So M had been planning this trip for months, thinking about it for years, and it finally came to fruition, and not a moment too soon. Lots of stress on the jobs. We left out of NY (sorry Trish for not stopping to see you, we were literally in and out for boarding and disembarcation). We booked a one week cruise (Saturday to Saturday). It was cold when we left and when we returned, but everything in between was sunny and warm. Ahhhh.
Here are the only shots of us by the pool. This was when we first boarded and it was still very cold out. M was just so happy to be on board and beginning her vacation, that nothing could dampen her spirits.
You can see I have my jacket on because it was so cold out. That changed within 24 hours I am happy to say. So we left NY and began our cruise on the Atlantic a number of miles off the eastern seaboard of the U.S.
M decided this was likely a once in a lifetime cruise and if we were going to do this, we were going to splurge and get a stateroom with a balcony, toward the middle of the ship so we wouldn't get bounced around as much. I took shots from both directions not knowing how the lighting would be.
The room was fabulous! It had a separate bathroom with toilet, tub/shower, and sink. Plenty roomy enough. Then there was the bed area with nightstands, closet and lights. Then the lounge area with fold out futon, desk, chair, cabinets, t.v., safe and refrigerator, then the balcony with two chairs and a table.
Our first stop was Port Canaveral, Florida where we took a shore excursion to see the Kennedy Space Center. It really appealed to the history nerd in me.
The next day we docked at Stirrup Bay, Bahamas, a private island owned by the cruise line. The first day I got up and saw the water, I was amazed. It was a really clear, teal (greenish/blue) and you could see to the bottom. It looked like a jewel tone and not like any water I had seen before. I took countless pictures trying to capture the color of the water and was never able to. It was so beautiful. So was the island. On our shore excursion there, we kayaked on the other side of the island. We saw stingrays, star fish and other tropical fish. Then we came back to the other side of the island, had lunch and swam and played in the water. The funniest line for the whole vacation was when we were with our kayak guides. A voice of another worker came in over their walkie-talkies and said: "apparently there are fish in the water here." (Meaning the beach). The Kayak guide replied: "what?" The voice said, "yeah, some tourists just came and reported that there were fish in the water." How funny. What did they expect, a swimming pool?
We spent all our time on board sitting on the balcony and watching sunsets, reading, or going all over the boat to enjoy the spa, eat all we wanted, or enjoy some of the shows and activities they had on board. We both worried we were going to gain a ton of weight, but I actually lost 5 pounds on the cruise. I think it was because I caught up on my sleep and didn't have any stress. I told M we need to schedule another cruise so I could lose more weight, she told me, "that was a very expensive 5 pounds." So I guess that's out as an option for losing weight. Oh well.
Our next stop was at Nassau, Bahamas. We did a snorkeling excursion which was M's favorite. There were so many beautiful colored coral and so many multi-colored tropical fish. It was like floating in a fish tank. We bought an underwater disposable camera to take pictures. We're waiting on that to be developed. Hopefully we got some good shots and didn't double-expose everything. I can't remember the last time I had to wait to get pictures developed. How antiquated! Anyway, there was a lot of shopping in Nassau. There were all sorts of really high-end, expensive stores and galleries for the uber-rich. We of course shopped in the open air markets where you could haggle for items and get a reasonable price. I got a really cute backpack and tee shirt.
My favorite part of the cruise were these babies, individual hot tub jacquizzies that faced a bank of windows at the front of the ship. You could lie there in warm, bubbling bliss and gaze out at miles and miles of ocean. It felt like I'd died and gone to heaven. We made it a point to get to the spa every day to take advantage of this luxury. Okay, so overall, I'd say the cruise experience was a huge success. We went on the Norwegian Cruise Line which was spotlessly clean and being cleaning non-stop, 24/7 where ever you looked. I took Dramamine while on the ship and only had a mild, underlying nausea while sailing some of the time. I get motion sickness very easily, so I had been worried about that. This cruise allowed us to do what we wanted, when we wanted and we didn't have to dress up or socialize with anyone if we didn't want to. I managed to read an entire book in less than a week. I don't believe that's happened in at least 15 years. The only downside was having to come home and back to the reality of working. *sigh* I will have a book review soon. The book I read was great!