Poke In The Eye Phone

June 17, 2010 -

John Heald

Good morning everyone. This is Heidi here writing to you on this lovely Thursday morning here in the UK. Before I continue I should mention that I am not sitting here in my underpants or Johns underpants for that matter. I am fully clothed and happy to have the chance to start John’s blog for him today. That’s because early this morning John and I had a little bit of an argument you could say. Kye woke up at 6:30 am which is early for her and normally I have a routine of going down stairs, making her a bottle of milk, changing her nappy or diaper as you call them and then bring her back into our bed to feed her. This morning though I was really snug under the covers and had been having a dream about Rafael Nadal’s bottom. Not really but I told John I had because he gets on my nerves all the time talking about Megan Fox and her skinny bottom.

I asked John to go and do this but he said he was tired and he had a long hard day of blogging ahead so off I went as usual. When I came back with Kye John was on his Blackberry e-mailing PA 007 to try and get information on the new ship Carnival Magic and didn’t even say good morning to Kye.

To John his Blackberry or Raspberry as he calls it is the biggest thing since the invention of fire if he were to lose it he would think it was like losing his mouth or his ears.

I am sure most of you bloggers know what a BlackBerry is but if there are those like my Mum in Holland who think a BlackBerry is a fruit, let me explain. It’s a cell phone that can also receive and send e-mails. This means that no matter where John is on the planet someone can always get hold of him. I am not joking when I tell you that he used to take a newspaper to the toilet and now he takes his BlackBerry.

But this is not its biggest fault. Have you ever been out for a drink with someone who has one? Sure, they’re in constant contact with the office, which is great for them, but they’re not in contact with you. Every time I am in the middle of an important conversation with him his BlackBerry chirps and I can see he is not listening any more. I can see that John is willing me to hurry up and finish talking so they can whip it out and see if PA 007 has written or one of his Stephanies needs him.

Go out with someone who has a BlackBerry and you’ll not get a single word out of them. Because it will be chirping or whining or playing the theme music from The West Wing as John’s does.

Because he has a BlackBerry John may be physically out with friends but mentally he is at work. This means he can never have fun. He can never relax. I have there decided to use one of John’s favourite sayings and “insert it up his bottom.” The West Wing theme may be a little bit muffled.

So why am I writing to you. Well to make a long blog short John said blogging was as hard as looking after Kye. I told him it wasn’t so we had a bet. So I am sitting here with a cup of coffee writing to you while John is up to his neck in dirty diapers and will soon be spoon feeding her yogurt and bread before playing the “I will throw something on the floor and you pick it up game” over and over and over and over again.

This also gives me a chance to say hello to you and thank you for all your lovely thoughts you send to me and Kye.

I better hand over to John as I have just seen the way John has put her diaper on and it’s upside down and back to front. As John would say……….looking after a baby is easy — my arse.

Yep, John here and I have waved the white flag in surrender……just call me Jean Claude …. and I guess I had better take over the blogging and Heidi can put Kye’s diaper on which I must say….is as difficult as learning Mongolian. …………..so let’s crack on with some Q and A ……..off we go.

John R Asked:
Dear John, (Please reply)

I would like to start out by thanking you for your continued help as well as being a good and decent person. Am I buttering you up, probably! :) You also continue to entertain with your thingy – blog thingy – please continue!

I know that on some of the Conquest class ships the aft pools and spa tubs are designated as adult only. regardless of whether those ships have gotten Serenity (which does not have a swimming pool)

The adult only swimming pool is something that we always enjoy so much. It’s nice to be able to relax in the swimming pool. It would be nice to see consistency with this policy within the classes.

Since all the Conquest class ships do have 3 swimming pools, there should be no problem in designating the aft pools and spas adults only.

Perhaps you will be able to follow up with the beards.

Thanks again,
John R

John Says:
Hello John R

It is a very interesting subject this one because I know that many readers will agree with you here that the aft pools should be for adults only. The problem is that there are just as many that will disagree and those people will be the ones with children. Certainly it would be difficult to have these pools as adults only when there are high counts of children onboard as there are this summer. Still, I can also see that an adult only pool would be something that would offer a retreat for some. Obviously we have the Serenity decks which are certainly a step forward and is a very popular area on all our ships that have them.

Whenever a blogger posts something like this I will always make sure the right people get to read them and maybe we could suggest that these pools become adult only after or before a certain time so as to make both groups of people happy. What do you think about that idea?

This is one of those subjects where as always I encourage others to chime in please. Thanks for the kind words about the blog and hope to hear from you again soon.

Best wishes
John

Austin Carroll Asked:
John, PLEASE REPLY

We are platinum cruisers and was shocked to hear that our dining preference, EARLY, was wait listed. I thought platinum guests were guaranteed dining preference? None the less, we are going to try YTD so that we can be guaranteed to eat before 8PM (not fans of late dining).

My question is this:

One of the things that we like about set dining (table/time) is that we know our gratuities go directly to the wait staff. When eating at the YTD, how are the gratuities handled if we have different staff each night? It is my understanding that the gratuities go into a pool and then split among all of the servers. If that is the case, would our outstanding servers suffer from another server that might have less than at par service? Would it be inappropriate to tip cash each night?

Just a little nervous at change. We have sailed 12 times with early and 1 time with late dining. We still enjoy entertainment at dinner and hear that we may have none with YTD.

Another question, we are sailing on the Pride out of Baltimore on June 20, 2010. Do you know what time (on average) the ship arrives back in port for debarkation? We have read not to schedule flights until after 2pm. I’ve also read similar statements regarding Florida ports, but we (on average) arrive by 7am at those ports.

This is the 2nd cruise that we are little uneasy about due to the unfamiliarity, unfamiliarity, not being sure how things are going to go. (Obviously our first cruise was the first uneasy time, but everything went great).

THANKS!
Austin Carroll
Icard, NC

John Says:
Hello Austin Carroll

I am sure the wait list information you received was incorrect and my apologies for that. Change is never easy and I can totally understand how, after so many times at an assigned sitting that you are somewhat nervous about trying Your Time Dining.

However, I promise that you will not regret it and the flexibility of dining when you want will be something you will definitely appreciate and enjoy. The tipping is simple. The pre-paid gratuities you place onto your Sail & Sign card will be pooled between all the waiters on the team as you will probably have a different server each night. You are so kind to think of paying each one in cash but honestly that is not necessary as the entire team are looked after fairly and equally.

Carnival Pride is scheduled to arrive back into Baltimore at 9 am however I understand that the ship is usually able to start debarkation right at 9 am as often the captain will get the ship back into port by 8:30am. Once permission has been given by Customs and Border Protection, guests using the self assist system will be allowed ashore starting with Platinum guests with all their own bags.

If you can manage your own luggage then you will be the first ashore and if not I am told you should be able to debark around 10:30am. Certainly, the more time you can give yourself at the airport the better. But please do not be nervous. The Carnival Pride is a great ship and her team will make sure you have the very best of cruises.

