Jump to content
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips

Carnival Dream Journal with Pics - Caesars, Monkeys, Coconuts and a Buddy


Recommended Posts

This is a Journal with pictures of our January 23 - 30, 2010 Cruise on the Carnival Dream. For those of you who have read our Journals of our Carnival Freedom and Carnival Paradise cruises you will know that they are very long and detailed. The first 4 days of our trip up to and including the first Sea Day will be posted over the weekend with the Ports we visited, the remainder of the Cruise and our final day and night in Orlando being posted as the week goes along.


Numerical conclusions will show a gap from the Carnival Paradise cruise as the Carnival Splendor Journal, although done, was not posted on Cruise Critic because it was a Cruise Critic Group Cruise but was sent to many of those in the Group.;):D


As expected we had a great time with great friends, new and old, and 2 members of our family.


Caesars, Monkeys, Coconuts and a Buddy (and a Red Dress)


The Why? and How?


In June of 2008, thanks to the rumors flying around on Cruise Critic and a “definite maybe” from our PVP at Carnival we booked a Carnival Glory 7-Day Exotic Western Caribbean Cruise for January 23, 2010 out of Port Canaveral, Florida with the hope that the Carnival Dream would be taking over that itinerary. We thought this would be a great way of getting on the Carnival Dream at a cheaper rate.


As much as were looking forward to our April, 2009 Carnival Paradise and Carnival Splendor Cruises out of Long Beach, California Dee and I really wanted to return to the Caribbean. We booked a Balcony Guarantee for the 2 of us for $1907.98 including the Federal Taxes, Port Fees and a Fuel Supplement of $7.00 per person per day.


On July 1st, 2008 our ‘Dream’ was realized when we received an e-Fax from Carnival stating that we had been switched to the Carnival Dream. The Fuel Supplement had increased to $9.00 per person per day and the Federal Taxes and Port fees had been decreased by $20.24 so Carnival gave us a Credit for $7.76 so total pricing remained as originally booked. When Carnival eliminated the fuel Surcharge our total fare was reduced by $126.00 to $1781.98. During a trip to Nova Scotia in the summer of 2008 to visit my family we mentioned the Cruise to my niece, Jeanette, and her fiancé, Eric, and they showed some interest. On April 1st, 2009 Jeanette and Eric decided they wanted to join us so I phoned our Carnival PVP and gave her Jeanette’s contact information, and they booked Spa Balcony Cabin 12203.


In the phone conversation with our PVP I discussed the fact that we had originally booked a Balcony Guarantee on the Carnival Glory which would have guaranteed us a minimum Category 8A Balcony or a higher category if we were lucky enough to get an upgrade. With us now cruising on the Carnival Dream the Balcony Guarantee started at a Category 7A which is a Cove Balcony. As much as we thought the novelty of the Cove Balcony was appealing we decided we didn’t want to be in one. Our PVP did not have the authority to guarantee we wouldn’t end up with a Cove Balcony so I began a series of phone conversations with several different Carnival employees. It looked for quite a while that Carnival was not going to budge regarding the possibility we would end up in a Cove Balcony. My argument was that we booked a minimum 8A Category Balcony and felt that we should not get anything less than that. It took quite a while until I was satisfied with their solution and this is what their solution was:


as of 04/01/09

We can't wait to welcome you onboard your Funship Cruise.




7 days






We were happy with the agreement we came up with. And we did understand that our Balcony would be overlooking the Lanai Promenade which circumvents the Ship on Deck 5.

We were also very excited that Jeanette and Eric would be joining us on the Carnival Dream. Next up were our Back to Back Cruises on the Carnival Paradise and the Carnival Splendor which would see us departing for Long Beach, California on April 20th and returning to Victoria, BC on May 3rd. On April 14th our PVP called to wish us well on our cruise which we thought was a nice touch.


11 days after our return from the Carnival Splendor cruise we received the following e-mail:



May 14, 2009



Dear Guest,

I want to take this opportunity to welcome you home and to thank you for sailing with us on the April 26th sailing of the Carnival Splendor.


I realize many vacations are chosen because of a specific itinerary and I sincerely regret we were not able to deliver the itinerary of your choice. The H1N1 influenza situation occurring in Mexico escalated quickly and the CDC advisory issued on Monday, April 27th left us with no alternative but to take immediate action and cancel the port calls in Mexico.


I empathize with your disappointment and want to extend my sincere apologies for this disruption to your vacation. I recognize many guests were unhappy with the manner in which we handled this situation. Guest satisfaction is very important to us and we regret we did not meet your expectations in this regard. I want to assure you, however, that we made our decisions with your best interests in mind given our commitment to the health and safety of our guests and crew. Considerable time was spent by my team researching port substitutions. Regrettably there were virtually no other warm weather port of calls available to us and given the duration of the cruise, we felt that a call in San Francisco would be a welcome diversion versus no stop at all.


I now realize these changes had a more substantial impact on your cruise experience than I had anticipated, and it was not the memorable vacation we had hoped to provide. We value our relationship with you and hope we can win back your confidence. We would welcome the opportunity of having you sail with us again and hope you will accept our offer of a 50% cruise fare discount on a future 3-7 day Carnival vacation, departing before December 2010.


Please make your reservations in your usual manner and inform your agent (or Carnival) of the discount at the time of reservation.


Most importantly, I want to thank you for choosing Carnival and look forward to having the opportunity to welcome you back on one of our ships.



Gerry Cahill

President & CEO


Conclusion # 241: Bonus. I immediately contacted our PVP and she applied the $50.00 Welcome Home Credit from our April 20th – 24th Carnival Paradise cruise and the 50% cruise fare discount from our April 26th – May 3rd Carnival Splendor cruise to our Carnival Dream booking which left us with this fare for the 2 of us:




CRUISE RATE $ 804.00








Conclusion # 242: Thank you Carnival!


We emailed REALITYBREAK and ChairDancer as soon as we got the ‘50% cruise fare discount’ email to see if they got the same e-mail and to see if they’d be interested in joining us on the Carnival Dream and much to our pleasure they agreed and booked Cabin 7456 cause as we know Sue “likes it in the Aft.” So now we had Jeanette, Eric, Terry and Sue, joining Dee and I. Conclusion # 243: Sounds like a Party.


We booked our flights on May 15th using Aeroplan Miles (50,000 Miles) and we booked the Radisson Resort at the Port for January 21st and 22nd as well as a rental car that we would pick up at the Orlando Airport and return in Cape Canaveral on the 22nd. Terry and Sue booked the same nights at the Radisson while Jeanette and Eric booked flights arriving on the 22nd. The 6 of us booked the Hard Rock Hotel in Orlando for the night of the 30th.


