CARE TO HAVE FUN

January 4, 2012 -

John Heald

So I took Breeze for his first walk this morning. Up until now he has been in the garden where he will sniff and think about taking a crap before deciding he doesn’t want one and of course the moment I let him indoors he drops a turd in front of the dishwasher which seems to be his favourite place to do a number two. So this morning in Baltic conditions I dragged my lilywhite arse out of bed and took Breeze for his first walk and this of course meant that I became a crap collector. Over the years I have enjoyed watching dog owners bending over to scoop up their dog’s poop with their hands; it always gave me a giggle. Funny isn’t it. Sports stars, movie stars, even President Obama I guess all have to kneel down with their inside out plastic bags to clean up after their dogs output and as I said, I always had a good laugh at them.

Yet just an hour ago there I was, having to bend down and scoop up the droppings from Breeze’s bum and I realised how bloody ridiculous the whole scenario is. I mean, OK I am nothing special but can you imagine what it must be like for the rich and tanned? Take Gerry Cahill, our president and CEO, who is a huge dog lover and has I believe two or three dogs, yet he still has to clean up their poo-poo platters and what must his dogs be thinking? Our president and CEO owner has come home after a day of high level meetings about the next ship to get the magnificent Fun Ship 2.0 upgrades, and Gerry’s dog is saying, “Hey, everyone, watch him bend down and pick up this load. President my arse!

Anyway, before taking Breeze for his walk I had been told by Heidi and had read comments from bloggers and Facebookers that I should CONGRATULATE HIM ON HIS PERFORMANCE! What? So not only am I expected to scoop up his dinner but I am supposed to stand there, in public, congratulating him as he squeezes out a poopsie. What a sodding ridiculous scenario.

Look, the only reason I am going to agree to walk Breeze is so that he doesn’t crap on the carpet. My hunch is that Breeze will deliberately bottle it up until I am free to take him for a walk, just so he can humiliate me by making my fat arse bend down in public to pick up his steamers, thereby showing every passer by who’s the boss in this relationship. Still, if I have to go this whole thing then I am going to do it properly. This morning in the little grassy area near where we live I met other dog owners. One lady was congratulating her miniature poodle and in an annoying baby voice was saying “Come on Twinkle, do a poo-poo for Mummy.” So to join the club I shouted, “Come on Breeze, for God’s sake take a s**t will you!”

There must be somewhere where these picking up dog turd laws don’t apply. A place that has streets full of dog poo and nobody cares. Oh hold on………there is such a place……………it’s Paris.

Time for today’s Q and A………..here we go.

Vanessa L asked:
Hi John,

I am a long standing member of one of those big cruise review page thingies where everyone has an opinion about something…I think you know the one :) The reason I am writing is to tell you of our experience on the Carnival Victory last week. I’ll caveat this by saying that I have been reading review after review that, system wide, recent cruisers have found Carnival’s employees rude, non-engaging, and seemed genuinely miserable to be in their jobs. I’ve read over and over that the Lido dining areas are a mess, going for hours without cleaning tables, etc. I went into this cruise with the expectation that things might not be what I have always come to expect with Carnival. I was pleasantly surprised, when from check in through arrival to our room — everyone was incredibly pleasant to deal with. From the moment we boarded we were greeted with smiling faces. Every single employee we encountered smiled at us, said, “Welcome aboard,” made eye contact, and genuinely seemed happy to be where they were. The overall vibe on the Carnival Victory is awesome and I was thrilled to see that, at least for the Carnival Victory, the “system wide” reviews were not applicable.

I wanted to let you know about Oswald, our room steward. I’ve cruised about 40 times now (across various lines) and he is easily one of the best stewards we have ever had. He was always around in the halls, greeted my husband and I by name after one introduction, kept our room very clean, and immediately brought two items requested during our cruise. His personality shines and I wanted to be sure to let you know about his excellent service.

Please commend the Carnival Victory staff for a job well done. Karl was also a hoot to sail with and I enjoyed him and his staff tremendously.

