Thursday, August 23, 2018

Caribbean Princess Sea Day, August 23

Today is a sea day and I was up early enough to snap some sunrise photos. The view changed from one minute to the next.

Since it's a sea day it's a lazy day for me. Hubby told me this morning I need to rename my blog from Debs Days to Deb Does Nothing Days. Part of the problem with today is I made a bit of a mistake yesterday. 

It's been a while since I've sat on a white sand beach in the Caribbean. I forgot that although I might be covered by the shade of an umbrella for four hours, that white sand is reflective. And then the chances are going to be good that I'll be red-faced by the end of the day. Hubby can pull it off because he is already darker skinned then me. But I'm pretty fair skinned so those sun-bouncing-off-the-sand rays treat me a little more harshly. So there will be no showing my face anywhere today. Other than the balcony, of course.

Which is where hubby made his mistake. I was on the balcony this morning and he headed off to the International Cafe for a while. He shut the balcony door behind him as usual. But when I was ready to come into the cabin, I couldn't. Any guesses why? He locked the balcony door behind him. 

With me on the balcony. 

Now, if you ever go to the International Cafe for coffee or snacks or a chat, you know those visits can last a while. Which his did. Which left me on the balcony. With no bathroom available. I tried to keep myself busy with the iPad (again, yay unlimited Internet) but that only lasted so long. I did get a couple photos of the sargassum that's been floating in the water almost this whole trip. Sometimes it is in strips and sometimes it is clumps. But, boy the water color is beautiful.

After a while I felt like I was going to have to behave like one of those seagulls we sometimes see on balconies in Alaska. They fly onto the balcony to eat food some passenger left out. And then they get stuck and can't find their way back out. They get desperate and fly into the railing glass, fly into the door, fly into one side of the balcony divider and then the other, all looking for the way out. Lucky for me I didn't have to do any of the above. Although when hubby finally showed back up I'm not sure what he thought when I pounded the door with an open the door I gotta go to the bathroom look on my face.

Hopefully that's all the major excitement for the day. I have some writing to catch up on, some tutorial scripts to plan out, and some lobster-looking skin to attend to.

I forgot to mention this week we are celebrating an anniversary and a birthday. Actually, I had even forgotten until the balloons and cards showed up.
When we booked these cruises it was a couple weeks before my birthday. Which then a week later was our anniversary. Which a week after that was hubby's birthday. So when the Princess Vacation Planner asked if we were celebrating anything I naturally said my birthday. Then said actually anniversary. Oh, I guess hubby's birthday. 

Well, it looks like we're celebrating at least a couple of them this cruise. For we received balloons and a sign for our anniversary for our door. We also received a card. Then we also received separate cards to present in the dining room, one for our anniversary and one for hubby's birthday. 

We picked up both cakes and gee whiz it was hard to get them from a supervisor in the buffet. Not quite right to deliver them easily to people eating in the dining room but make it such a hassle for someone who chooses to eat in the buffet. If Princess wants to  offer a celebration treat it should be available for all, no matter where they eat. Grr.

We shared one of the desserts.
And then gave the other one away to a hardworking crew member working in International Cafe.
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 here. One new thing this cruise that we get with the Patter is a paper called the Daily Crave. It lists all the dining venues and times. I've uploaded today's Daily Crave here so you can see what it looks like.

Encouraging words money pocket:
Dropped off in a menu at The Mix Bar.

Tonight is formal night and I'll leave the balloon-dropping for those who want to fight the crowds. We're headed to another sea day tomorrow. Hopefully I'll be less lobster-y and be ready to be out and about. 

As usual, if you have any questions or comments, please click on the envelope icon at the top right of this screen.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Caribbean Princess in St. Maarten, August 22

Hello from St. Maarten!
I thought yesterday was perfect. I was wrong. It was today that was perfect. But also a bit sad.

We hadn't been to St. Maarten since last year's hurricane. After today I can say the damage is pretty significant. 
We took a taxi over to Orient Beach and went to the Bikini Bar. Bikini Bar used to be a super busy place. Now it's the only place open on the beach. And pretty darn empty.

Here's a picture from a couple years back. It's hard to see, but in the picture are all kinds of bars and restaurants and huts and lounge chairs along Orient Beach.

Now here's a picture I took today from almost the same spot. The place is decimated. There is not one lounge chair, not one bar, not one restaurant left intact and operating from Bikini Bar on down.

But it's like the beach has been given a fresh start. The crowds are minimal, the sand (and sargassum) are in their natural states. Bikini Bar has brand new buildings and umbrellas and lounges. Comfy lounges. And food and drinks. The menu for the Bikini Bar can be found here.
And vendors bugging you on the beach. They even have a sign to warn you. Just say no and they move on.

It was such a perfect day. A bit of a breeze, nice warm ocean water, and plenty of space to spread out. The beach was not busy at all. Just the way we like it. It's a shame that more people aren't heading to the beach though. They need our tourist dollars. 
Not our drinks but it made for a good picture.
We'll be back to St. Maarten in a couple weeks and plan on spending more of our tourist dollars to help support the island. 

Now ship info...
Today's Patter can be found here.

Buffet info: For those buffet folks who are interested in the seating in the new World Fresh Marketplace, you'll find different types of chairs. The center seating looks a bit different from the window seating.

There are even some couches.
 There are also some tall chairs facing the windows.
 Planks, a bit farther back in the buffet has different seating.
 And Steamers seating is another different venue with another type of seating.

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.

Encouraging Word Money Pocket: Today's was dropped off in the restroom at the Bikini Bar at Orient Beach. 
I do think I took my own advice.