Sunday, November 14, 2010

"The Cruise"

Please watch above video to find out why I now have a newfound gratitude for warm showers, warm good food, working toilets, windows, good smells and flashlights.

Jason and I had been planning to take our two oldest children on a fun warm vacation for some time now when my mother suggested we join her, her siblings and her cousins for a family reunion aboard a 7 night Mexican Riviera Carnival Cruise. We boarded the ship on the late afternoon of Sunday, November 7th and at 6 am the following morning we heard a loud grinding sound that vibrated the whole ship and it immediately started smelling like smoke and the power went out. We found out later that there had been a fire in the engine room but we were informed that they were working on it and would get the power back on asap and we would continue towards our destination. We did not find out until Tuesday that they would be unable to start the ship up again and that two tugboats would be arriving the next day to pull us back to San Diego. Because we had drifted even farther in the last 24 hours and because the tugboats could only pull us at a speed of 7 mph we would not get into San Diego until Thursday afternoon. In the meantime we had no warm showers, no light in our cabins or throughout the ship, no working toilets and no avenue to cook food. The stench became unbearable…the combo of smoke, rotten food, overflowing toilets…you can imagine. The food was less than desirable…green bean sandwiches, beet sandwiches, cold meatballs, hot dog salad… and the lack of light was not only difficult to find our way around but very depressing as well. We made the best of it by reading and playing cards when the sun was out and engaging in conversation when the sun went down. On the upside it was exciting to see an aircraft carrier up close as well as a navy seahawk as it dropped necessary supplies onto our ship.
As planned, we arrived in San Diego on Thursday morning where we boarded a shuttle bus that took us to a beautiful nearby hotel. We had a warm shower, had a hot delicious breakfast and we played in their pool. We stayed in San Diego a couple more days and had the opportunity to visit Old Town San Diego where we visited the Mormon Battalion Visitor Center, the Maritime Museum, the USS Midway and Seaport Village. Of course we were compensated for the whole trip, including our time in San Diego, and we were given a free cruise to book in the future. We are thankful to be safe and sound. Even though we had three and a half miserable days at sea, we joke now that we have learned how to be grateful for small things like windows. Ironically, we lost weight and earned money, from which I understand, is quite an accomplishment for one who has been on a cruise.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Humble Pie

Just when I was about to brag about completing my first triathlon, my dad sends me this picture...TOTAL BUZZ KILL.