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  #31 (permalink)  
Old October 29th, 2005, 09:07 PM
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I am literally GREEN with jealousy! This is making me look forward to the Liberty in February.......oh please make it soon!
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  #32 (permalink)  
Old October 30th, 2005, 02:06 PM
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Kuki, your posts are like my new soap opera addiction.

I'll begin your next post by starting with ...

"When last we checked in with Kuki and Mrs. Kuki, they enjoyed a dark view of the Rock of Gilbralter ... will today's dinner service continue to improve, will our hardy group of travelers get used to the time changes, or will Kuki fall into a life of perpetual cruise lag."

:-)

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  #33 (permalink)  
Old October 30th, 2005, 04:30 PM
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Default Another Day at Sea

Late last night I think we began passing through the remnants of Hurricane Wilma. Up until last night we had been experiencing very calm seas, and wonderful weather. After retiring for the night I noticed the “motion of the ocean� had picked up a bit. And by the time we woke this morning, the skies were dark, rain coming down on and off, and we were doing the “sitting still shuffle� with fairly high seas bolstered by winds across the bow at between 30 and 40 mph.

People were still out and about on the ship, so I’m assuming many have pretty good sea legs already, but there were most definitely some who were turning a bit green.

Our cabin is on the same deck as the bridge, and quite far forward, so while in the cabin we do notice the motion quite a bit. I personally prefer cabins toward the stern of the ship, but we had booked balcony guarantees, so the cabin location was strictly luck of the draw.

The chilly weather and motion continued through the day, and into the evening, and as a result there were some in the group who missed dinner. Mrs. Kuki and I, on the other hand didn’t let anything stand in the way of a meal.

Everyone spent most of the day indoors, and there were lots of activities planned for people who wanted to keep busy. Dance lessons, a number of trivia sessions, and games were almost continuous throughout the day. The highlight of the day was a “game show� passenger participation event, hosted by John Heald. One would truly be hard – pressed to find a Cruise Director with a quicker wit.

Today wasn’t the day for it, but I’ve been surprised how popular the movies on the jumbo screen by the pool have been, for both afternoon and evening movies.

One thing I haven’t talked about previously, that’s worth mentioning is the Silver Olympian Dining Room. The layout is similar to other Destiny and Conquest Class ship’s dining rooms, but in my opinion the interior design work on this one makes it the best looking dining Carnival dining room. In fact, in my view it’s quite an elegant room.

Tomorrow is a port stop in Funchal, Maidera, and our last stop before 5 full sea days crossing the Atlantic. It’s also Halloween, and our CruiseMates costume party, and contest. Now, this should be interesting!
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  #34 (permalink)  
Old October 30th, 2005, 04:48 PM
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Kuki, great reading. Perhaps here is an interactive chore you could perform.
State a time that you will be standing up by the big screen TV and we can log on to the onboard cruise cam to see you waving hi to all of us.

You should be easy to spot with the antlers and all...
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  #35 (permalink)  
Old October 30th, 2005, 04:51 PM
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Thanks for all the day by day reviews of your cruise. I love reading your posts. You should've been a writer

May you have sunny skies and smooth seas;
David
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  #36 (permalink)  
Old October 30th, 2005, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roscoe
Kuki, great reading. Perhaps here is an interactive chore you could perform.
State a time that you will be standing up by the big screen TV and we can log on to the onboard cruise cam to see you waving hi to all of us.

You should be easy to spot with the antlers and all...
Just slightly to the our right, your left (Kuki) of the screen would be good. lol
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  #37 (permalink)  
Old October 31st, 2005, 07:11 PM
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Default Funchal, Madeira & Halloween

Funchal, Madeira (Portugal)

We had packed our bags last night, and left them out in the hall. OH.. wait a second… we would have done that if this was a 7 night cruise, BUT , we’re not yet through even half of this cruise. Thank GOD!! It’s been way too much fun to end now!

Today our port of call was Funchal, Madeira; an island off the coast of Portugal. It really is a beautiful island, and quite tropical. The town is built on the side of the mountain, with the “central section� down along the ocean side. There was quite a selection of tours, but we took a taxi to the center of the city, right at the pier for 10 Euros. We then took the cable car to the top of the mountain, and the views from the cable car were quite spectacular.

