All I have to say is prayers are answered and wishes come true in the most wonderfully unexpected ways. Mine were something like this: Please let me be able to explore the world and learn from all the people in them. This trip was just exactly that! I loved it and I have to believe my parents have a little pull on the other side.
Thus began our pinch-me-I-must-be-dreaming 11-day free exotic Southern Caribbean Cruise!
Day 1: New York City
My sister and I flew in from our various locations. Both our flights were delayed putting us into NYC very late at night. We spent the rest of the time in the airport and that was just the beginning of our adventure. Do you know everything is hysterically funny in the wee hours of the morning?
Settling into life once on board the ship wasn't hard at all-- Room service, all you can eat everything anytime, and every kind of entertainment imaginable from karaoke to comedy? We met our assigned dinner mates and enjoyed the view of the Statue of Liberty at nightfall as we dined on 3 delicious courses.
Day 2 at Sea: The rough waters may have made others queasy but it put my sister and I to sleep instantly. After a great night's sleep we breakfasted and took our books to have a relaxing read on the sun deck (these are the things vacations are made of) I took my book about Australia and who should we run into but a family of Australians? We got to chatting--for like hours! and learned about life down under from politics to healthcare education. Fascinating. It seems Australia has many the same political and immigration problems we do?
Day 3 at Sea: More dining, reading. We went to the evening entertainment in the garrish theatre, went to a comedy show and sat in on the most pathetic karaoke you have ever seen. Not to worry-- we livened it up with our rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody. We soon found out that our cabin was directly under the karaoke bar. Wouldn't you know it but someone had to belt out "New York, New York," every stinkin' night!!! Oh the hardships of being on a cruise.
Day 4: Grand Turk
Our snorkeling excursion took us on a small boat to a spot in the ocean where the sea floor dropped 7000 feet. We snorkeled along the edge of it and saw myriad fish including Dori from Nemo and coral formations that could rival any earthly garden. Coolest thing I saw was brain coral, a squid and some jelly fish. Not so cool was that my sister got stung by those jellyfish. But, we didn't find that out until the next day!
Day 5 at Sea: We both woke up with major sunburns. All the sunscreen in the world could not prevent these white girls from the effects of intense tropical sun glare. To our great surprise, our very black friends were also sunburned. Aloe was the word of the day here--and I'll tell you the cruise gift shop makes a killing on the stuff. To boot, my sister's ankle was swollen and purpley red, so much so that it made walking difficult and painful. It could only have been those jellyfish! The other word of the day? Vinegar. That, folks, is the only way to neutralize a sting we learned and luckily she got a bottle free from our waiter. The smell of it will wake you up like a punch in the face. After many generous applications, she went straight to bed and well, I snuck out for fresh air as well as take in a show and dance with my Aussie friends at the club.
Day 6: Aruba