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Extraordinary Cruise – Vacation Day Two

What a great and relaxing day it has been. Today we were at sea all day. It seemed strange to us that we can drive to Santa Barbara in just a few hours but it is taking us a day and a half to get there by boat (something about having to go 100 miles out to be in international waters), not that we are complaining.

Our first full day at sea was fun, relaxing and really tasty. In my cabin, Bruce and I were up at about 7:30am. It turns out our other traveling companions were much earlier risers, opting to get up about 6:00am!! Beth even got herself up and out to the Zumba class that was offered this morning, we are all debating whether or not we should let people know she is part of our group (he he he).

The breakfast buffet was enjoyable and not too crowded so we were able to stroll through as many times as we liked and the free flowing coffee was very welcomed. Although we have all learned quickly that Bruce (who purchased the never ending soda cup) much prefers diet coke…in abundance…at every meal! He has decided not to try and beat his personal best (15 at one meal) on this trip. We all appreciate this.

Of the 80 or so activities, entertainment options and spa services we had to choose from, our group split up and took advantage of a few great offerings. The ladies all first attended a wine tasting with full appitizers and in depth information of the origins of each wine. Later (because wine was simply not enough) they attended the Martini Demonstration that was hosted by the Bar Team and the Cruise Directors staff. This was incredibly entertaining, as passengers were told to dance to music around the room in order to properly shake a drink. There was also circus like juggling of glasses and shakers that lead to very interesting Martini like concoctions that were enjoyed by all.

A Merengue dance class was also attended by Chris, Joyce, Beth and Gloria. They said it was more fun to watch as the actual dancing was very challenging, and it seemed that everyone else was 20 steps ahead all the time (maybe a few professional cruisers in the crowed).

We all had lunch today at Alfredo’s Pizzeria in the Piazza (not to be confused with the Trident Pizza Stand up on the Lido Deck) which created delightful gourmet pies we all enjoyed as we were serenaded by a mariachi band.

Bruce and Stephanie tried their hand at a Trivia Competition in the Explorer’s Lounge. Collectively we got nine out of twenty–one answers correct. We considered this a win since many people playing didn’t do even that well. Unfortunately, the game’s host did not appreciate our greatness and honor us with a free cruise, so we left and headed back to the Piazza for desert: decedent and wonderful Chocolate Hazelnut goodness. As we ate, another performer, a Mr. Josh Wheeler came out with his guitar and Van Morrison like voice and began to sing to us for the next hour. Before we knew it, it was cookies and milk time…not figuratively; they actually brought out cookies and milk to everyone at the show. Talk about your comfort food! What great fun.

Now The big event tonight was that it was our first (of two) formal nights. All of our ladies headed back to their state rooms early in the evening to get dolled up. The whole ship was a buzz with excitement, the likes of which I haven’t seen since my Jr. Prom. Everywhere you looked there were glimmering bejeweled women and tuxedo clad gentlemen, enjoying champagne cocktails and chocolate covered cake pops. Folks were in lines all over the Piazza and two levels up to get their portraits taken before and after their dinner seating. In the center of it all was a champagne glass tower that would sport a champagne waterfall. People lined up to also get their picture taken pouring the champagne.

Bruce decided this was not fully his scene. He said he had no desire to ever wear a neck tie and the food in the buffet was just fine with him; besides the 49ers were scheduled to beat the NY Giants on the jumbo TV at the Lido deck pool.

Bruce did consent to take pictures with the ladies before they went to dinner, but then it was off to the football game! The ladies enjoyed a decadent meal with amazing service from their new favorite waiter Mr. Milos From Serbia. Chris smiled and laughed through the whole meal, enjoying every bit of the dining experience. Gloria looked radiant all dressed up and shared the evening with her daughter. Really the ladies must have had a great time, because when they checked in at 10pm they were just getting home from dinner!

A little while later all of our residents decided the day had been long enough and they needed some energy for Santa Barbara tomorrow (our first port). Can’t wait to see what adventures await us then.

(So sad about the Niners…But Beth and Gloria are New York Natives so their night was very happy).

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