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Home From Cruisin'

We are home now; mostly unpacked, laundry started, catching up. Drive down proved delightfully uneventful. This despite the recent amount of rain on Baja Jorja's east coast courtesy of a High to the north and a Hurricane named Noah to the east. Overcast, and a bit windy, with light drizzle is all.

Arrived at the port a half-hour after boarding started, and proceeded directly aboard after parking. Ate a quick lunch after dropping off our bags in our dungeon stateroom, then took part in the Mandatory Life-Boat Muster. If you've never cruised before, this is sort of like when the airline flight attendants go through the safety schpiel, only you have to go to the lifeboat stations wearing your life preserver. Cruise lines take it pretty seriously too; they count heads to make sure everyone attends.

Out to sea on time (17:00) and into some very pleasant 5 metre (15 foot) swells. We didn't find it so bad, but a few members of our party and a lot of other guests aboard didn't agree with us. The ship's store experienced a boom business in dramamine patch sales. Some weren't quite so well off as even that. Somewhen around 03:00 the rocking stopped as we cleared teh Gulf Stream and entered the (somewhat) more sheltered Bahamian waters. Most everyone was able to take breakfast.

We were there (or at least I was) for the FCORN meeting, state-level OR Nursing business. So Saturday morning I dutifully attend our two one-hour sessions before we arrived in the Port of Nassau, capitol of the Bahamas. Finished up the business shortly after entering the port and shortly before actually tying up at the pier. Quick lunch, then off the ship to walkabout the city. Lots of folk hired onto tours or took a cab over to Paradise Island and a big casino resort. Herself and I, along with popperaussie and Dredd Phredd went walkabout about town. The last time we were here (five years ago) we'd done the same thing (sans ot-tarz)and mostly went directly inland from the port, only about five-six blocks and uphill, then to the east and back down to the waterfront.

We'd missed going to see a few sights though; The Water Tower built in 1928 and now the highest point onthe island at 216 some feet... and Fort Fincastle which is formerly the highest point on the island with 3 30-pounder coastal defense muzzle-loaders. Right next to them is an area known as the Queen's Staircase. It's a stretch of rock which was quarried out to build Fort Fincastle. By hand. By slaves. A long time ago.

Bit more walkabout after the climb, all downhill and therefor somewhat easier than getting up there. Rather curious behaviour on Dredd Phredd's part; he'd been rather excited about going on a sea cruise, but when we left the ship in the harbour, and he spotted two of Her Majesties Bahamian Navy patrol boats berthed right next to our cruise ship, he disapeered to the bottome of the tote bag Herself carried with us. Stuck his head out when we got off the waterfront, then ducked again when we walked past the Police Headquarters and teh Supreme Court building. In fact, he only came back out of the bag when we paused to photograph a couple churches, opposite side of town.

Overall, Nassau looks pretty good for having a hurricane pass over only a few days before.

Back aboard by or about 16:30 plus or minus an hour. Met up with the two people who wanted the commissioned portraits, and worked out the details. Sorry, folks, private commissions. Well, sorry for you, because you won't be able to see them. I'll enjoy the income though. Soak in the hot tub after that meeting, then off to the Formal Night dinner. Oh, BTW, Royal Carribbean does set a good table. Really. They told us we'd gain weight on this cruise (lots of people do). We didn't, but only because of that hill climbing and walking and more walking the next day on the private island, Coco Cay.

Departed Nassau about midnight, though I couldn't tell you exactly when as we were already ensconsed in our dungeon stateroom, and what we were doing is nunyas.

Two more obligatory CE sessions on Sunday morning, before arriving at Coco Cay. One of them was mine, creating a small dilemma: do I list the expenses for this cruise on our income tax deductions as for my presentation, or for my photographic commission? Decisions, Decisions. Still and all, wrapped up by 09:30 and so made the fourth or fifth lighter ferrying people ashore. Walked around the Cay to find the private place I remembered from five years ago is no longer so private (the beach is developed a bit past that spot). So we wandered a bit further along the beach and found another private spot which served quite nicely for the commissioned portraits. Then back to the main event area for lunch, and some photographs of sandpipers and surf. Back aboard about 15:30 or a half hour before the last lighter, and we left Coco Cay behind us as we sailed into the sunset... heading home.

