Smooth seas overnight and I slept very well...past 9:00am in fact. Today they had the NEW Sea-day Brunch in the MDR. New menus, new hours, and even new aprons for the servers. I like the concept. The Punchliner theme didnít really work, but the menu was good so they saved the best and did away with the comedians and later start time. Good job Carnival.
I had the Steak & Eggs and they were excellent. I went on deck and lounged around the waterworks area and would have gone down the slide, but there was no attendant on this beautiful calm day. Lunch from the JiJiís Wok and it was very good as usual. I had afternoon cabin time then went for a walk around decks, stopped for a Reuben Sandwich on the way back to the cabin. I went a bit early to the Liquid Lounge and got a great seat for the Playlist Production Epic Rock
7:00 pm show. This is a high energy rock show with great costumes, the full LCD background and with stage enhancements such as smoke, fog, & flames. A very entertaining show. Dinner tonight was good. We had Chicken Wings for the table (2nd time) and I ordered: the Butternut Squash Soup, Pasta & Shrimp entree as a starter, the Pork Tenderloin and as I couldnít decide on a dessert had the first three (Apple, Strawberry,& a Brulee) listed on the menu . Might as well. They had rock music in the Ocean Lounge
this evening, I only listened for a while then cabin time. We turned our clocks back one hour this evening.
Day Eight--Friday--at Sea
Smooth seas overnight although a bit higher than yesterday. I went to the MDR for breakfast and they have reverted to the standard menu, not the brunch so Eggs Benedict this morning. I went up to the Water Works and again the slides are closed and the seas are calm. Ití a shame to spend so much money on the new design only for them to not be able to be used. I was told that they are not holding enough water in the small pool at the end of the slide run. After a walk about the ship I had some very good Chicken Schnitzel from the Lido Marketplace for lunch. At 2:30 pm Ken Bryne, the long time Carnival MaitreíD did his first ever official Carnival show in the Liquid Lounge. He had a packed house with people in the aisles and staircases. He did a great show and received two standing ovations. Carnival should have been doing this on all of the transatlantic cruises. At 4:30 they hosted the Diamond Cocktail Party in the Limelight Lounge. It was well attended by more than the 116 Diamonds on board. This is the largest number of Diamonds ever on a Carnival sailing. CD Jamie introduced the Captain and senior staff and they served very nice híorderves as well as your choice of complementary cocktails. It was nice of Carnival to do this...thanks. Following the party several gathered in the lobby bar until time for the feature show with David Knight, the hypnotist. Iíve seen his show several times and it is entertaining. Dinner was good, I ordered French Onion Soup, Pork Tenderloin, and Short Ribs. Tonight was 1950ís theme music in the Ocean Plaza from 10:00 pm to late. We also turned the clock back another hour.
Day Nine--Saturday--at Sea
I felt some rolling seas overnight. I was up and had a very nice special omelette this morning. I then met a friend to get some photos for my blog before going up to waterworks to check on the slides. Not running and it actually looks as though they are shut down. I now wonder if itís a weight situation with the extra fuel on for the Atlantic crossing or problems with the NEW fresh water system for the Waterworks. Not really right to promote it if it canít be used. I did something new this morning, I had my haircut in the Spa. It was nice and they did a good job. I just couldnít wait until December to see my regular barber in Cozumel. I watched the movie Lincoln on cabin TV, Daniel Day Lewis did a great job, but I thought the movie was slow. I went to a kiosk and had my Sail&Sign account summery printed out for review. The kiosks are great and saves time standing in line at Guest Services (GS). I had Stir-fry from the JiJiís Wok for lunch...always good. There were a couple of college football games on TV as they picked up two television stations from San Juan and one in USVI. So I was able to watch some Big 12 football during the day as I would do at home. Nice. For dinner Iím doing a basic plan, I ordered a Salad, Pasta, the Prime Rib, and three desserts just for myself and the table to sample. All were good too. The feature show this evening was Seth, the piano bar entertainer. He was very good and has a very bright future either with Carnival or wherever. They also had a nice 10:00pm show in the Ocean Lounge by Justin, one of the Playlist entertainers. We again moved our clocks back an hour at bedtime.
