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TRACE

Pride review Jan 9,2004 sailing...

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Saturday morning January 8, 2004 we left home and drove south. Our intention was just to take I-5, but after hearing the grapevine was closed, we decided to go 101. We arrived into Long Beach in the afternoon in the pouring rain. We did the Park & Cruise deal from Holiday Inn Express- Downtown. It was $130. Very comfortable. Will stay there next time too.

 

Sunday morning January 9, 2005 we got it together early... we called down to the front desk and told them we were ready for the shuttle to take us to the ship. The lady at the desk told us to come on down to the lobby as he was on his way back from the ship. When we arrived at the lobby, he was there. We loaded up and off we went. As we started accross the bridge, I looked to my left, and there she was. Could barely see her because of he rain, but you couldnt miss that red funnel. My heart began to beat !! The driver drove us into the parking garage where we got out. A porter was right there to take our bags, which she did. I tipped the driver 5 bucks, and the porter 4. Then she asked our stateroom number. we were 8A guarantees so we had grey tba tags. she said she couldnt take the bags without a cabin number. She took us over to an area where all of the folks who were Debarking were standing. We stood there for about 15 minutes. We got ourselves collected. I saw a gentleman with a walkie-talkie and asked if he could help us. That we were leaving on the ship this am and "where do we get our stateroom number?" He pulled out a bunch of papers from his pocket, found our names told us our cabin numbers, so we could write them on all our luggage tags. they then took our luggage, and directed us over to the Queen Mary. (Just follow the early check in signs) We were guided along once inside into a large reception area. Here, we gave our credit card info, and they checked ID. Pulled out an envelope with our S&S cards and welcomed us to have a seat. My partner wanted to go out to smoke a cigarette, so we walked outside. We took a couple photos with the ship behind us, and stepped outside. After my bud was done smoking we went to go back to the waiting area, when we were stopped by a Queen Mary employee asking for tickets. We explained that we were there for the early checkin and just stepped outside to smoke, but she insisted we go accross the lot to buy tickets, or we could go stand in line. It was pouring rain. It was a bummer they made us go buy tickets to go back on board the waiting area, but what are ya gonna do? Finally we went to stand in line around 12 we met some really cool shipmates in that line! Around 12:30 we started the process of embarking. Once inside its through security check... 1st photo... up an escalator to the upper level another photo and you walk accross a long walkway to board the ship. We crossed onboard mid ships near the shops into the atrium. Stunned...we stood there in awe. After the ohhs & ahhs we got on the glass elavator up to the 8th (panorama) deck were we found our stateroom 8-269 it was starboard aft just under the Lido Deck We had been upgraded to an 8H! THANKS CARNIVAL!. The stateroom door was open and all lights were on. The cabin was decorated with Happy Birthday decorations. Foil, and droopy things... really cool! Also both beds were covered with Bon Voyage Gifts... Chocolate ships, ball caps, tshirts, and sweatshirts all wrapped in clear wrapping with cool carnival bows. we also had a "medium priced" floral arrangement that was beautiful and lasted the entire cruise.

We took several pictures, closed the door, and went up to lido deck for 1st meal and to explore. Several People were delayed getting on board and I'm told it was around 6PM befor we cast off and headed out to sea.

 

Monday January 10....sea day... thats about all I remember :) Hey... I'm on VACATION!

 

Tuesday.... umm....Sun... fun...The Casino...Karaoke.... lots of coronas...Bingo....I Know I had a Blast...

 

Wednesday Puerto Vallarta....OH MY GOD! Sunny and 90. ATV Adventure was excellent! free drink, free lunch some shopping and you get wet to boot! They also gave us a free Tequila Tour. We were late getting back to the ship as we had another shore excursion the sunset pirate adventure. by the time we got thru security... to our stateroom.... showered & changed... back off the ship.... the pirate adventure had already left without us... I saw a pirate guy walking towards us and we showed him our tickets, and he rushed us to a little skiff, and the whisked us out to the pirate boat. It was great. I drank tequilla sunrises and Jim had Margarrrrrrritas! It was a blast complete with fireworks which was a great way to end his Big 5-0! We had the time of our lives! We then set sail for Mazatlan...

 

Thursday...Mazatlan Sunny and 90. Did the Beach/Shopping show... it was great! the folklore show was very interesting... the shopping was really cool. and the resort they took us to for lunch and beach/water time... WOW! This city was really neat. the cab drivers both spoke perfect english and gave us little tidbits of info that made the ride pleasant. Wear your setbelts! They ignore stopsigns :) The cab alone is a cool excursion!

 

the next morning... Cabo San Lucas... They tender you in... security circled the ship here...this was a neat city. we did no excursions here opting to walk the "wharf" were we made our way to cabo wabo and back, had lunch ond shopped in the shops. If you like Margarrrrrritas... go inside the little shopping area just as you get off the tender. its off to the left. Towards the middle in the back, this guy has a little "booth" he sells drinks. Jim said they were excellent. His Coronas were very cold...