We all booked the Costa Maya Exclusive Beach Break through www.costamayacruiseexcursions.com and the Cozumel Bar Hop through www.cozumelbarhop.com . On December 14th Terry, Sue, Dee and I decided to book a private tour for the 4 of us through www.ronystours.com in Roatan as Jeanette and Eric had decided to dive there. The excursion we booked for Roatan was described on their website as a do “what we want” type of day so we jumped at the chance to have a ‘freestyle’ day to do what we wanted, where we wanted, when we wanted. We planned to play Belize by ear. Conclusion #242: We are ready!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

January 21st – Customs, Traditions, a REALITY BREAK and a Chair Dancer


We set the alarm for 3:45am with a plan to shower, finish the last minute packing and be at the Victoria International Airport 2 hours before our 6:53am flight to San Francisco understanding that we would likely encounter increased security measures after the incident around Christmas time where the terrorist had smuggled explosives in his underwear. We arrived at the airport on schedule and got in line at the United Airlines counter. After waiting 5 minutes and not moving at all we realized that the counter was not open yet. The lady in front of us was very happy once we had our revelation and I removed my chin from her shoulder. Conclusion #243: I get excited and maybe a little impatient. Eventually the CSA’s arrived and we made our way to the counter, paid our $70.00 to check our 3 bags, showed our ID, got our boarding passes and were instructed to be at the gate at 6:10am for ‘Secondary Security’. We made our way outside for a quick smoke before heading back into the Terminal to hit the Duty-Free Shop for cigarettes and then proceeded through Security.


Once inside the gate area we grabbed a coffee for Dee, a Pepsi for me and a Smartie Cookie for the little kid in us both. Conclusion #244: This would be the last Coke/Pepsi I would have for about 10 days without any Crown Royal added to it. Our gate was divided into 2 seating areas – one seating area for those who had been through Secondary Security one for those who had not. The areas were separated by ‘high-tech’ Retractable Belt Ropes and manned by Commissionaires. We sat in the non-secured area to finish our drinks and snack before proceeding to Secondary Security where 1 of the 3 Security Agents directed us to his side of the plastic Security Table, asked us if we ‘were travelling together?’ to which we responded “Yes” and he told us to go ahead. Conclusion #245: He could probably tell that neither of us were wearing any underwear.


We had a seat the gate and while awaiting our boarding call I called Carnival’s Bon Voyage Department to order the Bon Voyage Room Decorations and 2 Carnival beach towels for my niece and her fiancé. At 6:30am we were instructed to board Flight UA6125. We found seats 3C and 3D and settled in for a quick 2 hour flight to San Francisco. We passed the time by watching a performance by Russell Peters, an Indo-Canadian comedian, which Dee had loaded on her I-Pod. I’m sure the other passengers were wondering what were laughing so loudly at. Conclusion #246: Russell's funny


As we began our descent into San Francisco and came through the clouds it became apparent that it was raining very hard. With our unscheduled stop in San Francisco aboard the Carnival Splendor in April, 2009 during the beginning of the Swine Flu outbreak in Mexico we had now seen it rain in San Francisco by air, land and sea. Conclusion #247: Cross another one off the Bucket List.




We had a little delay as they waited for a Grounds Crew to flag us into our gate. Once there we deplaned and headed towards US Customs and Immigration. Once in line I placed my chin securely on the shoulder of the lady in front of me to hurry up and wait. The line moved swiftly and soon enough we had our stamp in our Passports, retrieved our 3 pieces luggage, re-checked them and began the trek from Terminal 1 to Terminal 3. We made a quick pit stop outside to have a couple of smokes before heading through Security.




Once through security we decided to stop and have a bite to eat and we decided on a couple of toasted BLT sandwiches with fries from Lori’s Diner. They were very tasty and provided the absorption factor we would need for the next part of our journey. After eating we wandered through the PGA Store where surprisingly enough we did not see any men texting. I was in awe of all the Pebble Beach memorabilia. We did think that the Tiger Woods clothing line smelled like a mixture of many different perfumes. Conclusion #248: Must have been a number of different women involved in the production of the apparel.


Next we purchased several magazines at KTVU2 News before heading to Gate 82 to await our flight. A little while later I needed to head to the Restroom and couldn’t resist popping back into the PGA Store to buy a Pebble Beach souvenir. Conclusion #249: Jim’s got ball.


Soon enough it was time to board Flight UA751 to Orlando, Fl which involved many stops in Finland. Soon enough with Dee in the window seat, me in the middle seat we were airborne, leaving the rain behind and were at 37,000 feet in no time at all.






As is our tradition we decided to renew our long standing relationship with the Bar Cart and decided to order as close to a Caesar as we could get. The United Airlines version consisted of Finlandia Vodka and spicy Bloody Mary mix. Conclusion #250: The Vodka was truly from Finland because we could ‘Finnish’ our drinks quickly. We paid for our first round however any drinks to follow were compliments of United Airlines as they were not able to get the onboard movie to work in our section. We did our best to drink our luggage fees. The fellow in the Aisle seat next to us was a young kid from Australia who was travelling to Orlando to become a lifeguard at the Disney Properties. He had a strong desire to join us in Finland but fell victim to the difference in the minimum drinking ages between Australia, Finland and the United States. After ordering a free beer, being requested to show ID by the Flight Attendant and searching everywhere for the ID he would have had to have used to board the plane he decided that a Coke would be the best choice. We did our best to drink his luggage fees too. Conclusion #251: Vive la Finland or Hail Caesar or something like that.




We did our part to pump up the Recycling Programs in the United States, conversed with the Aussie kid and all in all enjoyed a smooth flight to Orlando. He made us laugh a few times – once with his choice of travel wear of which he could go straight from the plane to the Lifeguard Tower as long as it was 80 F. He definitely was not prepared for San Francisco or the temperature on the plane. The second time we laughed out loud was when he informed us that ‘his parents had really encouraged him to take this job halfway around the world for the next 8 months.’ “They really seemed happy for me!” he added. Conclusion #252: Somewhere in Australia a man and a woman were cracking open 2 Fosters and putting a couple of shrimp on the Bar-B


About halfway through the flight we played ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors’ to see who was going to leave Finland early so they could drive once we got to Orlando. Dee enjoyed her extended stay in Helsinki while the Aussie kid and I made pyramids out of Coke cans. Soon enough we arrived in Orlando and according to the Captain a significant tail-wind had helped us arrive 40 minutes early. We think he just stepped on it just so he could make this flight ‘endia before we drank all the Finlandia’. After a quick monorail ride to the Main Terminal, we retrieved our luggage and shortly thereafter we were standing at the Budget counter picking up the paperwork for our Rental Car which turned out to be a Toyota Rav 4. Conclusion #253: Toyota, hmmm we thought, “Should be no trouble putting the pedal to the metal.” We phoned Terry (REALITYBREAK) and Sue (Chair Dancer) to let them know we would be there ‘real soon’. They said it would be about a 45 minute drive but we told them that Budget had given us a Toyota so they said they’d head down to the Lobby right away.


We hopped in the vehicle, navigated our way out of the Parkade, set up the GPS we had brought along with us and were on our way to Cape Canaveral for our 2-night stay at the Radisson at the Port. When we arrived we saw Terry and Sue walking into the Lobby to wait for us.

Dee and I can’t tell you how lucky we were that Terry and Sue decided to join us on this Cruise. They are so easy going and so much fun and we enjoyed every minute we spent with them. Conclusion #254: There were a lot of minutes. They were nice enough to pick us up a Bottle of Crown Royal and a bottle of Malibu and some mix to save us time as they had arrived earlier in the day. After exchanging hugs in the lobby, checking in and finding our Room we mixed some drinks, grabbed some beers, a big bottle of Cider, a bucket of ice and became a ‘Party of 4 at a Table for 4’ Poolside. In Canada we can get various flavored Ciders which you can buy in 4-Packs, 6 –Packs or 2 liter bottles and has an alcohol content of 8%. We had promised Sue that we would bring her a couple of bottles of Raspberry Cider to try Conclusion #255: It was obvious that night that Sue and Dee live by the motto that ‘There is no try; there is only do or do not as they proceeded to ‘do’ a 2 liter bottle of Cider.


