Saturday, February 5, 2011

At Sea and then Princess Cays Febuary 4 and 5

Day at Sea

Sleeping in! I am too lazy to get out of bed, Bernie heads up to get some breakfast and he brings me a latte so that I can at least function. After a shower we head towards the International Café for a beverage. We see Tim Donovan and Billy London (his replacement) and welcome him on board. The Bijoux sail is happening this sailing and we take a quick walk thru but once again it is way too crowded and we walk out with nothing.

I head off to find a quiet corner to read and Bernie heads off to Trivia and when we meet up again we decide on lunch in the dining room. My first time during the entire 20 days and it was very very good. But I need to pace myself as we are dining in the Crown Grill tonight.

After lunch I feel like getting some sun and run into Paul/Yvonne and Brian/Christine but they are situated in a spot where you hear Movies Under the Sun (total waste of time) and the Neptune Pool and the band playing. It is like dueling sounds and it is driving me nuts and I head more forward so all I can hear is the band. I had a nice chat with a lady from Montreal about her cruise, for which she is travelling with her three teenage daughters!

my three lovely companions

Dinner is at 6:30 but before hand a quick stop in Skywalkers for a nice glass of port is in order. We meet up with Johan and Peter in the Crown Grill and we have a fabulous dinner with great wine, great friends and great food. Bernie had the foie gras, French onion soup, and the filet mignon, I had a nice salad, French Onion soup and the filet mignon. Yummy and of course the chocolate molten lava cake, Peter had two, yup two pieces of lemon pie and he ate both! But he did share a few bites, and it was to die for. Staff once again were amazing and it sure makes for a special treat.

Peter with his two desserts, I am so jealous

After dinner it was a few more glasses of wine and we managed to make it back to our cabin just before midnight (the ship was deserted as not much was going on).

We are in Princess Cays tomorrow, our last day.

Friday, February 4, 2011

St. Thomas again February 3

St. Thomas

WHAT we are docked at Havensight! This means no Water Island like last sailing. I know many on board love Havensight but we much prefer the quieter Crown Bay and the easy assess to the water taxi. Sure we could fight the traffic and head over to catch the ferry but we opt to just relax on the ship all day.

We start out with breakfast in the stateroom, then down to the International Café where we run into our new friends Millie and Jim and we end up sitting there for over an hour.

Bernie wants to finish his book so I decide to head ashore for a short time. I think I am only ashore for about an hour. It is hot out and I have become a slave to the air conditioning now.

I am back on board and am so excited to see Brian and Christine back. Bernie heads up to the Sanctuary and I decide to stay in the cabin and catch up on my blog and to watch a movie. I ordered room service (clubhouse and salad).

We have our friends Gwenda/Collin over for sail away from St. Thomas, what a beautiful view. Today we are sent chips/salsa/guacamole which comes in handy for sail away. We all agree to meet later for Captain Circle Party, but as we go down to attend we see the long line and don’t feel like waiting in it and run into Paul and Yvonne who didn’t get an invite so we gave them ours and decided to head to dinner right at 7:30 for a dinner for the two of us and we are lucky to get to be served by Audry again. Tonight is the Chef’s dinner and Bernie enjoys the goat cheese soufflé, mushroom soup and the scallops, all were very good. I had the mushroom soup and the fried chicken, but asked Audry to omit the French fries and give me a salad, well she brought me a HUGE salad, which I think I ate only 1/8 th. Of it. Francesco had another special treat for us, tomatoes and mozzarella, and then he served us some octopus, which I tried but decided I prefer looking at them underwater.

After dinner we head to Club Fusion to for the 70’s multi media trivia where we win!!! But it is a bottle of champagne and we decide to give it to the team up at the front that were so funny during the whole game so that they can enjoy it. We then head over to Explorer’s lounge to see the comedian Carl Strong, be warned don’t come late or leave early from his show or you will be targeted. He has his moments, but I guess jokes about farting and bowel movements are more of a guy thing because Bernie really thought he was funny, me not so much. He has an adult show tonight at midnight tomorrow.