Why not drop me a line when you get home and tell me all about your YTD experience.

Thanks so much for your loyalty and have a brilliant cruise

Best wishes
John

The Cruzin2some asked:
Dear John,

If your paint IT with glow stick green I will have to come up with a new name for you other than Johnny Sparkles. Let’s see. Johnny Glowworm. Yeah that will work. This may be a good idea for those nightly visits to the loo. You will not have to turn on the lights and it will provide a better water show than the Oasis of the seas.

John Please reply to this part,

We are thinking about a cruise that has the same itinerary that you are currently on and I was wondering about the Grand Turk Shore Excursions. What do you recommend?

Thanks for the help!

The Cruzin2some
James and Nancy Enslow

John Says:
Hello James and Nancy Cruizin2some

You won’t need much paint…….that’s all I had better say on that subject. As for Grand Turk, well I love that port. The shopping is right next to where we dock as is Margaritaville which is loads of fun. The excursions are superb and here are two of our most popular;

AQUA BOAT AND SNORKELING ADVENTURE

Take command as Captain or First Mate of a 2-person 12-foot min-boat for an incredible adrenaline rush! Your adventure begins at the cruise terminal where you’ll be greeted by the crew and taken to the launching area. Here, you’ll receive thorough instructions from your trained guides about the safety and operation of your aqua boat. Then, board your mini-boat and cruise along the turquoise waters on the west coast of Grand Turk. Travel along the famous 7,000-foot coral reef wall drop-off that attracts divers from all over the world. Your first stop will be a pristine snorkelling spot at Amphitheatre Reef. In approximately 10-15 feet of water, you will encounter an abundance of tropical fish and a variety of corals. After snorkelling, climb back into your aqua boat and head to Pillory Beach, a beautiful secluded beach with sparkling white sand. Enjoy a swim, snorkel, or just relax on the beach. From there, you will head back to the launching area, enjoying views of historic Cockburn Town and your cruise ship.

CAPTAIN EXPLORER OUT ISLAND AND SNORKEL EXPIDITION

Experience an exhilarating boat ride and world class snorkelling; then explore an uninhabited island, accessible only by boat – All in this action-packed expedition!

On this thrilling excursion you will:

  • Begin your adventure with a fast-paced ride to Hidden Bay aboard a 38 foot boat.
  • Listen to a safety briefing then don your snorkel gear and enter the turquoise water.
  • Notice that Hidden Bay is surrounded by healthy coral reefs inhabited by an abundance of tropical fish.
  • Explore the marine life then swim ashore for a hike.
  • Explore the old ruins on the island and the natural pools carved into the rocks along the shoreline.
  • Head off for another thrill ride as you cruise by Penniston Cay to view the rock formation of the island and the elusive nesting birds before heading up Grand Turk’s coast for views of the island.
  • Enjoy refreshing beverages which will be served during your expedition

DISCOVER GRAND TURK AND BEACH DAY

Enjoy island sightseeing and then escape to Grand Turk’s famous Governor’s Beach for a relaxing day of sunbathing, swimming and snorkelling!

On this excursion you will:

  • Listen as your guide provides cultural and historical commentary as you drive through the small island of Grand Turk.
  • Ride past St. Thomas Parish Church and the salt pans, evidence of the island’s salt-raking past.
  • Continue along the quaint Duke Street, lined with historic homes, and arrive at Front Street in the heart of the capital.
  • Stroll along Front Street while your guide points out the Anglican Church, the Victoria Library, and other historical buildings.
  • Reboard your bus for the ride to Governor’s Beach, a protected area within the Columbus Landfall National Park.
  • Arrive and be greeted by the friendly staff who will provide your snorkel gear and instruction on its proper use.
  • Enjoy snorkelling, swimming, or simply relax on your complimentary lounge chair.

So there you have 3 very diverse excursions and all of them have been top rated by guests who have been on them before you. If you have any questions please let me know

Best wishes to you both
John

Ade’ U. Asked:
Dearest Mr. Heald-Please reply =)

How are you doing today? Lovely, I hope. I have a bit of dilemma. I’m a VERY young 20 something who usually travels with my parents alone being an only child. I find the easiest way for me to meet people around my age is at dinner. In the past years I’ve had some AMAZING table mates and met some great friends that I still talk to years later, but on my past two cruises, it’s been a booth for the 3 of us. We would love to sit at a much larger table where I can meet more people. If you could do anything at all to help I would greatly appreciate it.

Thank you in advance for anything you may be able to do. I also had a blast with you last year on the Carnival Freedom. Looking forward to sailing with you again soon!

John Says:
Hello Ade’U

Thanks for letting me know about your dining request and your description of being a “young 20 something.” To me, 20 is young regardless so enjoy every moment of 20s as they are some of the best years of your life. I have sent a note to the Maitre D on your Carnival Dream who I know will do his best to help you with your request. Have a brilliant cruise

Best wishes to all
John

Julie Anne Husbands Asked:
John or Stephanie (please reply),

I have twice posted a long cruise review asking for a reply, and both times it showed “awaiting moderation” for a week or so, then that disappears and I get no reply on the blog. One post was in December or January, the other in April, it was the same review of an October 2009 Freedom cruise.

Did I say something offensive? Is that why it disappeared? I certainly didn’t mean to, and if someone would tell me why it’s being deleted, I’ll try to fix it as I really wanted it to be posted.

Thanks.

John Says:
Hello Julie Anne Husbands

I clearly remember replying to you some weeks ago. Sometimes it shows awaiting moderation just because of the sheer number of comments that are waiting to be posted and put that with the 3 weeks I am behind, then sometimes the wait is longer than perhaps it should be. Did you get my reply? Please let me know and if not please accept my apologies if I haven’t replied and if that is the case please post again and I will reply immediately. I am sure that everything you wrote was not offensive……………..unless you called me French.

Best wishes
John

Mary Smith Asked:
ATTN Stephanie 1-343:

John Heald has requested that I write to you regarding his response to my above listed request. We will be sailing on the Liberty on 6/26/10. John asked that I please forward you my parent’s names and cabin number so that he can send them a letter of congratulations for their 50th wedding anniversary. Their names are John and Joanne Wilcox and they will be staying in cabin #7352. Should you require any additional information, please contact me at the email address that I have provided. Thank you in advance for your prompt response in this matter.

John Says:
Hello Mary Smith

Just to let you know I received your details and I will send your parents a little something on this their 50th wedding anniversary cruise. I am sure they will have the best of times.

Best wishes to you all
John

Jeanette Asked:
Please reply

John, a quick question and comment to pass along to the bearded folk at head office….Why not do a better job promoting Carnival and the other cruise lines in Canada. Surely they realize we have a very long and very cold winter, why not try to get more Canadians to cruise, especially in winter when we can be in lockdown in our own home cuz it is so damn cold out……

And for a spelling lesson–PVR is spelled PUERTO VALLARTA……….