It was so nice to relax with great people, talk, reminisce about our Team Splendor Rain or Swine Cruise and just catch up on the previous 9 months. We laughed a lot that night as we re-lived the memories of our 1st cruise together and I told a few stories about my family, two of whom would be cruising with us. Conclusion #256: I might like to tell stories. There’s an expression that says ‘If it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ and that is so true as the last time we had seen Terry and Sue we were doing the exact same thing – having drinks and laughing at the Team Splendor ‘Glowing Home Party’, at least that was the last time I saw them. The 4 of us had closed down the Disco on the Carnival Splendor and were on our way to the Pizza Bar and Splendido Pool Bar which meant we were taking an elevator from the Promenade Deck to the Lido Deck. I had managed to get on the elevator with Dee, Terry and Sue but then realized I was still on the elevator and the other 3 had gotten off somewhere. Conclusion #257: It was Bed Time.


Around 1:30am Dee and I realized we were starving having eaten only the BLT in San Francisco earlier in the day. I headed inside and asked the guy at the Front Desk if he could recommend a good pizza place and he gave me a number. I called but they were just closing to it looked like we would be chewing on ice for the rest of the night. Conclusion #258: BLT = Be Last Time you eat today or so we thought. Sue managed to find us a small bag of raisins and peanuts which we devoured. Conclusion #259: Peanuts and raisins make us thirsty. Terry had finished all his beer so we got him on the Crown and Coke train while the girls finished every last drop of Thursday’s Cider. Conclusion #260: Ya know there’s gonna be a Friday’s Cider.


We sat Poolside until about 3:30am before deciding to go to bed knowing we had a great day, in fact a great 9 days ahead of us.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

January 22nd - Lobsters, Dolphins, an Alligator, Tiki Bars and the Girls Downtown


Dee and I woke up around 9:00am, which was really 6:00am for us, and I showered and then headed down to the Pool area while Dee got ready. As I was walking along the walkway to the Pool I heard Terry call out my name so I stopped, told him we’d be ready to roll shortly and then grabbed a table.






Once Sue and Dee were ready we followed Terry and Sue to Budget to return their Rental Car where we encountered an unusual sign between the Car Rental Lot and the waterway adjacent to it. We are used to ‘Beware of Dog’ signs or ‘Beware of Owner’ signs in Victoria but the ‘WARNING: ALLIGATOR LIVES IN CANAL’ sign had us being a little cautious. Conclusion #261: All Upper Case lettering scares us. Terry came out of the office, said he’d be right back and headed off to the Gas Station to fill up their car. Conclusion #262: The Upper Case lettering must have shook him up too.




As soon as Terry got back we decided to get away from those big, scary letters and headed over to Fishlips for a bite to eat and some refreshments. I was hoping that Fishlips could cure my Parchedlips. We grabbed a table out on the deck overlooking the waterway we would be sailing down the next day and had a look at the menus. If you are staying in Cape Canaveral we would highly recommend Fishlips for lunch or dinner. The service was great and the food and drinks were awesome. Dee and Sue ordered the Lobster Tacos and the Lobster Rolls so they could each have 1 roll and 1 taco. Terry had the Grouper while I had the Scallops and Risotto. Just as we were finishing our food we saw a Pod (Conclusion #263: Thank-you Google) of dolphins leaping out of the water right beside us. The day could have ended right there and then and it would have been a great day.






Full and having had our thirst quenched we hopped into the Toyota and sped towards Cocoa Beach and the Ron Jon Surf Shop. We shopped for about an hour, grabbing some souvenirs for Dee’s boys and my daughter and also picked up 4 large Ron Jon cups in order to minimize the number of trips back and forth from the Pool area to the room to refresh our beverages Conclusion #264: We are Energy Conservationists. We figured these cups would come in handy on the Carnival Dream as well for water and what-not.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

January 22nd - Continued


Next we headed over to the ‘World Famous Cocoa Beach Party at the Pier’ Conclusion #265: Pier, Dock, Sidewalk or Curb? – We are not fussy where the party is. The sun was out and the weather was hot so we decided to make our way out to the end of the Pier. After paying our $1.00/person Admission to cross the border towards the end of the Pier we found ourselves at Mai Tiki Bar Conclusion #266: Mai Tiki Bar, Her Tiki Bar or Their Tiki Bar? – Again we are not fussy. We grabbed a seat and started sampling their menu which was conveniently propped up against railing of the pier. Several Beach Bums and Sauza Silver Margaritas later made us feel like we were at the Swai Bar.








None of the four us seem to have any trouble striking up a conversation with those around us whether we know them or not and this afternoon was no different. We talked to those fishing off the pier, those sitting at the bar and especially to one elderly gentleman who knew ‘the girls downtown’.


The story he told us was that he was originally from the Netherlands; had immigrated to Canada and settled in Windsor, Ontario, just across from Detroit. In one breath he told the couple sitting on his right that he owned 4 Corporations and in the next breath he told us had met and married a beautiful, wealthy and much younger woman in Canada and now spent 5 months a year in Windsor and the rest of the year in their condo in Cocoa Beach and he pointed out the building to us.


It didn’t matter if he was talking to Sue, Terry, Dee or me he had the same shtick and it would involve asking a question and before whomever he was talking to had a chance to answer he would have a somewhat humorous answer for us and add “or at least that’s what the girls downtown told me”. We laughed along with him and think that he was pretty used to controlling conversations but as soon as we started answering with funnier responses before he had a chance to play his punch-line or we turned the tables on him he seemed to become disinterested. The final straw came when he started in on me and Dee regarding how much older I am than Dee and how eventually she would have to ‘lead or push me around everywhere’ and I responded “that she does that now. What do you think my ears are for?” he somehow realized that he had met his match with the four of us and bid us adieu but not before reminding us that his young and beautiful wife would be awaiting his return.


Around this time Dee and I decided to have another round and ordered another Beach Bum for Dee and a Margarita for me. We heard the Bartender say that he was going to have to head down the pier to pick up a couple of food orders for some other patrons at the Bar and that he would be gone about 5 minutes so we told Sue and Terry if they wanted another they better get their order in. Sue tried and tried to get the Bartenders attention before I gave him a “hey’ just before he made his get-away. Sue laughed and told him that she had been trying to get his attention to which the bartender said “Next time try this” and whipped up his shirt and we all busted up laughing. Conclusion #267: He wants to 'top-off' Sue’s drink. Terry and I looked at each other and decided it would be in our ‘breast’ interest to let the girls have at least one more drink each after these ones.


I got up to have a smoke and had a chat with a young kid wearing a Minnesota Vikings hat, tank top and shorts - Conclusion #268: Saints fan who was fishing off of the pier. I asked if he “had caught anything today?” and he said “Nope, not today” and then I asked if “he fished here often” and he said “yep, for about the last 3 years” so I asked his “what he normally caught?’ He looked at me and laughed and said he “had never caught anything here ‘cept a cold.” Conclusion #269: That’s why we do all our fishing in Aisle 6.


