Monday, December 21, 2015

Carnival Breeze 2015

Last week we cruised on the Carnival Breeze out of Miami. Our daughter Dyanna and son-in-law Earl went with us. Our cabin number was 8334 and we hat late dinner seating at table 536.

We left Lantana around 8am and had breakfast before heading to the port. At 10:45 we arrived at the port and parked our car. We went in the door and immediately we were separated at the security gate. We went through and started walking away when we were called back for them to search our bags and I couldn’t believe there was a big question about my knitting needles! Finally they let us go. Getting on the ship was so unorganized and chaotic. Around noon we were told to line up and get on the ship but then we went one way only to be turned around another way. Diamond members were let on the ship about the same time as everyone else. One lady was told to take the stairs when another lady told her to take the escalator. We had lunch around 12:15 and then wandered around the ship. At 4pm we had our lifeboat drill and our station met in the lower dining room. After the drill we sat out on the deck and watched the ship pull out. After that we walked around before getting ready to dress for dinner. After dinner we wanted to go to the Welcome Aboard show but we were all too tired so we went to bed.

12/14/15: At Sea
We had a lovely day at sea yesterday. We ate steak and eggs and cheesecake for breakfast. Then we walked a few miles around the track to burn off calories. After that we went to the food demo and we ate so many samples that I couldn’t eat lunch. At 1pm we had the meet and greet with our Facebook group and then I took a little nap. At 4pm we had cocktails with the Captain and lot of free cocktails! I was so excited to take photos with the Captain and Wee Jimmy (the cruise director!). Wee Jimmy was so personable and I felt like I had known him for a long time. He showed me all these lovely photos of his wife and his babies (dogs and cats). We went to the comedy show to see Jaylyn Bishop at 7:30 and it was really good. Dinner was prime rib and lobster so I ate so much that by 9:30pm I was ready for bed!

12/15/15: Montego Bay
We had breakfast in the dining room and the service was not very good. They served my poached eggs on the raisin English muffin that I asked for on the side. Plus, it was very slow so we will probably eat breakfast on the Lido deck tomorrow. We arrived at Montego Bay around 9am and got off the ship. We walked around the kiosks in the port and then walked outside the gate to get a picture of the ship. My daughter found the souvenirs she wanted (Jamaican coffee, shot glasses, and an ashtray.) Then we went back to the ship because there wasn’t anything else to do there other than pay a lot of money for a cab to go somewhere else. I took pictures of the cab prices. Security made us turn on our phones and cameras. Then we stopped for some pizza before going to relax on the deck. After lunch we went back to the room to watch movies on TV and take a nap. After dinner we went to the show Viva Variety that was the hypnotist and we really dislike that show. But I didn’t know what the show was (because I didn’t read the program) and I dragged my whole family there so we all stayed.

12/16/15: Grand Cayman
We had a lovely day at Grand Cayman. We got off the ship at 7am and arrived at the beach around 7:45 before it got crowded. We spent a couple of hours snorkeling while my son-in-law watched our stuff. He wore blue jeans and enjoyed sitting in the shade watching us since he doesn’t swim. Then we enjoyed a bucket of beer (4 for $20) before heading back to town. The cab fare was $5 per person one way to and from the Public Beach (Calico Jack’s). The cab fare to Royal Beach was $4 but you had to pay $2 entrance fee. After doing some souvenir shopping, we came back to the ship around 12:30 for lunch. Then we relaxed until dinner, which was elegant night.

12/17/15: Cozumel
We had a lovely day in Cozumel yesterday! We got off the ship at 10am and took a cab ride downtown ($8 for 4 people). Then we walked around before stopping for a beer in this shop while a rain shower came by. The Coronas was $1.50 each.  Then we walked some more before going to the Megastore to buy some Pepsi for me to bring back to the ship. On the way through the Duty Free shops, we had an incident with one of the sales persons. He wouldn’t let me take a photo of the liquor and the price and then wouldn’t let me get his name (which was Marco). When we went to ask at the Guest Services desk, the person there was pretty rude to us. Then we walked out on the deck to watch people almost get left behind when the ship was leaving. When we got back to our cabin, our clean laundry was waiting for us.

12/18/15: At Sea
We had a nice day at sea. I ate too much at breakfast and we walked an hour on the track. Then I sat and relaxed while hubby walked another 30 minutes. Then we packed up our suitcases before going to the Questions for the Cruise Director event. After that I got ready to go to the Platinum/Diamond party. My daughter Dyanna went with me and then Don and I went to the comedy show to see Tommy Drake. He was okay nothing fabulous. After that we listened to the music in the Ocean Lounge until dinner. During dinner they announced that we were diverting to Key West for a medical emergency but later they announced that the person was responding well to medicine and instead of going to Key West, we would continue to Miami. I never got a letter informing me about what time breakfast is served tomorrow so I called Guest Services. I was told 7:30 and when I asked the man what do people do for breakfast if they are getting off the ship at 7; he had to go ask someone. Then he came back and said it opened at 6am. They don’t seem to know what they are doing.

12/19/15: Debarkation
Getting off the ship went much smoother than getting on. We had breakfast at 6am and we met Dyanna and Earl by the elevators. Then we all went to the Lobby Atrium to wait for them to let us off the ship. At 8am, the 4 of us were the first ones off the ship.

This was an okay cruise. I’m glad we were able to cruise with Dyanna and Earl since this was their first cruise. We have noticed how service has really gone downhill from when we first started cruising with Carnival. Service in dining room is extremely slow. They used to put the napkins in your lap and they didn’t this time consistently. They reached across guests to pass plates and pour drinks. I was missing forks for several courses of the meal several times. The Guest Services desk guy was extremely rude. The food was not up to the usual standards but it was still okay. It was a lot of fun meeting up with the Facebook group and seeing people we recognized throughout the cruise.

Things I Learned:
1. We were told that the chocolate mints on the pillow at night were discontinued in order to pay for the accordion player and violinists and other entertainment. 
2. The crew can only work 14 hours at a time and must be given 10 hours off with 6 hours of uninterrupted time for sleep. 
3. Sitting outside in the early mornings away from the Lido deck kept me from overeating at breakfast. 
4. We don’t like Jamaica at all. 
5. We like the lower floors better than the higher floors. 
6. The beach at Grand Cayman was nice. 
7. People walking through the halls after 10pm and before 7am need to lower their voices! 

 Original photo by Pat Hensley

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