December 11, 2013

We spent two days at sea returning to Miami. where we did the usual "cruise' things: eat, lay around the pool, catch the show in the evening.....
But today was a real "hurry up and wait" day, beginning early. The cruise line asked that we try to be out of our staterooms by 8:30 am - and I know that sounds early, but they had a 4:00 departure time the same day and lots to do to get ready. So we were up early, had breakfast and were debarked by 9 am. 
Then we waited an hour for our shuttle to take us to the airport. Our flight wasn't until 4:15 so there wasn't any rush to get there, but we had nowhere else to go, so we waited at the airport for 5 hours.
That's not so bad, there's a lot of shops and stuff at the airport. We all managed to keep busy, reading, computer then lunch before we took off.  Then we had a 5 hour flight. As the flight wasn't full, we were able to move up to our own row. Michel had the window seat, so he took some pictures of Miami through the window. They turned out so nice I thought I'd share them.  
Once we were on the ground in Vegas, we went from 85 degrees to 35 degrees! It sure was cold.  Then we had a nice 1.5 hour drive to Bullhead City.  So in actual fact today, December 11th, 2013 was 26 hours long instead of 24 - It was a long day. and we were all very tired and glad to be home, in spite of the wind and the cold temperature.

December 8, 2013

Welcome to Philipsburg, Sint Maarten.
Philipsburg is four parallel streets squeezed between Great Bay, where the cruise ships dock, and Salt Pond, where salt was made many years ago. All of St Maarten is duty-free, but Philipsburg has shop after shop each trying to outdo the others offering electronics, alcohol, jewelry, linens, perfume, and more.  Michel and I spent the day walking around this quaint little town.
Our original plan was to partake in the America's Cup Regatta. This is where you have an opportunity to join a racing crew on one of two 70-foot long sailboats with masts 8 stories high and then race against each other. 

But it was too windy, so the race was cancelled, thus our choice to tour the little port town. 

We rode back and forth between three little ports on these water taxies.
Played tourist, shopped, took silly pictures and laughed a lot.
Stopped for a rum punch and it almost knocked my socks off!
ingredients include: spiced rum, vanilla rum, dark rum, another kind of rum, then a shot of amaretto. By the time she finished pouring this over ice there was only a sliver of room at the top of the glass for the juice. I had to go back twice for ice once we got a larger glass. But it was sure GOOD!!

Ice Cold Beer, EH!

At the end of our day we spotted this yacht parked at the dock.
I don't know if you can see the emblem 'air' on the side, but this yacht belongs to none other than Michael Jordon!!

December 7, 2013

Welcome to Castries, St. Lucia
With a population of 65,000; Castries is the capital and largest city of St. Lucia. Castries is a port city. Shoppers flock to the city's dozens of stores and to Castries Market for fruits, vegetables and handicrafts.

We had some wicked rain this morning, and decided to wait it out aboard before heading into the city.
Just sharing some of the beauty. Love the waves of the ocean. And the palm trees too!

 Our plan here in St. Lucia was to take part in the under walk - the SeaTrek Adventure
Here we are getting ready. (Coco Puff, our guide, Rich, Myself, Michel)
Tina decided to opt out of the adventure.
If it weren't for her we would not have any pictures.
Thank You TINA!!
Anyone who knows me, knows that snorkeling is just too scary for me. I just cannot put my face in the water. So when we saw this adventure on Amazing Race one time - it was a no-brainer!! (lol) For me that is! 
These are the helmets we wore.
They weigh 70 lbs. each and they sit right on your shoulders.
She (Coco Puff) reassured me the air that is circulated into the helmet keeps the water out.... we'll see??

We're in the water, the guides are getting ready to put on those heavy helmets.
I must say, I was a little nervous.
Here we are all hooked up to our air tanks (they float on top of the water).
She was right - no water was coming into the helmet. YAY - I just might make it.!
The first half of the 'walk' it was hard for me to not hyperventilate.
The last half of the walk, I started to relax and enjoy it, although I was holding Michel's hand and praying he wouldn't let go while he was jumping up and down - his feet barely touched the sea floor.  
Whew!! We got through it. The only bad thing about this adventure was that the water was very murky from the rain earlier in the day. There wasn't very much to see in the way of sea life. BUT - that being said, it was a great adventure and I'd do it again.

December 6, 2013

Bridgetown, Barbados

Barbados is only about 70 sq. miles and has 60 beaches spread throughout the small island.  

