Thursday, December 23, 2010

Adios Mexico. Hello home!

Ok.  I tried to post this last night but Explorer was acting crazy & kept locking up.

Well, this was the last day of the cruise.  I woke up early this morning & went out on the balcony to watch the sun come up.  This was an everyday occurrence on the other two cruises but for some reason this time I slept late almost every morning.  Anyway as I was sitting there watching the sky turn from black to gray to orange & then blue, I spotted something in the water.  At first I thought it was just the shadows from the swells but then something jumped out of the water!  I watched for a minute thinking that it was maybe a flying fish but then 3, 4, 5 more started jumping & I dawned on me that I was watching dolphins at play in the swells!!  They seemed so small but I realized that it was because the ship is so big and we are so far up. I tried to get the camera & take a picture but by the time I got it, they were gone.  Later this morning I spotted one more for just a brief second and then it too was gone.  I may not have gotten a picture but I will never forget watching the dolphins play in the ocean swells! 

We haven’t gotten out much today.  I really have enjoyed just sitting out on the balcony and listening to the waves hit the ship.  We went up on deck for a while but it was so windy and the wind was very cool.  I finally gave up & we came back to the room.  Our deck was a lot better.  The wind was blocked so I stayed out there for a long time.  I only came in when the “Frenchies” in the cabin next door came out and broke the spell.  They are very loud and apparently have no idea that there are other people on the ship!  Anyway, I just came in and sat on the couch and watched the ocean from inside where I couldn’t hear them yell to each other.

All in all, it has been a very relaxing five days and I am so glad that we came.  Next time though, we will pick a time when the kids are in school.  I will never understand how parents can just turn their kids loose on a ship!  Sitting here now waiting to go to dinner, it sounds like a herd of elephants in the hall.

We just got back from dinner.  Warm Chocolate Melting Cake!  It's a good thing I can't get that everyday.  I would have to buy all new clothes about once a month!  The 8th grader just found out tonight that I was a teacher.  I had to show him how to hold a coffee cup.  He said "I just learned something from a teacher, I'm on vacation, I'm not supposed to be learning anything."  I told him that I was on vacation too & not supposed to be teaching anything but that's what we do best.  He learns & I teach.  He was a pretty good kid after all & his grandmother wasn't too bad after she stopped trying to impress everybody with how many times she has been on a cruise!

Running out of time & NOT going to buy anymore so the next time you hear from me, we will be in Mobile

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Mayans & Carlos & Charlie's

I was too tired last night to write.  We had a great day Monday at the ruins!  I have been teaching this stuff for several years now but this was the first time I actually had seen the things I have been teaching about.  I know to most of you it’s just a bunch of tumbled down buildings and a lot of rocks, but to me it was awe inspiring!  Our tour guide was a native Mayan so it was even better.  He told us many things I didn’t know, like true Mayans all have the same birthmark on their lower back (just above the butt crack) and that the Mayans are believed to be one of the lost tribes of Israel.  We looked at everything.  I even climbed the pyramid all the way to the top!  I got my Mayan birth certificate on banyan tree bark inside a pouch made of local hemp.  I could have stayed there exploring all day.  He took us to a cenote which is a sinkhole.  It is 44 meters deep and is where the ancient Mayans got their drinking water.  The water is so clear!  He told us about when they discovered these particular ruins they found bowls & other vessels at the bottom of the cenote, along with 15 skeletons!  It seems that the unfortunate ones went down to get water, stumbled & fell into the cenote & drowned. 

We left the ruins & went to the beach.  The breeze felt good, but the water was so cold that only a few brave souls dared to go further than ankle deep!  I went in up to my knees so Terry could take my picture & when I came out my legs were numb from the cold!

Today we went shopping in Cozumel.  We docked at a different place than we have before so were totally lost at first.  We did find some good bargains and had lunch at Carlos & Charlie’s.  I love that place.   The people are so crazy!  The balloon guy had a tip can that read on one side “my 15 wives & 82 children would appreciate a nice tip” & on the other side “I accept tips or sex”.   I did not participate in the conga line this time around.  Now we are sitting in our room so that I can type this up & get it loaded.  They are having a special ½ price deal on internet only from 7 to 9 so I am trying to take advantage of it. 