Once at the top we took the famous Madeira “sledges� part way down the mountain. The “sledges� are a like large wicker baskets with seats in them, and they are guided down the roadway by two runners, using ropes, and the soles of their shoes as brakes. They do prevent you from reaching break-neck speeds, so while not a thrill ride, this was lots of fun.

The sledge ride takes you about half way down the mountain. We then walked downhill, about 2 miles, back to the center of the city. A great day!

This is a beautiful island, and very clean and friendly. It’s one of the hidden gems on this itinerary, and until people visit no doubt they don’t know what to expect.

Back onboard, and tonight was Halloween. I’d convinced those in the group who brought costumes, that they should be worn to dinner, and to the evening shows etc. The ship had a Halloween party in the disco, and we were surprised at the large numbers of people who did bring costumes with them considering the overseas flights etc.

We left the disco with those from our group who had costumes, and moved to the piano bar, where we were able to give out prizes, with help from Cameron, the entertainer there.

I could only convince a few hearty souls to head out on deck next to the jumbo screen, to wave to all of you through the web cam. Hope you got to see us!
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  #38 (permalink)  
Old October 31st, 2005, 11:01 PM
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Kuki, I'm waiting to hear if you found "Play That Duo" in the supper club, or in one of the lounges. They really are worth looking for!

donna
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  #39 (permalink)  
Old November 1st, 2005, 09:53 AM
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Kuki - you have done an excellant job!
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  #40 (permalink)  
Old November 1st, 2005, 11:42 AM
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Well done Moose man! Just wondering if the Liberty has bow to stern Wi-Fi like the Valor did.
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  #41 (permalink)  
Old November 1st, 2005, 05:23 PM
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great reviews kuki..
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  #42 (permalink)  
Old November 1st, 2005, 06:14 PM
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Kuki and all. I too am still waiting to hear the end of the cabin mystery....I think this is better than watching soaps on my day off......

I have to say - I have a visual of your shower curtain chasing you around in the shower OL Now I am scared out of my wits since I have gained weight rather than lost weight since my last cruise. I believe I may be molested by the shower curtain OH DEAR!!! We'll see - I'll let you know.

I went online at 7:30 promptly last night and watch the webcam. Well, it only changes every 1 minute. I think you were only there 2 minutes. I could only see that there were 3 - 4 people standing to the left (looking at the big screen) of the bar - one had white pants and another a green top. Other than that I couldn't tell if it was you. I guess I expected to be able to see moose ears or something. Maybe next time.

Anyhow - Beta ravaged Cancun again today - no vacationing there. I would assume that poor Cozumel is having a hard time getting on there feet. I will take pics while I am away and let everyone know how we're doing.

HAVE FUN FUN FUN!!!!
Love you all....Thumper
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  #43 (permalink)  
Old November 1st, 2005, 07:08 PM
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Donna.. yes! They were playing in Harry's the night we were there, and were excellent! We haven't been back, so haven't heard them again.

Only 5 of us made it up to the web cam, and it was very windy and cool on deck, so we only stayed out there about a minute.

Crossing Day 1

With the lateness of the hour that I was typing last night I guess I forgot to talk about some of the great costumes we saw. Considering the length of this cruise, I was surprised at how elaborate some of the costumes people brought with them were.

From our group Tom and Paige won for the best costumes. Paige had made Tom a very spectacular matador’s costume, and a lovely “signorita� costume for herself. Everyone thought I was dressed as a nun, but I just had a bad cruise habit. In the cruise ship costume judging I did make the final seven, but the audience voted for some fellow in dire need of a proctologist.

I should add that most of the people put on their costumes later in the evening, but the Cruisemates gang was foolish enough to listen to my suggestion, and wear theirs to dinner and the shows.

On to today… the first day of our Atlantic crossing. It was a wonderfully warm day, and the seas have calmed considerably, so decks were crowded with people. And many soles delighted to be over their bouts of sea sickness.