 

Really cool things...

Leaving Puerto Vallarta & Mazatlan... the locals go to a spot and honk their horns, wave, yell, flash their lights.. it was neat, and I waved back...Gracias!!!

 

The Carnival Staff was way cool... the photo staff was very friendly and took excellent photos of us. Every one was friendly and really seemed to enjoy there jobs. We thought it was cool when we spoke to a waitress on evening in the starry night and then the next night she was in ivory piano bar comes up to us and says... I remember you guys from karaoke... are you having a good time?

 

The Talent show/ Bedtime Story...DO NOT MISS THIS... DO NOT MISS THIS!!! Just let that laughter out... everyone else is...

 

This is where i heard Greg say... I'm gonna miss this...after asking around.. I was told he is retireing... in March... opening a 70/80's style place in Puerto Vallarta. How True? I dont know... it's just what I heard.

 

SECURITY: excellent, felt very safe the entire week. onboard and ashore.

DOOR DECORATIONS: Didnt see any...

LOG BOOK: In library...saw 2 books... forgot to sign it... DOHHH!

 

Saturday was the final sea day... time to pack... trips winding down....we hit the casino... had our last slice of pizza and called it a night.

 

Sunday.... we had Black tags and were the last color off the ship... we waited in the casino till 12:15 when they called our tag. we should have eaten breakfast...the trip was over... we were off the ship.

 

BACK TO WORK... Its been a week now, and i'm stil high from the experience, but i started feeling some PCD on Friday... so we called the PVP and will book 1/8/2006 on the Pride and do it again!!!!

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Excellent review!!! Can't wait until we sail again in May. We just loved the ship and experience so much we are going again!

 

Steven

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Hey Trace - thanks for the review...I'm leaving 2 weeks from today on the Pride :D I was worrying about the weather being chilly but from the sounds of it you had some very nice weather! I live in Michigan and it is about Zero out so I'm counting down the days to get on the big boat!!

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Hi, thanks for the review, I'm on the pride Feb 6. I was wondering, what time did you arrive at the Queen Mary for early check in? And why were people delayed? Was it the rainy weather or security issues? And as for luggage security, is it the same as planes where you can only use approved locks or can you lock your luggage before giving it to the porters?

Thanks so much!

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Thanks for sharing your trip with us! I am also on the Pride Feb 6. I was wondering what tickets you had to go get for the Queen Mary? I thought you could just walk on the Queen Mary for early check in. Please could you give more information about this?

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Thanks all ... it was a great trip.

 

Kerrilah: Probably got to QM around 9:45. Weather played a large part in delays for people getting to the ship. I used those plastic little ties when leaving the hotel. ALL were removed by the time my luggage arrived at the stateroom. nothing missing... people were just doing there job...

 

yesitsfree: I think we encountered a difficult QM staff member... I explained we had already checked in and had just stepped off to smoke a cigarette, but she insisted we go get tickets. I didnt let it ruin my trip, but I was concerned we were off to a bad start. I think she was just being a b***h.

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Trace...so glad you had a great time. We are on the PRIDE in March, so I was alarmed to hear about Greg Kneale.

 

Can you tell me how the sea days weather wise was?

Motion of the ship also please?

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Ciship: Yes, I heard from a waitress that Greg was leaving in March. I feel so fortunate to be able to say he was my first cruise director. He was hilarious! His bed time story was so funny, i could barely catch my breath. My partner Jim laughed so hard, it made me feel great to see him so happy. He caught te bug and we are booked "same time next year"! WooWhoo! :)

 

Sea days were sunny and comfortable, the coolest days were monday & saturday. sunny but a little cool. quite comfortable for us northern californians!

 

Barely felt the ship moving except in the taj mahal when you occasionally felt a slow up & down sensation. I slept like a rock! I know i just set myself up for a Derf comment, but seriously... very comfortable indeed...

 

I'm sold on this trip.... our PVP was the Greatest... will never book with a TA...Carnival took very good care of us!

 

Any other questions? ask away... I cant stop talkin about it!!! :)

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Thanks Trace, guess I'll just leave the locks at home, I keep all the expensive stuff in my carry on anyway! And thanks, we were planning on leaving home about 9ish, so that's perfect (we're just 20 mn from the port).

And thanks for the smoking tip, Im a smoker,but maybe Ill hold out just in case I encounter the same "lovely woman" you did!!

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So glad you had a great time. I am hooked on Carnival after our trip on Pride last July. We're sailing on Glory in June.

 

Elise

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Trace, Funny thats what I call my wife too (Tracy). Thanks so much for the review. Sounds like you had the time of your life!:D We are going on the Pride March 27, and are also going on the Pirate sunset tour thingy. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Could you tell us a little more about it, if you remember anything after all those drinks.:cool: Thanks, Rick

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Trace thanks so much for the great review. We depart on 2/13 and can't wait. Glad to hear the evening show on the island was good as we want to do that too. Your insight and style of writing is great, keep it up. Yee Haa only 17 days to go! (Not that I'm counting or anything.)