I’m officially on the bloggers cruise, so WooHoo, now if you could get that HAL ship to change it schedule and move the Glory to HMC instead of Nassau everyone would be happy….

John Says:
Hello Jeanette

I am very excited that you have booked BC4 which I intend to make the best one yet. I want you to know that we are working very hard to please our Canadian guests who are very important to us and maybe you could be more specific by telling me exactly where you think we could do a better job. The problem with sailing from Canada is you are limited to where you can go. However, I love having Canadian guests onboard as they are so much fun so if you have any specific ideas please tell me so I can pass them along. Best wishes and thanks for showing me the correct spelling of Peurto Valaartta (spelt correctly.)

Best wishes and see you in February
John

Talktalk Bonnie Asked:

This will be my 4th cruise and my second with Carnival. I see that on Cruise Critic you are the person who books tables for dinner. I would need a table for 5 on the Valor as we are a very private family and don’t want to sit with other people who will not be the same as us. How do I do this and how much does it cost.

Bonnie

John Says:
Hello Bonnie

All I need you to do is send me another posting with your sailing date, and cabin number and last name please and I will then ask the maitre d to help with your request. Let’s see how much it will cost:

7 day cruise x $40 per day per person x 5 = $1,400.

Please make cheques payable to John S Heald or I give $50 discount for cash…….. kidding. There is no charge for this service. I am here to help.

Best wishes
John

Nancy Asked:
John, PLEASE REPLY.

John, for every person out there like Corvette Lady, there must be at least a hundred of us that really like you and think you are very funny and appreciate all that you do. And we just love your blog and all the comments you make. I don’t know about anyone else, but I look forward to hearing about Heidi and Kye. I think what makes your blog so enjoyable is that you don’t hold back and hide your emotions or feelings or thoughts, so we feel we can honestly get to know you as a friend. So, please don’t change a thing about the blog or about you. And don’t stress over those with other opinions. There’s plenty of us here who do think of you as a good person and a friend. I personally read your blog every day and look forward to the next day’s blog.

I wanted to ask if there was an update on a question that was asked on May 11 by “Emily” in regard to any type of non-alcoholic Sparkling Cider being added to Bon Voyage or if there is a place to buy some onboard. Hubby and I are sailing on Carnival Freedom in January 2011 for our anniversary and we prefer Sparkling Cider. Has there been any hint of something like that coming to Carnival yet?

Thanks, John. Have a pleasant day. And remember, less stress is best for us diabetics.
Nancy

John Says:
Hello Nancy

I just wanted to say a big thank you for taking the time to write those very kind words which mean so much. Writing my blog and giving my opinions leaves me open for attack which I have learnt for the most part to accept but words like yours make that much easier. I asked for the sparkling non-alcoholic wine to be put on Bon Voyage so let me follow up on this now and I will let you know. It is a great idea.

I hope your sugar levels are good and thanks again for everything.

Best wishes
John

And that’s all for today.

I often talk about the wonders of Cunard here and occasionally add a dollop of Holland America. One branch of the Carnival family tree that I hardly mention is Costa Cruises. And that’s a shame because they are very special indeed and their ships are just beautiful. I also think they have some of the best names in the industry as well. They have the Fortuna, the Luminosa, and the Romantica.

Everything about Costa oozes Italian class and Italian style, even the people who work in the office. While Carnival executives are happy to wear a pair of chinos and a polo shirt it is not unusual to see Costa executives dress fabulously. When I was invited to the naming ceremony of the Costa Luminosa and Cost Pacifica I saw someone very high Costa 40-something man wearing a bottle green, jacket with a black sweater, light shirt, yellow jeans, black shoes and – as a finishing touch – an ivory silk scarf. It sounds stomach churning…. but, as an ensemble, worked perfectly because he was Italian. If I had been dressed like that I would have looked like Elton John’s love child.

It is often forgotten that Carnival’s interior designer Joe Farcus also does wonderful work for Costa Cruises and as you will see now from this video, his contemporary Italian designs have made the Costa Deliziosa a stunningly beautiful ship. The film is shot on a steady cam so it actually feels like you are touring the ship. Highlights you must see are the chocolate bar, the Formula 1 race car simulator, 4D cinema, food selection and of course that sumptuous and luxurious Joe Farcus-designed interior. So, join me for a slice of Dolce Vita as we visit the Costa Deliziosa.

I love that video and it’s also the little details like the sound of the ocean that’s included when you see shots of the ship at sea. You know, soccer, opera, Ferrari, engineering, Catholicism, gelato ice cream and rumpy pumpy are some of the favourite things to your everyday Italian and Costa sits very easily on that list.

Let’s move from Italy to Tampa, Florida and visit today’s ship………the Carnival Legend. Let’s see where she sails to.

TAMPA, FL 4:00pm

FUN DAY AT SEA

GRAND CAYMAN – 7:00am 4:00pm

COZUMEL, MEXICO

ISLA ROATAN -11:00pm – 6:00pm

BELIZE -  8:00am 5:00pm

FUN DAY AT SEA 10:00am – 6:00pm

TAMPA, FL -  8:00am

Oh and just before we have a look at who is onboard and see some great photos of the ship…….. how about this for a brilliant Christmas cruise.

Friday, Dec 23

TAMPA, FL 4:00pm

Saturday, Dec 24 KEY WEST, FL 10:00am 5:00pm

Sunday, Dec 25 FUN DAY AT SEA

Monday, Dec 26 GRAND CAYMAN, CAYMAN ISLANDS 7:00am 4:00pm

Tuesday, Dec 27 COZUMEL, MEXICO 10:00am 6:00pm

Wednesday, Dec 28 COSTA MAYA, MEXICO 8:00am 5:00pm

Thursday, Dec 29 BELIZE 8:00am 6:00pm Friday,

Friday, Dec 30 ISLA ROATAN 8:00am 7:00pm

Saturday, Dec 31 FUN DAY AT SEA AND NEW YEARS EVE PARTY

Sunday, Jan 01 TAMPA, FL 8:00am

That’s a nine day cruise to some great ports and a brilliant chance to celebrate both the holidays and New Years Eve all on one cruise.

So, let’s have a look at some photos featuring the interior of the ship and Captain Vito Giacalone, Hotel Director Mr. Guna and the irrepressible CD Weeeeeeeeeeee Jimmy.

Here is one of the 344 Stephanies superb slide shows.

I loved my time on the Carnival Legend and I know that wee Jimmy and Mr. Guna and his team have the ship at the top of the guest satisfaction chart. She is in my top three favourite ships in the Carnival fleet and if you haven’t sailed on her ……………you really should.

We will look at more of the fleet starting next week with the Carnival Destiny.

I am hoping that I will be able to confirm where your Carnival Magic will be home porting and I will pass along this exciting news as soon as it’s available.

