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the briefest of recaps

Posted in Crazy Wisdom on Saturday, December 3, 2005 at 11:44 am by flerly.

Well, we’re back from probably the best vacation experience ever. I think we’re hooked as Royal Caribbean cruisers, and look forward to doing one of these again. We simply had a great time at everything we did, from the shore excursions we booked to just hanging on the ship, and I have to say the day spent on their private resort island in the Berry Islands was just amazing. JT still has a ton of photos on his laptop, and we may post a few later on, but you know the drill… tropical, beautiful… clear blue water, sandy beaches, a hammock hung in the shade of a couple of palm trees.

The whole experience really left us smiling all the time. Even the casino seemed to treat us right this time… no huge winnings, but after JT hit $75 jackpots on slots a few times, we actually got brave enough to try the craps table and have several good runs there. Everyone was so nice and funny, too. Enjoyed dinner every night with two nice young couples, both on their honeymoons. Learned a couple party tricks from our waiter Dwi, who we even convinced to tell us some detailed stories of life on a cruise ship that hits bad weather… whoa.

And did I mention on top of all of this, we were spoiled in our stateroom? I purchased one of the “romantic” packages, which for like $95, gave us a bunch of little extra treats in our room. We were greeted by champagne and chocolate covered strawberries, as well as a fruit basket. Then we got canapes delivered while we were dressing for formal night and more strawberries as a late night treat. Then there was a huge breakfast in bed one morning. The price also included one formal photo and 8×10 silver picture frame. All so worth it.

If anything we might have been a little surprised at the stateroom when we first arrived. I think we both starting looking around for what possible angle the photos of it could have been taken from in the brochure, but it turned out to be more than comfortable. I have a couple nice photos of our view out the window. The bed was large and plenty comfortable. I was a little surprised to have a tv in the room, but it was nice. They had a few “Royal Caribbean” versions of channels like TNT, Cartoon Network, CBS, CNN, and their own movie channel with pretty new stuff. There were also channels to watch ship activities, like one on deck showing the pools and one in one of the lounges, which showed the evening shows.

But, I babble, and most of you have probably cruised before. I just wanted to say that we had no trouble getting our booze on board, which worked out nicely with the unlimited juice and soda package for mixers. We also bought two bottles of wine and stretched them for four dinners, and so other than a couple cravings for something fruity and tropical (and my desire for one of the souvenir glasses), we didn’t end up blowing a ton on booze. We also didn’t spend a lot on duty-free stuff, other than my usual little souvenirs. So, with pre-booking the two excursions (which were both AWESOME), the pre-provided gratuity chart, and our own liquor, this trip was pretty much a no-brainer on the wallet. It was nice to just relax and enjoy ourselves and not worry about anything, especially the budget. More than anything, I think that’s why I’m hoping to do this again.


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