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Monday, August 29, 2011

First day on the senior Windsurf

The first thing we noticed on this cruise was the age of the cruisers. On big party ships, like in the Caribbean, they are a lot younger, or on the Mexican Riviera. We used to do that. That's a lot of fun, too. And older people go on those as well. Just a different kind of fun. The pace of life on this ship was going to be a lot slower and quieter, the way we like it. There was one extremely young couple for the Oldy/newlywed Game, we found out later, and I think they had been married like, a week, but had been together maybe a year. They were the only ones in their 20s. Even the other "newlywed" couple was in their 40s, because it wasn't their first marriage.

Anyway, we enjoyed being in a group of people who just flat out don't make a lot of noise. A little rowdy, sure, espcially when we sailed away. That's always a crazy time because most of these people's vacations were just starting, and a lot of them were escaping from their jobs, unlike those of us who are retired. Honestly, we work harder on trips than at home.

The party was on the deck outside where we were eating, and the speakers faced OUTSIDE, so we could continue to eat and chat, and also hear the music and and watch the fun. This is making me want a beer. But at the time, I had a pinacolada, which is like, an annual indulgence. In fact, I think I had two. And there's a steward for every pair of guests. Ours was named "One," which we guess was an Anglicized version of his Indonesian name. Very sweet fellow, as was our cabin steward, Mayun, and all the lovely ladies at the concierge desk. One wasn't our ONLY steward, nor was he really assigned to us, but there were so many stewards, it felt like we all had one.

The food on this trip, except the fish, was spectacular. We sent the fish back twice, but they always had something better ready to replace it with. Somebody finally got our message that every meal must include at least one form of chocolate. Been saying that for years on cruises where they load you down with flan, vanilla pudding and empty pastry shells.

There were four restaurants on the ship. You had to have reservations for two of them, one of which was outdoors, so we never went to that or the other one, because our favorite restaurant was "The." That was it's name. "The" had all the kinds of food we like on ships: escargot, beef tartare, carpaccio, and so on. Even the night of the "barbecue" on deck (think hot, messy, waiters forced to sing and dance, loud music) we ate at "The." We also ate at the Verandah (yeah, with an "h") every day for lunch, with their fantastic buffet. And although most ships have a midnight buffet, this one didin't, and it didn't matter, because we were always in bed by 10 PM. Not big on partying, especially if there's an excursion the next morning. Anyway you could get room service 24/7, and it's included. Joyce said breakfast was always good, too, but I never saw it.

Let's see if we have any ship pictures:

See, there's one of my pinacoladas. Picture taken by One.

And two party pictures.

That night, the "entertainment" was a list of what the entertainment would be for the next week, and a bunch of announcements. After that, the DJ (more on her later) took over the lounge and we went to bed to read for a while. We had already unpacked, the bed was turned down, and everything was just about perfect. That's the way the start of a cruise ought to be.

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