I do have one “just curious” question. What determines what group number you get when you are checking in? Four couples from our roll call all checked in at the same time in San Juan. We were all at the counter simultaneously. This was about 11:30AM or so. My husband and I got a card for group 1. OK, that made sense; it was early, after all. However, two couples got group 2 and one couple got group 4, even though we all left the counter at the same time. In addition, there were only about 30-40 other people waiting to board at that early hour so I can’t fathom that group 4 was needed that early. In the end, we were all allowed to board using our group 1 card, I just wondered what the rhyme or reason was why we received everything from group 1-4 when we all checked in at the same time. Thanks! And I love your blog!

Vanessa

John says:
Hello Vanessa,

Thanks so very much for this brilliant review as it shows that while everyone is entitled to an opinion it is important to go onboard with an open mind which you did of course. I do know the site you are referring to and I guess often the people who write there are heavily influenced by the title of the website. Anyway, I will be honoured to send your words of praise to the ship and of course they will be so happy to see that you have taken the time to mention them. I will have to check into the whole embarkation question because you are correct, if you all checked into regular embarkation at the same time then you should I think all be given the same number. Maybe they have a system I am unaware of but I will check and let you know. Thanks so much again for taking the time to write and most importantly I am glad you had fun.

Best wishes.

John

Gail Laveroni asked:
John,

There is something for every phase of a lifetime with Carnival. I first started cruising with Carnival in my twenties in 1986. I was single and cruised (what I considered) often with my girlfriends. We stayed up late and had some of those moments that become a little blurry in hindsight…….especially when we had the pictures developed. (“Who is that I am standing with???”) Ahh, those were indeed good times. When I was first married I wanted to share some of those good times with my new husband so we went on the Carnival Sensation together. John, it was a totally different experience. It was like we were in a parallel universe. Being on the ship ‘coupled’ was great in and of itself but it seemed like we never saw the single. Granted we were enjoying our balcony ;) When we had a child I waited until she was old enough for Camp Carnival to consider sailing again. Then we discovered she has a peanut allergy and I was just too nervous so we waited until she was 10. Last March we sailed the Carnival Freedom and she had a blast. Now I didn’t see the singles or the couples…just the families. Carnival has been a great part of my life for many years. My ninth cruise is coming up November 19 on the Carnival Dream to celebrate my fiftieth birthday. I can’t wait to see who is missing from this one! Thanks to Carnival for making it fun. You guys are awesome.

John says:
Hello Gail Laveroni,

A great post indeed Gail. You know, Carnival really does have something for everyone and you are right, we have certainly changed and in the 25 years I have been here I have seen the demographics change a lot from singles and couples in the 80’s and early 90’s to us shrugging off the old party boat image and therefore attracting the families and the older couples as well as continuing to see singles and younger people sailing as well. I am so glad that you are still part of the Carnival family and obviously I have missed your cruise on the Carnival Dream so I will say that I hope you had a brilliant time and hope that we see you soon. Thanks again for the beautiful post.

Best wishes to all the family.

John

Sam and Beverley Chater asked:
John,

I read so many negative comments about you that I had to come and discover what all the fuss was about. Your name is constantly being written on _______ and having seen what you do myself I have to tell you that my DW and I are hooked. We are not Carnival cruisers and I am sorry to say that we love Princess and Celebrity but every cruise line should have a John Heald because the information you provide and the fun you have in doing is invaluable and I bet other cruise lines wish they had one of you. On a personal note I see you are British as is my DW. We met when I was serving with the USAF in Lakenheath in the 1960’s and I have always considered myself as an honorary Brit.

Thank you John and you have two fans in Beverley and me.

John says:
Hello Sam and Beverley Chater,

I am glowing after reading this and thank you so so much for those very kind words. Please don’t apologise about being fans of Princess and Celebrity, OK, maybe apologise a little bit about the Celebrity bit. Seriously, though, I am honoured (spelt correctly) that you read the blog. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea and I know that people who don’t like it do enjoy expressing this on other websites and as I was saying earlier, that’s their opinion and I respect it. I do though try hard to provide a mixture of fun and information and I am so glad that you both enjoy it. I hope one day you will come and cruise with me so I can meet a nearly fellow Brit in you and a true Brit in your darling wife Beverley.

