Caribbean Cruise — 2019

Friday, April 5, 2019 — Costa Maya, Mexico

We didn’t plan any excursions today so after breakfast we all got off the ship and walked around the shops, bars and restaurants near the pier.  The HAL ship Rotterdam that we sailed on last spring from Tampa to Rotterdam is docked near us.  The shop area in Costa Maya is very colorful and has a salt water pool and dolphin pool.  Back on the ship, B & J went to lunch at the Solarium Bistro and Jeff walked right up to us.  It’s weird, but instead of losing each other we often just run into each other.  B & J went back to the cabin and worked on the blog.  Anne called to say Henry and Jeff were in line for the FlowRider, so Barbara went up and shot some videos.  They looked pretty good—it was Jeff’s first time.  There was an expert on it before Jeff and he was doing spins and all kinds of fancy stuff.  Chris, Jay and Barbara played the second round of Progressive Trivia in the Schooner Bar (we missed the first round).   It was humbling to score 7 out of 15, although the winners only had 11 correct.  Later the adults went to Central Park and Jeff took some candid shots of us on this formal night.  The ship would have charged about $20 per photo and they wouldn’t have been as funny and memorable.  Lobster was on the menu tonight and most of us ordered it.  Jamie has had NY strip steak every night but it was a little too rare tonight and they replaced it.  Barbara had a nice conversation with one of our waiters who is from Indonesia.  He said their contracts are for 7 months and they work 10 hours a day.  They do get to go home a few times during the contract, but going from Miami to Indonesia is a couple of very long flights.  Our waiter’s wife and children live in Indonesia so the ship employees make a huge sacrifice to take these jobs, although they must make more money than most of them would in their native countries.  Chris, Anne and Jeff went to a crazy show in Studio B at 10:15 called Crazy Quest Game Show hosted by the cruise director.  Barbara poked her head in but didn’t see them so went to the casino instead (loser!).  No one has had any good luck there.  Barbara looked in at the Crazy Quest game a little later and was glad she hadn’t gone because it was very loud.

Henry on the FlowRider

Costa Maya, Mexico

Costa Maya

Costa Maya (looks like a postcard)

Costa Maya

Costa Maya

Costa Maya

Portrait by Jeff in Central Park

Portrait by Jeff in Central Park

Portrait by Jeff in Central Park


Jeff on the FlowRider

Saturday, April 6, 2019 — Sea day

While some of us were being lazy or eating, Jeff ran 14 miles (wow!).  Anne and the boys were at the pool.  At 10:45 Chris, Jeff, Jay and Barbara met at the Silk Dining Room on deck 5 for a Galley Tour.  It was quite interesting to see the huge dishwasher, giant soup pots, mixers and other cooking utensils.  The kitchen, which is on decks 4 and 5, covers about 2 acres.  Quantities of food consumed in an average week are as follows: eggs - 86,400, beef - 15,600 pounds, chicken - 16,000 pounds, and lobster - 1,800 pounds.   The bakery has a machine that makes 4,000 bread rolls an hour.  205 waiters and 163 assistant waiters work on the ship.  Jay’s dad Earl would have loved this galley tour.  It’s mind-boggling.  After the tour we had a nice lunch with champagne in the dining room.  B & J went back to the cabin to work on the blog.  We went to the Flow-Rider mid-afternoon and took some video of Jamie surfing.  The mini-golf championship final between Jeff and Chris didn’t make it into today’s schedule.  After tracking down a soft-serve cone machine we went back to the cabin and got most of the packing done—tomorrow we have to leave the ship by 8:00.  We had another nice dinner (prime rib) at 7:15 and a dining room supervisor from Jamaica sang a few bars of a Harry Belafonte song.  B & J peeked in at a family comedy show but didn’t stay.  The adults had a brief last visit to the casino.

Jamie on the FlowRider

Elevators on the Allure

Waiting for galley tour

Galley tour - dishwasher

Galley tour - soup pots

Galley tour - chicken stock cooking (the table tilts to empty it)

Galley tour - it gets steamy

Galley tour - shrimp cocktail anyone?

Galley tour - mixing bowl

Galley tour - making dinner rolls

Galley tour - our dessert with lunch after the tour

Galley tour - prime rib on the menu tonight!

© JAY 2020