I wanted to ask for some feedback please and this is a request from the beards at Carnival HQ. As you know, we have recently changed our debarkation talks with some ships having them and some ships having none at all. As I also wrote last month the big comment card push has been totally stopped across the fleet. We still put the cards in the staterooms but the CD’s no longer mention them at all and the manipulation that quite honestly we all used when asking guests to complete them is no more. So, I wondered how those who have cruised since we made these changes have found it. So to put it plainly here are the questions that I have been asked to put to those who have been with us recently?

1. If you cruised with us and there was no debarkation talk, did you miss having this event?

2. If you cruised and there was no debarkation talk did you watch the video that has taken its place and now plays in your state rooms?

3. Did not having a debarkation talk effect the debarkation system itself. Did you fully understand how to disembark the ship?

Thanks to those who are able to answer these questions, we really appreciate it.

Well things here in the Heald household are OK and Heidi’s Mum has come to stay for a week or seven. I still can’t work this bloody coffee machine and I discovered why. Heidi bought something called a Nespresso coffee machine and when I told her it was a load of crap and asked her why she had bought it she told me it was because of George Clooney. I asked her if his Georgeness told her to fill her bottom with petrol would she have gone to the CITGO station immediately done so?……………..and that was me in the doghouse.

We’ve reached a point, in fact, where you probably couldn’t hope to sell anything unless it’s attached in some way to a celebrity. Seriously. If I was to develop a way of converting boogers into gold, unless I got William Shatner to say it works, the kits will sit on Wal-Mart’s shelves gathering dust.

Who for instance cares what Paris Hilton? Yep………here in the UK she is advertising a breakfast cereal. Is anyone really going to buy a box of Weetabix cereal because Paris says you should?

She’s a girl who carries dogs in her purse next to her hairbrush and wears T-shirts bearing her own name. I am sure that Paris Hilton has an Eye Phone and one that is probably covered in diamonds as well.

I know Heidi gave me a bollocking at the top of this blog about my obsessive use of my Raspberry but compared to people who have Eye Phones……my obsession pales into comparison.

I know this with absolute certainty because I have seen guests and crew cradle them like they are holding a new born baby.

But that’s nothing…………..have a read of this.

iPhone More Important Invention Than Flush Toilets?

By Charles Moore May. 24, 2010, 8:32am

Is the iPhone a more important invention than the humble water closet? As one who has lived for extended periods of time in houses and cottages without indoor plumbing, I would say not, but according to your typical British consumer, it is as the iPhone was voted a more important invention than washing machines or internal combustion engines. In the Tesco Mobile survey of 4,000 Britons aged between 18 and 65, the iPhone ranked eighth — ahead of the toilet, which finished ninth (toilet paper was 22nd), and also higher than the automobile, camera — even shoes.

Here is the link to the complete article

http://theappleblog.com/2010/05/24/iphone-more-important-invention-than-flush-toilets/

Oh what a load of bollocks. Let’s see how fabulous your Eye Phone thingy looks when you have to poo in a bucket!

Yep……….this confirms it….us Brits are totally bonkers but I am sure there are plenty of world wide Eye Phone lovers who would agree with their British counterparts. It gets worse. People also think that the Eye Phone is a more important than painkillers.

OK……. would every sodding idiot involved in this survey step forward to undergo haemorrhoid surgery without anaesthetic? You’ll have your precious apps to take your mind off the scalpel slitting through your arse. And if that thought scares you, remember, you won’t have a toilet to crap in after the surgery has finished so don’t forget your bucket.

And why do people get so lusty over their Eye Phones They’re just cell phones with silicone breasts and hair extensions…………….they are Paris Hilton.Then again………………if Megan Fox advertised Eye Phones wearing only stockings and suspenders…………………..I’d buy one!

Goodnight
Your friend
John

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59 Responses to Poke In The Eye Phone

  1. Lorie Shaw says:

    Hi John,

    No Eye Phone for me. I’m a Crackberry person all the way! In fact, if you are still going to be the cruise director on the Splendor in September, then I’ll be the woman carrying her Blackberry in one hand and a tasty Carnival signature drink in the other! Ah…heaven!

    Have a blessed vacation with your family and hope to see you in September!

    P.S.: Love your blogs. Thanks!

    Lorie Shaw

  2. nanetteali says:

    Hi Heidi!! Great start to the blog love it!! Ja!! Miss you. Hope to see you and Kye soon. :) say Hi to John and a big kiss to Kye.
    Muchos huggos
    Nanni

  3. Geri & Jack says:

    Hi Heidi,
    Hahahahahahaha such a funny blog. My sentiments exactly and they never get any better!
    Even after 53 yrs of marriage my DH has mellowed but never changes. But, oh how we love them ‘unconditionally’ (I think)?
    I Loved your blog and your true sense of humour. Keep up the good work
    You made my day!
    Best wishes to you and your beautiful family.
    Geri Scott
    proud platinum CCL cruiser
    John, get out in the kitchen and rattle those pots and pans LOL!

  4. Mary "Mrs. Shy" says:

    Dear John,

    You are right. My dear husband has his iphone with him 24/7 and spends a lot of time on the toilet with it. Whenever I am looking for him, he’s sitting there playing games on his iphone.

    …………….and Heidi, you are right too. I think men have replaced newspapers and magazines in the toilet with their Blackberrys and iphones. Now they spend more time in there than women.

  5. Kristin Smith says:

    Heidi – Love the Rafa comment! There are many parts of his that one could dream about!

  6. Hi John,

    1. If you cruised with us and there was no debarkation talk, did you miss having this event?

    I haven’t been to one in years.

    2. If you cruised and there was no debarkation talk did you watch the video that has taken its place and now plays in your state rooms?

    No.

    3. Did not having a debarkation talk effect the debarkation system itself. Did you fully understand how to disembark the ship?

    No. Yes. I really think the written instructions left in the cabin are self explanatory, but a video would be a good backup.

    —————

    On the “Comment Cards” – how about setting up an electronic system where people can fill out in their leisure time back home instead of rushing to pack, have free final night cocktails, enjoy the “last supper” etc.

  7. John, so your now “the person who books tables for dinner” as per Cruise Critic. Why don’t you have one of the Stephanies put a filter on your incoming comments that will send any comment containing the word Cruise Critic or CC to be sent right to trash.

    But Talktalk Bonnie does have a good idea charge them all for the service.

    BIG Ed

    • Beth Flynn says:

      Huh, Big Ed….wouldnt your comment then be sent to the trash??? …I’m just saying….

  8. Mary "Mrs. Shy" says:

    Info for Austin Carroll:

    If you decide on Your Time Dining ( usually on the second level ), ask to be seated by the railing……..that way you can see down to the lower level that has the traditional dining. The singing and dancing usually starts after the entrees and just before or during dessert and I timed it to be about 7:15 so make sure you are still there at that time. Once our server was so quick that we had to draw out our dessert so we could be there still when the entertainment started. LOL

    Most of the waitstaff in My Time are not expected to participate in the singing or dancing as they are usually in different stages of serving the meal. If possible, some do but you won’t see it too frequently.

