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Old 11-12-2012   #1 (permalink)
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Carnival Pride Cruise

Sandy and I just returned from our 7 day cruise to Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay and Freeport. Wonderful week away from the election crescendo!

We sailed out of Baltimore, MD...an easy 1+45 drive for us. Pulled into the port and offloaded the bags, checked in and were on the ship within 15 minutes! Being "Platinum Cruisers" with Carnival, we were able to go directly to our stateroom and drop our carryon bags. Usually, you have to wait until they make an announcement that the rooms are ready. From there, it was down to the main dining room to check on our table situation. They had us seated at a six top. Cruises are our alone time so we asked the Maitre'd for a table for two which he gladly accomodated. That done, it was off to check out the ship and people watch!

The ship decor theme was renaissance art. Very tastefully done...unlike some of the other Carnival ships which are more like a vegas casino.

Atrium

Taj Mahal Theater

David's Steak House

Artwork in Atrium

Atrium Bar from Deck 6

Entrance to Taj Mahal Theater and my Dead Sexy Travel Companion
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Old 11-12-2012   #2 (permalink)
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The first two days of the cruise were spent "at sea". Sailing from B'more, it ws a little cool the first day. So, we spent it inside watching various events and games. We got started in the Super Trivia competition...a two team comp guys against gals. 4 total events culminating on the last day. Really more a luck game than a knowledge game as you have to roll a large die when you get the question correct. Whoever gets the higher total points from the die wins. The ladies jumped out to an early lead of 26-13 on day one!

Day two was spent lounging on the "Serenity Deck". A relaitively new addition to their ships. The aft portion has been turned into an Adults Only area with cushioned chaise loungers and hammocks. Unfortunately, it was not all that serene! In addition to having a rather large group of very boistrous characters the ship layout has the water slide directly above the serenity area! So, when Camp Carnival heads for the slide with a huge crowd of 10 year olds..... But, the chairs were comfy and we managed a nice nap in in spite of.
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Old 11-12-2012   #3 (permalink)
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Day three was Grand Turk.

We left the ship for a short walk down the pier to Margueritaville.




Sandy spent most of her day in the pool....I lounged some more!

The Imagination docked next to us gave the illusion of two funnels on the ship

They also have this Flow Rider that kept the young teens busy most of the day.

We went for a short walk up the beach toward "Jack's Shack" and came across Topher their labradoodle. He spends his days digging holes then wondering why the fill up with water!

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Old 11-12-2012   #4 (permalink)
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Day four was Half Moon Cay which is their private island. A little slice of heaven on earth!
This day was a bit breezy, but warm. We attempted to do some snorkeling and floating around. That was a comedy in itself as we battled the waves! Sandy went head over heels on one wave and I was out of breath from laughing!
A couple of shots of Half Moon Cay

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Old 11-12-2012   #5 (permalink)
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Freeport was our last stop. It is a very industrial port and everything is an ~30 min cab ride away. That in addition to the short time we had in port drove us to remain on board and take advantage of the serenity deck again.
Having the power of the sun on Half Moon Cay, Sandy decided to remain mostly covered and even borrowed one of my hats....this is a HUGE deal as it clashed with her outfit...something that is a cardinal sin in her world!
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Old 11-12-2012   #6 (permalink)
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We left Freeport about 2:00 PM and headed North for B'more.

I decided to try another round of trivia and won a 24 carat plastic ship on a stick!


Caught this sunset


This was also round three of Super trivia and the men came back strong to tie up the match!

Last edited by horizon200; 11-12-2012 at 06:45 AM..
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Old 11-12-2012   #7 (permalink)
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Last day at sea was spent watching games and such

This was our final Super Trivia day as well. Apparently, word of the heated competition spread throughout the ship! This was the largest crowd that had ever shown up for the game. On this day, we entered tied up. We went down in flames as the women had lady luck on their side and continued to roll high numbers as we came up with 2's and 3's!

Sandy admiring the ocean blue.


We woke on our final morning just as we were passing under the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. A different view of the bridge than most would see.


A couple of hours later and we were docked in B'more.
This was the worst part of the cruise. Typically, we are off the ship between 8:30 -9:00AM. On this one, we arrived in port at 9:00 and then they had all of the people that wanted to carry off their own luggage disembark first. Very slow process and we were finally off by about 11:00 and headed home.