John Heald starts off every day with a live broadcast of “The Morning Show�, shown on the big screen on deck and on TVs in the cabins. It was nice to be watching on deck this morning, and get a special hello from John to me and all the CruiseMates gang.

Once again there were activities scheduled almost continuously throughout the day in different venues on the ship, and one could be as busy, or as lazy, and one wanted to be. Today I took the lazy route, and did a lot of relaxing. Think my afternoon nap started at noon.

There was a pretty funny in the comic in the Venetian Palace show room tonight. Jim Brick told some funny stories, and I think with his presentation he may be even funnier later in the cruise, when he’s scheduled to do a midnight, adults only show.

After the show some of us were in the casino for awhile, and then headed to the Piano Bar once again, to spend some time with Cameron.

In my opinion, the Venetian Palace showroom, the casino, and the Piano Bar, and the dining rooms, are the nicest looking of such venues in the Carnival fleet. The Murano glass chandelier in the showroom is quite breathtaking. And the casino, for a casino, is quite elegant.

Tonight at dinner we began the first of 5 nights of dinner team trivia for the group. With appreciated assistance for Eva Kiss, we delivered a trivia sheet to each table, at all the different dining seatings, to be completed by the tablemates, and turned in for scoring. The final night before we reach St. Maarten we’ll tally up the scores and hand out prizes.

Here’s a question the teams had some trouble with…. See if you know the answer without googling it.
Who was the first U.S. President to hold a patent?? And .. what was it for?
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  #44 (permalink)  
Old November 1st, 2005, 10:03 PM
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Default And the answer is................

On May 22, 1849, Abraham Lincoln received Patent No. 6469 for a device to lift boats over shoals, an invention which was never manufactured. However, it did make him the only U.S. president to hold a patent!
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  #45 (permalink)  
Old November 2nd, 2005, 02:24 AM
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Come on you Libertarians its 8:30AM GMT!.
The sun is up and it looks like a calm day ahead.
Why aren't you on deck smelling that pollution free air?

I see you!!!

(((This image may very well be copyrighted by Carnival cruise lines.
Please board guru's, let me know if this is against the TOS.)))



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  #46 (permalink)  
Old November 2nd, 2005, 08:16 AM
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What a great picture. Good morning. I really hope you're having a wonderful time. It sure seems like you are.
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  #47 (permalink)  
Old November 2nd, 2005, 10:43 AM
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Just checking in from Liberty. All of what Kuki has said and more. Lots of fun.
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  #48 (permalink)  
Old November 2nd, 2005, 09:20 PM
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Default Crossing - Day 2

Sea Day 2

The 2nd of 5 sea days crossing, and we woke to grey skies and rain, and it unfortunately continued for the entire day. This got some of the cruisers a bit antsy, looking for things to do.

Fortunate timing as I had organized our own “Kuki version� of a treasure hunt for our group. Teams were formed and given a hint/puzzle sheet, from which they had to figure out what each of the six clues represented, and then set out to find the items… keeping in mind that trying to think like me would help them. We even had people asking if they could join in when they overheard our preparations of teams by the aft pool on Lido Deck.

We had six teams set out around the ship, and accuracy and speed counted in accumulating points. I must not be all that strange, because none of the teams got zero points, but one did come close. The teams returned to the Promenade Bar area for the calculations to decide a winner, and prizes were awarded. It looked like everyone had a ball. I know I had some great laughs watching what items people came back with, depending on how they interpreted my hints.

With the rain today, a lot of people must have been watching TV, and the video of the Halloween Party from the other night, because all day people were coming up to me an talking about seeing me in my “cruise habit�.

This evening’s showroom entertainment was a ventriloquist, Jerry Goodspeed. He was quite entertaining considering he tells jokes older than I do. Actually, I use many of the same jokes. An odd coincidence; I had sent one of those jokes in to John Heald today, to use on his “Morning Show, and the ventriloquist used it tonight. I’m sure he had no idea, but I got a chuckle.

After the show, a few of us went to spend some time with Cameron in the Piano Bar again. The Piano Bar isn’t as busy as on most Carnival ships we’ve sailed, but it’s one of my own favorite places to hang out.