Bridgetown is the main commercial centre and is Barbados' largest and liveliest city.
Today we had a beach day, something we all were very excited about. The water was so clear and blue and warm; the sand so soft and powdery.  This beach is probably the most beautiful beach we've ever been to.
Carlisle Bay is Barbados' most important bay, rich in history and great for snorkeling and Scuba diving because of its reef, colourful fish and many wrecks. This stretch of beach that we were sunning on is called "Browne's Beach" by the locals. Lounge chairs and umbrellas were supplied for just $15.00 (2 chairs - 1 umbrella) so we were quite content to just lay back and enjoy the sun and the surf.
 This picture was taken on our way back to the cruise ship.  We walked the boardwalk along the bay. We even sampled the local 'apple' which was quite different from the apples we eat. Instead of a core with seeds it has a spiny type of pit and the skin is peeled off because it is too bitter to eat. They cost $1.00 for 4. It tastes nothing like the apples we're used to.
The Marina along the Boardwalk.

Playing tourist!!

December 5, 2013

Roseau is the largest and capital city of Dominica. With a population of 16,582, it is a small and compact settlement surrounded by the beautiful Caribbean Sea. Though there are few beaches, there are water falls, rainforest and sulphur springs.

Another beautiful, hot day in the tropics. Once again, we didn't have any certain plans. We knew we wanted to see the island so here is a picture of Michel and Rich 'negotiating' with one of the local taxi drivers for a city tour.
We learned that Roseau is Dominica's most important port for foreign trade. Some exports include bananas, bay oil, vegetables, grapefruit, oranges, and cocoa. The service sector is also a large part of the local economy.
It would be a relatively inexpensive place in which to live and the US dollar is worth 2.5 times that of their currency.

Our tour took us to the beautiful Emerald Pool, which was a short walk down through a lush rainforest (pictured above) and at the bottom of a huge waterfall.
Michel is inside the waterfall.. brrrrrr too cold for me!!

Hayden (the taxi driver) took us to the Botanical Gardens, which compared to our 'gardens' was not very impressive, but they do have some very beautiful flora and fauna there as well. This is a picture of a school bus that Canada had donated, and during Hurricane David in 1979 this African Baobab tree fell on it. Fortunately no-one was in the bus at the time.

Our tour ended about 3.5 hours later in downtown Roseau. This is a little pub where Michel tried the local beer and I had a yummy rum punch before heading back to our ship.

December 4, 2013

First port of call - St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands, and after 2 full days at sea, we were happy to see land.

The view of the harbor from the ship as we were coming into port

Another view as we were getting closer.

We didn't have any plans; never booked any excursions, so when we debarked and went ashore we hired a taxi and did the 'city tour'.
The taxi took us around the city and up to Mountain Top where we got a beautiful view of Magen's Bay.

St. Thomas is only 32 sq. miles in size, and our tour only lasted a couple of hours, so when we returned we wandered around in the downtown area.
There are many little side streets for shopping.
We had an enjoyable day, and even did some shopping for souveniers before heading back to our ship.

December 1, 2, and 3, 2013

We begin our Caribbean Cruise...
We flew from Las Vegas to Miami yesterday, and today we boarded our cruise ship, the Norwegian SUN.
This ship was built in 2001 and refurbished in 2011. It houses 1,936 guests and 946 crew members and is one the smallest of Norwegians' cruise ships.

This is our stateroom.

A picture of the Miami skyline as we were leaving

the wake behind the ship.
We are on our way!!

The second night aboard was Formal Night, so we "put on the glitz"! (lol) The food was fantastic and we enjoyed our dinners in the dining room, rather than the buffet. The service is awesome.

We don't get 'all dolled up' very often, so we took the opportunity for a photo shot.

We enjoyed many beautiful sunsets.

November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving at Fiesta RV park.

Our good friends Rich and Tina, are now our neighbours in the RV Park.
They will spend 5-6 weeks with us here.
And we will be cruising with them again this year - we leave in two days!! We are cruising out of Miami for 10 days to the South Caribbean.  We're excited!!

November 17, 2013

This weekend Ron Lyttle and his girlfriend Ida came to Laughlin from Tucson, so we enjoyed a couple days of visiting.
We hit the casinos and went out for dinner the first day, then just kicked back for a little happy hour the next.
You will remember Ron from a previous post. He is an old 'real estate' friend of Michel's. He's been living in the USA for a number of years, and just visits Canada now in the summer months. Ida is his 'little' woman. A very nice lady. We enjoyed meeting her and spending a few hours with them.

November 11, 2013

Honouring our Veterans
Remembrance Day
November 11