All in all, a very relaxing cruise. We met some very nice people. There were a few on board that felt it was OK to use vulgar language wherever they were and didn't care who heard them and there were a couple of groups that were very loud. We also noticed the same groups appeared to be the people that felt T-shirts and jeans were appropriate attire for a formal dining room as well. This is where the snobby side of me comes out. I prefer to dress for dinner at a nice restaraunt and appreciate when others do as well. For the most part, people did dress for dinner. Others, however, adopted the "it's my vacation, I'll dress how I want to" attitude. But, again, we had a great time and look forward to our next cruise.

For now...back to reality!

Last edited by horizon200; 11-12-2012 at 06:46 AM..
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Old 11-12-2012   #8 (permalink)
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Great report, Mike! Sounds like a lovely vacation (although it sounds like they might want to rename the adults-only deck the "Sometimes Serene, Sometimes Notsomuch" deck). *sigh* I really need to grab my hubby and take off somewhere....
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Old 11-12-2012   #9 (permalink)
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Great report and photos! Looks like nice time. I see you slipped in a popular Cruise Critic subject, dinner attire.
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Old 11-12-2012   #10 (permalink)
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Wow...that is opulent! I am not a big cruise fan at all, but it sounds like you had a great time....and can I just add one more thing?

You are one lucky man to have such a great-looking woman hang out with an old man like you.

(and I agree with your comment regarding attire....)
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Old 11-12-2012   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by gingele View Post
Great report, Mike! Sounds like a lovely vacation (although it sounds like they might want to rename the adults-only deck the "Sometimes Serene, Sometimes Notsomuch" deck). *sigh* I really need to grab my hubby and take off somewhere....
Exactly! At one point, we thought it was camp carnival at it again and looked up to see a grup of women going down the slide and whooping it up like a bunch of kids...all fun I suppose...just not the greatest location.

I would highly recommend a cruise!

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Originally Posted by Mnbruce View Post
Great report and photos! Looks like nice time. I see you slipped in a popular Cruise Critic subject, dinner attire.
Oh yeah...a hot topic that is! Guess I'm old school. It was interesting to see the differences in dress and the demographic of who would dress up and who didn't. There was a group of 4 young ladies that could have been fashion models...they dressed to the nines all the time (and made sure everyone noticed...strategic timing of their entracne etc) then you'd see middle aged people come in in what looked like NASCAR race attire (insert head shake icon here).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacko View Post
Wow...that is opulent! I am not a big cruise fan at all, but it sounds like you had a great time....and can I just add one more thing?

You are one lucky man to have such a great-looking woman hang out with an old man like you.

(and I agree with your comment regarding attire....)
I tell myself that all the time Jack! I really need to tell her more though That particular dress (the black and white one) stops my heart everytime she wears it!
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Old 11-12-2012   #12 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by horizon200 View Post



Oh yeah...a hot topic that is! Guess I'm old school. It was interesting to see the differences in dress and the demographic of who would dress up and who didn't. There was a group of 4 young ladies that could have been fashion models...they dressed to the nines all the time (and made sure everyone noticed...strategic timing of their entracne etc) then you'd see middle aged people come in in what looked like NASCAR race attire (insert head shake icon here).
I'm a pretty casual dresser, but not NASCAR attire. This last cruise was the first time we skipped the formal wear and formal dinners. The demographics of cruisers is changing and I would not be surprised to see most mass market cruise lines eliminate formal nights not too far down the road.

Last edited by Mnbruce; 11-12-2012 at 02:58 PM..
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Old 11-12-2012   #13 (permalink)
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I'm a pretty casual dresser, but not NASCAR attire. This last cruise was the first time we skipped the formal wear and formal dinners. The demographics of cruisers is changing and I would not be surprised to see most mass market cruise lines eliminate formal nights not too far down the road.
Yes, even Holland America has relaxed the enforcement of formal attire in the main dining room.
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Old 11-12-2012   #14 (permalink)
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What does the front of that black and white dress look like, or were you taking and posting unauthorized photos?
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Old 11-13-2012   #15 (permalink)
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What does the front of that black and white dress look like, or were you taking and posting unauthorized photos?
That will have to wait until I get home from work!
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