Another good nights sleep and calm seas. I was up early again and it was a beautiful Caribbean Sunrise as we approached Belize. We were anchored about 8:00 am near the Carnival Glory. I went to the MDR for breakfast and ordered Eggs Benedict, Potatoes, Bacon, and Corned Beef Hash. It was very good. DW had room service with extra tea, honey and lemon for her sore throat. I went to a Bloggers Q&A event hosted by John Heald in the Red Frog Pub at 10:00 am. It was cabin time following until noon when I had a very nice Mongolian Grill for lunch. A lazy afternoon on board ship as I decided not to go ashore. We sailed about 4:15 pm and the VIFP party was held at 4:30 in the Liquid Lounge. Butch, the CD, did a good job keeping the party exciting. There were 44 Diamond Guests on board. The party continued into the Red Frog Pub and actually continued until 8:15 dinner with most Snoozemates coming and going as they prepared for dinner. When I returned I had a birthday ‘Fish Bowl’ size cocktail I was only able to finish with the help of friends. For dinner I ordered the Eggplant, Escargot, Pasta, and Chateaubriand. For dessert it was Birthday Cake and Baked Alaska as the waiters and Maitre’D Ken sang Happy Birthday for me. Very nice…thanks friends. Ken sang again for us tonight and the wait team did the song: What Does the Fox Say? Most of the venues again had good entertainment scheduled, but I had a Cherry Kiss and a ‘Deal Closer’ at the Alchemy Bar as my nightcaps and retired by 11:30. A FUN and interesting day.
Day Six--Friday--Cozumel, Mexico
A bright sunny day as we approach Cozumel. DW is still feeling under the weather so is planning a cabin day, I’m glad we have the aft balcony this week for her benefit. I watched the Freedom of the Seas and Navigator of the Seas follow us in and dock next to us at the International pier then I went down to the Sunset MDR for a nice breakfast of Fried Eggs, Bacon, CB Hash, Potatoes, Melon, and Leche Caliente. By the time I finished we were docked with the Carnival Magic next to us. Today the girls went to Paradise Beach and the guys went to San Miguel. We made our HQ at Woody’s Bar owned by my friend Nelly and used her super fast internet and three of us got haircuts from my barber Martin. Great people watching place as we enjoyed Cerveza, Coca-Cola Light, Guacamole & Chips, and Tequila. About 2:00 pm we were joined by some of the ladies and we went to Wet Windy’s for their great Margaritas and to eat. It was quite a feast. We got a taxi and returned to the Puerto Maya pier and was back in the cabin by 4:00. After cleaning up we met in the suite above the gangway for the 5:00 pm sail away, always fun to see the late runners and the waves from the guest on the Magic as we back away from the pier. I took a nap and DW was not feeling up for dinner so I had room service with her this evening and we had a casual cabin evening and watched the Winter Olympics on TV. I know the group enjoyed the casino, the Hasbro Game show, the Punchliner Comedy Shows, and more.
Day Seven—Saturday—February 22—at Sea
I had a very good long and restful nights sleep. Today is my birthday. Smooth seas and I was up early again this morning. I enjoyed a good breakfast at the Sea Day Brunch, I ordered the Steak & Eggs and it was prepared very well. After brunch I had cabin time and reviewed my ship account, they have two kiosks that will print your statement for you and save a trip to Guest Services. Unfortunately they do not have an interactive TV system. The morning was very nice and sunny and guests enjoyed the outdoor activities. Our group including DW who is now feeling better met at 11:30 am and had the Sea Day Brunch (lunch for me) in the Sunrise MDR. We did a ‘girl’ table and a ‘boy’ table as we have been known to do. I ordered the Tomato Soup, Grilled Pork Chop, and ice creme for dessert. It was very good. It was a good sea day and I was greeted by many on board with birthday greetings including a call from Guest Services. The weather got cooler once we reached a cold front late in the afternoon, but guests have had great weather all cruise. At 4:00 pm liquor can be taken from the Ship shop so I got a bottle of spiced rum for the following week. The production Show this evening was: Epic Rock, perhaps the best show of the week, we hope to attend more shows next week. The group met for cocktails before dinner in the Ocean Plaza, a good location as you can order Alchemy cocktails or standard bar cocktails or beer from the Red Frog as both haver severs in that area. We had all our tables full for our final dinner, I ordered the Grilled Chicken Breast on Fettuccine and two Panko Crusted Jumbo Shrimp. For dessert I had the Grand Manier Souffle. Ken sang again for us again tonight and the wait team again did the song: What Does the Fox Say? Much better than the usual Bags are Packed song. Following dinner I went to my favorite bar, The Alchemy. Since we are now well in the Mississippi River I had wifi from my personal hotspot so checked some late email and arrange some items to pack for the following morning.
We arrived back in NOLA very early and I was up and using the internet by 5:00 am. It will be an easy Debark as we are actually staying on board ship. We started packing about 7:00 am as we do have to change cabins today. I went up to Lido for a very nice omelet. Then we began our B2B process. Easy.
Crew / Staff
I found the crew to be very good as on all previous Sunshine sailings. I was able to again meet many ships officers through the Diamond reception and VIFP party. The ship is in very capable hands. My cabin steward team was adequate, our MDR waiters were much better than my previous Sunshine cruise. The bartenders were all great. Bar servers all very good. Ken Byrne as always is awesome as both singer and Matre’D. I enjoyed getting to know Linda the HouseKeeping Manager and sat with Caroline the Guest Services manager again, such a sweetheart. John Heald’s Blogger staff did a great job, I also enjoyed seeing Stephanie who used to be on John’s team and is now on her last week as the ACD on the Sunshine.
We had cabin 8330 a category 8N aft facing balcony on deck 8. It is the first time I have had an original cabin on the ship. We have had this cabin location on many Carnival ships and the cabin is slightly smaller, but the balcony is very nice perhaps even larger than the same location on Conquest class and definitely larger than Dream class ships. Great balcony, cabin not so much. The cabin is the usual layout with glass door at balcony (not sliding), full couch, three closets (a bit smaller), nice table, one bed stand (no lamps), push button safe, and stool at dresser/desk. No mini refrigerator, no mirror. The new downside to this cabin is the music late at night from the Havana Bar, it didn’t bother me, but it did friends in similar cabins.
They should have never sold any FTTF (Fastest to the Fun) passes since there were well over 600+ Priority Guests booked. They could not properly handle that many VIP’s and baggage wasn’t delivered until 8:00 pm for many. Also that was too many cabins to have ready at boarding, ours was only half way prepared and some not ready at all. One should not believe the claims that FTTF’s are not sold on sailings with many VIFP’s booked, they are.
Sailing with Snoozemates & other Blogger Friends. It’s always nice to see friends and familiar faces all week long on the ship. The Alchemy Bar is my favorite bar by far.
Another Great Bloggers Cruise !