It is now 11:00 and the ship has gone quiet, there is the Pub Night “If I Were Not Upon the Sea” show tonight but we’ve seen it many times and somehow the bed just sounds so much more inviting.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

St. Kitts - February 2

St. Kitts

We are pulling into St. Kitts, Celebrity Eclipse is already in port and we pull up beside her. Nice looking ship, some day I will try Celebrity.

We decide to head to the dining room for breakfast and sit with two lovely couples. Francesco sees us and asks where have we been for the past three nights. He insists that he will deliver lobster to our cabin for the formal night because we don’t do formal. We say no that is okay, we are doing the Crown Grill that night, he says he will have it for us the next night…. Oh he is precious.

It is warm out and there is a chance of those Caribbean showers and we are not in any rush to get off, but from the line up around the atrium it appears that a lot of people are eager to get off this ship for the day in St. Kitts.

We had a good laugh while sitting around the coffee bar our friend from the Purser’s desk shows up (names will be spared to protect him) and a passenger interrupts us and asks to speak to him. We see him pull our friend over to the side and his first few comments are “we are very seasoned cruisers but I am very concerned…..” and that is all we heard but Bernie could see that this gentleman was very concerned about something and even took a napkin out and drew a map but we weren’t sure what was going on, until our friend came back with a look of shock on his face. Apparently this gentleman is very upset and concerned about an earthquake happening in the Caribbean and a rouge wave hitting the ship and what would the Captain do. Our friend is holding back the laughs and is actually thinking maybe he was set up. Well we will have to keep playing that up.

 We head ashore around 11:30 and walk all over the town and into some of the residential areas (and yes we felt safe the entire time). We decide to head to the recommend Indian restaurant “Star of India” and oh my god that was good. Pricy (but it seems that a lot of thing are pricy here. While we were eating the waitress brought us a sample of their local rum and we loved it and made sure to pick up a bottle of the Coffee Rum, for which we gladly handed over to the staff at the gangway to be delivered to our cabin on the last night.
We like it here, but we have been here numerous times and we thought about going to the beach but since the weather is not cooperating we just hang out at the port after lunch. It is very hot and humid and the light showers are a nice break, but then the humidity kicks in again.
I tried to nap but too many interruptions, first they delivered our canapés, then our room steward delivered our laundry – so much for the do not disturb.

Bernie decided to head to the Wheelhouse bar for trivia and found there was a large number wanting to play and there was also a small group that had a private party going on that was scheduled by Princess. I not sure why two events were planned for the same venue, considering that Club Fusion, Explorer’s and Adagio were all available. Mark was hosting the event and he said that since this was a port day there once again was no prizes and that this was coming down from corporate headquarters, funny since other ships do give prizes, and heck I do think that Princess can afford a cheap bag or hat as a prize. Bernie was not happy when he came back to the cabin and stated this private party group was upset that trivia was being hosted at the same time and would shout out the answers to each question, so he left after five questions. He also said he will never sail again with Tim Donnovan as the cruise director as we have never been so disappointed in the entertainment on board, thankfully the entertainment does not make or break a cruise but it certainly adds to experience.
Tonight’s drink is the mojito so we are up in Skywalkers for drinks at 6 and we run into Millie and Jim, then we are joined by Colin and Gwenda, then Trevor and Catherine then finally Paul and Yvonne. So nice to cruise with friends again and making new friends. The view of the sailaway from up there of the beautiful island of St. Kitts.
Dinner is in the dining room and it is Italian night and really enjoyed the chicken dish. After dinner we find there is nothing going on in regards to entertainment, but we are getting use to this. We head back to the cabin and we watch the movie “It’s Complicated”. Tomorrow is St. Thomas.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Barbados February 1


We dock early and we are the only ship in port. This is the excursion we have been waiting for. We once again booked Silvermoon, here is a link to their site  in fact we booked it six months to the day – the earliest you can book.

