the Fussy Cruise – cruise # 14

Vision of the Seas Voyage # 793
Copenhagen – British Isles 11 Night Cruise

This cruise had a rough start. On day 1 we were informed that due to stormy weather, we might have to divert our route, sailing past the southern tip of England and therefore missing our first Scottish port, Invergordon. Since I’ve been there before, this wouldn’t have bothered me too much, except for the fact that Mum was supposed to join the ship in that port for her cruising holiday! Ahhhhh!! When it was confirmed that we wouldn’t be going to Inverness, I had to race to my room (on formal night, between resi and studio shifts) to call Mum and make new arrangements! Luckily she was already staying with David (who is one of the most organized people I know) in London and he made all the new travel arrangements for her to meet me in Greenock a few days later. Phew! Thanks YAVID!

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The cruise just got better and better after that! The day before Mum arrived I received my flight details and guess what? They approved my request to spend some time in England! Yay! This cruise ends on the 24th September and I will fly to Newark, New Jersey on the 28th September. Mini holiday here I come!
Our first port was Dublin, a place Mum has always wanted to visit. It was also her birthday AND I had won an evening off a few cruises back so the wonderful Diva combined this with my gangway off and so we have the WHOLE day to spend at leisure! Off we set into town and after strolling about the seats, enjoying the relaxed, jolly, inspired atmosphere that IS Dublin, we made our way to an amazing restaurant called The Church. It’s literally an old church which, with minimal renovation, has been turned into an old school vibe restaurant with a bar taking up most of the middle aisle. The food was great and Mum and I tried our first Guinness. Our waiter was very unimpressed with Mum when she told him she wasn’t particularly keen on it. Haha! It turns out that this was the perfect place to try Guinness, as Mr Guinness himself was married in this church!

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After lunch we went to the Leprechaun museum! It was a hilarious 45 minutes worth of Irish folk stories and play in Giant’s Causeway and on giant chairs! I will share one of the funny stories that we were told! The irish believe in fairies, but their fairies live underground and aren’t the “good” fairies that we are used to hearing about. These fairies have very naughty children and sometimes they will swap their children with human children. Back in the day, if children were very naughty, their parents thought they were these fairy “changeling” children and would promptly throw them down a well and IF the child was indeed a “changeling” the fairies would then return their real child… if not… well… their child ended up at the bottom of the well… I’m pretty sure this wasn’t a very successful practice!

We ended the day with dinner together in the ship’s dining room (super amazing food!) and then we went to see the night’s show (a singing performance) together. A lovely day with my super amazing Mum  It felt like I’d had a week off, not just a day!

The next day we were in Cobh and after showing mum around the Titanic historic spots, we took the train to Cork. I was expecting a superbly beautiful little Irish Village and I must admit that, although it was lovely, it was a bit of a let down. It was VERY Irish in one aspect… We saw 2 men lying in the middle of the road, drunk off their tits and raving to themselves. It was 11am… We wandered around, did some shopping and had a pint at a local pub before heading back to the ship.

Our last port of call before Southampton was Cherbourg in France. This actually turned out to be a beautiful town and although the people weren’t particularly friendly, we really enjoyed walking around the quaint village. BUT the best part of the day was discovering that Elvis Presley is alive and well! We found him! He’s looking slightly worse for wear, but is alive and living in Cherbourg!

Elvis is alive!
Elvis is alive!

Funny Nikola story: Lina was transferred on the 3rd day of this cruise and I was left alone in my cabin. This was nice, but lonely as I missed our chats before bed and hearing her saying “Imagine that Baby!” over and over to her boyfriend. I love you Lina! Nikola (who lives next door) got a new cabin mate the same day that Lina left and when I saw him the next morning, he looked exhausted. Turns out his new cabin mate snores like a tractor on E. Being the lovely person that I am, I invite Nikola to sleep in my room and so for the next few days we were roomies. When Mum arrived, I slept in her stateroom and so Nikola had my room to himself! Until one morning when he was awakened by a girl opening the door… Turns out I had been assigned a new cabin mate! Nikola was shocked, but not as shocked as her when he told, rather sleepily, that there probably isn’t a mistake as this is a girl’s cabin! Hahahaha.

Highlight of the cruise – seeing Mum of course, but also, I saw my first and only dolphin! I was shooting decks somewhere in the middle of the English Channel when movement caught my eye. After 4 months at sea, I have finally seen sea life other than star fish!

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The sad part of this cruise (of course) was that I am no longer a visionary and had to say a lot of good-byes. To my team and other Visionaries, thanks for an amazing 4 months! I can only hope that my new cabin mate, team and friends are as wonderful! Hopefully see you in the Caribbean!

I’m a bit apprehensive about what awaits me on the Explorer, but I’m going to put those worries aside for now… Mini holiday here I come! First stop is Southampton for a night with my cousin and then on to London for some family fun with Mum, David and Michael.

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The Good times keep rolling – Cruise # 13

Vision of the Seas Voyage # 792
Copenhagen – Norwegian Fjords 7 Night Cruise

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We finally know what ship we’re heading to next! I have been placed on Explorer of the Seas. It sounds perfect – I love exploring!!! I will be joining 29th September, which gives me 5 days for my transfer… I have requested to spend this time in London. Could be pure awesomeness!!! Holding thumbs, pinkies and toes!

We had more goodbyes this cruise, as we visited our favourite Norwegian ports for the last time. We went back to Kristiansand, Bergen and Geiranger for final shopping, pictures and exploring! Each port had something special to offer! In Kristiansand I spotted a zebra, in Bergen I bought some gifts (including some whale sausage for the family to try) and in Geiranger I went on a highlights tour that took me high into the mountains!

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For the Geiranger tour, we started with a nerve-racking drive, through cloud, up a steep, narrow, hairpin bending road to a viewpoint. We stayed for 10 minutes, but couldn’t see much due to all the fog. As we were all climbing back into the bus, the cloud lifted to reveal a magical, ethereal view of the fjord.

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Next we made our way back down the hair-raising, hair-bending road and started to climb the mountain that Lina, Nikola and I hiked up 2 weeks before! We stopped at the obligatory viewpoint before continuing up the mountain. Higher and higher! In the photo below you can see the hair-bend road that we drove up to get to viewpoint #1!

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I am a sleepy travel companion. I can’t stay awake long in a car if there’s no chit chat or sing-a-long going on! Therefore you will not be surprised when I confess to falling asleep for a good 10 minutes during our drive up up and away! Oopsy! As we arrived, our tour guide pointed out the hundreds of small “rock towers” covering the mountain top. She explained that by adding a rock to these towers, you are making a wish to return to Norway in the future. So of course I added my own rock!

On our drive back down the mountain, our tour guide put some Norwegian music on. It was such beautiful music. The only way I can explain it is that it sounds like a cross between Irish music and the pretty songs from the Lord of the Rings soundtrack!

We had a dress up party on the back deck this cruise. Some precious pictures of the night are below. I’m going to miss my Vision team!

Highlight of the cruise: Learning some new dance moves at Latino Night!

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