    Hope this helps.

  9. Bryan says:

    Hello John,

    It’s been awhile since I was here, but I just got back from sailing onboard the Destiny and can give my input about the new debarkation talk system. By the way, the trip onboard the Destiny was brilliant and was the type of brief getaway needed. Give my thanks to Brent and the rest of the crew, if you get a chance.

    Anyway, to the suits at the Carnival HQ:

    1) There was no debarkation talk for the Destiny. I guess since I’ve been on Carnival a lot already, the fact that there was no talk didn’t really bother me. I will admit that having no debarkation talk had the effect of making the “Farewell Show” feel too brief, though.

    2) I didn’t watch the video, but again, I have to qualify this by saying that I already had prior debarkation experience with Carnival.

    3) I fully understood how to debark the ship, and it seemed that the majority of people onboard also knew what to do. Self-assist seems to be a popular option. At the same time, as I was passing through customs, assisted debarkation also had plenty of baggage waiting to be claimed, so everyone onboard seemed to be good.

    I have a feeling this was discussed in detail in a previous entry I haven’t read, but can I ask what prompted the overhaul for the debarkation talks? Thanks.

  10. Ducky says:

    Hey John,

    I recently sailed the Miracle and:

    1. Did not miss the debarkation talk.

    2. Did watch the debarkation talk on video.

    3. I thought the instructions were very clear but, since we were Platinum we received separate written instructions. The written instructions were very clear and helpful.

    BTW, Luv my iPhone, and Mac Book and iPad. ;)

  11. BIG MIKE says:

    Loved hearing from Heidi. You are a lucky man. As for the Debarkation talk have a recorded video on the cabin TV’s, that should be enough for everyone to refer to especially if you are a new cruiser. As for comments about the food on Carnival. Every year there seems to be changes in the Menu for the good. In the years we have cruised on Carnival the food has improved greatly. If you dont like something just ask for a different entre. Hope your visit to to the Old Country is restful and enjoyable.. Mike & Linda

  12. Jeanette says:

    John, reply if you wish…

    Yes, you can spot a Canadian on a ship (usually between December and April) because most of us are ghostly white because it is dark when we get up and dark when we leave work!!!! In the case of the Arctic, it’s dark damn near all day for six months……

    I work in a office (over several floors and buildings) of around 150 people, and perhaps 5-7% of those have been on a cruise and most of the others have been to Vegas, Mexico, and A hell of a lot have gone to Disney in California and Florida (and gee, guess what, there is a port damn close to Orlando and Anaheim!).

    It is true, to get to our sun spots we have to fly a fair distance. It is usually a 8-10 hour connecting flight for me to get to Miami or FLL.. It is only 3.5 hours to fly to LA., but that doesn’t mean we don’t go….we do go in droves to escape the cold.

    Carnival needs to advertise on Canadian television networks, much like they do in the US. I get the US stations and can see the commericials, but ow many others have them and see them? I walk past a travel agency going to and from work and I have seenpromotional material from HAL, Princess, RCI, Norwegian in their window, but never anything from Carnival….Perhaps a little more promotions at the TA level would get more Canucks baring our ghostly white bodies on the ships and coming home beet red, but they had a good time despite the pain of a 2nd degree sunburn and an excuse to take an extra day off work……

    BC4–I know it will be fun *BG*…….

    PS: where is Alex K? which ship is he on, or is he back from holidays cuz he isn’t on the Liberty right now….ya, you know I’ll be asking to be in his dining room if he is on the Limbertry in September…d***, those eastern block men are hot…..*BG*…

  13. Heidi, I can totally agree with you about the Blackberrys. When I had the fantastic opportunity to sit with John and our friends, many times he had to go to either the Blackberry or his phone. He would constantly apologize for going to them. I kept thinking if I was his wife I would cut him off with rumpy pumpy if he didn’t put those machines away. My wife would kick my ass if I was on those damn machines. Sorry John, I still like you a great deal. I hope you are still enjoying vacation? See you later my friend. See you Heidi and hi Kye.

    Paul F. Pietrangelo

  14. Waiting4acruise says:

    John you know better than tell her take taking care of a baby is easy. We husbands know that we will lose that argument and something else.

    As for the no debarkation talk, we cruised on the May 16 Carnival Legend. (We loved the singing Maitre D, Ken.) We did not have debarkation talk. We did not miss it. We watched it on tv at our leisure. As this was our 9th cruise we knew the debarkation process.

  15. Trey Averett says:

    Hi John,

    Love your blog! I wanted to let you know that we just cruised on the Elation from Mobile (our 8th Carnival cruise). I was a bit concerned after reading some of the negative comments from cruisers who were on the voyage from San Diego so I wanted to email you and set the record straight. It is a fantastic ship with a great crew! The food was excellent, the activities were great, and the ship was beautiful.

    We just sailed on the Fantasy (same itinerary) in November so I was able to compare the two ships pretty easily. If you forced me find something to complain about on the Elation it would be 1. No Waterworks upgrade (the Lido and Verandah Decks are great on the Fantasy) and 2. The dress code was not enforced in the dining room (or really anywhere else). While I know it is a bit of a controversial subject, it disappoints me that I take the time to dress appropriately for dinner while others are allowed to wear t-shirts, shorts and flip flops in the dining room, even on formal night! And why do people think it is appropriate to walk around the ship and sit in the lido restaurant and bars in nothing but their bathing suites? Letting everything hang out on the deck is fine but please people, cover up when you come inside!

    I met an interesting couple at breakfast one morning; they were on their 18th Carnival Cruise, all from the port of Mobile! Of course they live in Mobile and when ever they get a chance they jump on board. Anyway, we were talking about how nice it would be if Mobile could get a semi-regular 7-day cruise and regular 3-day weekend cruise (Key West is a port suggestion). Please pass this suggestion along to the beards. It would be nice if we could get 2 ships (one larger) leaving from Mobile as the one we have stays pretty well filled with the 4 and 5 day itineraries.

    Here are my answers to your questions:

    1. If you cruised with us and there was no debarkation talk, did you miss having this event? – The Elation had a debarkation talk but no one from my group attended as we knew what to do. I think the CD could easily post the information needed in the Caper (Fun Times?) and save him or herself the hassle of having a formal talk.

    2. If you cruised and there was no debarkation talk did you watch the video that has taken its place and now plays in your state rooms? – Same answer as #1

    3. Did not having a debarkation talk effect the debarkation system itself. Did you fully understand how to disembark the ship? – Debarkation was smoother on the Elation than on the Fantasy. We had no problems at all.

    As far as the comment cards go, I normally complete one and actually started on our past cruise but was unable to finish. So, if you would please pass along my comments to the crew of the Elation with a special nod to Roberto in the Inspiration Dining Room. He was one of the best servers I have had on any cruise.

