Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Cruising and catching up

Well, it’s been a while. No excuses – just that blogging wasn’t on my plate for one of the things I’ve needed to get done. I’ve been keeping up with everyone’s blogs (Congrats Jason!) – but I just haven’t sat down and typed. Dial up is a killer.

Joe and I have been on a whirlwind of trips lately. We had the visit to his folks for Thanksgiving. I don’t think that we even put the bags away from that trip because we knew we were headed out again so soon. And, last week, we went on our first cruise ever. This was Joe’s vacation to plan – we both knew where we wanted to go, so he did a huge amount of research and we finally decided on the Carnival Valor out of Miami. It was a 7 night western Caribbean cruise with port visits to Grand Cayman, Roatan, Honduras, Belize and Cozumel. One of the other things that we didn’t really want to do was to book our excursions through the cruise line. Joe’s parents (who, in our opinion, are cruising experts) typically don’t do it so we got some tips from them and did more research…. We finally decided on Snorkeling with Stingray in Cayman, Cave Tubing in Belize and Dune Buggy touring in Cozumel. In Roatan, we just opted for a taxi to go to the beach. These were all pretty good tours – the snorkeling was a bit of a rip-off but the stingray part was neat. Roatan was amazing because of how lush and undeveloped it is. Belize was good. I just couldn’t help but be amazed at all the development that’s occurred since I was there in 1998. It feels like a completely different place now. Cozumel was by far our favorite excursion – our dune buggies rocked, we went with a really great couple we met on the ship and had probably the best meal all week. And, Joe tried and LIKED (!!!) guacamole. Way too much fun. And, Mom – the guac was just like the stuff you make – our tour guide said that was exactly how his family did it (but with no garlic). When we got back to Miami, this same couple was so cool to take us out to lunch in South Beach – what a great way to end the trip.

So, it was a good week. I got about 6 books read, relaxed, met some great people. I enjoyed the cruise….but I don’t know if it’s my thing. I don’t like how the towns put on this front for the cruise ships, how everything completely changes for that day. I like being able to go somewhere and immerse myself in their culture – not the other way around. Anyway – we’re keeping this open for future vacation plans. I just am really dying to get back to Europe. Our trip for next year has gotten scratched due to vacation issues (more on that in late January).

Work for me has been going along pretty well. I’m keeping pretty busy with random taskers and all sorts of normal job things at work. It’s a nice break, but I really miss being on a project. I’ll be starting my Public Management Certificate at IUPUI in January – I’m excited about that.
I guess that’s it for now. I have cruise pics to put up, but I want to wait till I get our two disposable cameras developed…

1 comment:

  1. That sounds awesome!

    So, I've often thought of the cruise thing, but is it just a method of getting from one port to the next, or did you also enjoy the time on the ship? How long was it between ports of call? How many activities and different things did you do on board? I know they're famous for their never ending food, but wanted to get your impression of the whole trip.

    Sorry to hear that the snorkling was a rip off. Did they have any scuba options? I absolutely LOVE the idea of Dune Buggies. Totally the coolest thing I've heard of in a vacation package. How long did you get to go? How far and how fast? Was it guided or did you get to play at your own pace?

    Can't wait for pictures!