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Old 05-11-2008, 02:38 AM   #1
Daisy5115
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April 19th Western trip report

I finally had time to write a trip report so here goes.

This was our second DCL cruise, the first was the same itenerary 4 yrs ago. It was me, DH, and DS 10, DS 6.
We came in Friday night only to avoid stress, almost missed the ship the first time we cruised due to airline delays. We splurged for the stretch limo from Happy Limo because it was only $70 more than car service. Worth every penny, my sons were over the moon about this! The driver had the movie "Cars" playing on the TV and sodas on ice for all. I had bought a little bottle of wine on the airplane for some adult refreshment. This I enjoyed in a champagne glass while the boys played with the limo control panel.
We had a free room at the Residence Inn with our Marriott points and this included free breakfast buffet. It was at breakfast that I noticed all the Boston/Mass. people in attendance. This would constitute most of the ship's passengers too.
We got a cab because we wanted to stop at ABC liquor store and I got some rum and 3 bottles of wine to enhance fruit drinks and save on my wine costs. We still spent a lot on drinks, not to mention out of control arcade cost and bingo! Oh and did I mention DH thought it was cute to introduce DS, 10 to pin trading? Another $100.
Nice to get to the port early since last time we ran through late. Walked around, got in early with #6 boarding. Got on the Palo brunch wait list. Up to the pool to relax. This would be the first of many, many mojitos. Really good here.
All the kids were waiting for the slide to open. I didn't realize it wouldn't be.
The first night, my DS 10 was so excited to be given come and go priveliges, but somehow had the wrong color wristband. DH and I were in the Rockin D bar playing scavenger hunt and Match your mate (I'm still laughing about the couple with the Kmart story )was just starting when we noticed a page, he was so mad when we got there. We had to tell him that we would change it so he could come and go, not a great start for him, but he ended up living at the Ocean Quest, met not one but two nice young girls from Mass, and getting email addresses to keep in touch. He also spent a lot of time at ping pong and arcade, not as much as I thought at the pool.
We walked around Key West, got a drink at Sloppy Joes, and then went over to Kermits for Key lime on a stick, too rich for me. I went on the trolley tour while DH took the boys to the ship and I joined them later. I just wanted to see some things, since last cruise we didn't get off the ship at KW. I did ask for a corkscrew, BTW, and received one that night (It was the nose on a towel animal) no charge for it on our bill...
The day at Sea was so crowded that we only got a table on deck 10 by luck. Way too much sun that day, very sunburned at formal pics, but came out well. Since we cruised before, we only bought a few pics at Shutters.
I met Hypermommy (Denise)in line for the formal pic and loved her tiara and dress.
We did eat at Palo on that sea day, but rushed off to the Castaway Club party and that was fun too. We had Palo dinner last time, I wouldn't go out of my way for either again. I like fine dining, but don't like to serve myself, or the trouble of getting the ressies.
The next day at Grand Cayman was the best because we had been there before, we stayed on the ship and very few people onboard. Disney brought some school children onboard from GC and had a presentation for them at the Goofy pool with character pictures. Very nice.
After that, we had our pick of seats and after awhile I went off to enjoy the rainforest room and the scented showers.
In Cozumel we went to the Playa Mia on our own in a taxi, but it was way too crowded, and the ocean trampeline was so far out I couldn't swim it with the currents. DH and DS 10 got out there, but the rock climbing thing was impossible accord. to DH. I would go back to Mr. Sanchos if we ever had the choice again.
We swam in the pool there and did a little shopping in town before getting on board. Just shark teeth necklaces for the boys. The dinner this night was the best. A tuna that had an incredible flavor. We had pirate costumes already from a cub scout pirate function, so that was easy. The pirate party was had so much energy,so much fun, as did the sailaway. I would never miss either. This is the night we got to know the family sitting next to us and we became good friends after that, even asking the waiters to pull the tables together for the next few meals. We shared tips with them from the disboards like room service fun! Every night we ordered Big Island cookies, chocolate milks and cake of the day! (cake not so good)
DH and I participated in a few contests onboard. The Pub Quiz was like jeopardy and we were the winners of only 3 teams. We got winner caps and little keychain lights. We also won the "Do you know your Disney music" and thank God DH remembers all those Disney videos that we had for the boys when they were little. I'm Wishin' was the hardest song. For this we won a very cool travel coffee mug, and another winner cap. DH went over and placed it on the head of a beautiful little girl who had really been enjoying the game near us.
The last sea day we did the tequila tasting. After reading the trip reports, now I know why there were a few empty seats! We had 3 shots and two margaritas. Then we were still chatting with two others at our table and they brought us one more rita AND one more shot. Next, I go up for a quick swim before bingo and get roped into a pool competition. Ladies against the Men. I was so buzzed. Little did I know there was relay swimming involved! Oh, great. Trying not to lose my contact lenses, I'm sure I lost the whole thing for our team but the prize for all was ...A free drink! yea!
At Castaway Cay we did some shopping at the store, a beach towel and photo album. My DS 10 wanted me to be sure to get a picture of one of his new "girlfriends" for him, so that was top of the list. The food was not as good as last time there, no lobster burgers and I was looking forward to those..yum. I did get my fill of conch coolers and finished the rum I had brought on board. I saw someone else walking around offering shots trying to finish their rum, so I wasn't alone.LOL
It was a great cruise, great weather, I can't believe our final statement was almost $1,000, and then we went on the Disney Studios in a car rental because we had time to kill before a 9pm flight and DS wanted to ride Rockin Roller coaster. I did see the first night welcome show and the Heath H comedy show. I skipped most of the others except the last show and the kids graduation. DS 6 loved the club but I think he just wanted to be like his brother and have a "club". DH and I went to the movie theatre to see Dan in Real Life and I viewed Donny in the College Road Trip in the big theatre by myself. Nobody else would come with me. DH and I love Diversions, but the pianist this trip didn't seem to know many songs requested by the people in there so that was disappointing. I love the chairs on deck 4, but there never seems to be enough time to just sit there.
If you stuck it out this long, thank you for reading.
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Old 05-11-2008, 07:38 AM   #2
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Hi Karen,
Great TR.
I was on the ship with you and felt the same about the pianist in Diversions. He was a bit disappointing on Billy Joel/Elton John night.
Did you rebook onboard?
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Old 05-11-2008, 05:36 PM   #3
Hypermommy
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Great TR... sorry to hear about the problems with your son to start with but glad it worked out. He probably met my redheaded son in Quest... unless he was too into the girls. From what I could tell my DS was into the games :-)