Dee grabbed the camera and decided while having a smoke to take a few pictures and was able to catch a great picture of two Cocoa Beach lovebirds. A couple walking up the pier finally had to tell her to “Hurry up and take the picture lady cause we’re thirsty!” They didn’t realize that the fact they still had their shirts was gonna slow that thirst quenching process down somewhat.







We had one more round before heading back in from the end of the pier, ensuring that when we got off the pier we headed down towards the water to dip our feet in the Atlantic. Conclusion #270: It was shrinkingly cold. We headed up to the Toyota for a quick trip to the ABC Liquor Store to grab some wine and Crown Royal for Jeanette, Eric, Dee and me. Next stop was a Grocery Store for 2 cases of water, a case of Pepsi and a case of Diet Coke and then a gas station to fill up the Rav 4. We made it back to the Radisson, took our purchases to our rooms and then Dee and I headed back down to the scary letters to return the Toyota just in advance of our scheduled 4:59pm return time. We reserved an SUV for the two of us and Jeanette and Eric for the 30th to get to Orlando and then a Budget Staff Member gave us a lift back to the Radisson.


What shall we do next we thought?......Hmmmm????... Drinks were the answer so the 4 of us headed down to the Pool area, grabbed a table and started hydrating with many other people whose faces we would recognize on the Carnival Dream over the next 7 days. It seemed that everyone we saw was in full cruise mode as people were laughing, drinking, dancing and just simply enjoying themselves. We headed up to the Tiki Bar and ordered a couple of White Russians for Dee and me made with Ice Cream instead of milk and a couple Miller Lites for Terry and Sue. Our table was right next to a ‘One Man Band’ and although he was good our location did not allow for any conversation so when a table opened up a little further away we grabbed it.


We kept checking the line-up for the Flamingo’s Dining Room but could never seem to get motivated to move. Eventually I headed up to the Room, mixed a Crown and Coke in a tall Ron Jon cup with lots of ice, grabbed Friday’s bottle of Cider for the girls, a bucket of ice and headed back down poolside. We talked, laughed and watched all the goings-on around us for the entire evening before we realized we were hungry. We were less than formal by this time so I headed to the Front Desk, got a number for a Pizza place and ordered a large double Pepperoni and a large Meat Lovers to our table poolside. Conclusion #271: This is definitely the life.


Around this time I started to become more and more excited about seeing my niece, Jeanette, as I had not seen her since August of 2008. Conclusion #272: Oh and her fiancé, Eric, was coming too. I began the countdown at about 9:00pm and updated the information for the other 3 at the table every 5 minutes or so. It was a lot of “In 4 hours Jeanette will be here!” and then “In 3 hours and 55 minutes Jeanette will be here!” Dee, Terry and Sue were very happy to see the Pizza arrive as, being a good boy, I don’t update with my mouth full.


A little bit about Jeanette or ‘J’ as we call her. She is 27 years old, outgoing and extremely funny. She comes by her wit honestly as her mother, my sister Sandra, is one of quickest and wittiest people I have ever met. You have to have thick skin to be around our family. We laugh at ourselves and with others. Jeanette graduated from Mount Allison University in Sackville, NB with a Bachelor of Sciences degree with Honors; she then went on to complete her Masters Degree before enrolling in Dentistry at Dalhousie University in Halifax, NS and graduated in the Spring of 2009. Prior to enrolling in dentistry she joined the Canadian Military on a program where they paid for her 2 years of dentistry, gave her a salary and she had to serve 1 ½ years for each year of her Education that the Military paid for. All bias aside she and her brother Mike are two of the most likable people I have ever met and I kept telling Terry and Sue that they would love her. Conclusion #273: Proud Uncle. During a summer visit back home 3 years ago Jeanette’s ‘other’ Uncle Jim, her father’s brother, ran into some health concerns regarding diabetes and it was determined that he may possibly need a kidney transplant. We were all sitting in my Dad’s Living Room when we got the news and J being J volunteered to donate one of her kidneys but my sister in a reflexive and instantaneous response said “No, Jeanette you are not giving up one of your kidneys!” We all looked at Sandra thinking ‘that was a little cold’ before Sandra followed up with “Mike (her son) can donate one of his kidneys!” We all looked at the expression on Mike’s face before we busted up laughing and I immediately dubbed Jeanette the ‘Golden Child’ and that moniker has stuck to this day. Soon enough Sandra backtracked and stated it was only because J had Boot Camp that summer and an operation of that nature would jeopardize her training. Health wise everything turned out great for J and Mike’s Uncle. However we never miss an opportunity to remind Mike just where he stands on the Family Tree. Conclusion #274: Even without surgery Mike was scarred.


We continued the ‘Party of 4 at the Table for 4’ for a few more hours and Terry and Sue did their best to stay up but the late night the night before, the fact that all the beer and Friday’s Cider was gone and our extended day of hydrating took its toll and they headed to bed about 12:30am. Soon enough Dee decided she could last no longer so I escorted her to our room, poured another drink and headed back poolside. J and Eric’s flight was supposed to arrive at 11:20pm so I was hoping they would be at the Radisson about 1:00am. About 1:00am I headed into the Lobby to wait and asked the person at the Front Desk to ‘give me a nudge if he saw me fall asleep as I did not want to risk spilling my drink.’ Dee came down about 5 minutes later, laughed at me sitting there with a big ole drink and said “J had just called, they were in a Cab and would be here in about 20 minutes”. I walked her back up to the Room, topped up my drink and headed back down to the Lobby. Sure enough at about 1:30am a taxi pulled up and I could see J and Eric in the back seat. I opened the back door to the Cab and J just looked at me and said “Get me the f*** out of here!” Conclusion #275: Golden Child has a potty mouth.


She managed to get her seat belt undone and got out of the Cab and then J and I exchanged our hugs and kisses. Then I grunted a “Hi” at Eric before heading inside to get them checked in. Conclusion #276: Don’t tell anyone but Dee and I actually like Eric. Check-in done we proceeded to wheel their luggage around the entire Radisson property before finally finding their room. Once inside I looked at Eric and said “at least there are 2 beds so you will not have to sleep on the floor.” With the 2 of them safe and sound I headed down to our room to give Dee a ‘bounce’. That’s not what you think as the Radisson has Sleep Numbered Beds and no matter what we set the bed at whenever I got into bed I sent Dee skyward.

It was night of sweet dreams before a sweet Dream

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Conclusion # 241: Bonus. I immediately contacted our PVP and she applied the $50.00 Welcome Home Credit from our April 20th – 24th Carnival Paradise cruise and the 50% cruise fare discount from our April 26th – May 3rd Carnival Splendor cruise to our Carnival Dream booking which left us with this fare for the 2 of us:




Great review! Looking forward to reading more.


I guess I am surprised that Carnival honored the 50% discount on a cruise you were already booked on. Typically those things come with so many restrictions, like only good for new bookings... I want to say it is generous of them, but maybe fair would be a better choice of words. Good deal!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great start, I cannot wait to


Thanks TakeMeAway1001


Great review! Looking forward to reading more.


I guess I am surprised that Carnival honored the 50% discount on a cruise you were already booked on. Typically those things come with so many restrictions, like only good for new bookings... I want to say it is generous of them, but maybe fair would be a better choice of words. Good deal!