The rest is fairly boring. Ah, yes, Dredd and Popper both came ashore with us on the Cay, and Dredd spent a lot of time pyrating everyone else's drinks. He made himself a drunken hit of the party at Dinner Sunday evening. Oh, and on the drive home from the port we got rear-ended. Only mild rumples, but Sidney SubaruOutback will need to go into a body shop soon. No one hurt.

Time to catch up with laundry and other stuff. Photos forthcoming. Probably (maybe) by this weekend next.


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 5th, 2007 09:18 pm (UTC)
Sounds like a good conference and a fun time.

I'm sorry you got hit on the way home, and relieved that it was relatively minor.
Nov. 6th, 2007 02:06 pm (UTC)
Thanks, and yeah. We stopped at a light in the middle of the Ocala National Forrest; I'd checked the rear-view and the guy was slowing down; probably doing between five and ten MPH when he hit us. So the bumper took most of it, and he was very apologetic and didn't know why the car didn't stop (I suspect drinking).

The conference and cruise was fun!
Nov. 5th, 2007 09:49 pm (UTC)
As business meetings go, that sounds like fun.
Nov. 5th, 2007 09:49 pm (UTC)
Well, other than the rear-ending part.
Nov. 6th, 2007 02:08 pm (UTC)
Yup, see the above to janetmiles. You'd of enjoyed the island too; sandpipers coming right up to and underneath the picnic tables, lots and lots of marine life in fairly shallow and Very Clear water to photograph (for a good part of it didn't even need the polariser filter).
Nov. 7th, 2007 01:52 am (UTC)
Aw, neat.
Nov. 6th, 2007 02:22 am (UTC)
Wait, wait, people were complaining about 15ft swells on a CRUISE SHIP? I mean, we're talking like a big thing, right? How big was the ship?

See, this is why I don't go on cruises. Other passengers would be getting sick and I'd be telling them all about the time we did 18 footers off teh coast of Australia and the entire front end of the boat came out of the water, then slammed back down and buried the 5" gun on the front up to the barrel (this was when I was on a Spru-can, the mighty USS Fletcher).

Oh and then there was SIX WEEKS of 12 foot swells that we had to take athwartships when we were hanging around South America. 12 footers when you can turn the bow into them are nothin, taking 'em on the side is a killer though.

Anyway, glad you had fun and wish I'd been there to be smug about the waves!
Nov. 6th, 2007 02:01 pm (UTC)
Wait, wait, people were complaining about 15ft swells on a CRUISE SHIP?

Eggs Act Lee! Oh, and me ROTFLMAO (both at the time and with your comments). Believe me, I thought about you (and my brother, and my brother-in-law, both retired surface nucs). This sucker is Big, a frickin' floating hotel. 73,529 tons gross, 880 ft LOA, 105' beam. with stabalisers.

Now, mind, I make no bones that my Navy hitch took a different route than yours; four years and I never saw a ship. On the other hand, I've spent a fair amount of time out on the Great Lakes (ever seen a storm on Lake Huron?) in small ships and sailboats, and offshore in both the Gulf and the Gulf Stream here in Baja Jorja in sailboats. And I love roller coasters. Motion sickness is not my problem.
Nov. 6th, 2007 04:35 am (UTC)
Sounds like a good time.
Nov. 6th, 2007 02:09 pm (UTC)
It was! Want to go with us next time? I know a great spot on their private island for some outdoor portrait work. *G*
Nov. 7th, 2007 12:40 am (UTC)
Glad to hear you and herself had a good time. They sure do know how to feed you on those cruises. I'm hoping I won't gain too much poundage when we go in Dec. (Himself wants to go snorkeling. Definitely not my cup of tea, but would burn the calories.)
Nov. 7th, 2007 09:56 pm (UTC)
Walking is good. I, of course, bring the excuse that I'm on a photo shoot. Even walking on the Promanade Deck is good. Boring, but good. Plus, there is the pool; short laps, but could swim laps.

Or, just sit in a deck chair and read. Turning pages should burn some calories.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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