As cruising was becoming more and more popular, and the convenience of simply driving to New York, we decided for yet another adventure on the floating vessel. This time my brother Johnny and his family along with Daniel and Matthew joined us. July 2013 we tried Carnival Splendor. Despite having the same ports of call as our previous trip, we wanted to enjoy the food, company and entertainment it’s valued for.
Our third cruise in five years gives us enough knowledge that everything becomes easy and more streamlined. We know what to expect and emphasize on what matters most. I rent a van for our family to accommodate both Daniel and Matthew. We meet with the others and start our cannonball run onto highway 87 for New York.
We arrive at the cruise terminal and board the ship. For a huge party of 15, we were fairly organized and punctual. As New York was becoming less visible in the distance, we couldn’t wait to hit warmer temperatures. It didn’t take long for both Daniel and Matthew to start vacationing as they tested the jacuzzi within the first 2 hours.
With a larger group of kids, the entertainment just seems to amplify. From using the water slides to mini putt, they always had something to do.
obviously when they were too busy to enjoy themselves with water sports, we certainly had different ideas. We’d snack instead.
That is one huge advantage in cruising. The food is usually fantastic and always in abundance. We do, at times, have to wait for lines to shorten, but for the most part, it is definitely satisfying.
Nigthly shows are seen, lounges are frequented, dinners are fantastic since we reminisce about the days activities and laughs are unstoppable. As in previous cruises, we all dress up for pictures and ponder on how our girls are getting older faster than we would like.
One particular evening we walk by a photo stand and seen frames that are used as props. We quickly position ourselves and take such a memorable picture that had us laughing the whole night.
What is it with vacations that our level of embarrassment rises and acting foolish is simply the norm. Anthony, the youngest of the group, even had his own body guards throughout the full week.
We continue taking family pictures as the week progresses and realize how lucky we are. Living a life of truth, simplistic and real is a model in which I try to teach my family. The joy we get in seeing our children laugh is a reward that is second to none.
As with every cruise, I have my personal sun tan lotion applicator specialist to ensure I don’t burn. Memories are made within the cousins and special moments are created with the silly acts that are performed. All in all, it just makes for a great vacation.
Bahamas, Grand Turk and Half Moon Cay were the ports of call during this trip. Although these were done in the past, a day out in the sunshine by the beach is always welcomed. Unfortunately this time around the weather was really not cooperating. Bahamas had some rain with cooler weather and this time around, we visited the town and local shops. With some form of independence day celebration, some of us participated in the Bahamian Drum festival while others where trying to keep warm.
Grand Turk was great as the sun was shining while at Half Moon Cay, the dark clouds were moving in for a mediocre day. Despite the weather not cooperating fully, we still managed to have a great time. We continued on the cruise with nightly shows and tasteful dinners. As my nephew Anthony has allergies, the crew were very attentive and made it very easy for the food ordering process. In fact the head waiter would at times even feed Anthony. Robert, my brother-in-law, became great friends with the waiter that would continuously offer him “B-BIBTY-2”.
We would even try to fit as many people in one room to discuss evening plans or meet along a bar in taking up most of the room. Travel party of 15 surely requires some floor space. Unless you pile them up one on top of each other…. with the heaviest one on top of course!
The cruise was slowly coming to an end and knowing that we would be staying in New York another night made everyone all that more excited. More family pictures are taken around the ship all while stopping at every ice cream machine to try new flavours.
We disembark the cruise and from one port terminal parking lot to the city center one, we start our hike. The day was gorgeous with the sun shining. Just like an assembly line we head to Time Square.
Alessia, with her love of Elmo from when she was an infant, still enjoys every paraphernalia. Vanessa, instead, always had a sweet tooth for NERDS. Melina, on the other hand, its models from Abercrombie & Finch. Oh well, to each their own.
Radio City Music Hall, Rockefeller’s Center and United Nations were also visited. It is great to see a huge land area with trees in the middle of such high sky scrapers. Central park is a great escape from the hustle and bustle of the city to the peacefulness and picturesque park.
Hunger sets in and after dining at Applebee’s, we check in the hotel for the night. Milena can’t go to bed until Melissa washes her feet.
Next morning both Robert and Johnny purchase Hugo Boss suits while Anna and I accidently run into Matthew’s parents. What are the odds of that.
It’s a small world my friends.