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Old May 6th, 2006, 07:21 PM
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Default Cruising the Canal with Kuki - DAY 14 - the ending.

Radiance – Day 14

Can hardly believe this cruise is drawing to an end already. Even with all the sea days on our itinerary there’s still parts of the ship I haven’t seen.

Last night, after we left Cabo San Lucas the temperature began to drop, and by the time we walked out on deck this morning it was 56 degrees Fahrenheit. After 13 days of shorts and bathing suit weather for daytime apparel, everyone was bundling up, if they ventured out on deck at all. The last day of the cruise to sleep in, and perfect weather to do so, so of course Mrs. Kuki and I were both awake at 6 A.M. The advantage was, since we went to the Windjammer so early for breakfast, the French Toast hadn’t turned to concrete yet.

It was a great day for the ship’s onboard revenue, as everyone was indoors, with many shopping for sweatshirts etc. – something warm to wear. Around the Centrum, on Deck 5, sale tables were jammed, and the “inch of almost gold? being sold outside the Windjammer Café was creating miles of gold for RCI.

This morning we received our luggage tags for disembarkation, as well as envelopes for the staff gratuities. Earlier in the cruise we had signed the form necessary to place all our tips on our Sea Pass account, and we received the vouchers to place in the envelopes for the staff. I think the system of giving guests gratuity vouchers to put in the envelopes in an excellent system, as you still get to hand the envelopes to the hard working crew, say thank you, and shake their hands. I prefer this system of “automatic tipping? to other cruise lines which simply give the staff a list of who has tipped them.

By afternoon it was time to go through the packing process, and it was a relatively painless chore, as most of it was simply dirty laundry. Pity the poor Customs Officer who might want to stick their hands in these bags!

With the cool weather chasing everyone indoors most scheduled activities were very busy! A session for teaching guests how to make towel animals jammed the Centrum area; there were line ups to buy tickets for the final jackpot bingo; and you’d have thought the question and answer session in the Aurora Theater with the Captain, Hotel Director, and Environment Officer was a private concert by Pavarotti.
This is the second such session of the cruise, and I think it’s an excellent idea for these officers to take the time, and the passengers obviously appreciate it.

One thing I am not going to miss from this cruise is the dreadfully slow Internet service. I’ve certainly learned to understand Internet service via satellite on ships is not high speed cable or DSL, and don’t expect it. However, the service on Radiance has been so slow I think I’m aging faster than it loads web pages. If you’re going to use the Internet service, be sure to purchase one of the bulk time packages.
That said, I really enjoy the ability “Cyber Cabin? supplies to access the “net? from the cabins, as opposed to going to one of the Internet Cafes onboard. The ship does also offer wireless service hot spots in some public areas, though I haven’t tried to access it.

I’m going to be ending this “cruise along? a bit early today, as I’ll be returning the connection chord to guest relations, so will be without service this evening.

We’re headed to Las Vegas for two nights on our way home, but when I do get home and caught up with what’s sure to be a huge mass of work waiting for me, I will be writing a full review of the ship for CruiseMates, as well as a feature article.

To brieftly summarize a few “key points? of our trip…
- The Radiance seems to have a very happy and helpful crew onboard. Much of that likely has to do with the great disposition and sense of humor of the Master or the Vessel, Captain Rune Lockling.
- The last couple of years I’ve thought (and said) that I felt the quality of Royal Caribbean’s food had been slipping. I likely carried that expectation with me the first few days onboard. However, as far as the dining room is concerned, I have been proven absolutely wrong. Though the chefs seemed to have a penchant for overusing pepper as predominant spice (at least for my tastes), generally the dining room food was very good!
- Entertainment onboard was really quite good, including the lounge acts, pool-side band, and showroom.
Anyone who has a cruise on the Radiance of the Seas in their future, except for perhaps a couple of minor annoyances, can expect a wonderful cruise experience.

I hope those who have cruised along have enjoyed the cruise, and we'll "talk" when I get home
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Old May 6th, 2006, 10:50 PM
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Thanks for the wonderful notes. I've enjoyed reading about your trip. Have a safe trip home.
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Old May 7th, 2006, 01:03 AM
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Thanks Kuki for the day by day reviews, I read and enjoyed everyone of them
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Old May 7th, 2006, 07:13 AM
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Kuki and Geela...have a safe trip home and enjoy your time in Vegas. I, too, have really enjoyed following along with you on this cruise.
Mary Lou Scanlon
NCL Pride of America April 24, 2010
NCL Epic February 12, 2011
RCCL Allure of the Seas - September 18, 2011
Celebrity Eclipse - February 11, 2012:
RCCL Navigator OTS - February 9, 2013
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Old May 7th, 2006, 07:55 AM
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Hope you win big in Vegas, miss you around here and in chat....have a safe journey home.

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Old May 7th, 2006, 08:51 AM
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Really enjoyed your posts everyday from the Radiance. Since we couldn't make it, this was the next best thing as to "what's going on?"

Enjoy your stay in Las Vegas and have a safe trip home.
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Old May 7th, 2006, 12:00 PM
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I just spent the last hour getting caught up on your trip. What a fun way to learn about a cruise. I even felt a little sad when it was over.

I'm fairly new to the board but I can tell that you're one whose opinion I'll value. You seem to have reasonable expectations -- you know how to keep in perspective the inevitable problems that are going to arise and you don't let them, big or small, spoil your trip. I especially like the neutral tone that you take in your descriptions, separating your descriptions from your opinions -- here are the facts as you saw them; we can do with them what we will. Thank you!
Grand Princess 11/05
Dawn Princess 8/06

Caribbean Travel Photos & Pictures
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Old May 7th, 2006, 05:08 PM
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Thanks for all your diligent notes on your trip. We will sail on the Radiance in August and are really looking forward to meeting her in 'person'. Thanks for the introduction!
Alaska SB - HA Zaandam - August 2012

Alaska NB - RCI Radiance of the Seas - August 06
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Old May 8th, 2006, 01:14 PM
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Default Thank You, Thank you, Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thank you so much for taking us along with you. It has been a pleasure looking foward to your postings each day. Going on my 1st cruise in November, I feel as thou I know what to expect from reading yours and the other cruisemate postings.
Thanks for all the valuable info.

Thank You from a very anxious cruiser!!!!

Explorer of the Seas--Eastern Caribbean
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