I did it!
My first cruise and my first time outside of the USA. No fear. Just fun!
Recently, my daughter and I set sail for the Eastern Caribbean. What a fantastic experience!
Laura impressed me with her travel knowledge and skills. If it were up to me, I’d still be standing in the wrong line at the airport trying to figure out how to get my luggage tags. She guided us quickly through a maze of travelers via the short TSA line and to our gate.
We arrived in Miami a day early to reduce the worry of a flight delay or cancellation. She’d arranged transportation from the hotel to the port the next morning , and before long, we were herded along with 5,000 other cruisers onto the ship. She’d selected a wonderful ocean view stateroom with a balcony.
The launch party certainly set the mood. Music, dancing, Caribbean Coladas-and a fun-loving cruise director.
I trailed my daughter like a little puppy the first two days afraid I’d get lost and never see her again. When I wasn’t trying to remember which of the nineteen decks held our room, the lido, and of course, the casino, I was challenged with figuring out forward, aft, port, and starboard.
All the walking helped offset the some of the weight gain from visiting the dozens of the food venues. Of course we had to test them all – well, most of them. We did splurge on the Fahrenheit 555 Steak House and Bonsai Teppanyaki, a Japanese steak house. So worth it!
Our first port stop was at Amber Cove in the Dominican Republic where we experienced monkeys up close and personal at Monkeyland Punta Cana. It was a little unnerving as they climbed all over me, but I didn’t freak out and they were cute.
The following morning we arrived in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Even though it was hot and humid, Laura and I hiked two and a half miles uphill to one of the historical forts. https://www.nps.gov/saju/index.htm
Later that evening, we set sail for St. Maarten island and when we woke the next morning, we were already in port on the Dutch side ruled by the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The other side is the French Republic. We spent the day browsing through shops, wading in the pristine waters, and lounging under an umbrella sipping cold beer.
The Celebration ship is the largest in Carnival’s fleet. At capacity, it can accommodate 6,5003 passengers plus 1,735 crew members. The enormous size impressed me as we passed numerous smaller cruise ships along the way. However, when we docked in port at St. Maarten next to the largest cruise ship in the world, Wonder of the Sea, I had to laugh.
Hopefully this is the first of many new experiences I’ll enjoy in this chapter of my life. I’m keeping an open mind and kicking fear to the curb! Meanwhile, stay tune for news about The Dahlonega Sisters. Coming soon!
I’d love to hear about your adventures. Drop me a line!