a minute or so freezing and feeling like I couldn’t breathe. Once I got used to the temperature my breathing calmed down, though. When I first got in I heard someone say “There are fish everywhere!” I looked down, and sure enough, there were fish everywhere! We were at a reef so that was pretty cool. They gave us an hour, so I started swimming around, and every few minutes I’d get salt water in my mouth. Bleh! It was so cool to see all the fish, though. It was strange because the water wasn’t very deep and a lot of the fish swam pretty close. I kept being afraid of feeling a fish touch my legs but I never did.

While swimming around I did see a lion fish! It was so cool. It was just sitting there at the bottom of the reef, but knowing that it was deadly filled me with both awe and fright. After a while I remembered what they said about the bags of fish food. I was kind of contemplating buying one, but eventually another group bought one and it was so cool! The fish literally swarmed. While I was hanging around watching, the girl holding the bag of food mistook me for someone else and asked if I wanted some. Her friend said “That’s not Amy!” We laughed and then she let me take some anyway.

After a while I was incredibly thirsty from all the salt water, and my jaw was hurting from biting down on the tube, so I went back to the boat. All in all, I think I only swam for about 30 minutes, but a lot of other people had started coming in too. When we were getting ready to leave, I think one of the workers on the boat found a shell, like an oyster shell or something, and I guess he noticed that I was by myself because he came over and gave it to me. I was caught off guard and at first I wasn’t sure what he was handing me, so I just kind of mumbled a “thank you.” A few minutes later I was thinking I should have said a better thank you, and when I was over at the water jug getting a drink, he came over. I thought it was him, but I wasn’t sure, so I asked “Are you the one who gave me that shell?” He said yes, so I said “Thank you so much!” He said “Welcome to The Bahamas!” and I said thank you again. Apparently he really liked that I said thank you, because a few minutes later he called me over and handed me a conch shell! I’m pretty sure my jaw dropped. I said “For me??” and he said yes. Of course, I said “Thank you so much!” all over again. He then proceeded to ask me how long I was going to be in Nassau and what I was doing later. Haha! It was all the more flattering when I got back to the cruise ship and saw how hideous I looked!

On the way back to the dock we passed a bunch of celebrity houses belonging to people like Chuck Norris, Tiger Woods, Oprah Winfrey and the owner of The Atlantis Resort (that’s where Alissa went for her excursion). They were such nice houses! I took a lot of pictures on the boat ride back because Nassau is such a beautiful place! As we were nearing the dock, we passed our cruise ship and noticed that there were a lot of people standing on deck wearing life jackets. We were all wondering what the heck could be going on! Somebody made a joke that someone flicked their cigarette over the side and caught something on fire. As I was planning to go straight back to the ship and take a shower, I was nervous that I wouldn’t be able to get back on.

After we pulled in, the guy who gave me the shells was holding a box for tips, and of course I gave a generous tip! I was still floating on cloud nine because, let’s be honest, I can’t remember the last time a guy flirted with me. It took probably about 5 minutes to walk back to the ship, and as I was nearing it I heard a beeping, and every time it beeped they would blow the fog horn. As I got nearer I heard the cruise director saying over the speaker “The drills are now over,” and I saw a passenger just hanging out on his balcony with his shirt off, so I figured it must have just been drills for the crew. Phew! I got back on the ship without one speck of trouble.

After showering and making myself presentable, I had only a few minutes to get to the entrance to the city before I was supposed to meet Alissa. I walked as fast as I could and got there right on time. I ended up waiting for about half an hour but she never came, so I decided just to go back in the city and walk around some more. The entrance to the city is indoors, and they have a bunch of little shops in there. A Baptist band was also playing “This Little Light of Mine” and people were getting really into it, lol. I saw that a lot of the shops sold these cute little straw purse things with different designs on them. A lot of them had Disney Princesses or Dora the Explorer on them. I wanted one, but they were $14-16, and I just didn’t want to pay that much. I also saw a lot of conch shells for sale, and I was glad that I didn’t have to pay for one.

After that I walked outside and headed the direction I had gone to look for boats that morning. I ended up walking to the end of the street and found the restaurant/bar Señor Frogs. A lady on the plane had mentioned that place to use, and the guy who gave me the shells had also said I should go down there. Since I had no interest in drinking, and Alissa and I wanted to try conch together, I just went into the little gift shop for a minute, and then decided to walk back. When I left the shop there was a guy out there holding beaded necklaces, and before I knew it he was putting one around my neck and had shoved one into my hand. He told me he couldn’t charge for them but people tipped for them and that’s how he made his money. He also said that when he put it on me I was officially a native. Haha. I only had a $20 bill but he said he’d give me change and handed me back $10. When I started to protest he said “You bought two of them.” I was so enamored with the city and the people at that point that I didn’t even care he’d tricked me into paying $10 for two necklaces that I could have made myself at home for much cheaper, and I just laughed and said “Oh, ok.”

