Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Caribbean Princess in St. Thomas, August 21

We're often asked why we remain on the same ship week after week. Some people assume it's boring to go to the same ports, having the same foods to eat, and seeing the same shows and are sure they could never make it work for them.

Actually we don't mind it a bit. Stepping on a Princess cruise ship is like home to us. We feel comfortable here. And when we visit the same ports again and again, those begin to feel like home, too. But I think one of the biggest plusses for us in repeating the same itinerary is the flexibility.

When we hit a port just once we feel like we have to cram in as much into a day as humanly possible. We want to see it all. Which leads to exhaustion. Makes the vacation feel like work.

Take St. Thomas, for example. Today there are four cruise ships on the island, including the behemoth Harmony of the Seas with almost 7,000 passengers. Add that to the other three ships in and we've got around 17,000 cruise ship passengers filling the beaches and shops and restaurants.
We're docked in front of a Carnival ship.
While Coki beach would have been our go-to for today, the idea of people on top of people doesn't sound like a relaxing vacation. But we'll be here again in two weeks on a two ship 7,000 passenger day. Much more manageable. And much more stress-reducing. Isn't that what a vacation should be?

So today we called an audible and changed up our plans. We would just wander the port in search of food, and more importantly, drink. While hubby was finishing up in International Cafe I did a quick Internet search for "food and drinks Havensight" and The Smoking Rooster popped up. We decided to wander the port, look around, and stop at the The Smoking Rooster.

I didn't expect The Smoking Rooster to be that close. Down the sidewalk just outside the gate and BAM you're there. Heck, just forget looking around and plop down!

Here's the view from our table. Yep, that's the ship back there. (And a random couple, not us.)
I took a photo from our balcony when we  got back. Yep, close.

We had quite the day. A shared sampler platter of lots of tasty food.
Topped with a variety of sauces.
Accompanied by sangria and Mai Tais and Cock a Doodle Do drinks.
And a drop off of an encouraging words money pocket. 

While we didn't travel far from the ship, it was a perfect vacation day. Even as I'm typing this it's perfect. A nice evening on the balcony with music coming from somewhere onshore. I think it might even be from The Smoking Rooster. Go figure.

Sometimes I feel like I need to pinch myself to check if this life is really my life. How did I get here? Why am I one of the lucky ones who get to live a life like this one? Who gets to sit in a bar in St. Thomas drinking and eating good BBQ on a Tuesday? Sure, health wise the two of us have been through a lot in the last few years. (Thank goodness for the blog during those times - it's the only thing that got me up every morning. Remember where I started on that Day 1 post? I sure do.) But how did we get through it and others didn't? I often wonder about that.

One thing I don't wonder about is how lucky we really are. I know for sure we are blessed to have this life. These experiences. And I know each time we take a trip it may be our last. After some trips - and sometimes midway through some trips - I'm certain we are done. But by golly, we recover and regroup and find ourselves able to plug away one more day.

Medallion™ Update:
I've combined my updates to make the progression of the roll-out more clear. 

August 18-25 updates can be found here.
August 25-Sept 1 updates can found here. 
Sept 1-8 updates can be found here.

Patter: Today's Patter can be found right here. The nice thing about the Patter on this ship is that it is delivered early. Since there are no mailboxes they are printing super-early so the stewards can deliver them into the cabins during their evening service rounds.

We're off to St. Maarten tomorrow.

Life is good, isn't it?

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