Vacation Journal: Day 3

 

I just returned from a 45 minute march around the promenade. The best feature of this boat bar none. It is an outdoor wooden floored deck that circle the entire ship. I walked at a normal pace for me, which is apparently 5 times faster than anyone else onboard that was out walking.

As I walked past people nursing their morning soda and cigarette, looking sullen and hung-over. I felt energized & alive, this speaks volumes to my efforts of the last 12 months to reclaim my physical body from the depths of obesity. This morning after a day and a half of eating too much and doing very little, I felt bloated and lethargic. Only when walking did I start to feel energized and alive. It seems it is now essential to my complete wellbeing to get the proverbial oil flowing through this old machine, quite regularly.

My daughter tried out the onboard day care for a few hours this morning. She had fun initially as they decorated t-shirts & watched a magic show. Unfortunately then she got bored, immediate bonding with the few other kids that were there did not happen. This caused her, usually well hidden, shy gene defect, gifted to her from her father, to surface. They made a call to our room & we went to go get her, only about 5 minutes before we were planning to anyway. I had been sat on the balcony, taking in the ocean & reading. Pizza, salad & ice cream for lunch, happy kid & dad.

After lunch we went down to deck 4 to review the previous evenings photographs. One of the fun things to do on an evening on the cruise ship is to have your photo taken at one of the many staged areas with professional photographers. They print every picture, you then go look them over & if you can’t live without one of them, they will sell them to you for what seems like a lot when you want to keep all of them, but for a professionally sat photo they are pretty reasonable. We like to get photos taken almost every day and then at the end of the week try to decide which ones to keep, never an easy process, but we always come away with some nice family photos.

Next up we went to spend some time at the pool & water parks. While I was having fun with my daughter, my observations of people were going wild. There were people all around “having fun”, what defines such a thing is open to interpretation. One guy was trying to prove his toughness to his peers by having a friend punch him in his gut. Others seeking attention by being loud and “funny”. Some trying so hard to be too cool to notice, yet desperately wanting to be seen. Women seeking affirmation from longing glances, the notice me just don’t talk to me ego stroke. So many more just sitting or laying, soaking in the sun, music, booze, food & whatever is on the giant screen, waiting for the next piece of staged entertainment.

In the evening my daughter started to get sick, suffering the chills at dinner, we fear from too much sun. I bought her a 5 sizes too big sweat jacket, the smallest one they had, to try & warm her up as she had no long sleeved tops with her. After dinner Mum & daughter retired, Mom sent me out to wander, sensing that I would not be satisfied to call it a day at that stage. This was true, sadly & mostly because I as yet, had not yet managed to find a bar onboard that could serve me a regular old fashioned hurricane on the rocks. I had been looking forward to this drink on the boat for months & today was to be the day dang it.

I tried to at dinner but rather strangely, unfortunately and annoyingly (this last one felt the most significant), they were unable to provide a non-frozen hurricane. What the actual #$@!? Last night I ordered a hurricane & I was delivered some frozen monstrosity. I despise frozen drinks, especially when they are rum based, for me rum should not be frozen. This shouldn’t be such a big deal, but I had been looking forward to my onboard hurricane for months, just 1, please! Next I tried to order a Jamaican rum coffee (maybe tomorrow), the waiter however was too busy to listen so I withdrew my order on principle. My wife kindly pointed out that I was only hurting myself, but frankly my dear ….

So after we went our separate ways I toured the ship on foot, again. Trying to find a place to sit and not be repulsed by the drunken life I once knew. Yes I realize the ridiculous irony of looking for a drink in a place that is not full of drunk people.

Struggling in this task I found myself at the very top of the 8 story atrium looking down. Maybe this is a me thing, but I looked down & thought about the splat, the mess, that would be made if I jumped. To butterflies in my stomach & nervous knees I plotted how such a process would transpire. Knowing full well that this was nothing more than some dangerous journey into the depths of my mind. Yet the internal chemicals were buying into this heinous thought. They believed possible what in my mind, conscious & soul, would never be allowed. Strange & poignant  in itself I believe. I don’t suppose this macabre tendency visiting from my troubled past to taunt me is a good thing. I am certain though, that acknowledging it and shining a light on it, so to say, forces its ridiculousness to pail into nothing more than futility, which is a good thing

Eventually I found myself sat at the bar in the small theatre at the rear (aft) of the ship. Finally a European bar tender, He, Sasa, I didn’t catch the country & he was too busy to ask. He was able to give me my vacation drink of choice. A Hurricane on the rocks (I need to learn to make that at home one day). My repeat order could not be filled by his colleague, I had to wait until maybe the only person on the ship capable of such a feat was available, prompting an additional tip on an already overpriced drink.

The purpose of being in the small theater was to watch a comedian, a Mr ?? (I have no idea). His routine was slow to get going but was actually quite good overall. The majority of his routine was based around the traveling public’s favorite subject, the TSA & their ridiculous rules like no leaf blowers or oversized nail clippers.

After the show I went to the atrium, had a pint of Red Frog ale, Carnivals on-board brew, which tastes almost identical to Alaskan Amber (this is a good thing). I watched the Pilipino entertainment couple sing & play piano. The young lady had a beautiful voice, but every once in a while her accent would come on in force, which while adorable, completely changed the mood of the romantic music to something slightly more comical. I finally walked the long way back to my cabin, helping a wheel chair pilot to understand that reverse is his & the occupants friend when it comes to bumps, much more so than repeated attempts to imitate the Dukes of Hazard & the General Lee.

 

Good night fine day. I am beginning to feel alive, if not quite fully rested.

 

PS: The ship is rocking tonight, to the extent that the towels are swinging in the bathroom. I anticipate a wonderful night’s sleep.

 

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