We have enjoyed a number of cruises and decided to end our trip with a twelve day British Isles cruise on Princess. I think that a cruise vacation is perfect for fun family trips, and it is a great opportunity for diverse friends to enjoy different aspects of their cruise at the same time. We have met some great people on cruises as well. Sharing a meal with others is just a nice way to get to know others.
All large cruise lines seem to offer similar things on their boats. Entertainment in the form of live music, shows, food, art auctions, the sale of jewelry, gambling and some form of passenger competition, whether it be singing, egg drop contests or dance contests and more food and drink.
Tasty desserts on the ship
The great thing about a cruise is that there are very different levels of fitness onboard. I see the passengers hitting the gym each morning or running up on deck as well as those who are unable to walk but can participate in a lot of activities. For me it is a reminder that as long as my body will allow me, it is my obligation to stay fit. But I did not go to the gym, just the stairs and lots of walking in the ports.
When we’re on a cruise we generally eat too much but do try to walk and climb stairs all the time. The fact of the matter is we probably eat more than we exercise, but we try to comfort ourselves in the knowledge that the cruise will not last too long.
Last year Greg promised me that we would take dance lessons. I was just in awe of passengers with the rhythm and grace to dance every dance. Well the fact of the matter is that we are both without rhythm or grace. I am quite sure if I did get Greg to a dance studio we would have been asked to leave. As a child my mom signed me up for dance lessons with my sister. I had the bag, the outfit, the ballet, tap and jazz shoes. After one lesson, the girl next to me recognized what a klutz I was and told me I was doing everything wrong. I quit dance, refusing to ever go back. Even now I fail to hear a beat, have no rhythm and am as clumsy as a bear. Greg is not far behind me. We continue to watch the dancers on the boat and know that that will never be us.
We enjoyed all of the ports we visited. Overall the weather was pretty good, cloudy and only a little rain. We loved all of the musicians in the ports, except for maybe the bagpipers. Not a big fan.
I’m sure he’s a nice guy I’m just not a fan of his music
At night it is difficult not to notice the old lady hecklers who delight in giving the singers a difficult time. They keep yelling a request for the same song over and over again. It is with great aplomb that the performers handle such pains.
At breakfast on one of our last days we sat with two other couples. One gentleman was originally from the UK, he and his wife had traveled to over one hundred countries, mostly on their own and not with tours. It would have been easy to admire him except for the fact that when he ordered a five course breakfast and the pepper was not delivered at the same time as the Tabasco for his tomato juice he yelled at the waitress for not bringing everything in a specific order.
Cruise Dos and Don’t
1. Don’t take the elevator, if you can walk, take the stairs
Take the stairs
2. Do research and plan your own excursions to give your trip a personal touch.
3. Do check out the entertainment, it is often really good.
4. Do go off the beaten track, see things that all of the tours don’t go to.
5. Don’t miss the iconic places too, there is a reason they are so popular.
6. Shop for cruise prices. I often get an inside stateroom, and if that means I go on more cruises then that’s fine with me.
7. Make the cruise your own. Do what you want on the cruise.
9. Do enjoy the food, but remember you can’t eat like that forever.
10. Don’t be a bully to the waitstaff, it’s amazing how much people appreciate the “magic words” I taught my students of “please” and “thank you.”
11. If you decide to sing karoke after a few drinks, pick a song that everyone knows and can join in with, so no one notices your bad voice.
12. There is limited wifi onboard so unplug and enjoy the time without having the distraction of email, Facebook etc.
13. Kismet- Destiny, fate, luck, chance. Leave room in your life for it. We asked the driver who picked us up as the airport if we could possibly visit Stonehenge. The answer was “yes” (for a fee) we were delighted to get to see this iconic sight.
14. Listen to the people you meet, ask questions, we learned so much from the people we met onboard.
15. Go with friends, make friends, and remember to have a good time.