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  #31 (permalink)  
Old May 4th, 2011, 12:54 PM
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Not sure where you are, but I'm here, too!
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Old May 4th, 2011, 01:40 PM
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May-be you two will bump into each other... Love the updates and pics, keep em comming :-)
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Old May 4th, 2011, 02:28 PM
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Look at that candy shop! I'd gain ten pounds just from going in there!
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Old May 4th, 2011, 08:18 PM
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Trip, I'm loving your posts and pics! I hope you're feeling better, too. I haven't seen the towel animal before! So funny !

When we sailed the Conquest I was happy to see Jordan Almonds in the candy store for a reasonable price! I'll be watching for them when we cruise.

Hope you and ZC find each other before the cruise is over ,
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Old May 5th, 2011, 02:21 PM
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Well... I hope Linda is doing Okay. As far as I can tell the ship just left Sicily and is on its way to Rome.

I am hoping for another post soon to see how she is doing. I hope her cold has abated. The pictures I saw of the ship in Dubrovnik looked pretty cold and miserably rainy and foggy.

Of course Sicily is much warmer, so....

Next is Rome - pretty exciting to be seeing Rome for the first time. Wish I was there...
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Old May 5th, 2011, 03:55 PM
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Hi Kids!
Today, was Messina.... We had the good luck to heva the city on our side of the ship as we docked....like a postcard as we looke towards the mountains...No Mt Etna though..too foggy....






Like my Boston, with morning traffic unlike ii have ever seen...People double, triple park,and at odd angles and it's crazy!!! The scooters hust go wherte they want, period! The bus driver Guiseppe, had to have the gods watching over us as we honked several times before we took these unreal turns with drivers coming the other way, within inches!!

Once we arrived in Taormina, every 2 steps was a picture you needed to take....They have a Greek Theater here, which we did not get to see, and since 5 ships were in today, you can imagine how crowded it was.



Shops line the streets with apartments above them. All these apts had the most gorgeous doors...some were glass with ornate push bars, while others were wooden with brass nails and such...I loved them all...





We stopped for lunch in a beautiful cafe overlooking the sea and saw two ships anchored..It was too hard to see which ones, with the fog, but, I heard one was a Crystal. We dined on pizza which was thin and crispy, with light sauce, cheese, ham and mushrooms.....it was delish....



As a virgin, to this part of the world, my words can't express how fortunate I feel to be able to see these incedibly beautiful cities and towns...Each corner provides something more beautiful to see... so ancient, and, filled with history, and we are walking in their footprints....Sorry to be hokey


I bought some beads, but as I can attest, many ladies went home with bags of goodies..maybe in Florence I might have a bag or two.....Next stop. Not m
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Old May 5th, 2011, 08:53 PM
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I'm enjoying your cruise SO much! Your pictures are great! I hope to see Mt. Etna in your picture's tomorrow!

Yay, pizza!!
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Old May 6th, 2011, 04:46 AM
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Fern the mt..was clouded over all day..someone aked where it was ,and, got the response...it would be over there..never saw even a peek Better luck for you I hope!
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Old May 6th, 2011, 01:12 PM
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I'm glad you got some beads. I hope you get several goody bags.
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Old May 6th, 2011, 04:26 PM
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I am writing this tonight, after a wonderful dinner at La Cucina del Capitano.I will get to that in a bit, but, today was:

Ancient Herculaneum... was the second of the two cities destroyed by Mt. Vesuvious, which, as we drove toward it, it was hard to imagine that back in ancient times it was 3 times the size! It sort of reminded me of what Mt. ST Helen looks like now,as if the top just got sliced right off.

Our Guide Guido..eveyone laughed at that one, has been a guide here, and, at Pompei, for over 40 years.This man was truly an actor, as he guided us along the narrow lanes to show "his" city.

Twentieth century technolgy is wonderful as we were all given little radios so we could listen to him, even if he was a bit ahead of you...this worked out well.

