*PHOTOS ADDED 4/13*
Some misc. items while we spend today filling out the US Customs form, packing up our 'stuff' and going to some last activities before disembarking tomorrow (Friday, 3/23) in Ft. Lauderdale. We shall be returning to the Ramada Cruise Port hotel for 2 nights before we board the Nieuw Amsterdam on Sunday morning, 3/25, to see 3 new ports in the Western Caribbean plus go ashore to see their own cay, Half Moon Cay, and take a guided nature walk there.
But before that, we'll be having a 'reunion' with the husband and family of my dear student teaching partner from our days at Oneonta State. Leslie Hollander Berman was a great friend for many years until we tragically lost her to a blood clot following surgery. I had always told Les that one day we'd get our two husbands together to meet. This Saturday is that day to meet and greet Larry, and their daughter Amy with her husband Brian and son Danny. It will be a happy event for me as we remember a truly gifted teacher with a wicked sense of humor and a zest for life that won my heart.
Now on to those misc. thoughts:
Staying on board for a back-to-back cruise means there was a repeat of some of the evening entertainment but we didn't mind as we could do other things, like go to a movie or read, etc.
It has been so hot and humid every day we left the ship that we had to shower upon our return!
I got to be an expert at washing out our underwear and shirts every night!
I have been wearing a tan-colored sleeveless zipper-front 'security' vest with 7 pockets instead of carrying a purse. It has worked out very well. I've had my ID, pocket money, monocular, camera, extra battery, tiny digital recorder, and room for tour tickets or maps with me yet my hands were free to use the camera and/or my recorder. (Ivan thought to buy the recorder so I could capture tour guide patter or my own verbal notes as we traveled. He uploads each day's recordings to the computer just as he does our photographs. That should really help with I start captioning our photos.)
We prefer our own Tai Chi Chah to Tai Chi Yang taught on ship. We'll do our own from now on.
There is quite a nice library with lots of space for reading, jigsaw puzzles, computing, etc. So
far I've delighted in being able to read 3 novels and a nutrition book without feeling guilty that I wasn't doing housework or preparing meals. (Hmmm, wonder if I'll remember how to cook when we get back home in November!?!)
We were surprised to learn there are so many Canadians on board but guess we shouldn't have been. It is quite easy for most of them to reach Ft. Lauderdale to take a Caribbean cruise, which many of them seem to have repeated several times. Not us!; we've enjoyed seeing the islands but the Caribbean is not going to be a repeat destination for us since we are mountain people rather than beach people.
One last thing – I am a bit concerned about how I'll keep up with this blog. Internet service on a ship is so very slow and expensive. It takes a while to get a message written, find photos to accompany, and it takes a long time to load the photos in (!!!) to caption and then enter into the blog. Time will tell how much I will be able to share and if I can keep your interest. Thanks for understanding and hanging with us! Hugs, Carol and Ivan