Best wishes to you both.

John

Mark Smith asked:

Carnival Legend Cruise 10-16/10-23. I wanted to pass along my impression of the Carnival Legend and her crew since I did not get a comment card. I am sure some on the other site will be blaming Carnival for the less than perfect weather we had ha ha, but it was not that bad, actually the overcast days made for perfect weather in my opinion. The rough seas were just part of it and helped to make the cruise memorable. As for the Carnival Legend, she is a wonderful ship and has easily become our favorite ship to date. Just beautiful. Our cabin steward was Oka and was just a pleasure to meet and did a fantastic job for us. His towel building skills are the best I have seen as well. Our wait staff was exceptional as well, Kaymen and Benito, great job and very entertaining. (especially Benito’s singing). I believe the asst. maitre’d, (not sure of title or name but think it may have been Miguel) was terrific, he was always walking the dining room and talking/checking with us. He was on his first contract with Carnival and did an exceptional job. As did the gentleman that was obviously in charge of the lido staff/area, I don’t think he ever took a break as we always saw him walking the area checking on all areas. We saw him request several things be corrected to his expectations as did Miguel.

Dee, the entertainment/comedy manager was excellent at her job and making sure everyone emptied the lounges and did not break line while entering; numerous times we witnessed her addressing people trying to sneak around lines etc. Meagan (asst. cruise director) was outstanding as well, such a friendly, willing to help person. Wee Jimmy, what can I say, he is excellent, the best CD we have had in our five cruises by far! He seems to have the knack of knowing just how much information he needs to pass along and when, without being excessive. He is always visible and talking with guests, just like he is one. We just loved Wee Jimmy, and the entire staff is a reflection of his leadership skills. The food was exceptional in both the dining and lido areas, and after meeting Chef Panda it is easy to understand why, he is great. The one area in past cruises that we have noticed is officers would not speak to guests even when spoken to, so it was a pleasant surprise to find that on the Carnival Legend officers would almost go out of their way to greet you!

The captain was very engaging during our Behind the Fun tour as well, even though he obviously was having a very difficult week with the weather issues and rough seas. What an excellent team this ship has and Carnival should be extremely proud! We made sure to thank each of these individuals personally and they seemed very appreciative to hear that. I apologize for the lengthy message, I could go on, but won’t. Just please know that Wee Jimmy and his staff/crew are EXCEPTIONAL and just great ambassadors for the Carnival brand. Thank you again to this great crew!

Mark Smith

John says:
Hello Mark Smith,

I am sure that a few Hugos and Camelstowes will think I am picking on you know what site in today’s Q&A but I really am not, this is just the way the questions are falling today. Anyway, the most important thing is that you had a brilliant time and I will be sending this to the ship and the supervisors because it’s a brilliant example of all that’s good in Carnival. I am sorry the weather was less than pleasant but I see you turned that into a positive. And talking of positives I see that you mentioned how the officers spoke to you and were polite and that’s important. Friendliness starts at the top and if the senior officers set the example the crew will follow for sure. I will make sure Wee Jimmy and his staff as well as everyone else you mentioned sees this great review and I thank you so very much for taking the time to write it.

Best wishes.

John

Cheryl Swartz asked:

My daughter and I are going on the Carnival Fascination for some special time together. She is a single mom and deserves special attention for raising her three kids on her own. Is there anything you can do for her? Maybe dinner with the captain or an upgrade? Our booking ref is ****** and cabin number is M77.

John says:
Hello Cheryl Awartz,

I see from your booking number that you are sailing next week so I am glad I saw this in time. While I cannot organise dinner with the captain or an upgrade I can send your daughter something to say welcome aboard and I wish you both a brilliant time together.

Best wishes.

