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Old December 3rd, 2009, 09:44 AM
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Paul Motter Paul Motter is offline
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Oasis Day 3…
It’s hard to describe in words just how frustrating a single mishap can be on a ship, but when it comes to Internet access my entire day yesterday went something like this: I spent the good part of an hour trying to figure out why a perfectly good internet account that had been working suddenly stopped working.

When I had exhausted my knowledge I went to guest relations who looked into my accounts and saw that I had used sometime but that account was now “dead” and so I had created a new account. Plus I had spent 17 minutes on the TV-web system that was just a joke (the keyboard was impossible to use).

So, when I returned to my room, I started writing my newsletter for today. The web works perfectly for a few hours. The very moment I was done, I prepared to upload my document and so I connected to the Web and a split second later I got the message “your session has ended.” What?

I tried again, and could not get on at all. Finally I message popped up that said “The Internet Link is Down,” Please try again in a few minutes. I kept trying every few minutes for three solid hours. After all, I had a deadline assignment due for my job, and I truly rely on web access on ships or otherwise I cannot travel on them (yet another reason to love cruising)
Finally I went to the front desk where a nice person told it was down but should be up within a few hours. In the end it did not come back until about 2:00 a.m. I tried uploading my files last night, but some of them just never went through. I am still not sure my workplace has received everything it needs from me for this assignment due to time zone differences, etc. In the end it was a VERY frustrating experience.
I must say, however, that the people onboard the ship could not be any nicer. They listen to your problems, they take action and they truly do the best they can to solve them. They were missing their web as much as I was. It seems to be connecting now, but I am still not sure if I can send files or not. Once I wake up a little more I will try that.

AquaTheater Show…

Last night were the two first ever showings of the AquaTheater show. What an impressive venue and what a lot of potential talent in the cast, There is high diving and extreme choreographed high diving. That’s the good news… the bad news is that it truly appears to my trained eye that this is only half of a show we are being treated to, that the rest is not yet ready to show to a live audience. I just talked to David Beers on the phone who saw the show at 5:30, just before ours at 7:30. Each show was only 20 minutes long. David says at his show that cruise director told the audience the entire show was not ready, due to high seas inhibiting rehearsal schedules during the Atlantic crossing. Well, last week during our interview with the captain he was bragging to us that the ship handled so well that no rehearsals were interrupted. I can’t say what the truth is, I heard someone from the ship made a comment which I will see after I upload this comment.
Anyway – what we saw of the show was very impressive; Impressive dives and acrobatics. A little bit of cheesy synchronized swimming, but they were so cute doing it (the gals who do it are like Swedish Bikini Models, scrumptious) you don’t mind that it is synchronized swimming.
But last week on my media cruise I saw parts of the show being rehearsed which were definitely not in the show we saw last night. This means there are big chunks of the show that are not ready yet. That’s OK, but as Dave pointed out, we are paying a lot of money to be on this cruise and if the show was not going to be ready, the company should have told us in advance, because it is an advertised part of the attraction of the ship. I enjoyed what I saw, but it is so short that it is almost as if you think they are joking when they come out for their bows.
Another complete letdown was the non-use of the stage-0side cameras. At the end of the show the scxuba divers came out of the water for bows. I had told you previously they use scuba to help actors breath underwater so they don’t have to get out of the pool between entrances. It is fascinating stagecraft, but there was nothing being shown on the side screens that was relevant to the show. Most of the time what we saw looked like a ‘60s light show – melting images similar to my Windows screensaver – which is actually more interesting than what they were showing.
This will be a great show someday – probably within a month or two, but unfortunately, it just wasn’t the big “wow” I was hoping for when I booked the cruise.
So, other than spending the day battling the Internet and then rushing to see a show (I arrived an hour early for the best seats) that didn’t thrill me, my third days on Oasis ever was a bust, I have to say. The Internet being down for 10 hours is really just inexcusable in this day and age. Then the show, then a rushed dinner at the “Seafood Shack” which is also venue I would not recommend.
But this is a testament to how nice and truly wonderful the staff onboard is. My wife is on a VERY strict vegetarian diet, so while I was eating she walked across to Johnny Rockets just to ask them about their delicious “Boca-Burgers” (they are not actually that brand – they are soy-based protein made to taste just like hamburgers). She just asked if it would be possible to order on in the dining room given enough advance notice.
At the time, I was paying the $8.95 service charge to eat at the Seafood Shack, but she was just sitting there. The staff at Johnny Rockets offered to bring her a Boca Burger to eat with me at my table – at no charge (JR usually charges $4.95 pp). They cooked it up and carried it across the boardwalk and served it t her so she could eat while I was eating. That is just wonderful, thoughtful service.
And that truly is the kind of service we have received from almost everyone onboard, truly. They are warm, helpful and they get personally involved in your problems. And for that I have to give RCL a HUGE THUMBS UP. They have really got a great team on this ship. As soon as some of the technical details are sorted out this will be an over-whelmingly great cruise.
Everyone has a bad day – yesterday was Oasis’ bad day. It wasn’t all bad, I stayed up far too late watching the Mike Record, the comedian, in the main lounge (he was hilarious) and I watched Karaoke and ate pizza until nearly 2:00 am. This is an active ship.
One thing that surprised me was that Dazzles was hopping last night, while it was dead on the media cruise. Oh well. The comedians were a riot, and David said the Ice show was spectacularly great. Tonight Dave and I eat in 150 Central Park. I have been looking forward to this moment for months now, KeriAnn (she is the executive chef), so I hope you are ready for me.

Tomorrow night we see Hairspray. I have not heard any reports about it yet but I believe it does show tonight so we should get our first reports soon. That’s it for now, until next time!
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