Fun game of Pub Trivia. I hope to do that again sometime! I missed the Disney Songs game,... that would have been fun too.

Thanks for the fun TR.
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Old 05-11-2008, 08:15 PM   #4
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Antoinette,
Opps, I meant SESSIONS for the painist. I noticed that one night it was the other pianist from Palo playing so were going to go to Sessions that night, but I guess something else came up. Forgot to mention that the last night the Pub comedy show was nothing to worry about missing. The vibe was that everyone didn't want to go home/cabins, but nothing else open.
No, we didn't book on the ship. I would always go cat 12 and it's my understanding that they don't give a discount for that catagory cabin.
Anxiously waiting the new ships and news.
We plan to visit my sister in law in Alaska next year and that's a pretty big trip for us. I haven't got a lot of vacation time, just started a new job last year.
Did you book onboard?
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Old 05-12-2008, 05:58 AM   #5
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Yes, we did rebook onboard, however will be sailing RCCL in April of 09. We want to see how we like it, and then we will either continue on with DCL in 2010 or cancel.
I know the service on DCL cannot be beat. But, I am thinking that another cruise line will be just as fun.
Diversions, Sessions, whatever. The pianist was really disappointing.
I think you are right though, Diversions is the sports bar. Sessions the piano bar. I think.
I am also waiting to see the new itineraries for the new ships. I am keeping my fingers crossed for Alaska.
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Old 05-12-2008, 03:18 PM   #6
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Hi Karen

Great trip report! I guess those were our empty seats at the Tequila tasting! Hope you got our share of margaritas!

Karen
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Old 05-13-2008, 05:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
I saw someone else walking around offering shots trying to finish their rum, so I wasn't alone.LOL
That was my DH!!!

thanks for the TR, it gives us another perspective on things we never knew were going on on the ship
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:21 PM   #8
Daisy5115
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LOL Karen,
You should have heard the Awww's when they picked up the extra shots/margaritas and took them away! The freebies at the end seemed fresh to me.

Karen
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