We saw amazing mosaic floors, stucco on some walls seven layers thick....ancient advertising of wine, showing the cost from high to low,and where some entertainment would soon be playing. It really was mesmerizing to know these artifacts are here still, for all of us to appreciate. We saw how they had a sewer system,and water systerns for the community. We saw rooms where women of ill repute made their money, and the bath area....

Who needed google when you could go to the town gathering spot in the main square,and find out all the news of the day and ther gossip! I you squint, I swear you can see the men in togas,and the women in diaphonous gowns, standing around the bar area, where they actually were able to keep beverages cold!

Some of the structures were multi level condominums, and some homes had porches.. Many of the homes we were taken to still had partial frescos for us to enjoy. We saw where many had fled to, at the time was right by the shores. They were sort of like stall like structures,and when they came out, they thought they were saved....the very next day another eruption killed them all. I urge you to visit here, or to Pompei, to be able to walk through ancient history..I was totally taken by this excursion.

This excursion is not for sissies..I thought I was one, who knew Lots of walking...up and down ramps, very uneven large and small cobblestones...very high curbs..Just an FYI for anyone considering this tour.

After the tour, you walk back up to the bus are to enjoy gelato,and to buy some trinkets.I was amazed to find out Herculaneum was within the city, with apartements all around the area...the ride was not long,m which was nice. We also stopped at the Cameo factory on the way..a 20 % discount was given, and many shopped I can tell you






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Old May 6th, 2011, 07:28 PM
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Trip,

I am so happy that you are experiencing the world and history first hand. There is nothing like seeing it yourself.

I am also happy to know that you went into "mule mode" and you were able to navigate the uneven surfaces and get into it.

Continue to send these beautiful pictures. We're all traveling vicariously through you.

Take care,
Mike
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Old May 6th, 2011, 09:39 PM
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What a great experience to be there. Did you get a Cameo?
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  #43 (permalink)  
Old May 7th, 2011, 06:25 AM
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Nancy, I have one at hpme,and I am trying to look for unusual beads...I am on a mission
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Old May 7th, 2011, 11:54 AM
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Cucina Del Capitano

For the reasonable charge of $10.00 pp, you can experience a delightful evening in this family style restaurant, a stairway up form the Lido Marketplace. This venue looks like it could be your favorite Italian Restaurant in your neighborhood.


The sense of Carnival's history is proudly displayed on the walls with many personal pictures of the Captains who served their ships. Many show celebrities, pst and present, and to see the stars of the old fleet in their glory days was like walking down memory lane for so many of us.



The dinner is served family style, just like it should be. For starters you are brought, fried calimari, toasted bread with lemon ricotta spread, Nona's Meatballs, and arugala salad...Your choice of entree, mine was aranccini. When almost stuffed, the staff brings out, fried pottoes, brocolli, zuchini & pasta. People loved the food,and it was plentiful. Between the course the waitstaff sings all the familar Italian songs, and the room was singing!



For deserts we tried Tiramisu,and Lemon sorbetta.

The Cucina Del Capitano, was a fun to spend the evening.






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Old May 7th, 2011, 12:34 PM
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Wonderful pictures ,Linda .
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Old May 7th, 2011, 05:53 PM
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It looks really good - but I can't help thinking that for a "family-style" restaurant where you want to take maybe four to eight people that a "per table" charge makes more sense than per person.

It will be interesting to see how this works out. Alternative restaurants have always been somewhat antithetical to the Carnival philosophy of not charging for extras. I know people who cruise Carnival because of that philosophy.

Now, I am not saying $10 is a lot of money, I am just saying for a family restaurant a per-table charge makes sense to me.

