We spent the first day of the cruise at sea, heading towards Haiti. A and I toured the ship which had a rock climbing wall and onboard surfing as well as an adult-only swimming area, kids only gaming areas, movie theater, production show theater, 3 story dining room and more. It was incredible. What a ship! I also participated in a Sudoku challenge that day and almost won, but some amazing Sudoku-ing genius showed up late and finished 10 seconds before me. I was still given a prize, a Royal Caribbean luggage tag, for finishing second. Win, lose or draw, it was fun to compete.
At dinner, A and I got to feel very brave ordering escargot off the dinner menu, having eaten it on our previous cruise. It was delicious again and the better part of the food. Throughout the cruise, A and I agreed that the food was ok, probably better on our previous cruise (although that may be rose-colored glasses) and that the simpler items on the menu were better than the more complex.
That evening the younger cruisers met up at the bride and groom's room to open a "special" bottle of champagne and go our separate ways for bachelor and bachelorette parties. The champagne was a bottle from the bride's friend's wedding 12 years prior - at the time, the friend handed our bride the bottle, saying, we'll drink this at your wedding, expecting her friend to follow her down the aisle within the year. When that didn't happen, she promptly forgot about the bottle, but our bride did not. She brought the bottle on the cruise and we took it to the champagne bar to be opened and poured. It looked like beer and smelled like acetone and after several toasts (I hate it when brides demand that everyone make a toast - this is my second experience with that and it was just as awkward with this small group), we threw it out and ordered a fresher bottle.
After drinking this much nicer bottle, the men departed to eyeball the "cradles" (the groom's term for young women) on the ship or whatever it is that bachelors do. We ladies hung out longer in the champagne bar getting to know one another better then headed over to karaoke. We were having so much fun that the other two gals went to get the guys to join us - unfortunately, by the time they got back (sans gentlemen, who had already dispersed), it was over. This a strange character of events at sea - nothing lasts very long. The karaoke was only scheduled for 1 hour. We headed over to the nightclub and danced for a few minutes before, we, too, decided to cut it off. After dropping the other gals at their floors, I headed down to the pizza parlor and had a slice with A and the groom.
What I Learned:
- Destination weddings are a lot of work.
- Having a highlighter for the cruise compass would be handy.
- You can always find members of your group wherever there is late night food.
My Favorite Part: Getting to know our cruise companions.