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11 Night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise Photo Review - Celebrity Reflection


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1 minute ago, Marvy Mare said:

Linda

We did get out for a drive yesterday and there were very few people around anywhere. We're working on a grocery list. Our children have offered to shop for us. I'd love to see a photo of your fur babies. Our long Roll Call for this cruise included a lot of dog photos.

 

Maris

   Hi Maris, Will a silky terrier and Paris a Parti-Yorky  both rescues with such attitude and character. A tiny bit smaller than your beautiful two.  Thanks

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On 3/16/2020 at 2:18 PM, Marvy Mare said:

 

Passions on the beach. It was lovely. The food was great, though it was expensive. We all opted for dessert back on the Reflection. All excursions that we did on this cruise, we found through cruise critic. Our Roll Call for the March 2, Reflection Sailing was up close to 80 pages. Great group. We enjoyed meeting quite a few of the people who posted there.

 

Maris

 

Maris, I am hoping that you took food pics at Passions on the Beach as eating ashore near the sea is one of my passions. Hang the expense if you are having a good meal in a memorable setting -something you can't do any day of the week!

Fingers crossed!

Norris

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18 hours ago, Marvy Mare said:

 

Dale - The America's cruise sounds amazing. How many nights is that? I know people who have done the Baltic & loved it.

Maris

Hi Maris!

 

The America's cruise is going to be 11 glorious days.  We've been to several of these ports on prior cruises, but wanted to return!  The Baltic is another 12 glorious days. 

 

Incidentally, we did a Southern Caribbean in 2018 on the Silhouettte, going to Grand Cayman and the ABC's.  Loved that cruise too!  The ABC's are wonderful!

 

Dale

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10 hours ago, Lindagop said:

   Hi Maris, Will a silky terrier and Paris a Parti-Yorky  both rescues with such attitude and character. A tiny bit smaller than your beautiful two.  Thanks

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Linda

 

They are so cute and so tiny. My brother & sister in law had a Yorkie a number of years ago. What a sweet dog. Ours weight 85 & 105#. A little bigger than yours.

 

Maris

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9 hours ago, Bimmer09 said:

 

Maris, I am hoping that you took food pics at Passions on the Beach as eating ashore near the sea is one of my passions. Hang the expense if you are having a good meal in a memorable setting -something you can't do any day of the week!

Fingers crossed!

Norris

 

Norris - Sorry to say, no food pics at Passions. Quite a few venue pictures. It was a beautiful evening. The only I am not a good food photographer and I didn't bring along an appropriate lens for those close ups. What lens & camera do you use for your food photos? I'll have to start practicing at home, though we don't really go in for presentation. I did notice lots of people everywhere we went taking food pictures with their phones. There seems to be an art to that too and I haven't taken the time to get good pics with my phone.

Maris

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March 1 - DAY 1 -Fort Lauderdale - Continued

 

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Royal Caribbean - Independence of the Seas - I saw this ship arrive in Fort Lauderdale as well.

 

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Carnival Sunrise - all these cruise ships are sitting in port somewhere.

 

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Fort Lauderdale

 

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17th Street Bridge. Open for the sailboat?

 

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At some point we went in to the Oceanview Cafe to grab a bite to eat. It was quite crowded but managed to get something. During our trip we had a number of meals on the large patio, outside the Oceanview. It's at the very back of the ship. I just want to be outside. It was starting to get a little bit warmer. T-shirt weather for us Northerners. After lunch we were accosted by one of the dinner package sellers. I say accosted because he was quite aggressive. That was one thing I didn't like about our cruise. Always selling something and maybe a little more aggressively due to the perilous employment situation. 

We should have just walked away, but since it was my birthday, we did want a special dinner. I like the main dining room. The meals are consistently excellent  and the wait staff friendly and helpful. So we told this gentleman that it was my birthday I we just wanted one specialty dinner at the Tuscan Grill. Ken liked the Tuscan best. I loved Murano's on our last voyage, but it has a lot of seafood. Ken doesn't like it. "If it swims it's cat food." is one of his favourite expressions. He is really missing out, but he's stubborn & I can't even get him to try.

Anyway, back to Mr. Upsell - He showed us again the dinner packages and how you save more the more you buy. You don't really save. The more you buy, the more you pay. But I get it. We didn't have a lot of onboard credit. When our final payment came due our agent offered us the option of using credit to pay off our bill, which we did. Since we didn't have a lot of credit, I wasn't throwing money around. We said no thank you, just the one dinner at the Tuscan. He replied with - If you take the 3 dinner package, I will also give you the Tuscan dinner for 50% off, a better deal than the normal 30% off on the first night . So we took the deal, only to regret our decision later. 