    Can’t wait for my next cruise!

    Thanks for reading my comments,
    Trey

  16. Susan Meeks says:

    Heidi – I loved you bloggy on this blog thingy. Just remember no how many times John puts Kye’s diaper on upside down that is still one diaper you do not have to put on. You deserve a break.

    John – In answer to your questions for the beards. I just got off the Carnival Ecstasy and I did not even notice that they did not metion anything about the comment cards until I read your blog thingy. As I have been on many Carnival cruises I do not go to the debarkation talk or watch it on the tv. As long as there is a letter put in everyone’s cabin about debarkation I would hope that everyone would be able to read it and follow the directions in the letter.

    I totally agree with you the the Costa ships are some of the best named ships there are. I have sailed Costa a few times and have totally enjoyed them. I love the Italian style.

    In regards to the adult only areas on the ships. All of my children are grown and I am now traveling with granchildren. Even though I enjoy the Serenity area I think there till needs to be a pool for small children. On the Carnival Ecstasy the new slides are great but I am wondering why they did not at least put in a splash pool for small children. And also they should have put some sort of shade in this area since it is the only place small children can play in the water. I love the sun but after hours out on deck it would be nice to have a place to get out of the sun while watching the grandchildren slide for hours.

    I hope you put your Rasberry down for a little while (or at least Heidi hides it from you) so you can enjoy your vacation with your wonderful girls.

    Thanks for taking the time to write your blog thiingy while you are on vacation.

    Susan

  17. JAS1178 says:

    Regarding the Debark Talk:

    Here is what we would consider the ideal Debark Talk:

    • Opening Humor
    • Give away something
    • 15 minutes of to the point info (don’t ham it up…just hit the highlights using your powerpoint as reinforcement)
    • 5 Minute “Highlights” Music Video from Funship Films
    • Employee of the Month Presentation

    We’ve been on ships that had CD’s spend forever belaboring the debark info. We’ve also been on ships to cut the Highlights Video or the Employee of the month….these are the things that bring a “Happy Closure” to our vacation. We enjoy seeing the captain one last time, and showing our appreciation to the incredible staff who has been serving us all week.

    We also enjoy recapturing the moments (Bedtime story, excursions, hairy chest, etc.). Yes we could watch it on the TV, but when the lights dim and the sounds of “Time of Your Life” by Green Day starts to play…it rekindles the memories of the week and seals them…those are the things we remember as we go through the sometimes difficult debarks. The Legends show is great, but it just doesn’t have the heart…that the debark or closing ceremony has.

    My quick thought with the comment cards: I will gladly do them, and express my honest opinion without cohersion. However, continue to give me a reason to do so – a chance to win a free cruise is powerful motivation.

    Hope you are enjoying your time with your girls…
    T-Minus 15 Days until we board our Carnival Dream!

  18. Kim G says:

    1. If you cruised with us and there was no debarkation talk, did you miss having this event?
    -I, for one, didn’t miss the debarkation talk at all.. there’s most often something I want to do anyways, so it made for one less decision I had to make! :)

    2. If you cruised and there was no debarkation talk did you watch the video that has taken its place and now plays in your state rooms?
    -My husband watched the full video, though he spent much of the last two days in our cabin with a severe headache anyways.. I only caught parts of it, but figured if he watched it all already, I wasn’t going to bore him with watching it again.

    3. Did not having a debarkation talk effect the debarkation system itself. Did you fully understand how to disembark the ship?

    -Debarkation on the Dream this weekend seemed so smooth! there wasn’t major lines and crowds waiting in the atrium to get off the ship, and those that were in the area were well out of the way of those of us that were debarking. We were among group 16 and we were off the ship about 845, if I remember correctly!

  19. proudpatriot07 says:

    1. Our last cruise had a debarkation talk.
    2. We cruised recently, and I found out that things like the shore excursion & debarkation talk were on TV, so instead of going to them I watched them on TV while eating room service sandwiches, hehe :).
    3. Yeah, I understood. I think most other people did too.

  20. Mary Lou Lovelace says:

    Hey John: My beloved and I cruised only 6 weeks ago on Carnival Freedom. It was the 8-day to Costa Rica, Panama, and Cozumel, sailing May 8th from Ft. Lauderdale. To answer to your questions about the debarkation talks, I would say that they did have one, but we did not go to it, but instead watched the video on TV while we packed up. Like you said, the staff left us the cards to fill out but didn’t push it on us. But I filled them out and put in the box.

    All in all, we didn’t really miss not going to the debarkation talk, but them again, we have been on five Carnival cruises and knew what to expect. What about first-time cruisers? They might be confused about things, but I think just watching the video would help them out.

    By the way, enjoyed the whole cruise and the any-time dining, we tried for the first time. We are early eaters, so we usually arrived at opening time, and were seated right away. Never had to wait. Also, we had such great waiters the first night that we asked for their section every night and got to know them just like an assigned dining time.

    The only thing I can think of to critique is the decor of Carnival Freedom. After sailing in the med on the Liberty (with you), I have to say that the Liberty and also the Splendor ships are so colorful, but I was sort of in shock that the Freedom is sort of blah. Oh well, everyone has their opinions.

    So John, take care, and our best to you and your girls until we see you on Bloggers IV. Got my balcony booked!

    Mary Lou

  21. Georgie T says:

    Please reply

    John,
    Can you tell me if the Conquest has adopted the new muster drill procedures? Prior to this time, handicapped folks gathered behind the forward elevators so they would not be trampled by the massess. Is this still the procedure or are guests sent to different gathering places on the ship as they are on the Ecstacy?

  22. Robert S says:

    John,

    Good evening. Just a quick question, I have read that cruisers sometimes bring school supplies for the local children at some of the poorer islands and ports. Does Carnival support theses efforts? Is there a donation box at the ports?

    Thank you for your time, and your response.

    Regards,
    Robert

  23. Heidi, you can do John’s blog anytime you want. But if you do do it in your underwear we do need a picture.

    BIG Ed

  24. Pat Brown says:

    My daughter and I sailed on Carnival Fascination the first week of May. The debarkation talk was televised all day the last day, It was simple, to the point, and informative.

  25. Princess Susan says:

    Always great to hear from you Heidi !!

    John caution, this next statement might give you a heart attack…I do not have a cell phone of any kind! I don’t want to be that reachable to people! I have my land line and a message machine….that’s all I need.

    About the debarkation talk.
    I haven’t gone to them since my second cruise. If it’s on the tv while I’m in the cabin I will watch it. Usually I just read the handout if I have any questions.

    By the way…..Maribeth says hi

  26. Tradewinds says:

    Hi John,

    Thank you for posting the slideshow of the Legend. We have sailed on her twice and absolutely love it.

  27. Emily Fowler says:

    ATTENTION NANCY, RE: SPARKLING CIDER!!!

    I hope Nancy sees this!