Thanks LSEA... We certainly didn't expect the 50% off after the Splendor cruise nor did we go looking for anything. Our understanding is that everyone on the Cruise received a 'Future Cruise 50% Discount". We know of a number of people who have applied the discount to existing bookings which, as you said, was very fair of Carnival .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Day 1 – A Dream, A Plaza, Falls, ‘Fun’ Drinks and a Lap Dance


As usual I woke up before Dee, got up and sent her down to the Box Spring before heading outside to see if I could get a glimpse of the Funnel. It was there so I snapped a few pictures before heading back inside to shower and then headed down to the Pool area for a smoke.




I met up with Terry and he said he had reserved a shared shuttle through Royal Shuttles for 10:30am for $4.00/person for the 6 of us. Not knowing (remembering) J’s room number I headed into the Front Desk, picked up the courtesy phone, dialed 0 and then asked the Receptionist who had answered the phone right beside me if she could connect me with J’s room. She looked at me, smiled, watched me shrug my shoulders and then put the call through and I told them told J and Eric to meet us pool side at 10:00am.


I headed back up to the room to fill our Rum Runners with my Crown Royal, Dee’s Malibu and then put our case of water, Dee’s 7-Up and Cranberry Juice and my case of Pepsi in our luggage. I ran down and met J and Eric at 10:00am and brought them up to the room, showed them the Funnel and then loaded up their water, Diet Coke, J’s Crown Royal filled Rum Runners and their 2 bottle s of wine.


Next it was Poolside to introduce J and Eric to Terry and Sue. Within seconds of meeting J apologized to Terry and Sue stating that she may “have a swearing problem this week”. Conclusion #277: ‘Too late’ I thought. We all laughed before Terry asked “What’s the f***ing problem with that?” Not having seen J in a while I began to ask her about her dentistry with the Military. I asked her if she pulled wisdom teeth in addition to normal dentistry procedures. “Did my Mom call you?’ she asked. “No” I said but now I knew there was a story of some sort so I pried a little more. “Do you want to hear about the 99 successful procedures or the 1 that did not go so well?” she asked. Not being a fan of big numbers or scary letters I chose the 1 that did not go so well. Just a few minutes and dozens of swear words later had us all in stitches with J’s recollection of a procedure that went a little sideways. Conclusion #278: Suffice to say that there is a member of the Canadian Military who will forever set off metal detectors wherever he goes.


Then J told us a story of how she had to go to Orthotics to get inserts for her boots and how the fellow there, who she had treated previously in the dentist chair, had looked at her feet and told her that “Wow you have really bad Hammer Toes!”. J feeling a little sensitive said “Well that’s not very nice. How would you like it if I called you Snaggle Tooth?” She had us laughing for the entire ½ hour we were waiting for the Shuttle with a few other stories from her brief career in the Military. Soon enough it was time to head out front to meet our Shuttle.


The Royal Shuttle arrived promptly at 10:30 so the 6 of us, along with 4 other couples, loaded the luggage in the trailer and then we headed to the ‘Aft’ of the bus for the 5 minute ride to the Port. As we were driving we couldn’t help but overhear one of the husbands of the other couples telling his wife that ‘she was in charge on ensuring that he did not drink too much on the first Sea Day so he wouldn’t miss Lobster night again!’ We all busted up laughing and the comments started flying back and forth. You could feel the excitement start to swell on the shuttle as we got closer and closer to the Port and finally the Carnival Dream was within our sights. We looped around and had a great view of the Disney Magic before arriving at our destination. Once we arrived at 10:45am we gave our shuttle driver $10.00/couple and helped him and a team of Porters unload our luggage out of the trailer. After giving the Head Porter $10.00/couple we hung around until we were sure our luggage made it onto the Luggage Carts. Next we made our way to the Terminal where Terry and Sue split off and went to the Platinum Entrance and J, Eric, Dee and I went through the General Boarding Entrance. After showing our Pass Ports and FunPass for the first time we were each given Medical Forms to fill out which were to be passed in upstairs. A quick trip through security had us on the escalators to the second floor where we handed in our Medical Forms, were given Zone 8 Boarding cards and made our way to a friendly Carnival Embarkation Agent. She swiped our Passports, our Amex and then went off to get our Sign and Sail Cards and returned quickly with a “Welcome Back Deanna and James”. We let J and Eric, who were with a neighboring Agent, know we were going to find some seats. Soon enough J and Eric joined us for what turned out be a 20 minute wait for Zone 8 to be called.






After hearing the call for Zone 8 we showed our Sail and Sign cards and our Passports and made our way to have our Security Photo and our Embarkation Photo taken. Next it was across the Gangway to our Carnival Dream. Conclusion #279: We had to tilt our heads sideways so our smiles would fit on the Gangway. At 11:45am a ding-ding of our S & S cards at Security had us admiring the Atrium of the Carnival Dream and we quickly found Terry and Sue whose S & S at that time was ‘sitting and sipping’. We joined them on the couches where they told us that the Platinum Embarkation had them on the Ship 15 minutes before us. Terry and Sue ordered a round of 6 Fun Ship Specials and before I could get the paper off the end of my straw I heard the sound a straw makes when a kid is done their drink and all that is left is ice coming from J’s direction. She asked Terry and Sue if they wanted another FSS and they declined as they were still finishing their first and had full 2nd ones waiting. Dee and I decided we would join J and Eric in a 2nd round as we figured we’d be ready by the time the drinks arrived. We were about 3 quarters of the way through our first drinks when the 2nd round arrived and before I could finish my first drink I looked over at Jeanette and she was putting her 2nd empty glass down on the table and I said “Holy Crap Jeanette!” to which she replied “Sorry Uncle Jim, when I have a drink in front of me it is like a mission!” Conclusion #280: Mission accomplished Captain J. We did try and warn her that these drinks would sneak up on her and advised her that this was not a ‘sprint but was a marathon’




L-R Eric, Dee, Sue, Terry, J



While we waited for J’s 3rd drink to arrive it was funny to hear J and Eric describe the Atrium as first time cruisers. Eric decided that the ‘designer’ was trying to satisfy everyone’s favorite colors. “You like green? OK we’ll put a big splash of green over here! You like red? OK we’ll put a big splash of red over here! You like blue? Ok we’ll put a big splash of blue over here. You like bubbles? Ok we’ll put bubbles over here!” Thankfully J’s drink arrived thus ending Eric’s trip through the color spectrum. It must be said that all in all, we all thought the Atrium on the Carnival Dream was amazing.


We thought it was a good idea to get moving at this point before J so we grabbed our drinks and made our way to the Lido Deck Aft and some sunshine. We grabbed a table and J and Eric decided to have some food from the Tandoor Grill, which they loved, while Terry and I headed up to Deck 10 to the Pasta Bar to get some food for us and Dee and Sue. The made to order pasta from the Pasta Bar was awesome.