Back up to the 15th to wait for the call that our rooms were ready. We did hear a rumour that you could drop your carry ons in your rooms at one point, but the doors were still closed.

 

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In a few hours we'd be heading out to sea, by those buildings.

 

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Beautiful clouds. I love clouds, just not too many of them.

 

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A Water Taxi - That would be a cool trip to take. Right by the cruise ships. Maybe next time, though I think if we ever cruise again, we would only spend one night in Fort Lauderdale. Very expensive this time.

 

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Coast Guard

 

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The pool area was starting to fill up. No one in the pool. It was still coolish.

 

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You will only be able to read this on a large screen. One of the points says that children who are not toilet trained are not allowed in the pool, even in swim diapers. It's doesn't say anything about adults who stand in the pool & drink all day. Because of this I avoided the outdoor pools. And we have a hot tub at home. We close it up in the summer. I don't get sitting around in hot water when it's hot outside. 

 

It was probably around 1pm when the call came, that our rooms were ready. Ken says that that's one of his favourite things about our first day on a cruise. I have to agree with him.

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5 hours ago, Marvy Mare said:

 

Norris - Sorry to say, no food pics at Passions. Quite a few venue pictures. It was a beautiful evening. The only I am not a good food photographer and I didn't bring along an appropriate lens for those close ups. What lens & camera do you use for your food photos? I'll have to start practicing at home, though we don't really go in for presentation. I did notice lots of people everywhere we went taking food pictures with their phones. There seems to be an art to that too and I haven't taken the time to get good pics with my phone.

Maris

 

Maris, food photos are hard to get right and I take some real clunkers among the decent ones. I've used my cell some times but it's an iPhone 5 (I like the small size as I can still bend over when I have it attached to my belt) but the camera on there is obviously old and can't compare to the current models). I've used a little Canon pocket camera (SD880) which is no-fuss but I mainly persist with my DSLR and a 16x35mm lens as the food is so close to me. I use F8 (when I remember) to get the food in focus all the way across the 10 inch plate (LOL)

I set the lighting to "Tungsten" as the light is always indoors on the ship. Meanwhile my food is cooling as I take 2 or 3 shots. I look like a dork but I can only get better as time goes on, hopefully . I don't use flash.

 

Here's a pic from my recent Birthday dinner in Trulucks, Chicago. ISO at 25,600!

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Start drooling....

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Outdoor dining is always easier, especially in Caribbean daylight. Aruba in afternoon light- ISO 320.

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I'll check out Passions website, if they have one, for food pics.

Norris

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14 hours ago, SkystheLimit said:

Lovely pictures and great descriptions.  We were also on this cruise and like many of you are self isolating. We were very lazy on the trip and spent a lot of time on the balcony enjoying the lovely weather. 

The weather was certainly perfect. Sunny and 30 almost every day. I missed the 3 minutes of rain. I was in the solarium. 

 

Maris

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Norris

Thanks for your pictures. I did check out some of your other food pictures too. My camera is a crop sensor, so probably a wider setting but Lightroom does a pretty good job adjusting the grain in those high ISO photos. We have a gift certificate to a local restaurant. When restaurants open again, I'll have to take my camera. Or I could practice at home. 😁

 

Maris

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March 2 - DAY 1 - Fort Lauderdale

 

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The view in port from our room (9299). It was on the back corner port side with a slightly bigger balcony. We booked 2 years out but C2 rooms on the hump were in short supply. I'm not sure why. Maybe agencies had them. I didn't know if we'd like being at the back, but it was great. A longer walk to get to the stairs or elevator is always good if you enjoy walking

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Even the parking garage looks good on Embarkation Day.

 

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Supplies. The luggage must already be on the ship.

 

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K9 team. Drug sniffing? Not sure what they were checking out.

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The Silver Wind was just on the other side of the terminal.

 

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We stopped by the Tuscan Grill on our way to the Muster Drill. 

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March 2 - DAY 1 - Sail Away

 

After the Muster Drill we headed to the Sunset Bar on Deck 15. A very busy spot at all times, especially for Sail Away. A group from Cruise Critic was meeting there. It was just too busy to meet many people but we did manage to meet Bev (NanaTravel). Bev had gone to a lot of work making name tags for people on the Roll Call.  

 

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That's us. Thanks Bev. Bev was also on our cruise in 2018. Hope to see her again. We also met Melanie & Jeff, whom we saw a number of times again on the trip. It's funny how some people you meet once and never see again and others you see almost daily. The man sitting next to Ken on the plane on the way home was on the cruise. Never saw each other. I guess that's par for a ship with over 3,000 guests. I think that was the total. The ship wasn't full. There had been a number of cancelations and at that time, unless someone had a 'cancel for any reason' insurance policy, they lost their money. 