Because of the length of this cruise, I think the age demographic is unlike what Carnival is used to. At 55 I am probably qualify as below the average, though there are some younger. Because of this the ship’s public areas are quite quiet later in the evening. But the showroom fills up for just about every event held there, and for the main evening shows, they show up very early.

I’ve spent some time each day in the casino, playing Blackjack. The staff in the casino is very friendly, and I enjoy spending time chatting with them, as long as my wallet allows it.

This evening at dinner we were talking about this being the beginning of our 7 night cruise. It’s truly amazing how the time has flown by.
I was talking to John Heald today, and we’re working on a little surprise for our CruiseMates readers, who are following along on the message board. As soon as the details are finalized, I’ll let you know.
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  #49 (permalink)  
Old November 2nd, 2005, 09:28 PM
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I miss you guys so much. I hope we can do some of the things you have come up with on the Century cruise. Tell us more.....

Luanne
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  #50 (permalink)  
Old November 2nd, 2005, 10:23 PM
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Hey Kuki,

I feel like I am there with all of you. Thanks for letting us cruise with you.
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  #51 (permalink)  
Old November 3rd, 2005, 12:37 AM
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Kuki - can you find out if John Heald will still be on the Liberty in February or who might be there in his place if he is not? The Phlock wants to know!
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  #52 (permalink)  
Old November 3rd, 2005, 06:14 AM
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Lisa - John Heald will be leaving the beginning of December and returning to the Liberty at the end of January.
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Old November 3rd, 2005, 02:18 PM
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Thanks, Suzy!
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  #54 (permalink)  
Old November 3rd, 2005, 07:14 PM
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kuki, it's a real scary thought with what you and
john heald will come up with but I can't wait to
find out. also have you had a chance to talk with
becka solyan from canada she works with the
entertainment staff so john might know who she is.
if you find her please tell her that mike and karen
will see her on nov.12th. thanks, mikee
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  #55 (permalink)  
Old November 3rd, 2005, 10:59 PM
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Default A Glorious Sea Day

Sea Day 3

Glorious sunshine and much calmer seas greeted us this morning. I took full advantage, and spent most of the day relaxing and lounging by the mid-ship pool. I really enjoyed a fun day of sun tanning, and visiting with friends.

The pool areas on the Destiny and Conquest Class ships have a cantilevered deck design, almost like stadium style seating (but each level has room for loungers). I personally am very fond of this design. It makes it great for people watching, while working on your tan.

Emile’s, the buffet style restaurant on Lido Deck, frankly, is not my favorite design layout. There are several buffet lines available, as well as an Asian station, Deli, and Fish & Chips/Sea Food station. However, the physical set up of the buffet areas, with multiple stations, on the Spirit Class are much more to my liking. I was a bit surprised to see that Carnival chose to stick with the longer buffet lines on the new build.

The best parts of this area are the self serve ice cream, and frozen yogurt stations.

Watching John’s Morning Show TV show each day has been very interesting. At the beginning of the cruise he invited everyone onboard to write him “Dear John� letters, telling him of any special occasions they may be celebrating, questions, or even complaints.

John gets quite a number of letters every day, and reads them all during the show. Probably the most difficult ones to deal with are the complaints from passengers, and I admire John for his patience. He makes a very sincere effort to deal with the complaints on the air, reasonable or not, and then proceeds to try and remedy the problems off the air as well. Some situations are obviously quite difficult, and I have to admire John for at least attempting to deal with the problems head on, and publicly.

This makes the show quite unique, and something I’ve yet to see on any other cruise line.

I also met with John this afternoon, as well as some of the cruise staff, to get initial instructions for my “day of work�. I’m looking forward to having some fun with John and his staff, and will be writing a feature story for CruiseMates about the experience.

Mrs. Kuki and I were invited to dine at the Staff Captain’s Table tonight, along with the ship’s doctor, chief purser, chief of engineering, and five other passengers. The invitation was for the 8:30 dining time, in the Golden Olympian Dining Room. Our regular dining time is 5:45 PM in the Silver Olympian Dining Room (which is really a touch too early), so this seemed like a long wait to dinner. But, it did give me a chance to see this dining room.