Day Ten--Sunday--at Sea
Just enough seas to rock you to sleep, itís been a very smooth cruise. I went to the MDR for a nice full breakfast this morning. I heard that the waterworks opened yesterday afternoon for two hours so I went up to check and the Waterworks was open. Amazing what a few complaints to senior officers, on social media and JHís Facebook page will get done. I doubt weíll know why they have kept it closed, but passengers were taking advantage this morning. There are three slides, two for racing if you wish, but the Carnival Sunshine Twister is the longest slide on any cruise ship and that is the one I tried a few times. Lots of twists and two black out areas...exciting. Iíll try to do this each day. Another advantage of my cabin location is I can easily get a light snack from the Taste Bar around the corner, the Egg Drop soup today was good. This is cocktail party day. At 1:00 pm we had a Facebook Friends Cocktail Party in the Piano Bar, my drink of the party was mojitos. Good Fun. The next Party was the Carnival VIFP Party at 3:15, but I had time to have two slices of pizza from Pizzeria del Capitano between. The VIFP Party, one of three that they held, was the usual deal with the Carnival video and I did have a couple of FunShip Specials but that was my limit. The Sunshine does not have a live orchestra so the DJ did the music from a booth on the stage. A little different, but it worked fine. The more I see Jamie the more I like her as a cruise director. There are about 2725 passengers on this cruise, with 116 Diamond, 717 Platinum, and 1014 Gold thus the need for three parties. As we get closer to North America we are getting more television so there were some NFL games on TV this afternoon, so I enjoyed some room service BLTís and football. I did the same at dinner tonight as last ordering just a basic Fruit appetizer, Arrabiata Pasta, Rib Eye Steak, and three desserts for the table to sample. Duck, Frog Legs, and Perch were other options. Dinner was good especially the Pineapple Boat fruit selection. After dinner they had a Caberet show in the Ocean Lounge with Chiara Castania one of the Playlist entertainers. She was great and they have done a great 10:00 pm show most every night. The Dallas Cowboy vs. New Orleans Saints NFL game was also featured in the EA sports bar and cabin TV late this evening as we have a lot of pax from both places on this cruise to NOLA. Very late game as we are still a few time zones east and I was actually asleep before the game ended. We again changed our clock back an hour this evening.
Day Eleven--Monday--at Sea
Smooth seas again and I had a nice sleep. This was a Sea Day Brunch day so I had long casual breakfast in the MDR. I had the Hueavo Rancheros and they were very good. I also tried the Banana Creme Pie...it was very nice. At 11:00 am (11/11/11) they made a special announcement concerning Veterans Day and had a moment of silence. Very well done and this afternoon a big Veterans gathering and show. I had a nice Fiery Tomato Soup from the Taste Bar this afternoon while walking around the ship then retired to the cabin to read. About 3:30 I went up to Guyís Burgers and since they were not too busy I discussed with the manager the fact that itís not quite a true Guyís Burger. He said it was the meat, that they are still using the European supplier. That makes since as Guyís requires a 70/30 mix so hopefully that will be corrected once in the USA. No Waterworks today yet leaks and brief loss of water in Lido Marketplace area today (itís just below the Waterworks)...who knows whatís going on? Minor inconvenience and not disruptive to cruise though. The feature show this evening was another Playlist Production: Studio VIP. A very good high energy show. Too many fruit drinks so I enjoyed a White Russian with friends in the lobby bar before dinner. Tonight I ordered: a double Shrimp Cocktail, Spinach Crepe (not good), New York Strip Steak, and a Banana Split & White Bread Pudding Cake for dessert. Disco and 1980's music was the theme in Ocean Plaza this evening. Another nice sea day. Clocks back again.
Day Twelve--Tuesday--at Sea
Again nice seas overnight. I was up early and with six consecutive 25 hour days I have had plenty of sleep. I read for a while then went early to the MDR for a very nice breakfast. Itís another beautiful day and I had a walk on deck, no Waterworks, but there was enough to keep the sun worshipers busy. There does seem to be plenty of deck chairs although there are chair hogs on board, I suspect itís the high number of European passengers on board and the fact that while in the MDR I overheard some telling another group to take your time, theyíve covered a dozen chairs on Serenity deck. I read until meeting a friend at Cucina del Capitano for lunch. I had both a pasta and lasagne, they were very good. MaitreíD Ken did an encore show in the Limelight Lounge this afternoon. It was again very well received. Iím really getting into my book so did more relaxing reading this afternoon and I went to the pre dinner feature show with Jerry Goodspeed the comedy ventriloquist. He was very entertaining and is a Carnival regular feature. Dinner was again good, but similar to previous night. I ordered two Shrimp Cocktails, the seafood entree Zuppa di Pesce Cioppino, and the NY Sirloin Steak. Late tonight was the Mexican Fiesta Party on deck.