Unbeknownst to me, this particular cruise was also a group cruise for an area kickball association. Yes, kickball… the game that I haven’t played since elementary school. Who knew that kickball was an organized sport? Well my family and over 700 kickballers set sail on April 5, 2013 from Long Beach. Embarkation was a breeze. We arrived to the port at 11:00 and were on board having lunch by 11:30 a.m. We hung out on Lido until 1:30 and then headed down to our room. Everything seemed normal until the safety drill.
We were assigned to muster station E which was in one of the lounges where the comedy show is held. And this is where we encountered the most obnoxious group of people in my life – the kickballers. The poor crew member leading the safety drill had a hard time controlling the crowd. Several were already falling down drunk. They were constantly yelling and screaming despite repeated requests that they stay quiet because the safety drill could not begin until there was complete silence. Thirty minutes later (no exaggeration) the drill began. We later learned that our room was not the only room to have issues with the kickballers staying quiet.
From that moment on we encountered hoards of drunken kickballers. Carnival security was extremely busy this cruise. Even the comedian used them in his jokes and said that he hadn’t seen such behavior in his 12 years of working for carnival. We smelled marijuana on more than one occasion on lido deck. It really was a sight to behold. Just unbelievable.
So upon my return I immediately took to the internet to search out information on the kickballers and came across a facebook page regarding the cruise. This one post stood out to me:
THE NUMBERS SO FAR: 517 - the total # of people who successfully snuck alcohol on board, 5 - the number of hours it took for the first guy to be banned from drinking the rest of the weekend, 2 - the number of people arrested on the ship for narcotics, 4 - the number of failed attempts at the cruise group photo, 16 - the number of people total banned from drinking by Carnival, 26 - the number of times the "roaming flip cup crew" got forced to stop playing, and most importantly: 0 - the number of players left behind in Mexico.
(Search carnival kickball cruise to see the madness for yourselves).
In the end we had a decent time. We decided to stay on the ship while in Ensenada since we had been several times before and we were able to enjoy the pools and waterworks in peace.
I would hope that Carnival would ban this group from cruising in the future. I know that everyone we encountered that was not a part of this group was not happy and the guest services area was busy with complaints. If this were my first cruise, I’m not so sure that I would sail Carnival again. This cruise gave a whole new meaning to the phrase “booze cruise.”