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Old February 8th, 2009, 02:21 PM
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Default Day 1 on the ship- Blog2NOLA

Mrs. Kuki and I were the first to board this morning, as soon as the ship was cleared, as were having to get up to Lido Deck to set the Hospitality Desk. I was surprised to see passengers still leaving the ship at 10:30 AM.
This may be something common, and relevant to, shorter cruises. I think many people on this itinerary likely choose the self disembark… which I mentioned earlier… I think actually succeeds in slowing down the disembarkation process. It’s probably an easier Disembark procedure to run for Carnival, just letting people lose to get off the ship when they want, but I think it also leaves the process disorganized.
We got on the ship before what appeared to be 4 wedding parties. I tried to choose a new bride from the group, but they each just sent me back to Mrs. Kuki.

At any rate we did get the hospitality desk prepared and then open, and spent the remainder of the afternoon greeting boarding cruisemates. Well, Mrs. Kuki, LindaG, and Snoozeman, and Gary did most of the “manning”, while I drifted about.

By 5 PM John Heald’s Wecome Aboard cocktail party began, and apparently the drinks seemed to be flowing liberally, for sure! Heidi had prepared a video for the Blogger's group and it was really touching.

Poor John obviously misses here.

John called an audible (wonder if the Brit knows what an audible is? ) from the set up that had been announced for dining; and chose to make the Bloggers Dining Room open seating. This caused some issues, and a rush for the dining room tables, as people tried to find tables to sit with their friends, and families,…. Or at least in the same generally area.
We have a meeting with John and the Maitre d tomorrow morning, to see if we can’t collectively come up with a better working plan. So, with John, Me, Big Ed, and Mach we may have to order out for a brain to sort it out, but I know it will be improved. After dinner, there was just a short time to go back to the cabin and get changed into jammies for the CruiseMates PJ Party in the Piano Bar, at 10:30.
I wanted to plan it for the first night to give the cruise a good kick off, and get people to meet. Everyone seemed to have a great time, and we got to see some interesting “versions” of PJs. Being the first night of the cruise, we did pretty good with PJ participation, so that was nice. And John came to judge the Best PJ contest. He somehow didn’t quite catch on, as he gave the 1st price to RayB and Helen who weren’t even in Pajamas…. So maybe he didn’t understand the rules .
There’s a sampling of pictures of Day 1 in the CruiseMates photo galleries.

Cocktails flowed pretty freely. There was a hiccup in the dining plans when John called an "audible" (football reference), but w're all meeting in the morning to discuss a better option for the arrangements. By tomorow evening I think everyone in the group should be enjoying "smooth sailing"
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