    Hi Nancy-

    I am the Emily that wrote regarding the Sparkling Cider. I got an e-mail from one of the Stephanie’s with the following info from the Bon Voyage department- there is non-alcoholic wine (including sparkling wine) in the BV wine cellar section, but if you are like me and prefer Sparkling Cider, you can call the BV department and they will order it for you that way (it’s not on the website). Unfortunately, I hadn’t asked early enough, so by the time I got the info, it was too close to the sail date, but maybe next time!

    The cruise was still fabulous!

  28. Shirley Godbold says:

    John, Please reply!
    Both our daughter got married in the past 7 months and we still had funds left for a cruise! We have already told you we are the No Ties Allowed group, sailing on the Carnival Victory, July 4th out of San Juan and this is each couples official honeymoon!. While I have order Choc. cakes for each couple as a surprise, it would be great if you could do something special for them. Kate Godbold and Paul Brotherton in cabin 9250 and Amanda Godbold and Chris Mayo in cabin 9244.
    Thanks, Shirley

  29. Beth Flynn says:

    Heidi, I totally agree! My husband used to go to work every day and never realize what it took to run our household. Now that he has become disabled, he stays home with our 10 year old and Granny and I work outside the home. Needless to say, our home has not been quite the same since the change. The clothes are never put away, the dusting is NEVER done and the house is in a state of clutter at all times. Huh, not so easy is it hon? And I still have to manage dinner because that would stress him out just a bit too much. LOL John, run while you can!!

  30. Sandy B says:

    Hi, Heidi! It is GREAT hearing from you. We miss you, so blog more often, and let John see what work really is by taking care of Kye all by himself! Wait! Poor Kye…what am I thinking?!!!

    Big hugs,
    Duchess Sandy in GA
    (who just signed up for BC4)

  31. Pat G says:

    Hello John, Heidi, and Kye
    It was great to have a blog started by Heidi. Her tales of John at home are as funny as John’s tales from the ship. In regards to the debark talk: We did not have one on the Carnival Liberty last week. We did watch the video in the cabin and read the information sheet in the cabin as well as the letter we received for being Platinum guests. The debarkation went fantastic for us as we were zone 1 and were off the ship before the self assist guests. That was great! Back when I sailed on the Carnival Triumph out of Miami with you in March of 2004 I swore never to sail from Miami again due to embarkation. I lied and now think Miami is the best port in Florida. The staff at the terminal are so friendly and the new VIP security line is awesome! The beards listened!
    Thanks for all the laughs.

  32. GeorgeR780 says:

    John, John, will you never learn?
    Its “Yes Dear, Yes Dear, No Dear”, repeat if necessary.
    If you keep this rhythm up you will be OK. If you miss a beat or deviate from the script you will be spending much time in Chateau BowWow. Sorry for the French reference!
    George

  33. Elizabeth Fisher says:

    I read the blog every day and really enjoyed Heidi’s blog! Maybe if Heidi posts more often John can get some much-needed experience with changing the nappy. :-)

  34. Michelle says:

    “Because he has a BlackBerry John may be physically out with friends but mentally he is at work. This means he can never have fun. He can never relax.”

    Oh, thank you, Heidi- how true! Having a family with IPhones and IPads has taught me this lesson.

    John, I love the blog. But listen to Heidi and be sure to put that thing down and away for some quality, disconnected time now and again! You family deserves it- and your loyal readers won’t mind a bit of delay.

  35. cruisin'lovebirds says:

    Heidi it was great to hear from you! Those turn-around days are great fun, and it is true that any diaper you do not have to put on is, well, a diaper you did not have to put on.

    Now for John’s questions.

    1. If you cruised with us and there was no debarkation talk, did you miss having this event?

    Absolutely did not miss it at all. Never attend anyway. We read the info placed in our cabin.

    2. If you cruised and there was no debarkation talk did you watch the video that has taken its place and now plays in your state rooms?

    Nope. Too much to do. Leave me some written information, I’ll do what I’m supposed to do.

    3. Did not having a debarkation talk effect the debarkation system itself. Did you fully understand how to disembark the ship?

    We understood, but we are Platinum, so the people you really need to survey are those coming from their first cruise.

    If you want to save time and energy, have one person video the debarkation info and play it fleetwide. No need to have the CD give the talk. I do like the farewells, but that can be done at the (duh) Farewell Party on the last night.

  36. Katiel53 says:

    John, Please Reply,
    Heidi, it was great hearing from you. I think men put diapers on backward so they don’t have to change them again. It will be up to you to do it until Kye is potty-trained. Men are quite clever in figuring how to get out of doing things they don’t want to.

    John,
    I wish there were an adults only pool on every ship. I like going into the water, but when I have spent time doing my hair, I don’t like having it get wet from some children splashing. I know that is selfish, so I don’t use the pools now. I also know we can’t make kids stop splashing as “it’s their vacation too.””””””””

    As far as the debarkation talks go, we don’t attend the talks, don’t watch them on TV, just go by the letter we get for Platinum cruisers or when traveling with others who aren’t, look at the Capers (uh-oh, wrong name) to see the approximate times for each color. I don’t see where it’s necessary to have a talk in a theater.

    I kind of agree with Big Ed regarding people and Cruise Critic. There are a few people who tell everyone/anyone to ask John for whatever you want. Oh, I mean tell John what you want him to do. I think the annoying thing is that they don’t ask politely, they demand (.I didn’t see where TalkTalk Bonnie asked, she demanded.) I know you want to help, but if no courtesy is used, then, if it were me, I’d ignore them. I know you aren’t like that, but it is very rude of them.

    You do a great job on here and when people don’t appreciate your work or show respect, it ticks me off. OK, off my soapbox for today.

  37. David & Lucy says:

    John, I have a favor to ask (Please Reply)

    My wife and I will be taking our Milestone cruise on the Spirit, sailing on July 13, 2010. My sister and her husband will be flying in from England to join us. Could you please contact the Maître d’ and pave the way for a table request.

    We would like to be in the main dining (Empire?) for early seating; preferably a table for 4, not a booth. Somewhere at the lower level of the dining room in the middle area so my wife can easily get up and have plenty of room to dance with the crew. She loves it!
    Thanks, David and Lucy Wyatt (also Peter & Deborah Leckie)

  38. Frank and Bridie says:

    I told you you would be in the Doghouse John! But you are smart to give in :) On your survey I do not miss the debark talk and we never go anyway. At this point we have it pretty much figure out. But the Tv idea is the best of just playing the tape.

    Big Fans as Allways,
    Frank and Bridie

  39. semper fi says:

    John,
    Just a suggestion

    Why not take 3 days and just do a Q& a session on the blog that way yo can get caught up.

    With your upcomming schedule it may be a help and while i cant speak for all the bloggers i personally really love reading the letters and your replies.

    Thanks

    Bill

    • Semper Fi,

      He would have no problem if only HIS bloggers asked questions and didn’t have all those that were sent here by a third party to ask for free things and tables.