FYI: I just noticed that it is a $5 charge per child 11 and under.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 08:57 PM
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Looks good to me, Trip! I'm not happy about extra charge restaurant's on any ship, but I guess it's a sign of the times . $10.00 doesn't sound too extreme for a full Italian meal.
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Old May 8th, 2011, 01:26 PM
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On a Sunday,with no traffic, we made it into the city, in an hour and fifteen minutes. This is where a private tour has it all over a large excursion...You can park a car and not walk alot. The walk from the bus, into the plaza, was about 15 minutes. We stopped for breakfast at Sergios, and got a great deal for breakfast..Blood orange juice, a croissant,and coffee or tea..On to see the amazing staute of David, It was breathtaking.



After orientating ourselves, out little group of pals walked towards the Duomo. To our delight we saw there was a marathon going, on, with a delightful school band playing. There also were horse and buggies availale for picture taking. As we walked towards the Duomo, we found it wouldn't open till 1:30. There was quite a crowd around, and we saw the some men dressed in costume performing flag tossing. It was fun to watch them toss the flags quite high,and catch them with no problem at all. They also threw them up,and caught their partners flags..quite a spectacle. We loved it!

Our group walked back towards towards the plaza, to have lunch. We dined outside, at Ristorante la Maremma. With postage size table and cloth napkins, we all felt very Italian, sitting outside in the glorious weather. I had penne and teeny tiny meatballs with lem in a lemon sauce...So good, I have to find a recipe when I get home for it.

We then shopped. On a mission to find beads, I found none, but diod find a gorgeous handbag on sale, and some scarves. Elaine bought a leather coat. Jewelry and leather stores abound here,and choosing is difficult with all the beautiful things.

We were lucky to be here at this toime of the year, because we has easy crowds..From all I hear, high season is shoulder to shoulder and the heat, on top of that can be brutal...Yay us!






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Old May 8th, 2011, 04:17 PM
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Amazing photos, was wondering what the air temp. is there now, hope not terribly warm?
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Old May 9th, 2011, 01:27 AM
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Hi Trip..

I'm home now. Catching up.... I can't believe you made it to Florence and didn't get to the Ponte Vecchio; jewelry , jewlery, jewlery.

Did you go to the Academia and get to see the original Statue of David? The picture you posted is a replica in the square.

Hope you're having a great time, and the pace isn't wearing you out.
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Old May 9th, 2011, 10:02 AM
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Monte Carlo

Was not to be sadly. The Port Authority closed the port to all ship, so a day at sea was meant to be. I am glad I took some pictures while we were close in..this will be my memory.

The gym and spa benfited from the surprise sea day, and the best sea day yet, had everyone enjoying the pool.

We have a busy day ahead of us tomorrow...I have many pictures to get up in the gallery too, so sea you when I get back.

How would you like this on a hot day!


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Old May 9th, 2011, 10:24 AM
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Kuki, Yes, we saw the Faux David, still impressive for sure. We had someone from the media group, who was on the same tour as we were, who was our tour gide for the day...We enjoyed everything we saw, and jewelry was everywhere..but, I was on a mission for just beads....we loved every minute!
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Old May 9th, 2011, 06:47 PM
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Trip,
What was the reason for the closed port?
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Old May 9th, 2011, 07:07 PM
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Usually Monte Carlo is a tender port - and it is oftyen closed down to ships due to high seas (which makes tender loading very precarious). That is too bad that it was closed since the walk up to the church where Grace Kelly was married is beautiful - but you still see a fair amount from the ship.

Florence is a beautiful city. I personally don't care that i have not seen "the real david" since I was 18 - because faux david is just as exciting. I went to the famous art gallery there one (Ufizi? - bad memory right now) and I found it rather staid.

Florence is just a lovely city to walk the streets and enjoy a cafe to me, anyway.

Did you go to Pisa, Linda?
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Old May 9th, 2011, 07:35 PM
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Can't wait to join the magic !!


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Old May 9th, 2011, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter View Post
Usually Monte Carlo is a tender port - and it is oftyen closed down to ships due to high seas (which makes tender loading very precarious). That is too bad that it was closed since the walk up to the church where Grace Kelly was married is beautiful - but you still see a fair amount from the ship.