We are told to meet at gate 2 where a bus takes us to the boats. The woman who meets us is not the friendliest but seems to me she wasn't that friendly the last time either.  But thankfully Stacy and Tony are our hosts and not the grumpy woman at the pier.  There are nine of us on the catamaran! The other boat they have is less expensive but twice as many people. We head south to snorkel with the turtles. We have done this three times now but this has been the best time ever. We were surrounded by them and they even let us pet their backs (we were told this is okay but don’t hold on to them). They swam around us for at least a half hour where I got lots of great shots and video.

Bernie petting one of the turtles

Our next stop is a snorkel spot where there are two shipwrecks. Bernie feeds the fish and there are lots of them but not too many varieties and after snorkeling in Bonaire everything is compared to that experience. We snorkel here for about another half hour. We then start heading north to a beautiful beach and drop anchor. Here we are given the opportunity to swim off the boat while lunch is prepared. A fabulous hot lunch is served (lots of food) and great beverages, beer, soda, water, rum punch, red/white wine. After lunch we can swim some more.

We pull up anchor and I lay out on the mesh at the front of the catamaran to dry off and oh my I think I am in heaven. I hear the water below me and the hot sun beating down, and laughter coming from our friends.

We are dropped off at the pier at 2:30 and again Silvermoon does not disappoint, once again they are the best excursion we have ever done while cruising and can highly recommend them.

I am sitting here on my balcony listening to the steel drum band on the deck below – gee they are playing YMCA and we both laugh! At least it is better than Country Western in the Caribbean.

Tonight is our Captain Circle Party, we are opting out of the dining room again and will head to the Horizon Court of Café Caribe.

St. Lucia January 31

St. Lucia

St. Lucia is a beautiful port to come into, very lush and very mountainous. We are docked now and we don’t have any plans today. We were here once before and did a great tour with Cossol but don’t feel like another tour so we will probably just walk around. There was a notice last night that they will be working on painting our hand rails today all along our deck. It is 8:30 and they are out there already, so we will leave soon so they can do their work and we don’t have to deal with the smell.

Us with Luana our favorite photographer on board from Brazil

We are off the ship around 10:30, we are docked where there are quite a few shops, you can take a water taxi for $3 round trip to the town, but we both needed some walking and walked to the centre of Souffries and checked out the market and local shops and neighborhoods.

the boardwalk we walked along to the town center

at the market - seems appropriate
Bernie picked some banana ketchup and some hot sauce. The people here are very friendly and they work very hard to get your business, don’t be put off by their aggressiveness a friendly no thank you will work.

After about two hours of walking I am tired, Bernie wants to continue so we separate and I catch the water taxi back to the ship and Bernie you walked towards the airport and a beautiful beach called Veggie Beach which had a nice resort called the Rendez vous. The beach was deserted, it had some good waves, good for body surfing, few locals and very friendly and he felt safe the entire time. On the way back he enjoyed a couple of local beers (Pitons) two for $3, another stressful day. Strangest thing was sitting on our balcony listening to the band in the square play country western music.

the ferry I took back
I ended up coming back on and grabbing a bite to eat in the Horizon Court where I met up with Brian/Christine and Paul/Yvonne where they filled me in on their day. We both ended up having a nap, in fact we slept so soundly we didn’t even hear room service delivering our canapés around 4! Good thing I was wearing clothes.

We met up with Johannes in Skywalkers for drinks, Colin/Gwenda and our new friends Millie and Jim joined us, later Peter showed up to make his appearance. Tonight the drink was cosmos and well we enduldged. Sailaway was beautiful from St. Lucia.
Tonight the Café Caribe theme is German Buffet. We grab a plate, one good thing is we don’t often over eat when we dine in the Café Caribe. Explorer’s lounge is hosting Majority Rules and we usually love the game, but once again I feel the entertainment on board is lacking and even the usual fun game is a dud, and we found it boring.

Tomorrow is Barbados we hit the hay relatively early and well after so many drinks we are passed out.