We grabbed a beer each and moved away from the crowd so I could take photos. Barry, a retired Professor from Boston chatted to us about photography, one of my favourite topics, as the ship pulled away from port. Woooo Hoooo! We had been worried that this wasn't going to happen. We got away just in time.

 

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 You can see the reflection of the patrons of the Sunset Bar as we pull away.

 

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Bye Silver Wind!

 

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The 17th Street bridge is closed.

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No one was waving. Maybe they were sea sick.

 

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I thinks she's saying "Wait for me!"

 

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Now there's a send off!!

 

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And watching. We watched cruise ships from that beach a few years ago. It took us quite awhile to get down there from where were were staying. 

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And waving!! 

 

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Bye Fort Lauderdale!

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The Silver Seas? follows us out to sea!

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Turns out we were in the room next door to you 9301 the corner aft S1 suite.  We even had an envelope mixed in with our embarkation info in our cabin that was yours and placed it in your mail slot.  We also love the aft.

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32 minutes ago, Marvy Mare said:

 

 

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The Silver Seas? follows us out to sea!

 

 

 Maris, that's Independence of the Seas in both of your shots. A mighty vessel.

Norris, ship nerd

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My sister and I love Celebrity, sailing on an 11 day on the Reflection next February.  Loving your photos and your review.  Diane

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2 hours ago, wrk2cruise said:

Turns out we were in the room next door to you 9301 the corner aft S1 suite.  We even had an envelope mixed in with our embarkation info in our cabin that was yours and placed it in your mail slot.  We also love the aft.

That's so funny. What are the odds? Did your balcony wrap around at all? Could you see up the side of the ship at all?

Maris

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2 hours ago, Bimmer09 said:

 Maris, that's Independence of the Seas in both of your shots. A mighty vessel.

Norris, ship nerd

Norris

How do you quote a post without copying everything? Still figuring this out.

 

Maris

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1 hour ago, dblane said:

My sister and I love Celebrity, sailing on an 11 day on the Reflection next February.  Loving your photos and your review.  Diane

Thanks Diane

 

Next February things should be back to normal. Have you been on the Reflection before? It is beautiful.

 

Maris

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54 minutes ago, Marvy Mare said:

Norris

How do you quote a post without copying everything? Still figuring this out.

 

Maris

 Maris, now that you can post a dozen or so pics in a post, when someone hits Quote  and then gives a short reply which may have nothing to do with the pics, readers have to scroll down all the pics they have already seen to see the new comment and it annoys many, especially those reading on phones so what I did was hit Quote and then get rid of anything irrelevant-ie the other pics and comments you made.

 

On my MacBook this involved highlighting each unwanted photo by clicking on the left border-the photo turns blue-I clicked the right mouse (there is no mouse, it's a two finger tap) and it brings up a menu which includes things like cut and paste. I hit cut and the photo is gone from the reply. The text I highlight and then hit delete.

Then I backspace using the delete key to get rid of the empty space between those two photos which are the only things left in the quote.

 

Hope this helps!

Norris

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On 3/15/2020 at 11:41 AM, Marvy Mare said:

 

I'm catching up on photos. I edit in Lightroom and then transfer them to Flickr before posting. Our rural internet is really slow. I'll go for a spin on my indoor bike and then get back to this with photos of our dogs, the snow we got & Fort Lauderdale to start. 

 

 

 

Just catching up on your Photo Review and the above quote had rung true for me and have to add my two cents here.  I felt your pain(past tense). I suffered for many years for an overpriced terrible DSL provided by our largest corporation in Canada. It's sisters company in Atlantic Canada, Bell Aliant, is rotten to the core with the worst customer service ever.  I like you also use Lightroom but I use Smugmug to upload my photos for my Photo Trip Reports (PTR). The upload load to Smugmug was brutally slow. Thank God! Our Local cable company Easlink was doing upgrades on our roads and I can happily say I love my connection and Eastlink and $60 cheaper a month with no troubles at all. 

 

Regards,

Kevin Reid

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10 hours ago, Bimmer09 said:

 Maris, now that you can post a dozen or so pics in a post, when someone hits Quote  and then gives a short reply which may have nothing to do with the pics, readers have to scroll down all the pics they have already seen to see the new comment and it annoys many, especially those reading on phones so what I did was hit Quote and then get rid of anything irrelevant-ie the other pics and comments you made.

 

On my MacBook this involved highlighting each unwanted photo by clicking on the left border-the photo turns blue-I clicked the right mouse (there is no mouse, it's a two finger tap) and it brings up a menu which includes things like cut and paste. I hit cut and the photo is gone from the reply. The text I highlight and then hit delete.

