View Full Version : My Magical May 26 cruise - Part 1

06-11-2001, 02:08 PM
Before I start, I have to say this was THE BEST family vacation we have taken thus far. Both DH and I truly felt like we had had time to RELAX and our DS's had a good time too.

The Players: Patrick, 41 Jacquelyn, 41
Ryan, 8 Jonathan, 7

After getting the kids off to thier last day of school, DH and I went to the job of packing the finished clothes suitcases and packing the last minute things. After some house cleaning (hate to come home and clean!) we checked the kids out of school and are off from West Marietta at about 12:15. We did encounter a bit of traffic on I-75 south of Atlanta but after that is was smooth sailing (no pun intended!) While DH drove, I worked on our DIS pins, Large gold safety pins w/ our name in letter beads w/ lime green and purple spacers. Finshed off top w/ a lime green bow made of mutilple loops of lime green beading ribbon. I'm not a artsy-craftsy person, but I was pleased w/ the result. We have one of those TV-VCR units for the van (With headphones). The kids were kept entertained all the way down watching movies, with the only arguement of who would get to watch their movie first! I brought the 2 packs of Disney Trivia cards to play in the car and pass the time, and almost got thru both of them. We only stopped once in Valdosta for gas and a potty break. We packed sandwiches and drinks before hand so DH liked this alot!. After crossing the FL line we encountered some smoke from the fires that had been going on and this follow us almost all the way to Jacksonville on I-10. We took I-95 south to Cape Canaveral and saw billowing thunder clouds looming ahead. We ran into a nasty thunder storm about an hour away from the Cape that slowed us down. We finally arrived at the Radisson about 8pm. We met CarolineS and her family and had dinner at the Tia Ho Japanese restaurant and got to know each other. We discovered our DH's both love golf and sushi! We picked up an ice cream from Dairy Queen and went back to the Radisson, but the storm followed us and it was raining quite heavily. No pool tonight, but the kids did enjoy the nice whirlpool tub in the Radisson suite. (And so did we!) Went to sleep thinking about seeing the "Magic in the Morning"!

We awoke to the alarm clock that a previous guest had set! (note-check this before bed next time!) It was 6:30am and I jumped out of bed to look out the window and there she was! It was a bit foggy but still a wonderful site! After a quick McD's breakfast I took the DS's for a quick pool dip before getting on the shuttle. I met a couple of other families around the pool also traveling on the Magic. At 10:30 we got on our shuttle to the terminal. We had 2 large clothes suitcases, one Garmet bag, a smaller "stuff" suitecase to check. On board we took the infamous J.C. Penney wheeled cooler filled with drinks and snacks w/ a large canvas beach back on top (used as our 'day bag'). My DH had his laptop and the camcorder. We bungi corded the upper bags onto the telescoping handle (a good idea from DH!) The kids and I had our backpacks. We took the elevator to the check in and as we got off we met Sherry, Dave from Marietta's wife. She had on an unmistakable "Big Chicken" name sticker w/ her green bow! She told us about the new Bahamian forms to fill out so we stopped for a moment to fill those out while the DS's went exploring. We were there by 10:45 and the terminal already had several lines checking in. I proceeded to the Castaway cay line while DH got into the already forming line to get on board. The two ladies in front of me had to stop and fill out the new Bahamian forms. There was a couple in the line next to me that spent at least 20min asking the CM about dinner times, kids clubs, ect. They should have a computer terminal there w/ the DIS board info available and direct them to it! I had my ticket books, BC's, Picture Id's for adults (DL's are ok) and new forms all ready. It took all of 3 min to get my KTTW cards! The CM thanked me for being so efficient! As I got in line we met Jag90 and Ralph and Roberta. They were some of the DIS members I had tried to group together for dinner. We could already tell by our table assignment that they had things 'screwed up' and we would have to straighten it out at dinner. I broke out the Disney Trivia cards again to help pass the time! At about 12:00 the characters came out to greet the on-coming passengers. By 12:20 we were counting down to get on board! We scanned the KTTW cards then went thru the security check point. Would the wheeled cooler pass the mouse test??? YES!!! No problems what so ever! We had to un-bungi everything to get it on the conveyor belt for the scanner, but after re-bunging everything we walked up the gangway and boarded the ship. They took our picture next to a board w/ MM and the cruise date (no name announced). This pic became the center of a collage w/ the ship, mickey pool and CC. (DofM has it on his site). We went straight us to Topsiders for a quick lunch before the ressie race! I had some shrimp and the mango soup.Mmmmm! Since it was then 12:45 I went to Palo's to make my ressies, instructing DH to get into the Spa line by 1:00. While in line I met Dave with his Big Chicken name sticker! We were into Palo's by about 5 til 1:00 and filled out the paper slips to get our Brunch and Dinner ressies. Had no problems getting what we wanted, both on Monday. As I was on the way to the Spa I saw DH and DS's and told them to go on to the cabin. When I got to the Spa Line (about 1:10) they were ALREADY taking ressies! This is where I met Rhonda (aka SleepingBeauty) and her sister. I ended up getting the 8:45am Sunday Surial bath, the 10am castaway cay couples massage and 2 Relaxation therapies (foot massage w/ alpha capsule) on Wed and Thursday.

(DANG! was in the middle of an edit when the board logged me out)!