It was after 2:00 at that point and I realized I hadn’t eaten since breakfast, so I decided to go back to the ship and get some lunch. On the way back a guy in a Rasta hat came up to me really close and said “Hey sweetie, you want to buy some weed?” I just burst out laughing and said “No, I’m good!” I took my time walking back to the ship, taking lots of pictures of the water and the palm trees and everything else, and just chuckling to myself all the way back. I got back around 2:20, so I left I note for Alissa in our room saying I was at the buffet and went up to eat. After I got done eating I went back to our room and she still wasn’t back. I think at that point I decided to just go lay out on the deck in the sunshine. After doing that for a while, I wondered when the heck Alissa was going to get back, and decided to go back to our room. I can’t remember if it was on the way down or when I got to our room, but I finally found her. We swapped stories about our day, and when she saw the necklace I was wearing she said “Oh, you met that kid too?” Turns out she got ambushed by some kid selling the same necklaces, and he tried to make her buy two as well, but she only had $3.00 with her so he just gave her the one. She spent some time in Africa last year, and when I told her about the guy who gave me the conch shell and was hitting on me, she said for some reason black guys all want a white girl. She told me how earlier that day when she was walking in Nassau some guy asked her “Do you need a taxi?” She said no, and he asked if she needed something else, and she said no, and as she was walking away she thought she heard him say “Do you need a husband?” HAHA! Anyway, she’d had a wonderful day as well, swimming with dolphins and then walking around Nassau. She had lots of pictures to document her experience. I don’t even know what we did the rest of the evening, but at 6:00 we went to dinner.

Night 4, I got:

Starter:
1. Spinach and Artichoke Dip with crisp tortilla chips
2. Chilled Creamy Bing Cherry Soup
Main course:
I ordered: Penne Siciliana—durum wheat pasta, tossed with a sauce of eggplant, zucchini, plum tomatoes, cream, pecorino cheese and Italian herbs
What was brought to me: Bacon Mac N’ Cheese (B.M.C.)— apple wood smoked bacon, with aged cheddar cheese topped with a grilled, marinated chicken breast
Dessert: Grand Marnier Soufflé served with orange vanilla sauce

I had actually been considering the Mac N’ Cheese, but decided against it. Marilyn was sitting next to me and she ordered the Penne Siciliana as well, but they brought us both the B.M.C. She sent hers back, but I decided to try it first, and it was good so I just kept it. Well, it was good, but had a little too much bacon for my taste. I was actually glad I’d kept it though, because when they brought Marilyn her Penne Siciliana I didn’t think it looked that good. I’m sure I would have liked it because I thought the description sounded delicious, but I didn’t mind. I also forgot that I could watch my boyfriend all night if I sat on the other side of the table, and I sat on the side I’d sat on the first two nights.

During dinner Michelle told us a funny story. She said that the first two night when they went back to their room, the towel animal was on Marilyn’s bed, so Michelle got jealous and left a note for the room steward the next night asking if she would please put the towel animal on her bed that night. When they went back after dinner, sure enough, the towel animal was now on her bed. The next day their room steward was laughing and asked them who the jealous one was.

When they passed out the dessert menu, I knew right away I was going to have the soufflé, but Bogdan told us all, “The soufflé is the best,” so everyone except Michelle ordered it. I had been taking pictures of most of the food, and of course I took pictures of the soufflé. They came around with extra sauce and asked if anyone wanted any. I said yes, but just a little, and when Bogdan was pouring it I said “That’s good.” I don’t know if he didn’t hear me or what, but he poured more than I wanted, so I ended up with a soufflé drenched in vanilla sauce, lol. It didn’t matter because it was still delicious. After that I asked him if he would take a picture of our table, so he did. The lighting in the dining room wasn’t very good, so my camera used the flash, and consequently none of the three pictures he took turned out very good. The first one was the best, although it got kind of washed out, the second one was extremely washed out, and the last one just turned out blurry. He brought my camera back and was telling me that he didn’t think the last one turned out, and then he said “I didn’t touch anything!” Lol! When I went to look at the pictures I opened the thumbnail view of all of them and he saw the pictures I had just taken. He said “Hey, that’s my soufflé!” Haha, it was cute. Of course, the wait staff all danced for us again that night. I decided that the next night I need to get a picture with Bogdan.