Eric, who stands about 6’5’’ tall and loves to eat, thought the Tandoori Grill and the Deli on the Lido Deck Aft were incredible and he visited these two places frequently. Lots of times you read how people, especially first time cruisers, don’t discover the Pasta Bar or the Tandoor Grill or the Deli on the Carnival Dream and the Carnival Splendor ships , while others don’t discover the Fish and Chip places on the Conquest Class ships or the Rotisserie on the Carnival Splendor. We spent so much time on the Lido Deck Aft that all Eric seemed to eat besides dinner in the Dining Room were sandwiches from the Deli or Indian food from the Tandoor Grill. It was Sunday, the first Sea Day when I told Eric there was a 24 hour Ice Cream Machine and gave him directions and off he went and visited there often from then on. On Wednesday after our short trip into Belize City, Belize a wide-eyed Eric came running up to Terry, Sue, Dee and me while were sitting at the Sunset Pool Par on the Lido Deck Aft and he excitedly informed us that “they have a Buffet on here today and it’s down there a little ways on this Deck!” We all busted up laughing and informed him that it’s there every day for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. “NOOOOOOOOO” he says before adding “I love this Ship!” I asked him if he had not noticed the Buffet during one of the dozens of trips he had made to the Ice Cream machine and he said “No, I always have trouble finding it so I am just focused on the Machine so I don’t miss it.” Conclusion #281: Both J and Eric have ‘Missions’.


Now fed and having had the a Waitress visit us a couple of times I looked over at J and she was putting the empty remnants of her 5th Fun Ship Special on the table while simultaneously raising her hand for another drink as if she was in 1st grade and had to use the restroom. We decided we should move but J said she had to wait for another drink and we told her you can just go to the bar “I can just go to the Bar! I don’t have to wait” she said before asking “Who wants another drink?” Conclusion #282: We gave Jeanette TMI. Jeanette bought everyone a drink as we passed by the Sunset Pool Bar on our way to the stairs to Deck 11 and Terry and Sue switched to Miller Lites at this time.


We settled in a spot on the Aft of Deck 11, the Panorama Deck, overlooking ‘The Gathering’ on the Lido Deck Aft. We grabbed a couple of the oversized plastic chairs and took in the sights and sounds while Jeanette took in the Fun Ship Specials. Within seconds of us being upstairs Jeanette asked “Who wants another Fun Drink?” Did she just say ‘Fun Drink’??? Conclusion #283: 5 of us were inebriated while J was abbreviated. Before I even had a chance to say I wanted to switch things up regarding the type of fluids I was drinking J had dispatched Eric to the bar for another round of 4 ‘Fun Drinks’ and 2 Miller Lites.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Day 1 - Continued


At exactly 1:00pm I grabbed our Cell Phone to make a call. After the first cruise Dee and I took together in January of 2008 on the Carnival Freedom we convinced a friend of ours to organize a cruise for her and her husband and her husband’s family. They chose the Carnival Glory for January of 2009 with much the same itinerary as we were about to do. On the Saturday that they were embarking our phone rang at 9:00am our time and after answering all we could hear for about 5 seconds were the sounds of a Steel Drum Band before our friends, Deb and Ted, started rubbing it in that they were having a Fun Ship Special on the Lido Deck of the Carnival Glory in 80 degree weather. We returned their call twice in April of 2009 from the Lido Decks of the Carnival Paradise and the Carnival Splendor and today would be no different. Conclusion #284: What are friends for? As I was looking off in the distance away from the rest of the group I dialed their number and as soon as Deb answered the phone I started with “Na Na Na Na Na Na.” I was halfway through my “Na’s” when Dee admonished me with a “JIM, That’s awful!” and even Eric said “Wow Uncle Jim that’s cold.” I’m thinking “*****” and went back to talking to Deb. As it turned out they did not know I was on the phone and at the same time that I started my ‘Na’s’ an elderly gentleman had just come to rest at the bottom of the stairs from Deck 12, the Spa Deck, to the Panorama Deck after falling down the last 3 stairs or so.


Understandably the wife of the gentleman who had fallen was glaring at us assuming that I was mocking her husband. I finished my conversation with Deb and passed the phone over to Dee so she could say “Hi” and I explained to the others what I had just been doing. I was not even aware that anyone had fallen and for those that know me know I would never do anything like that. Conclusion #285: Never is a long time as we would soon find out. After they told me what had happened I felt horrible and unfortunately I was too late to catch the husband and his wife to offer my apologies and explain what had happened. Dee seemed to think that the wife had eventually realized I was on the phone. It got a little quiet for a minute or 2 before J broke the silence with the sounds of straw hitting ice and air. She asked ‘who wanted another drink’ and having had enough of the sweet drinks I said I would switch to a ‘Double Crown and Coke in a tall glass with lots of ice” and Dee decided she would have a BBC which is Baileys and Banana Colada while Terry and Sue stayed on the Miller Lite train. I told J to put away her card as we had not even paid for a drink yet thanks to the hospitality of Terry and Sue in the Atrium and J since we arrived up top. J said “No” and sent Eric on his way to fill the order. Conclusion #286: Eric needs a tray and a blue golf shirt.






We stayed where we were at until about 2:30pm when we decided to do a tour of the 3 Cabins so that we all had an idea of where our Cabins were situated before we didn’t have any idea. The plan was to go to Terry and Sue’s Aft Balcony Cabin #7456 first. Conclusion #287: As we have heard before Sue likes it in the Aft. J and Eric went down the stairs to the Lido Deck first, followed by Dee, myself, Sue and then Terry. Just as my foot hit the Lido deck I heard a scream behind me and turned around to see Sue sliding down the last 3 stairs on her aft. Conclusion #288: Apparently Sue likes it in the Aft and on the Aft. Not only was she not hurt but her glass of Miller Lite was still raised high with a straight arm that would make an NFL linebacker proud. It was like looking at the Statue of Liberty lying on her back. Carnival Staff Members began rushing to her aid but she assured them she was fine and I immediately started with “Na Na Na Na Na”. This is when the “stupid white people” theme of our cruise took over and it would turn out to be a very common and frequent theme. Sue might have been fine but the 5 of us were in pain from laughing so hard. After checking out Terry and Sue’s Cabin we went to J and Eric’s Spa Balcony Cabin #12203 which was decorated with the ‘Bon Voyage’ decorations we had ordered for them and then we watched them open up their 2 new Carnival Beach Towels. Next was a visit to our Balcony Cabin #6266. Our luggage had arrived by the time we got to our Cabin so we unpacked the Rum Runners and poured everyone a drink. Our Assistant Room Steward arrived shortly after we did to introduce himself, let us know about the Muster Drill at 3:30pm and to get us to sign the sheet indicating that we had indeed met him. We gave him $10.00 and asked that he fill up our Ice Bucket twice a day and he said he would. As it was getting close to the Muster Drill everyone decided to head back to their respective Cabins to unpack before heading to their respective Muster Stations for the Safety Drill.


Dee and I relaxed for a moment before we unpacked as much as we could. Around 3:30pm we heard the first call for the Safety Briefing and knew that we did not need to go just yet. The next announcement we heard stated that “By now you should all be at your Muster stations watching the Security Video”. In all of our cruises together we have always been at the drill physically and did not mean to miss it but we did. Conclusion #289: Either the Drills are way more efficient on the Carnival Dream or Dee and Jim are way less efficient. As it turned out Terry and Sue ended up going to the wrong station and J wasn’t able to last through their briefing.


We had made plans to meet back at the Lido Deck Aft at the conclusion of the Safety Briefing for Sail Away and we did just that. Finally at 4:16pm Dee and I were able to buy a round for everyone and we did so again at 4:59pm. We finally had J on a drinking pace that was a little more humanlike but unfortunately the damage had already been done.