John

Charles F asked:

Please can you tell the beards that Ken Byrne the singing maitre d is simply the best in the business and this coming from someone who has been on 51 cruises including three world cruises with Holland America and Cunard. While the Magic’s trans-Atlantic experience had some serious flaws the service in the dining room and the entertainment, humor and hospitality provided by Ken and his staff was the best we have ever received.

Thank you.

John says:
Hello Charles F,

I am sorry to read that there were some “flaws” but thrilled to see that you enjoyed Ken and the dining room team so very much. Ken is indeed one of a kind and your compliment will be read by Ken and his supervisors and coming from a man with the cruise experience you have will mean so much to them all. Thank you and if you would like me to address your experiences on the Carnival Magic I am here ready and willing to do so.

Best wishes.

John

Sandy H. asked:
Good evening, John!!

My hubby and I just spent a fabulous week aboard our Carnival Splendor with my brother and sister-in-law. I had written before we left, requesting a table in the main dining room close to the action. Whether or not you had anything to do with it does not matter. (If you did, THANK YOU.) The table, 411, was perfect!!! We were blessed with a wonderful team waiter “Stan” and assistants Deanna, and Leoval who remembered us from our cruise on the Carnival Legend in April 2010. Then, to top it all off, we had the pleasure of spending many memorable moments with our Maitre ‘d Dessi. She made each one of us feel special, and even called my brother to check on him when he didn’t make it to dinner one night. Whoever hired her deserves a night with a Latvian for making such a brilliant decision! On behalf of those who haven’t said it, THANK YOU!!! (And we thank you, too.)

Best regards,

Sandy

John says:
Hello Sandy,

It was me, I deserve the night with the Latvian! Seriously, I did indeed arrange the table as you requested and I am so glad you had fun on the Carnival Splendor. The comment above yours was praise for Ken the maitre d and here we have praise for another true star of Carnival Cruise Lines, Dessi who I know will be thrilled to see this. I am so glad you had a wonderful time and I am here ready to help you the next time you book a Carnival cruise.

Best wishes.

John

Nicolette De Luca asked:

What do I have to do to get a job with Carnival? I have written to _______ three times and have not even had a single response which I find very unprofessional. I graduated from NJCU and really want to be part of the entertainment staff and then a cruise director. I have had responses from all the other cruise lines but nothing from Carnival. What do I have to do to get in?

John says:
Hello Nicolette De Luca,

Many congratulations on your graduation and may I point you in the direction of www.carnivalentertainment.com. This will tell you all about the jobs you mentioned and how to apply. Good luck.

Best wishes.

John

And on that note we will finish today’s Q and A…..I wonder why she didn’t get a response ………. mmmmmmmm?

Right, let’s talk about the Carnival Breeze which is of course just five months or so from being delivered. I have no idea who the godmother is and it will be exciting to see who Carnival chooses. Will they go with a star name or as we did on the Carnival Magic go with someone who has given to the community as in the Lindsey Wilkerson of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital? One thing I can tell you is who the captain is going to be and the man with the responsibility of being the Master of our flag ship is…..Captain Vincenzo Alcaras and here he is.

I am thrilled to be working with Captain Alcatraz……..bugger……..I mean Alcaras again. We had so much fun when he was staff captain when we delivered Carnival Legend and together again on the Carnival Splendor and I wish him many congratulations on being chosen for this auspicious position and I will have a full interview with him very soon.

Let’s see who else is going as here is the senior officer team for the Carnival Breeze:

Captain: Vincenzo Alcaras
Chief Engineer: Antonio Colotti
Hotel Director: Pierre Camilleri
Staff Captain: Stefano Battinelli
Staff Chief Engineer: Fabien Gervaise
Guest Services Manager: Ana Maria Dumitru
Housekeeping Manager: Niksa Pelic
Food & Beverage Manager: Narsing Jindam
Human Resources Director: Jovencio Frazao

And again, well done to these outstanding individuals who are considered by the beards to be the best in their position and I look forward to working with them all, except Ana, the guest services manager who threw me out of her office on the Carnival Magic because I farted. She has never forgiven me.

