Cruising for some fun
Damara Hutchins | Highlands TodayLast week, my husband, Chris, and I celebrated the 23rd anniversary of our very first date by doing something we've never done before: take a cruise on a boat to another country.
Published: December 15, 2012
Published: December 15, 2012
The first lesson one learns on a cruise ship is that you are essentially living in a floating hotel, but the rooms are much smaller and you never, ever leave the lid up on the toilet when you attempt to flush. I am not sure why this is a rule, but there is a lot of scary noise when the flushing occurs so I tend to believe it without question.
The second rule is that you must own some form of non-cash payment method because the ship only deals in room numbers that charge a credit account. This sounds wonderful, especially when all your meals are included in the original ticket price, but it doesn't take very long to rack up an impressive amount with just drinks, even those of the nonalcoholic variety.
I have a third rule that is a normal etiquette I live by each day, but most people disregard it. Please, when using elevators, allow the people already on the elevator an opportunity to get off the elevator before you barge in. It is just the polite thing to do.
Royal Caribbean was the cruise line we chose, thanks to the help of my pseudo-cousin, Wendy, who got us an excellent deal. We rode the "Monarch of the Seas," which is ending its career with the Royal Caribbean fleet in the near future.
Our first stop was in Nassau where we stayed for 12 hours. Chris rented us a scooter and I bravely rode on the back while he drove.
Bahamian traffic drives on the opposite side of the road and their potholes don't seem to get much attention from repair crews. I spent most of the ride praying I wouldn't fall off the back and get to experience the inside of an emergency room in Nassau.
We explored a couple of beaches and the inside of some caves where a couple of local kids showed us around. They were adorable and knowledgeable so we tipped them and headed to the Straw Market.
In the evening, we took a sunset catamaran cruise around Paradise Island and then had a late dinner at Senor Frog's. That ended our time in Nassau.
The next morning placed us on the shores of Royal Caribbean's private resort, Coco Cay. I chose to lie on the beach all day long and do absolutely nothing. We all have our goals in life.
Chris, on the other hand, he's a real go-getter. He snorkeled the day away and went "swimming with the fishes" in a very non-mob style. He even found a marker that earned him a prize on the ship. What a lucky guy!
Though I'm confident I could learn to live my life on permanent vacation if I had the funds to support the lifestyle, I don't think I could stay on a ship for any extended period of time. That feeling of being closed-in starts getting to me after a short while and there is nowhere to run but Open Ocean.
When we arrived back on dry land, I was most excited about returning to my own bed with its normal dimensions and pillow-soft top. I was happy about being back on the proper side of the road too.
Back home also means back to work. I suppose weird toilets and funky beds weren't all that bad.