      BIG Ed

  40. Maribeth Kring says:

    Dear John, Please Reply,

    Loved the highlights of the Carnival Legend, it really brought me back to last summer when I was there with Jen Baxter!

    My question is do you know yet who the piano entertainer will be for the Christmas/New years cruise? A friend of mine will be on that cruise and she’d really like to know. I checked Ms. Laura’s Piano site but that listing is missing.

    Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

    Big Ed’s Little Cousin
    Maribeth Kring

  41. Brian says:

    Heidi…let me say that John doesn’t just use his blackberry to look at Megan Fox’s bottom while he is on the can…on the Fantasy a few weeks ago, John whipped out his RaspBerry to show my daughter a picture of Kye!

  42. Jim Burke says:

    John,

    I heard from 000 that the new Magic will be home ported in Barcelona for European cruises.

  43. Ed Milan says:

    Heidi, A big thank you for starting today’s blog thingy.
    You go out and have a day at the spa and let John take care of Kye, she will be fine with him I think.
    Papanh

  44. The Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    Here in California I work with about a hundred and twenty hispanics that were allowed to stop work and watch their team Mexico play in the World Cup.
    Final Score:
    Mexico

  45. The Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    Here in California I work with a hundred or so hispanic teammates that were allowed to stop work and watch the World Cup. Good place to work !
    Team Mexico……dos Team France ….. Nadda.
    Oh the poor french team. Their plan to win by blinding the team Mexico by not bathing seemed to backfire on them as they got to close to their own goalie.
    The Cruzin2some

  46. Billie Hicklin says:

    Hi John,
    Just to go back a few years..The year being 1994 on one of Carnival’s ships..I can’t remember which ship since I have been on 44 cruises..anyhow, YOU were the cruise director and I was a passenger, and in the talent show I sang “Stand By Your Man”…you can go to YOUTUBE BILLIE HICKLIN and see the video of YOU hosting the talent show and my performance of Stand By Your Man..If you have any trouble finding it..email me at kmsongbird@carolina.rr.com and let me know..if you are on facebook go to my fb page and click on the youtube..I would like very much for you to see this..Bob & I have been wondering just where you are…I think you & Heidi were just becoming engaged when we last saw you…So glad to find you…Let me hear from you if you care to…My husband Bob was in the “midnight Story” where he played the ‘villian’…
    We had such a good time on those cruises..Billie Hicklin

  47. Dearr John and Heidi & Kye
    HEIDI, Loved Hearing from you. I understand the addiction to the raspberry/phone thingy. I play games on my Droid phone till the batteries wear down and It needs to be charged. Instead of shoving it up John’s “arse” hiding it in Kyes “dirty nappie” might be a better suggestion.,, Just a little evil thought.

    Regarding the debarkation talks, used to go to them, after the third one we quit going.
    1. Did not miss the debarkation talk. It seemed to be the same “cookie cutter” speech.
    BUT …..
    2. we did watch the debarkation talk on tv/ video.

    BTW John did you know that Megan Fox is engaged to be married now and off the market??

    Take Care
    {{{{{{H U G S to ALL}}}}}}}}}
    The Tuckers in Florida
    Elizabeth & Arnold

  48. Stephanie says:

    To answer your questions about the debarkation talks….

    I was on the Carnival Victory May 16-23, 2010. We did not have a “talk,” but the information was played on the television in case we wanted to watch. I can tell you that I had it on for a little while but did not pay attention to it. This was also my 4th cruise, so I thought I had the debarkation process down pretty well.

    So…answering your questions:

    1. No, I did not miss the debarkation talk.

    2. We had it on, and watched a little bit of it, but not the whole thing.

    3. I think there might have been a little more chaos for other people during debarkation on this last cruise than the previous ones. The only thing I did not understand completely was how the new Luggage Express program worked. I did find that some of my questions were not really answered (maybe b/c I didn’t watch the whole talk on the tv). So we had to go to guest services to ask them our questions (which they did).

    Thanks!

    ~Stephanie

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  50. Gail Sirois says:

    We did not miss the live Debark talk but did listen to it on the television. Everything was very clear and we had no problems at all.
    As for the evaluation cards, we did fill it in but think the rating system is almost worthless. Exceeded my expectations is almost an impossibility. Although it would take longer to write and much longer for management to analyze, written comments would be much more valuable. We have left praise for particular crew and also a few negatives especially about maintenance. Crew members that we have kept in contact with after the cruise tell us that management does not care about positive remarks but comes down on a crew member if a negative comment is received.

  51. Jeri Green says:

    Great way to start my day, Heidi. Your blog was wonderful and it was nice to hear from you again.
    Regarding the debarkation talks: I feel they are not needed as the written directions plus the tv covers the subject very well. (After 26 cruises we never went to them anyway.)
    Comment cards: Very happy to hear they are not being “pushed.”

  52. tracy says:

    hi heidi and kye and john nice blog.men act like they cant do things so u will take over so they dont have to do it.john forget the stupid phone ur not home long spend lots of time with the girls. trust me they grow up fast. my son will be 5 in july. seems like yesterday he was just born but its been 5 yrs.

  53. JimC says:

    I’m a little late in replying here on the debarkation and comment card issue. I have just caught up on the blog thingy since I have just gotten off the Carnival Dream. As you have heard from others already, I don’t think the talk will be missed. We have not been to on in many many cruises. Its the last day of your cruise and the last thing you really want to do is spend an hour listening to how you are getting off the ship the next day. Having it shown on the stateroom TV is more than enough. On the Dream they provided a “how to” summary letter along with the Customs form and the comment card. That along with the video is enough for anyone to figure out what they must do.

    As far as the comment card “pushing”. I always thought the way Carnival CD’s pushed the comment cards on everyone and made hints that “unless we get an “outstanding rating we have failed you” was beneath you. If you want honest answers so that you can improve on your service, why on Earth would you expect everyone to just mark the highest score??? We fill ours out as honestly as we can.

    I think the new procedures are spot on.

  54. Kaperino says:

    Dearest Heidi,

    Enjoyed hearing from you and laugh of course as hearty as when I get an opportunity to read John’s. Totally get your blackberry issue with addictive behavior. There is an app that I use which keeps the phone silent except say, calls from you, Kye, or your Mum…..the light will flash in different colors as to an incoming email or voicemail message. Retrieval should be kept at a minimum for mental health, agree? Good luck with that. Perhaps an intervention is necessary?

    Must give a review of our recent Dream cruise. It was spectacular!

    Love to you all,
    Kap

  55. Roger Tollerud says:

    John
    My wife and I are Milestone level cruisers so when there was no deberk it did not impact us at all. I usually attended the talk as a diversion and because the Cruise Directors are funny. What I miss is the opportunity to give a standing ovation to all the crew members who worked so very hard for us all week.
    Like streamlining the Boat drill/Safety briefing this is probably another good step forward.
    Regards
    Roger T

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