Tomorrow is our last “Fun Day at Sea”.  Thursday morning we will be back in Mobile and back to the real world. It has been fun and relaxing but I think I will be ready to get home on Thursday.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cruise Day 2

Sorry this was supposed to be posted yesterday!
Today was a “Fun Day at Sea”.   We didn’t do much today.  Mostly we wandered around to ship finding our way to & from everything!  We went to hear the speech on shopping.  We will be in Progresso tomorrow.  We were cautioned not to buy anything there.  This tourist thing is still pretty new to the people there & they haven’t figured out that they need Carnival’s recommendation to keep the tourists coming back.  It seems they are not above putting plastic in a setting & selling it as the real thing.  One couple bought something for 100 pesos (about $40 American) they were charged $100 American on their credit card!   They have also been caught stamping fake silver as real. 

Tonight was Formal night in the dining.  Everybody at our table showed up tonight.  Everybody except us is from Pensacola.  The Swans are nice.  She works at a credit union & he is retired from the Air Force & now works as a Civil Engineer.  The other family (of 6) is another story.  Grandmother is so busy trying to impress everybody with how many cruises they have been on and where they have been that they don’t have time to talk about anything else.  They have their 8th grade grandson with them (I just can’t get away from 8th graders!)  He is so funny.  He was a real pain the first night but was a lot more talkative tonight.  He told me he liked my outfit because it was “sparkly”. 

We made the rounds of most of the photographers after dinner.  That is always fun.  Now if just a few of the pictures turn out half way decent!

Big day tomorrow.  I finally get to tour the Mayan ruins.  Internet is running slow so I don’t know if I will be able to post pictures just yet.  I will keep trying ...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Cruising as a VIP

Just got into our suite.  This VIP stuff is GREAT!  We left the hotel at 10:30 this morning and by 11:30 we were sipping the drink of the day and eating lunch.  When they say VIP they really mean it.  We were whisked off to a private office as soon as we stepped off the shuttle and from there it was the royal treatment all the way!  I think we are spoiled already & we haven’t even left the port !

Our room is nice but not any bigger than the balcony room on the Triumph.  It is very nice though & the whirlpool tub will be a plus.  We saw on the web page that we could get internet use for $5.00 a day, but it turns out that it is really $24 an hour!  I won't be posting as often as I thought at those prices!

We are ready for some fun and relaxation though... not much to post yet... Will post pictures tomorrow. 

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Cruising & Christmas

It's finally here!  We leave tomorrow after school for Mobile then 5 day on the "high seas".  I know we have been planning this for a long time, but now that it's here, I keep thinking of things I forgot to do.  I hope I remember to pack everything.  I was just going over the list in my head.  The phone charger, laptop charger, camera charger...Oops!  I forgot to buy toothpaste!  hope I have enough! 

As much as I am looking forward to this trip, I am looking forward to Vivienne's first Christmas even more.  I can't wait to see her ripping paper and playing in the boxes!  I know she is too young to remember this Christmas, but we will remember it for her.  I am already looking forward to next Christmas when Vivienne will be old enough to really enjoy Christmas, but we will have a new baby to buy for too.  Baby Trammell is due in June so will be 6 months old next Christmas.  That is just old enough to sit alone and rip paper!  I'm not sure if I want this baby to be a boy or a girl.  I think it would be really nice to have another girl that will be close to Vivienne's age.  They will grow up together so it would be great if this one was a girl so they could be best friends.  Then I think, it would be really nice to have another boy in the family.... The truth is I really don't care, as long as he/she is healthy & happy!

I have to go read over my list again & make sure we are ready to get out of here tomorrow.  There are so many details to remember... Thanks to Malinda for taking care of the cats, bringing in the mail, & picking up Jenna at the kennel.  That's a few things I can mark off my list & not have to be worried about.

The next time you here from me will be from somewhere in the Caribbean!