You always here about those lucky people who go somewhere warm during a Minnesota winter and how much fun they have during spring break. As much as I hate leaving my warm, soft bed, I was one of those lucky people.
Although I was going on a cruise in the Caribbean with the two feet of snow piled in my front yard, I was regretting the morning that my family and I left at four in the morning. By six we were on the plane heading towards Atlanta, Georgia and I was in a hungry, tired, cranky zombie like state. After a small lunch we bored the plane again that was flying to Fort Laderdale, Florida, where our ship, the Star Princess, was stationed.
Hours later my sister, grandpa and I were in our room, amazed at the horribly small size and mortified of the tiny, cramped bathroom. All was well for I finally got all the food I could eat at the 24-hour buffet, four pools and plenty of hot tubs, unlimited soft drinks, and plenty of sun. Evening came and sleep consumed me as I layed my head on the hard pillow, and I listened to the sound of my grandpa snoring. That was when I regretted not bring ear plugs and the first day ended.
Sunday came and my mother was in a frenzy, getting us kids out of bed and laying out our clothes as my uncle's wedding drew nearer. The wedding came and went as did the reception with the various, fun-loving appetizers and a very moist cake with a hard sugary crust that was worthy of being gagged up.
The third day dawned and we arrived at our first stop in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, yeah mon. The first ten minutes were overwhelming with eager vendors and desperate taxi drivers. My family and I headed into a shopping center where I got my T-shirt and Jamaican soccer ball, I also got my hair partially braided and swam in the always changing, salty ocean. Later we found a taxi driver who gave us a tour that was cut short due to my younger brother's car sickness.
On the fourth day God fled Jamaica and sought refuge in Grand Cayman, part of the Cayman Islands, with the Seven Mile Beach. Our day was spent on the beach either swimming or snorkeling. My father, sister and I saw some coral and some itty, bitty fishes. Even though God was present, part of the island was HELL (a rock formation). My family boarded on the ship again and that night my mom, dad, uncle and I went to see Dreamgirls. When the movie was over Mom walked back to her room, Dad, Uncle Dan and I went the buffet...again, then returned to the theater to watch Flags of our Fathers.
Wednesday, the fifth day, the ship arrived at Cozumel, an island just off the coast of Mexico, twelve miles to be exact. After disembarking the very big boat we headed to our first organized tour to see the Mayan ruins with Gama y Pepe, our humorous guide and skilled bus driver. Although the hovering clouds provided some shade, it was still hot and sticky. The tour was filled with knowledgeable facts and a passionate Mayan, Gama. The tour ended with shots of tequila for the adults, darn.
Day six, a Thursday on the calender, the captain of the ship sailed, and sailed, and sailed some more across the north side of Cuba. The buffet was our best friend, if not our only friend, for breakfast and lunch. Since we were planning to stuff our tanned, sexy faces at a more formal restaurant that night, we had to abandon the faithful buffet and eat really delectable Italian food.
Friday came, our last day on the ship, Princess Cays was the last stop. The scent of food wafted through the air as my family found a spot on the beach with the assistance of my two uncles, two cousins and our new family member. Finding that the water was only up to my knees because of the coral rock under my feet, I turned back and decided to work on my tan, or what I could get. Our free land time soon ended and the whole party of Marchettis' went to another Italian restaurant for our last meal with the whole party, if not the only one I regret to inform you. Later that night Dan, Dad and I went to see Casino Royale that lasted until the wee hours of the morning.
Saturday was our disembarkation day and we set our bags outside so we could get to the airport faster because of our elven o' clock flight. Arriving home my family, with me tagging along, ate dinner at IHOP, then drove home. I must say that I was glad to have my soft pillows and the huge pile of blankets to keep me warm. With my last step of the gangway I knew that this was not going to be the last time I would be on a cruise ship, but only the first, and I am eager to go on another one.