Then I backspace using the delete key to get rid of the empty space between those two photos which are the only things left in the quote.

 

Hope this helps!

Norris

Thanks Norris

I cut and pasted this and added it to my notes. I'll have to try it at some point.  You're not just a boat nerd, a techie nerd as well. I do use a Mac as well. Desktop.

 

Maris

 

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10 hours ago, FRMPEI said:

 

Just catching up on your Photo Review and the above quote had rung true for me and have to add my two cents here.  I felt your pain(past tense). I suffered for many years for an overpriced terrible DSL provided by our largest corporation in Canada. It's sisters company in Atlantic Canada, Bell Aliant, is rotten to the core with the worst customer service ever.  I like you also use Lightroom but I use Smugmug to upload my photos for my Photo Trip Reports (PTR). The upload load to Smugmug was brutally slow. Thank God! Our Local cable company Easlink was doing upgrades on our roads and I can happily say I love my connection and Eastlink and $60 cheaper a month with no troubles at all. 

 

Regards,

Kevin Reid

Kevin

 

We had Bell for many years and switched a couple of years ago to our local provider - Nexicom.They give great service. When you call, they are not trying to sell you something else, like those pushy guys on the ship. And you are always speaking to someone from the area. In all the local towns and even some of the rural areas they are upgrading the service to Fibe internet, I think it's called. It comes through buried cables. Unfortunately, we are in quite a sparsely populated area and we will not be getting the upgrade anytime soon. Our internet comes through the Bell lines. It is much better than it used to be but still leaves much to be desired. 

On another topic. Ken wore his Dirt Shirt, a gift from our son & daughter in law after their trip east, one day.  When he wore that shirt on our 2018 trip he got so many "Are you from P.E.I.?"s, the we were wondering if there was a busload of you fine folks on the ship. This time, I don't think he got any greetings.

 

Maris

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Just in case anyone was wondering where the Reflection is now. All the dark blue are cruise ships. I read somewhere (can't remember where) that most of the crew are still onboard and that there are no cases or COVID 19 on any of these ships. This is a screen shot taken just now from 'Marine Traffic'.

 

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It's getting tougher and tougher to stay upbeat. It was sure a quiet St. Patrick's Day. Yesterday, I took my dog for a walk down our quiet street. I passed a friendly stranger, who said Hello. As I got closer to home, I saw him standing out in a yard two doors down. Turns out he lives there. Probably for about 3 years now. The snowbirds are all coming home too, other than the ones who didn't take things seriously. They may just have to stay put.

 

March 2 - DAY 1 - At Sea

 

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Looking down our hallway towards the stairs and elevator.

 

After sail away, we spent some time enjoying a quiet time on our deck. Our reservation for the Tuscan Grill wasn't until 8:30pm. Our 'reading in bed time' at home. When you do book on ship there isn't always a great choice of time, especially on the first night with the Specials offered. 

 

We went to the 7pm Celebrity Showtime with Kevin Jordan. He was very funny. Used a flashlight to focus on audience members. Had a great deal of fun with '19', a young man traveling with his family. 19 was a very good sport too. I've been wondering if these acts speak to the people that they centre out before the show. A couple of days later I recognized 19 in a crowded elevator and called him by 'name' - "Hi 19". Everyone in the elevator seemed to know who he was. Were they all at the early show? Kevin Jordan did a late night (10:30pm the next night) adult only show that was supposed to be even funnier. 

 

 

We headed to the Tuscan Grill for our late dinner after wandering around the ship. We did stop at a Game Show - True of False, in the Entertainment Court. After our team lost, I left. I'm very competitive and not a good loser 🤣. I didn't carry my camera around at this point. Pictured out with the sail away. Sometimes, Ken gets a little tired of me lagging behind taking shots. Anyway, I got a photo of the menu from the Tuscan Grill. Sadly though no food photos.

 

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I also made a note of what we had to eat. Something I didn't do for every meal (sorry about that). I had the Crab Cake, Arugula Salad and the Ricotta Gnocchi (1/2 order - it was almost bed time). It was all very good. Ken had Heirloom Beets, Broiled Filet Mignon (his first of many steaks) and Garlic Potatoes. He said that even though the name or the salad was Heirloom Beets, there weren't enough beets. Go figure. After dinner, they brought out a large piece of Strawberry Shortcake and a few of the staff gathered to sing me Happy Birthday. I was appropriately thrilled. 

Then the Sticker Shock. They brought us the bill. $90 for 2. No discount of any kind. We signed for it and didn't say anything at the time. I didn't want to ruin the good feeling. The staff was so friendly and positive. But I lost sleep over it later. Left a bad taste. And the bad taste wasn't from what we ate. 

More about that later - Off to walk the dogs in the park.

 

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