We had a lot of choices when it came to how we would celebrate this special anniversary. I, particularly, like cruises. Like everything else, cruises have their pluses and minuses. We know people that love cruises and people that don't like cruises (or the thought of cruises) at all. I like the fact that you unpack once and get to stay in the same room for the entire trip and yet you get to experience a number of locations that would normally have you packing up and moving hotels and taking trains or planes every night. Of course most times you only get the one day in these glorious destinations, however, that is one day more than we would have had had we chosen one single destination for our 10 day vacation.
Other things I like about cruises... the food is delicious and every meal comes with multiple courses. The ships, and this particular ship specifically, are beautiful. We had a suite and an adjoining concierge class room with adjoining decks. There was plenty of room for the six of us and the furnishings were very nice. The suite came with fun amenities like a butler and afternoon tea. The butler came around in the afternoon with a tray of sweets, sandwiches, hors d'oeuvres and tea service.
The minuses... cruise ships can be quite crowded, especially on sea days. However, since I do tend to choose rooms with the idea that I will spend a good deal of time in them, I always have my space to go back to for peace and privacy. Another minus is that when you go to the infirmary with anything that might resemble the swine flu, you are quarantined to the ship for 24 hours and not allowed to go on your excursion to the Amalfi Coast, but that is probably a pretty specific incidence not experienced by most cruisers :).
One thing I am a little disappointed about is that normally when we go on cruise ships we all have the same muster station and we take a group picture with everyone in their life jackets. This time we did not do that. As a matter of fact, our "muster station" was not a muster station at all. We met in the alternative dining restaurant and watched a video... what? What ever happened to everyone crowding out on the deck trying to hear what people are saying and then eventually just going back to your room because everyone else is... I don't even know where Grammy and Grampy were. Oh well, life goes on.
Another one of my favorite cruise experiences is "Sail Away". We all shared a bottle of champagne on our deck as we left the Civitavecchia, Italy pier on a Friday evening sailing towards our first destination--Messina, Sicily. I love arriving at and leaving the ports. Unfortunately on this cruise we were early every morning and had pretty much docked by the time I got out of bed, you can bet that I was out on our deck every evening when we left port. Its kind of bitter sweet because you are leaving a location after just a few hours, however, you are off to another beautiful spot the next morning--so until the last night, its all good!
I love this picture of Sammy, Chris, Joey & Grampy!
Grammy and Akiko
Leaving Civitavecchia Pier
Our Civitavecchia tug
Grammy's not buying whatever Joey is selling....
Yep, Sammy had champagne too....
Tired and Happy!