Day 15 – Do I hear Funeral Music?

The ship steamed towards Florida all night, and we awoke to our final destination – back in the USA.  Darn.

Yesterday was a jam packed day, so I had started packing the day before.  I’m not good with goodbyes, whether it is kissing one of my kid’s goodbye as they drive away with their family or realizing that my fantasy vacation is once again ending.

I love my family, I love my children, and oh my – how I love to travel.  George is always ready to head back to Oregon.  His dream vacation lasts around a week.  This was a little over two weeks, so Teddy Roosevelt is ready to cry “Charge” and head back home.  His souvenir panama hat planted his head, safari shirt, shorts and black dress socks and shoes.  He is dressed and ready to go.  I, on the other hand, am eyeballing the next ship to see if there is a stowaway spot. Continue reading “Day 15 – Do I hear Funeral Music?”

Day 13/14 – Near Death with Dolphins


Yesterday was exhausting, and a bit emotional, so I didn’t write about it last night.  It’s the next morning, the last full day of our cruise, and now I’m really getting emotional.  I hauled myself out of bed and am sitting with my computer, a cup of coffee, fruit and a bit of muesli (damn I’m going to miss this).  I think yesterday was exhausting for a lot of folks, and I easily found an empty table on the outside deck at the rear of the ship.  It has everything to make my heart happy; warm breezes, blue waters, people to dote on me (oh dear, I’m going to cry), and the buffet right through the electric doors.  I don’t even have to push a door open and there is the coffee pot ready to fill my cup that runneth over.

But, back to yesterday!  The Grand Cayman Islands!  We have never been to the Caribbean.  Don’t hit me, but it didn’t seem all that interesting.  I mean, the Romans never made it there, did they?  It’s always seemed more a land of party boats, bikinis and laying on the beach with a tropical drink.  Three things I am decidedly not.

Oh my goodness.  The water is so blue.  Royal Blue.  The. Water. Is. That. Color!  Lord, it is lovely.  And then it changes!  All my life I have known there is the color of aqua marine blue.  You know that blue-green so popular decades ago.  They got that color from the Caribbean!  It really exists on something besides a wall!  Or a 1950’s refrigerator. Continue reading “Day 13/14 – Near Death with Dolphins”

Day 12 – In the Caribbean Sea


Our last full day at sea with no commitments.  Tomorrow we are in the Grand Cayman Islands and then one last sea day before Ft. Lauderdale.  But we will have to pack and get everything set out early to be ready for disembarking.  It will take me hours to creatively stuff all our purchases into the luggage.  I’m still stressing it won’t fit.  I need one of those giant old steamer trunks like they used in the 1920’s.  Those were the days.  And if you believe the movies, everyone had a personal maid to pack it for them.

Today was a great people watching day.  We are all aware the trip is winding down, and I noticed many travelers stopping to chat with the staff and various musical acts.  It is nice to see people take the time to say thank you and share how their talent touched our hearts.  Obviously, we all work hard for money, but I know how my heart sings when someone has a kind word – it is the icing on the cake.   Continue reading “Day 12 – In the Caribbean Sea”

Day 10 & 11 – The Panama Canal


We spent a lazy day on the ship, as we are full speed ahead for the Panama Canal.  Whoa.  My Bucket List Runneth Over!  I have always been intrigued by this man-made phenomena, and know I am going to see it first hand.  No PBS documentary for me – it’s a full sail day across the Isthmus of Panama and I don’t want to miss a moment.

Yesterday I attended another Beyond the Podium lecture by our intrepid Arctic explorer.  The first two lectures were fascinating and extremely motivating.  I was ready to volunteer for the next expedition – who cares it will be 20 degrees below zero – on a good day!  But the last two lectures haven’t thrilled me as much.

This lecture was about a dogsled trip she took across Greenland.  It was not an exploration by any means – she hired a guide for she and her husband.  Not that doesn’t beat a trip to the outlet stores at Lincoln City, Oregon!  But she was reaching here to bill this as a mighty exploration adventure.  There was one humorous situation.  After their dog sled trip, they couldn’t leave due to bad weather.  Before they left, they were able to witness a 20 team dog sled race, which is a pretty prestigious race in this neck of the woods. Continue reading “Day 10 & 11 – The Panama Canal”

Day 8 – Sea Day and the Magic of Dolphins


Today was a day at sea while we are steaming 550 nautical miles towards the Equator and Ecuador.  I woke up feeling ever so much better today.  The sun was shining and the water was sparkling blue.  I couldn’t tell looking out the porthole how warm it was, but it looked pretty darned wonderful.  George and Emma were both still in slumberland.  I put on my gym clothes and made the trek to the top of the ship.

I was going to head for the gym, but when I popped out by the pool, it was so warm and lovely that I decided to walk the track.  It was about 7:30 a.m. and already there were a number of people sunbathing.  Mostly the old prunes, I mean aged sun-lovers, the same group who always seem to be there.  Maybe they sleep there – or they died on the first day and nobody has noticed yet.  If I was a pool attendant, I’d sure pretend not to notice.

Everybody was smiling broadly, and I thought this was an awfully jolly group.  Then I quickly checked to make sure there wasn’t a stream of toilet paper hanging out the back of my pants.  Last time I saw smiles this happy, I had a big streamer of Charmin’ following me. Continue reading “Day 8 – Sea Day and the Magic of Dolphins”