Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Croooozing is very, very good.

I had no idea what to expect, and really no idea I'd come home all crooz-addicted, but I have. Short form, for those who were curious like me and want to know the deal:

- never once got seasick. used the behind-the-ear patch for the first two days, just in case, but not even a twinge, and the seas were rough on the last two days. i found the motion really comforting, once i got over the feeling that someone was always kicking the bed from underneath.
- our cruise line [Princess] was insanely germ cautious and no one got sick. kudos to them for their precautions and care!
- there is a certain kitsch factor involved with cruising. either you embrace it [the daily newsletter telling you what amusements they've planned for you tomorrow, the morning tv show with the cruise director and key staff people...we actually found ourselves looking forward to both, so clearly we got RIGHT into it] or not, but we found most of it amusing as hell.
- everything [and i mean EVERYTHING] is a photo opportunity for the cruise staff. they put you in situations where they can take your picture so they can sell it to you. without question, these were the WORST pictures ever taken of me, and most shockingly, of my really adorable and photogenic husband. the only picture we bought was the one taken of our whole party just before we got on the boat.

Here are some pictures NOT taken by the cruise line of our trip:

The hotel we stayed at the night before we left [Ft. Lauderdale]. Not cheap, but exceptionally skanky. Avoid.

Hub and I on our balcony while still docked. So excited!

And once we'd gotten underway...it was almost always this beautiful the whole trip.

Look what greeted us at our first stop in Ocho Rios, Jamaica!

My only yarn-related sighting the whole trip. This lovely woman was crocheting hats in the craft market in Ocho Rios. When I took her picture, she got giggly and shy, so I showed it to her and she smiled. Damn, I should have bought one of her hats!

Hub's favorite bartender, Voodoo, in Georgetown, Grand Cayman. They spent some quality time together. :-)

Me and my beloved seester on the last night of the crooz. Hub somehow couldn't get the camera to behave, but I still like this picture.

Damn, that's a big big boat, eh? This is the view from our spot on the beach at Princess Cays in the Bahamas on the last day. Can you say too much sun, despite all precautions? I thought you could.

But what is croozing really like? Have you seen Howl's Moving Castle? Take out the people trying to hurt you and that's what this is like. Unpack, relax, have a drink [very light on the booze, but that suited me fine since i'm quite the amateur drinker] and wake up in another port. Tired of this one? Just wait 12 hours and you'll be somewhere else. Hub and I are fit-in/live-like-locals travellers, so this took some getting used to. But it's great as an introduction to someplace you've never visited before. You'll know after 12 hours if you want to go back.

We want to go back. Maybe not to the touristy parts that we overran, but to the beautiful countries that we got to see little teasy bits of. How Grand Cayman seems overrun with Canadian expats staying for a while. How Jamaica seemed so poor and yet so rich and beautiful. How friendly the people of Cozumel were.

I got no cheap silver. But I snorkelled, people. Really. Hub and dad were off to Tulum. Sis and her hub were off to another set of ruins, and mom was not feeling well. So I found some nice guy in a white polo shirt and clipboard, paid him $40, and was the last body on a boat heading out along the coastline [devastated by hurricane Wilma, so the beach was gone and the coral mostly gone, too. so sad!]. I'd never snorkelled in my life, but what better time to try?

That's me on the right. Horrible picture [don't ask how much I paid for it. I needed proof that I did it!] but it was a fun, fun day. I saw fish. I saw eels! I touched a live starfish [and then the nice men put it back at the bottom of the sea so it wouldn't die. I pulled a shoulder muscle getting out of the ocean onto the wildly moving and slippery boat. But who cares. I snorkelled. On the way back, Corona with lime and I was giddy with my success.

So that's it, then. Croozing is fun and hub and I will definitely do it again, should we ever be able to afford it. [This trip was a ridiculously generous gift from my parents.]

I hope you're all having a wonderfully peaceful, calm and happy holiday and are resting up for the new year to come. Me? I've gotta go rest my shoulder so I can start knitting again one day!