At a little after 5:00pm we decided to head down to Deck 5, the Promenade Deck, and go to Wasabi for some Sushi. I ordered everyone a round of drinks and when the Waitress saw the Gold S & S Card she said ‘Welcome Back James.’ Those of us that eat Sushi were enjoying it, while J was eating wasabi by the finger full of everyone’s plate. About this time I asked J if she ‘would like her uncle to hang on to her Passport and US cash?’ as they had already managed to lose one of their S & S cards, been to the Guest Services Desk to have it replaced and been unable to figure out the Safe. J agreed. When the Waitress returned with our tray of ‘Fun’ she must have decided that we were ‘Fun’ as she hung around and chatted with us for a bit. I asked her what ships she had been on and she listed off half a dozen or so. I asked her if she had ever worked with a Bartender by the name of Vanlapa who was from Thailand. She smiled and said “Vanlapa here” and gave us directions to the Ocean Plaza Bar where we would be able to find her. We had met Vanlapa on our January, 2008 Carnival Freedom cruise where she was a Bartender at the Specialty or Wine Bar on the Promenade Deck and we absolutely fell in love with her. Conclusion #290: It became a Martini Bar for us. We spent many hours on that Cruise planted on stools in front of Vanlapa and she treated us well. Dee and I were now very excited as were Terry and Sue as they had read the Journal of our Carnival Freedom cruise on Cruise Critic before meeting us on the Cruise Critic Team Splendor cruise and knew how fondly we spoke of her. J was just concerned as to whether or not there would be ‘Fun Drinks’ there while Eric was wondering if there would be food.


We picked up our drinks and headed towards the Ocean Plaza Bar and when I heard Dee say “There she is!” Vanalapa looked at us, screamed and said “Oh my God, Jim and Dee!” and fell laughing behind the Bar. Next thing you know she is out from behind the Bar giving us hugs and then introduced us to Romeo and Katrina who were her fellow Bartenders and then we introduced her and them to the rest of ‘us’. Conclusion #291: Like Eric at the Ice Cream Machine we visited here often.



Vanlapa and Romeo

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Day 1 - Continued


At 5:55 Dee had to use the Re$troom and at 5:57 she made her 1st donation to the Carnival Dream Casino. Around 7:00pm the 3 ladies went to change for dinner and stopped at the Waves Pool Bar for a couple of drinks to take back to the Cabin. Conclusion #292: Night, Night J, See you tomorrow. Terry, Eric and I stuck around the Ocean Plaza Bar for a few more drinks before heading out about 7:45 to change for our 8:15 Dinner seating.


Our Assistant Waiter on our Carnival Splendor was a Russian by the name of Vladimir who we fell in love with. We stayed in touch after the cruise through email and Facebook and when the Carnival Splendor began doing the Pacific Northwest cruises during the Swine Flu outbreak in Mexico we arranged to take him and a friend of his, Olga, out when the ship was in Port here in Victoria one Wednesday and show them the sights. We ended up in a bar for lunch that day and Vladimir really liked Paralyzers, the Canadian name for a drink that is made of Vodka, Milk, Kahlua and a splash of Coke or Pepsi. We got him and Olga a couple of 4-Packs of Mudslides each, which are similar to Paralyzers, to take back on the ship that day.


When we were on the Carnival Splendor Vlad told us his next contract would be on the Carnival Dream so we spoke to Ken Byrne, our Maitre’d who had also been our Maitre’d on the Carnival Freedom, and asked if we could request Vlad as our Waiter for our Dream cruise as we knew Ken was going to be on the Dream as well. He said “Absolutely” and gave us his card with his email and instructions to email him in advance of our cruise to remind him. I found out on John Heald’s Blog that Ken would be leaving the Carnival Dream on January 23rd, the day we were getting on, so I emailed him in late December to remind him of our request. He said that Vlad had already spoken to him about us and everything was a go and to email him the week before our cruise as a reminder. Vlad emailed us in early January to say that Ken had left the Carnival Dream earlier than expected so I took a chance and emailed Ken anyways. He replied that he had left our request with Ante, the new Maitre’d, and that he was enjoying ‘snowy Ireland’. We emailed him back to thank him for his help and to say that we hoped that we would be in his Dining Room again someday as we do feel he is an incredible Maitre’d. Knowing we were going to see Vlad again Dee and I decided to bring him a 4-Pack of Mudslides because he liked them and a 4-Pack of White Russians, well, because he is one. Vladimir is small in stature but big in personality. He is probably around 4’10’ tall at best and probably wouldn’t weigh more than 90 lbs soaking wet but he is adorable. We also brought him a straw Cowboy Hat with a Canadian logo on the front as a souvenir.


Gift Bag in hand we left the Cabin at precisely 8:15pm and headed towards the Scarlet Dining Room. We were surprised that there was still a small line-up on Deck 4 waiting to get in and when the couple in front of us got to the Assistant Maitre’d’s stand they were informed that this was the Crimson Dining Room. We just laughed and said that ‘we were with them’ and headed off towards the Aft of the ship. The husband of the couple we were now travelling with was in a wheel chair so we did what we could to help out. Eventually the wife, who was a sweet, sweet woman, told us that they ‘were following’ us to which we responded ‘Damn we were following you”. The words were barely out of our mouths and Vanalapa appeared out of nowhere and came to our rescue. She fanned the lady pushing her husband in the wheelchair all the way to the Scarlet Dining Room. We thanked Vanlapa, bid ‘adieu’ to the other couple who had to take the elevator down to the 3rd Deck before entering the Scarlet Dining Room on the 4th Deck, heading down to the stairs to see a smiling Vladimir patiently awaiting our arrival. ‘My Darlingz!” he said as we exchanged hugs and gave him his goodies which he quickly hid.



Dee and Vladimir


We grabbed seats at our Table for 10 where Eric, Terry, Sue and another couple by the name of Joanie and Norm, who were from Nashua, NJ, were already seated. We immediately got into ordering mode so as not to keep anyone waiting any longer as it was already 8:30pm. Thankfully the other Table of 4, who George, our Head Waiter from Romania, and Vladimir were to look after did not show up this evening so we got all of the attention. I ordered 2 Shrimp Cocktails, a Caesar Salad, a medium rare Flat Iron Steak while Dee had a Heart of Iceberg Lettuce Salad and the Barbecued baby Back Ribs. We also ordered the Wine Package and as always chose the Robert Mondavi Chardonnay. Our Bar Waitress, Julia from South Africa, was adorable and very attentive but never intrusive. She always had a smile on her face especially when she saw how happy we always were. I ordered a Double Crown and Coke in a tall glass with lots of ice and told Julia that I would have at least one every night and every night thereafter it was waiting for me when we arrived just as our bottle of Robert Mondavi Chardonnay would be sitting there chillin’.



Dee, Jim and George


We are certain that the first night was a tough night for Joanie and Norm as the 5 of us on were overly hydrated from many, many ‘missions’ that day. We loved them and soon enough they started coming out after dinner with us as well.


In the middle of the Dinner service a Hostess came walking up to the table and said she was ‘looking for a Miss Jeanette” and since she was not there Eric answered that “He was with her.” You could absolutely see the fear in Eric’s face as he wondered “Oh No! What have we done?” I started laughing and told the Hostess that Jeanette was unable to make it to dinner but that was indeed her fiancé as I knew what was happening. My sister had arranged to give J 8 ‘mission’ tickets which would take care of her for 5 minutes at some point during the 7 day cruise. A few minutes later the Hostess returned looking for a Mr. James as my sister had gifted us with 8 drink tickets as well.