After dinner we went back to our room and discovered our next towel animal was a rabbit, this time NOT wearing my sunglasses. They used two little black dots for eyes. Yes, it made me laugh. I don’t remember for sure if it was that night, but I think it was, that they were holding a Thriller Dance Class, so we went down to watch. It was mostly little kids on stage, but there were a few adults. It was so much fun to watch! When we got there, without even realizing it, we sat down right in front of Marilyn and Michelle. They had been down there the night before watching the dance class, and there was this little boy, only about 3 years old, that they told us to watch. Apparently the night before he’d been watching the instructor very intently and trying his hardest to dance along. He was so cute! He kept trying to follow along but kept ending up at the very front of the stage in front of everyone, haha!

By that time I not only didn’t even come close to feeling motion sickness, but I didn’t even notice the rocking of the ship anymore.

Day 5, Friday, was our last day and also the day we ported at Freeport. Now, we had heard some things about Freeport that made us wonder if it was really worth our time going there. I had heard that the beach near the port is pretty much just rocks, and that if you want to get to a nice beach or get to good shopping, you need to take a taxi. Alissa had used most of her cash at the dolphin encounter, so she didn’t have much left and we really didn’t want to pay for a taxi, so we decided to just walk around the little shops where we were. It was pretty much just a flea market; there were a bunch of small shops that you could go in, and in another area there were tables set up where people were selling things. We spent probably a couple of hours in Freeport just walking around, and we did buy a few things, but not much. I did find those cute little straw purses for $10 there, and they would even put your name on it for free, so I got one with pink flip flops on it. It’s so cute! I also got a magnet with a little map of The Bahamas. We still wanted to try some conch, so we found a little stand and ordered some conch fritters. They were pretty good, but we didn’t realize how much they came with. We would have been better off just splitting a plate, and I think I only ate about half of mine. After that we decided to just go back on the ship.

When we got back to our room, Alissa decided to organize her suitcase and I went up to the Lido to get a drink. I wasn’t planning on getting any ice cream, but when I got up there I saw that they had a chocolate fountain with shell topping, so of course I ended up getting a couple bowls. Haha! I had discovered a few days before that Bogdan worked the beverage station at the buffet, so I headed over there to see if he was working. He was. I sat down at a booth between both stations and sat there pretending to read, but mostly just watching him. Hahaha!

I can’t remember for sure, but I think that was the day Alissa and I went to the Library to play board games. We ended up playing Trivial Pursuit for Kids. Most of the pieces were missing so we just took turns asking each other questions from the cards. My favorite was when she asked me “What is the favorite color of children under 7?” I was sure she had misread the card because that couldn’t possibly be a real question, but no, that’s what the card said. Turns out the answer was red, although I have no idea where they got there information from. I think we ended up playing until shortly before dinner time.

Night 5, I got:

Starter: Fresh Fruit Cocktail
Main course: Broiled Fillet of Mahi Mahi served with steamed vegetables of the day
Dessert: Baked Alaska— vanilla sponge with assorted ice cream and baked with meringue

That night I remembered to sit on the other side of the table so I could watch my boyfriend all night. Frank and Fred had a habit of forgetting his name and calling him “Bogey,” which we thought was extremely rude, so at one point I said “Or as I call him, my boyfriend.” I then disclosed to everyone at the table the fact that I’d gone up to the Lido deck earlier and spied on him. Everyone made fun of me and made comments like “That’s called stalking!” and “Oh, to be young again.” When he first came over to our table he made this cute pouting face and said “Everybody, tonight’s the last night. If you want I can talk to the captain and see if he’ll give you another cruise.” Lol! Many times during our cruise I’d mentioned to Alissa how cute I thought he was, and apparently that last night she realized it too. At one point she asked him how to say his name and he said “How do you think you say it?” so she said it and he said “Yes, that’s right!” Later she asked him how to say hello in Romanian, so he told her how to say a few things.

Unfortunately I didn’t think the Mahi Mahi was very good. I thought about sending it back, but there just wasn’t really anything else that I really wanted, so I went ahead and ate some of it and all of the vegetables. Michelle ordered the Meatloaf, but she did not like it at all, so even though she felt bad, she sent it back and ordered something else. Later, Bogdan came over and was talking quietly to her. I don’t know what he said, but I think he was worried about her getting something she liked. He was so nice. Later that night and again the next morning he asked us about our experience. He was such a genuine and sincere person and was so concerned about whether we were enjoying ourselves. When they brought the dessert menus I saw that they were having Bitter and Blanc again. I was excited because I had liked it so much, but most other people at our table had a menu that said Baked Alaska. I think only one other person besides me had one that said Bitter and Blanc. We realized they’d given us the wrong menu, so Frank switched with me and said he was going to ask Roy Anthony for the Bitter and Blanc, lol. When Roy Anthony came to take our dessert order, Frank pointed to the menu and said “I’ll have the Bitter and Blanc!” Haha, Roy Anthony’s face was priceless. He moved his head close to the menu and blinked a few times, and I just started cracking up.