I went to the cabin to do some unpacking. The over the door holder was GREAT in helping keeping the room uncluttered. Our BIG suitcases fit in the closet and the rest fit under the bed. The wheeled cooler fit under the vanity along w/ the computer case. I initally forgot the excursion request drop off (we finally found our request INSIDE the navigator they have in your cabin) but DH was able to get the 12 meter regata and 2 banana boat rides for CC on Sunday without any problems. I went back to Topsiders for a few more goodies and a "strolling drink offer" before going to the Boat drill. Aftewards we went to sign up the DS's in their clubs. I did Jonathan in the club first then Ryan in the Lab. Jonathan was ahead of me, and I turned around to make sure Ryan was behind me. I turned again and Jonathan was gone! I went up one floor to the cabin (6056) where DH was but Jonathan was not! Back to the clubs to look again before alerting the CM's that our child had wandered away. They immediatley started walkie-talkie communications and within a few minutes informed us that Jon might be on Deck 7 (where our cabin on the WOnder 2 yrs ago was!). I checked and he was standing there next to Rhonda (AKA SB). I was hoping his DIS pin would make him more recognizable! I thanked her profusely and went back to the cabin. After a lecture on our cabin # and "why you don't leave w/o mommy or daddy" we went to Deck 10 for the DIS meet and sail away party! The Bubble guns worked great! We met up w/ a few of the DIS folks we had met before. We had perfect weather as the "big white hands" waved us good-bye and we heard the ships horn! Back to the cabin to get ready for dinner. As we arrived at Parrot cay (we DID get the requested rotation of PLAPLAP) there was already some confusion on dinner seating. I talked w/ Humberto, the head waiter and after we got the groups defined we were all ready to sit down to dinner. We met Sasa and Dally, our server and assistant. We had the coconut shrimp, which were delicious! I had the pan fried grouper, DH had the seafood stew, which he liked. Ryan had a hot dog every night with another entree to try on the side. The kids ate a MM ice cream bar but we skipped dessert to try to get dessert at Palo's. Since dinner ran late we missed the Mickey Mania game show. We checked the kids into their clubs and went to Palo's to see if we could get seated. They could and we ordered appetizers and the souffle! We had the shrimp and the calamari which were both good! Then came the souffle and I was waiting in anticipation for the first bite!! After the sauces were put on we began eating and all I could think of was "is this it??" Maybe it was just all the hype or my southern taste buds are just not used to all the culture. I chalked it up to a tired first day and vowed to try it again on our Dinner nite. Due to Palo's we missed the opening Variety show and the evening game shows. We went back to the cabin to finish unpacking then gathered DS's from the clubs. We arrived at the cabin to find my pj's arranged to sleep in ( they did this on the Norway 20 yrs ago for me...it's nice to see SOME things have not changed!) After setting the Indiglow Timex alarm clock (just the time, NOT the alarm!) we put out our order for AM coffee/juice and went to bed, dreaming about our 2 days at sea!:cool:

06-11-2001, 04:25 PM
Love your report!! Especially knowing what time you arrived, made ressies, etc.... sure helps with my planning!!

You mentioned that you requested PLAPLAP dining. How did you go about doing this? Did you call DCL directly or go through your TA? We would also prefer this rotation and know it wouldn't be a sure thing but it would be nice to make a request.

Thanks again--Looking forward to more!!

Happy Cruisin' MNmom:jester:

06-11-2001, 05:04 PM
Since I was a previous cruiser I did most of my calling on the Castaway Cay phone number. They have a smaller number of operators and I talked a particular one or two several times,expecially since I called in the evening. When I initally requested the rotation I was given the "we can put your request down but not guarentee it" song and dance. According to previous cruisers, the ages of your children will determine your rotation. Younger kids (6 and under) you will usually start at AP, rotation is APLAPLA. If you have older children (7-12) you start at PC, rotation is PLAPLAP. Older kids or just adults start out at Lumiers, rotation is LAPLAPL. We requested the rotation as a suggestion from the board.... You are in Lumiers for the formal night (a more elegant restaurant), you are in Parrot Cay for the tropical night (in a tropical setting). We had early seating, that worked for us most times. But some prefer eating later, having thier kids awake for the shows. My DS's were both more interested in club activites than shows so the early seating was best for us.

To me, since most cruisers would not make such a request that if you do, they do the "DIsney thing" and try to honor it.

It worked out for me...so it dosen't hurt to ask!!

Have lots of bubbly fun on your cruise!:cool:

06-11-2001, 06:13 PM
Love your reports so far...can't wait to read more!

Question -We arrived at the cabin to find my pj's arranged to sleep in ( they did this on the Norway 20 yrs ago for me...it's nice to see SOME things have not changed!)

Being a "newbie" at this cruise stuff, did you leave your pj's out on the bed...where did they find them to arrange them?

06-11-2001, 08:01 PM
Hi there:

I can't believe you made it all the way to Valdosta before your first "potty" stop!! I'm looking forward to the rest of your reports! Although our 5/12 cruise was a bit challenging at times, we just booked the inaugural western carib. for 5/11! When you fall off the horse, you have to get back on! Isn't the humidity today awful?

06-11-2001, 10:11 PM
I have to admit, I did the pj's just to see if they would do it. When I was 22 on the Norway I was young and this bothered me. Almost 20 yrs later I love the nice touch!

Several of the other nights we weren't so tidy when we left the room and our room steward Marlon would just place all the clothes on the bed in a green laundry bag. This was OK until my DH tossed one in the closet and didn't let me know. I thought my slip and torture garmet (flexees) had been stolen! :earseek:

(I would never fit back in the dresses without it!!)