I will also keep my eye out for music folk as the Grammy's are the night we leave, as if at my age I recgonize anyone any more. Lydia of COLD Ohio

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I will be sailing on the Pride on April 3rd - can't wait!! Has anyone heard anything good about the horsebacking in Matzatlan. I think it's called happy horses?

 

Also, any new info. on the lady that disappered from the Pride in December??

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Ok... here goes...

 

Love Bug Rick (love your name) yes, its called the Sunset Pirate Adventure. It started at 4:15 and returned well after dark... it was kind of crowded... they did 2 seatings for the dinner... the peple on the "main" deck ate first... they also received all the free shirts and stuff. The pirates entertain the whole evening. first, the do their booty shakin thing then they get ladies from the main deck to come up on stage and shake their thing!!! if you want to be part of audience participation... stay on the main deck. since we arrived late, we ended up on the aft deck up were the captain steers. it was neat up there because there were less people bumping into you, and you could oversee everything. during dinner, they switch modes and put on more of a mexican medicine man type show lots of costumes, and chanting and such .... fascinating! after dinner they go more into a pirate fighting skit which is cool. by this time we were heading back towards the pride. They shot fireworks off from the beach as we went by, which was totally awesome. (around 10 shells 1 at a time)

If you get seasick, you might not enjoy this excursion. the ship bobbed around like a cork.

The Pirate ship docks at a pier right next to the Pride, so you dont have far to stumble back to ship :) Open Bar, and lets just say, they were very generous...Jim was ordering 2 margarrrrrrritas @ a time and they were strong...

 

Lydia: We didnt do the excursion you mention, but I did hear a couple mention it during the Midnight Mexican Buffet when leaving Puerto Vallarta. Sounded really neat. very romantic.

Dont miss the Bedtime story immediately after the Talent Show. Also... on Saturday Greg did a Debarkation talk ... at the end of that the ships video crew put together a little 2 minute video set to the song " I Hope You Had The Time Of Your Life" dont miss this ... not a dry eye in the house...

 

binuevo: I think your talking about Randys Happy Horses. I think that is in Mazatlan, we didnot do this excursion, but did speak to a family who did and said it was excellent. very beautiful!

as far as the missing lady... nothing was mentioned, of course, but I personally noticed alot of surveilance cameras all over that ship...those railings are pretty high...above waist level on a 6 ft man.

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I will be sailing on the Pride on April 3rd - can't wait!! Has anyone heard anything good about the horsebacking in Matzatlan. I think it's called happy horses?

 

This is awesome horseback riding. I would get in touch with her as fast as possible though. It is called Randi's Happy Horses. It costs $45 per person and is well worth it. Have a great cruise.

 

Trace: Great review. It was like reliving it all over. Our cabin was 8560 and we looooooooved the rocking motion. Never slept better. Also liked being able to take the stairs to the food.

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I will be sailing on the Pride on April 3rd - can't wait!! Has anyone heard anything good about the horsebacking in Matzatlan. I think it's called happy horses?

 

Also, any new info. on the lady that disappered from the Pride in December??

 

We'll also be on the Pride (4/3/05). We have 4 horses reserved with Randi already. Go to http://www.randishappyhorses.com for information and to make reservations.

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Well Bon Voyage everyone...

 

ya know... that randys sounds pretty good. might have to try that next time.

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Trace - thanks for the great review. We're cruising on May 8th, but I'm ready to go now!!!

 

I want to get off to a great start --- board as early as possible with the least hassle. I know there will be crowds and lines and waiting ... I expect that. But it would be great if you could walk me through the best was to get through this. Here is what I think ... please correct me

 

1. You drop off your luggage with a porter in the Parking Garage? We'll be taking a shuttle or taxi from the Hyatt. Will they know where to go? How early can you do that?

 

2. Go to the Queen Mary for early check-in. I assume you can easily walk from the Parking Garage and I think I read somewhere that they open at 9.

 

3. Then what? Did you get in line to board right after checking in (and having a smoke)? Was that about 10 and you waited for 2 1/2 hours? Were you close to the front of the line?

 

Tell us anything else that you did that was special or fun or different? I am soaking up all the good stuff about the Pride.

 

Diane

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I am also on the Pride April 3 and riding with Randy. I can't wait.

 

Jen

 

Great! We are really looking forward to the ride and relaxing at Victor's. We are taking our two boys (age 6 & 7) - Don't worry, they're well behaved and always supervised.

 

Robert & Christy

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Trace -

 

That lady at the Queen Mary early check-in entrance was a witch. We stayed there the night before, and she refused to allow us in that entrance. Instead she made us walk all the way around to the hotel entrance in the pouring rain. Considering that we had 4 rooms and paid about $250 per room, she probably could have been a little more considerate.

 

Karen

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Trace,

 

I loved your review it was great!!

I will be sailing the Pride in Sept and found some interesting ideas from it.

you don't happen to have pictures online anywhere do you?

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