Of course, I spent all evening watching Bogdan as he walked around. At one point Marilyn said “She hasn’t taken her eyes off him all night!” After dessert he came over and I asked if I could get a picture with him. I assumed people take pictures with the waiters all the time, so I thought it would be no big deal, but when I asked he got all shy and didn’t say anything at first! People at our table started saying things like “He’s blushing!” and “He’s got a girlfriend!” Haha, I was so embarrassed. After a few seconds he said “Sure!” and came over. I had Alissa take our picture, and I was worried that it wouldn’t turn out because of the ones that didn’t turn out the night before. She said it looked good, so when she handed my camera back to me I looked at it and said “Perfect!” Bogdan said “I’m not perfect, you are.” Haha!

After that Bogdan asked us about our experience, if the food and service had been good, etc. Old Fred started complaining about the temperature of the food and asked if the food was kept under heat lamps or anything. Bogdan gave us a very detailed explanation about the time limits that they have to serve each course, how busy it is back in the kitchen, and all sorts of other details to explain why the food isn’t always piping hot. At one point he mentioned how they used to be able to carry 18 plates out at a time, but after about 3 years of the servers started having back problems, so now they’re only allowed to carry 12 plates out at a time. He said he’d been there for 1 year and he already had back pain. A few minutes after that Frank leaned over to me and said “You might want to rethink this one; he’s got a bad back!” Hahahah! But earlier in the evening Frank leaned over and said…well, I can’t remember the exact wording he used, but it was something like “He really is a solid looking young man.” LOL! Anyway, Alissa and I were kind of bothered by the way Frank and Fred acted toward him, because they kept calling him “Bogey” to his face, and when Fred complained about the temperature of the food and Bogdan gave him that explanation, he didn’t even say anything. When the explanation was finished, Fred just said “Is there going to be a song tonight?” Apparently they always sing the same song on the last night on every ship, and since Frank and Fred have been on multiple cruises they knew the song was coming.

So, they sang us our song, which I got on video, and then, to my dismay, the evening was over. Alissa was a few people ahead of me so I didn’t see this, but apparently Bogdan gave her a hug when she left. Frank was in front of me as we were leaving and he shook Bogdan’s hand, so I thought that seemed like a better idea than just saying “Thanks, bye.” So I reached out and shook his hand, and he held onto it as I was walking away! I was pretty shocked, yet elated. :D

Our towel animal that night was something resembling a seal, and it wore my sunglasses again. Indeed, it truly did make me laugh. I didn’t sleep well that night for some reason.

Day 6, Saturday, we had to get up bright and early. I think we got up around 6:30 or something, because our flight was at 1:50 and we needed to make sure we got to the airport on time. Also, our deck was the first to disembark; I think our disembarkation time was 7:30 am. We got up, got ready and finished up our last minute packing, then went up to breakfast. I wasn’t sure if Bogdan would be working on the Lido or not because it seemed like he was usually there later in the day, but I was hoping that since it was disembarkation day for us and embarkation day for the next group, that he would be up there working, and he was. I said hello to him when we walked into the buffet, and after eating we decided we wanted to say thanks again. We were looking around for him and recognized him by the very top of his forehead, lol. We couldn’t even see his eyes and we knew it was him. We went over and said thank you again and goodbye, and shook hands again. Then we went to our room, got our stuff and disembarked. I was so sad to be leaving. After we went through customs we boarded our bus that would take us to the airport, and we sat there for about an hour before we even left. We took a sad picture on the bus this time, to be opposite from the one we took when we got on it last time. We got to the airport about 4 hours before our flight, so unfortunately we had to just wait around. Our flight to Phoenix was a little delayed, but not much, and when we got there we pretty much just had time to get some food and eat it quickly before boarding our plane for Salt Lake City. When we got in it was snowing. Needless to say, I was even more depressed to be back.

Being back on solid land after five days on a ship and a full day on planes was pretty strange. I still felt rocking for the first couple of days, and the first two nights I was back I woke up in the middle of the night disoriented and confused about where I was, trying to figure out if I was still on the ship. The second night I couldn’t figure out where I was and I could even feel the ships vibrations, which made it even harder to figure out where I was. Since being home, all I’ve wanted to do is go back. I love The Bahamas and I LOVE cruising! I’ll definitely go again the next chance I get.

1 Comment:

  1. Melanie said...
    Mmmm....all that food sound delicious!!

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