The ship’s officers were very friendly, and conversation flowed pretty easily, as we lingered over coffee until the rest of the dining room was empty.

Though interior décor is identical, the Silver Olympian is nicer because it’s located at the stern, with large picture windows facing aft. It’s also appears to be a bit larger then the Golden. The Silver Dining Room is used for 5:45 and 8:15 seating, and the Golden Dining Room for 6:15 and 8:30 seating.
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  #56 (permalink)  
Old November 4th, 2005, 03:53 PM
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I think Kuki has invented a whole new business here. Vicarious Cruising.
For a small fee , you get to read the detailed accounts of someone else's cruise , as it happens. Almost as good as being there.
I'm so rapped up in reading that I feel I'm on the cruise. I even went and got a towel to dry off from the rain the other day.
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  #57 (permalink)  
Old November 4th, 2005, 11:49 PM
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Default 4th sea day

Sea Day 4

Another superb day at sea on the Liberty! We couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day to spend cruising. Even though we slept in, so didn’t get out on Lido Deck until closer to 10 AM, we had little problem getting loungers by the pool.

The day began with Dance Lessons in the Venetian Palace show room at 10:30 this morning, and continued with a variety of activities available all afternoon. A Sea Feud game at 1:30, then, tea time at 3:30, followed by the Horse Racing finals at 4:00, and other trivia game at 4:30 filled the afternoon, for those who wanted to participate.

We normally try and buy a horse at auction, and bring along some materials to decorate the horse. However, flying overseas for a long cruise, with luggage weight restrictions, we didn’t bring anything with us. Good thing because I had slept through the horse auction anyway. On sea days sleeping through some activities becomes a normal occurrence. It seems afternoon naps have become a very pleasant habit.

We’ve been on the ship now for 12 days, so now know it fairly well, and I think its fair now to form some opinions. To be straight forward, I really like this ship! While some of my initial reaction to the interior design work may have been a bit trepid, it has certainly grown on me.

The public rooms are all distinct, attractively furnished, and most importantly comfortable. There are some minor issues, such as a too small, under-stocked library. However, overall this ship is a winner! The crew, “to a man�, have been very friendly and willing to help with anything. I can’t be so kind about some of our fellow passengers. I’m not sure if it’s because of the age demographic, the five continuous sea days, or simply the total length of the cruise… but we’ve seem some unfitting behavior, and overheard some pretty unreasonable complaints from SOME of our fellow passengers.

Of course they are the minority. The vast majority of people are having a great time, and enjoying their cruise.

Each night at dinner time, during the crossing, we’ve had team trivia. I made up trivia sheets before coming, and they are passed out at dinner. Each table has the evening to fill them out and turn them in. With four different dining times on the ship, I would have been scrambling all night to get the trivia sheets to all the tables. Fortunately, Eva Kiss, the dining room host for our dining room, had offered to deliver them each night.

Eva is a lovely young woman, and just as sweet as can be, and has been of tremendous help, and service. We couldn’t have managed the nightly CruiseMates Trivia game without her.

She’s just one example of how helpful we’ve found all the staff.

We came back to our cabin tonight to find my name in the Carnival Capers, listed as social host for several events tomorrow. Now that was a bit different, but it should be great fun!

I'd best go get some sleep, so my brain will function
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Old November 5th, 2005, 07:06 AM
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Nice Moose Man,
I can't wait to hear all the activities that you will be invloved in, be sure to save that copy of the CArnival capers....Have fun!
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Old November 5th, 2005, 07:20 AM
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Kuki, I've always said that ."its only two things better than a 7-day cruise, 1) a longer cruise, or 2) a back to back cruise" Even though some say that is to long to stay on a ship. I would love to expierance that oneday. And with your daily postings, I could read them and get a feel of what it would be like.

Now that you've done this, would you cruise this ship again, and/or go on another 12 day cruise

Thanks for all the updates. Keep'um coming Just think, you can do this again on your next cruise coming up in just a couple more months

Happy Cruising;
David
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Old November 5th, 2005, 05:28 PM
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Just a question.

On the index list why does this thread have "Sticky" in front of it?
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