For dessert I had the Warm Chocolate Melting Cake and Dee had her Cappuccino. Dinner took us almost 2 hours tonight and this was the case most nights. It had nothing to with service provided as the service was top notch, but rather the leisurely pace at which we dined at due to our desire to visit with Vlad and enjoy as much time as we could with him. It took a few nights but eventually George joined in on the ‘Fun, Fun, Fun’ with us. We are sure it was a little overwhelming for George at first as Vlad was getting all the attention. We made sure to include George in everything as the week went along.


After dinner Dee, Terry, Sue and I made our way to Sam’s Piano Bar where Barry Miller was the Piano Man while Eric headed up to the Cabin to check on J with a promise to come back to the Piano Bar. Conclusion #293: Night, Night Eric. We thoroughly enjoyed Barry and the atmosphere in the Piano Bar this night. Barry really got the crowd to participate and the Bar service was outstanding. Soon enough it was time for Sue to head to bed and Terry escorted her up to their Cabin with a promise to return. Conclusion #294: Night, Night Sue. We knew Terry would be back and true to form Terry, who we had nicknamed Mr. Fun, returned in a matter of just a few minutes. We don’t remember all the songs he was playing but we do remember doing a pretty good job of Jimmy Buffett’s “I Don’t Know and I Don’t Care” a few times that night. He also used a song that started “I know a girl, her name was…….” and then he would ask the crowd to shout out a name and then he would improvise rhyming lyrics such as “I know a girl her name was Sue, she wears underwear and they are blue” Conclusion #295: ROFLMFAO – Inside Joke.


Dee said she had to ‘use the Re$troom’ and Terry and I laughed and looked at our watches knowing full well, after our experiences with her Re$troom breaks on the Carnival Splendor, that the toilet she would be using would be situated directly in front of a Lucky 7’s Slot Machine so we went back to enjoying the show. As the night went along the show and the requests from Barry of the crowd got a little more adult-oriented. There was pole dancing and a ‘Cousin It from the Addams Family’ act and just after Dee returned from her ½ hour Restroom/Casino break Barry said “the first woman to spank their waiter would get a free round of drinks” she jumped up and was azz-slapping this poor little waiter from Indonesia’s. Conclusion #296: I’ll have what he’s having and a free drink. A few minutes later Barry’s request was the “1st woman to give her man a Lap dance gets a free round of drinks” and in a flash Dee jumped on me. Conclusion #297: J may have lapped her Uncle in drinking earlier in the day but her Uncle ‘had the last lap’. It’s not a sprint J, it’s a marathon.


Dee had to go for another Re$troom break so Terry and I hung out , had one more round before calling it a night. (I did have to ask Terry the next day if I left him in the Piano Bar and he said we left together – him heading to the elevator and me to look for Dee in the Re$tCasinoRoom) I did one tour around the Re$tCasinoRoom and couldn’t see her so I headed back to Sam’s for a night cap before setting out one more time to find her and did indeed find her sitting on a stool in from of a Slot Machine.


We headed up to the Cabin, poured a night cap and headed out on the Balcony to relax, have a smoke and enjoy the sounds of the Ocean before heading to bed at 3:30am

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OMG, I am ROFLMAO. This is SO GOOD. We were on the Dream for her 11/15 sailing from Manhattan JUST because we are a 20 minute drive to the cruise terminal, wanted to try a "new" CCL ship and the lst port of call was Pt.Canaveral where our BFF live. I sent this to him because they are always cruising the piers for happy hour and probably are "regulars" at the places you went to. ;) We had a BLAST on the Dream. Hope you did too and can't wait to hear more about your adventures. BTW, I would rather have natural childbirth TRIPLETS than go to a dentist, so no way could I have cruised with J :D Also, what does TMI mean??? And PLEASE, just for the fun of it, post J's bar bill at the end of your review. OY!!! And you are only on day 1/4??? :eek: Can't wait to read more. :p

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OMG, I am ROFLMAO. This is SO GOOD. We were on the Dream for her 11/15 sailing from Manhattan JUST because we are a 20 minute drive to the cruise terminal, wanted to try a "new" CCL ship and the lst port of call was Pt.Canaveral where our BFF live. I sent this to him because they are always cruising the piers for happy hour and probably are "regulars" at the places you went to. ;) We had a BLAST on the Dream. Hope you did too and can't wait to hear more about your adventures. BTW, I would rather have natural childbirth TRIPLETS than go to a dentist, so no way could I have cruised with J :D Also, what does TMI mean??? And PLEASE, just for the fun of it, post J's bar bill at the end of your review. OY!!! And you are only on day 1/4??? :eek: Can't wait to read more. :p


Thanks Cruisin Karen...TMI - Too Much Information....and yes we did have a blast:D from the first minute to the last..There's lots more to come...And much like the Rabbit and the Hare our S & S bill just for the 'refresments' ended up being about $300.00 more than J and Eric's, will post the totals at the end ..J's a one day on one to recover kinda girl where we are more, hmmm, lets say consistent when we are cruising

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, next time you all book a cruise, let me know and maybe I'll hop aboard. You sound like my kind of "cruisers." :cool::rolleyes:Might even raise my arm up when J asks who is ready for another DOD ;)FAVORITE is the CCL Spirit class, but I was really surprised by and impressed with the Dream.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great review! Looking forward to reading more.


I guess I am surprised that Carnival honored the 50% discount on a cruise you were already booked on. Typically those things come with so many restrictions, like only good for new bookings... I want to say it is generous of them, but maybe fair would be a better choice of words. Good deal!

it seems carnival is getting better at customer relations...they also let me use my 50% off on a previously booked cruise.......oh, and by the way jim....another masterpiece of a review...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Loving your review! :D


Thanks happlady


it seems carnival is getting better at customer relations...they also let me use my 50% off on a previously booked cruise.......oh, and by the way jim....another masterpiece of a review...


Hey Roy..It will get better too...lots of material from this trip;):D...still wishing you would have been there....D'ya have a good visit home???

Gonna get a few more pictures up tonight and then put the first sea Day up tomorrow...it was a long, long 1st Sea Day:D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks happlady




Hey Roy..It will get better too...lots of material from this trip;):D...still wishing you would have been there....D'ya have a good visit home???

Gonna get a few more pictures up tonight and then put the first sea Day up tomorrow...it was a long, long 1st Sea Day:D

I did have a good time home...it gets harder and harder to leave every time....now im on the road until may..its pretty emotional for me reading this journal, knowing that I should have been there with you. but its awesome reading about you,dee sue, terry and your niece having such a great time. if anyone reading this feels like jim is exagerating in any way to enhance his story, I can assure you, he isnt. fun times literally follow these great people and I saw it first hand.....
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What a wonderful review. We would also love to cruise with you although I don't think I could keep up with your drinking even thou I can consume a fair amount of beer. I can't wait for the rest. By the way are you a writer?

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Welcome to Cruise Critic
      • ANNOUNCEMENT: Explore 5 Unique Destinations With All-inclusive Pricing
      • Holiday Exchange - Jingle and Mingle 2023
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Cruise Critic News & Features
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
  • Create New...