Monday, February 1, 2016

At Sea - January 31, 2016

Ramon and Bernie

Love this itinerary because there are two sea days right off the bat to get the vacation going. 

I am sleeping much better this leg.  The cabin is great, wonderful location all the way forward (R212) and we don’t hear much of traffic outside.  We do hear our neighbours tv but I think it is because they are hard of hearing!  I laugh because I can even tell what show they are listening to.  I do find the sound transfer between cabins to be very poor and wish Princess would build cabins with better insulation but then again I am noise sensitive.  Really the sounds are bearable and all we do is turn on some music in the cabin to block out the noise from next door.  And at night I have been putting in ear plugs and I don’t hear a thing.

We lost an hour last night and we don’t even leave the cabin until 11 am.  Bernie attempted to head up to the Horizon Court but it is crazy (the normal where is this, where is that) that he gives up after eating just some cereal. 

I am down in the International Café enjoying a coffee when I get a message from our friends.  Yes we are using the Messenger at Sea App with our friends.  It is easy to set up. 

Just go to contacts and add your friends.  To find your friends you need to know there account number which is a code made up of numbers and letters.  Now why they would not have the option of just searching for your friends by name or cabin number I don’t know but having to remember your code to share with others is a bit of a pain.

So I get the message that they are heading to Alfredos for pizza for lunch.  Since I didn’t have breakfast I am up for it.  We meet up there and we are sat at Vladamir’s section.  Now we know him, we have dined here enough times that we pretty much every waiter here.  But Vlad is unique, the first time he served us we thought okay he is just tired.  But every time, including today he looks like he is exhausted.  

His eyes are heavy and red.  I ask if he is okay…. Yup.  But I am sure he is totally out of it, not a single smile or interaction with us.  I am surprised he is even working.  He doesn’t even remember who orders what. 

We do see Ramon from Mexico nearby and he shines!  Really shines!  We tell him we will be at the Crown Grill tonight and we can’t wait for him to serve us.

For our pizzas I had the calzone but it has obviously been sitting for a while as the sauce poured on the top has dried out and soaked into the calzone.  When you cut into it a lot of liquid drains out.  This is not like it was the first time we got it.  It is warm, not hot but it is still enjoyable.  Alfredos seems to be hit or miss on this voyage.  We have dined here about 6 times now and three times have been below par.

Our afternoon was total relaxation!

I went back to the cabin and first of all did ironing - yeah I know ironing.  But after doing wash on turnaround we had a few items that needing ironing.  I could of put them in the laundry service to get pressed but Princess has great laundry facilities here on the Royal.  It takes no time to press the six items and I laugh because two cabin stewards passed by and stopped to say hi and were surprised that I was still on board.  Now isn’t that special… love these guys.

I change into my swimsuit and head down to the Lotus Spa and the Enclave.  As soon as I walk into the Spa I feel more relaxed.  Just before I enter the change room I encounter a couple where the man is informing the lady what she needs to do in the change room.  It is obvious the woman has some dementia or possible alzheimer's.  I tell the man I will make sure she is okay.

We enter the change room and I show her the locker and take out the sandals and robe.  She doesn’t know what to do with the robe.  I unravel it and help her put it on.  She needs to use the washroom so I lead her to the washroom.  I lead her out to her companion where he takes her into the enclave.

You can see she is really enjoying it too.  When we are in the pool at the same time I ask her if she is relaxed and she smiles and says “totally relaxed”.  She really enjoys the waterbeds!  I later talk with the companion she is with and find out they are not sure exactly what is happening, they are still trying to determine if it is early onset alzheimer's. 

He tells me that she went back to school and got her Phd in 2012 and right after that started to go downhill.  They thank me for my help and I said it is my pleasure…. My Aunt (my Godmother Monique) has Alzheimer's and so many have been good to her I have to pay it forward.  Plus no good deed goes unpunished and trust me we have been so gifted this voyage with some amazing things I am glad to help out.

After an hour in the Enclave we need to head back to the cabin to get ready for dinner.

Tonight is Joan’s (Angelique Mom’s Birthday) and we have reservations at the Crown Grill for 5:30.  Make sure to make reservations as soon as you get on if you want to dine her the first formal night as they are very busy here tonight.

We start the night with Angelique and Simon in the Cabin enjoying some champagne.  These two friends are treasures and we haven’t sailed with them in a long time but we have visited with them a couple of times on land.

We arrive at the Crown Grill where we are sat at a lovely table for six and Ramon welcomes us.  We start with champagne.  And toasts in honour of Joan!  Cheers!

I had my usual, the Black and Blue Onion Soup (delicious), then the spinach and goat cheese salad with beets (yum!).

The choices of meat

But for dinner I had the beef chop with the sautéed mushrooms.  The steak was cooked perfectly.  Ramon and all the crew worked seamlessly and even with the numerous bottles of wine, sparkling water and entrees they didn’t miss a beat.  And that is not easy with a full restaurant and our table of six.

Bernie had the mussels

We end the meal with a round of Sicilian Kisses!  And of course dessert! 

Tonight’s meal was one of the best we have ever had at the Crown Grill.  Both experiences at the Crown Grill have been top notch.  The Royal’s Specialty restaurants renew our faith in the specialty restaurants again.

After dinner we head to Vines to enjoy the Atomic Party Band in the Atrium.  We dance and sing and laugh - oh maybe some more drinks!

We drag Angelique and Simon to the 10:30 Colours of the World Production Show.  It is the first time we have seen this show this trip and we LOVE it.  I remember it from last year and these guys shine.  Definitely plan to see this show.

We are now officially tired and we are in the cabin and falling asleep just before midnight.

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