Florence is a beautiful city. I personally don't care that i have not seen "the real david" since I was 18 - because faux david is just as exciting. I went to the famous art gallery there one (Ufizi? - bad memory right now) and I found it rather staid.

Florence is just a lovely city to walk the streets and enjoy a cafe to me, anyway.

Did you go to Pisa, Linda?
Florence is my second most favorite city in the world (of those I have visited; next to Istanbul). Ponte Vecchio is one of the most famous and photograhed bridges in the world I think. BUT.. in Florence you simply can't see everything.
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Old May 9th, 2011, 07:56 PM
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Florence is great. One of my favorites only about 100 feet from the faux David:

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Old May 11th, 2011, 09:15 AM
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Our last day onboard

I have to say, leaving this cruise, was a bit harder than my other cruises. First of all, going to such beautiful places for the first time,was just wonderful. The Travel Channel, came to life for me. No wonder first timers choose to book another asap,to see what they missed the first time around. These ports offer so much, and, while a 10 hour tour seems long, it goes by in a heartbeat. Each port has a charm of their own, but my surprise favorite was, Taormina, with Florence a close second,but the Magic does have a great itinerary.

Meeting the press group,and having time to really discuss, a common interest was enlightening, and we met some delightful people. Our final get together, was a cocktail party in the Piano Bar,chatting about the days onboard. Most of them, have sailed these ports many times, and I loved to listen to their stories...

We left for our pre dinner show,and all I can say is,this show is a wow! We only had the one production show this week,and Las Vega illusionist Jason Byrne,along with the singers and dancers really had the crowd going. A bit different then the usual production show, so don't miss it.

Packing, was left,and, reality set in....the travel day is coming! I think Kuki's black cloud of travel descended on us! From beginning to end. this day was really one for the books. We had a nine am shuttle to the Barcelona Airport,and upon arrival, we found our Iberian flight had been changed, and it left it 25 minutes! They spoke to the gate,and since the airport is huge,they felt we could not make it in time, so, sorry no plane for you!

We lounged around the airport till 4:00 pm, and ended up flying on American, quite a different plane from the amazing Airbus, which had beds! We finally took off late, and when we arrived at JFK, they could not align the jet way to the plane, and once we got of the plane to walk off, the doors were locked. Are you thinking sitcom here? We all were!

Since we were already late, we really needed to book it, to the gate, only to be delayed, and when we finally got onboard, we could not push back, and when we got to the runway, we were delayed for 45 minutes, due to heavy traffic. Upon our arrival home, our ride was delayed due to the incident at Logan, with the passenger trying to open the door on Delta. Police presence was everywhere.and I got home around 12:30 am, and I was up at 7 am...My body clock is a bit askew, and never experiencing this effect before, it will be interesting to see if I fall asleep in my scrambled eggs. I am glad to be home, but no one will put mints on my bed, or make me a towel animal to greet me at the end of the day. Maybe if I twist Bruce's arm?
Back with more,and pictures.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 09:29 AM
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Donna, sorry, this was due to high seas. The Port Authority would not allow the ships in, although John Heald, said Captain Cutugno, tried 3 times before the port was closed.

What surprised me, was when I asked several of the journalists, if they missed going to the port, They said no. This port was not on their top ten list...while some cruisers although disappointed, welcomed another sea day before they, left for home, or, as so many did, stay in Barcelona, then on to other European cities, for an extended vacation.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 11:21 AM
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Most of those journalists have been to Monte Carlo before (I have been there probably 10 times, I have lost count). I rarely even get off the ship anymore, even thoush the last time I did I went a difdferent direction and found a lot of things I had never seen before.

I walked by the church where Grace Kelly was married and is now buried, and they just happened to be having a big funeral in the church at the time, so it was oddly like living the moment of her funeral.
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