I have been spending a lot of time with my parents. I don’t speak much about them here apart from mentioning my ability to clear a room with my bottom comes from my father. Dad is 76 and Mum is 70. Dad has type 2 diabetes like his father and like me although my father is slim and has never been overweight. Dad also has other medical concerns but is (touch wood) fighting fit. Mum is a trooper. She has bad knees but her sense of humour and ability to laugh away problems and pain is something that I find truly amazing. But they are getting older and I find myself wanting to look after them more and more these days.

Growing old is something we all have to look forward to hopefully and I watched the news yesterday that said that in ten years time the average life expectancy for people living in the western world will be 98 years. That’s all well and good but I am worried because what actually happens when your teeth fall out and you keep putting the cat in the microwave? Seriously, who’s going to look after you when you can no longer look after yourself? Hopefully your children will face up to their responsibilities and ship you into a spare room. But in 10 years time your children will be working every hour God sends and be driving their electric cars to work and using their EyePhone 29 which will be implanted into their wrists. They will not have time to mop up your pee and, anyway, to pay the bills they will probably tell you they’ve already rented the spare room out to someone, which is son-in-law code for “We’re not having that farting old bastard cluttering up the house all day and watching Judge Judy.”

I have always said that my Mum and Dad will never go in a home and God willing they never will have to because Heidi and I and my sister will always look after them. But even if I wanted to put them in a home and I wanted a decent one for them I probably couldn’t afford it. A relative of mine, whose husband is 90-something, recently checked into a home in and the bill is 1,000 pounds a week! Bugger me that’s $1,500 a week. And for that there are no sexy Latvian nurses ready to give him a bed bath every night it’s just a room, with a bed and some ordinary food and some bad television.

Let’s think about that. Every dollar you’ve ever saved will not go to the government or your children. In reality, it will go to the owner of the old people’s home where you end up living. And all you can do, all day long, if you still have enough marbles, is hope and pray that you dwindle to nothingness before your savings. I find that bloody frightening. $1,500 a week, you can get a cruise for that….hold on……I think I may have come up with a solution. Where you can have a room, delicious food and fun entertainment and activities all day and all night – a Carnival cruise! There’s no doubt that the ship would run smoothly, but there’s more to it than that. Instead of being surrounded by a bunch of incontinent strangers guests would be enjoying the late autumn of their lives with people who love cruising. I bet it wouldn’t cost $1,500 a week and we would still make revenue from bingo!

But what to call the ship?……. mmmmm………..the Carnival Constipation, the ship that never moves……….. nope …………..oh hold on……….we already have the perfect name for our ship ……… the Carnival Paradise. Because if your parents are like mine, then for all the love and care they have given me…. then Paradise is the least they deserve.

Goodnight.

Your friend,

John

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30 Responses to CARE TO HAVE FUN

  1. Char says:

    John, I have been saying for years I’m moving into a room on a ship. Hell cruising is cheaper and there’s a doctor on board. How damn good can it get. Now we just need that booze card and I’m set.

  2. Nicola Kerr says:

    Hilarious! My daughter is desperate for a dog but like you I just find the idea of picking up poo pretty awful plus the level of responsibility once you have a dog, however I can see all the great things about dog ownership too. Anyway, great blog as always. You are a great ambassador for Carnival as I recently told them on my review of my cruise on the Carnival Valor. That ship is stunning and we had a great time. Maybe Alaska next!

  3. The Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    When the crew of the CCL Paradise pamper their guest then I suppose they will use real PAMPERS. Well at least they can DEPEND on the crew to take good care of them.
    The Cruzin2some

  4. Phil Hale says:

    Oh John the name of the ship should be the
    Carnival Life! I can’t think of a better way to spend the rest of mine. At 62 I share many of the same problems as you and your folks. On the ship you’d need wider aisles though and you could convert the laundromats to scooter storage/charging rooms. Can’t wait to see what Valor has in store for us Feb. 18th. Life without Guy’s burgers could be tough!

  5. Sandy H. says:

    A thousand apologies to Desi on misspelling her name. A lady of that quality certainly deserves better.

  6. Irene says:

    Dear John, please reply.
    As you know my grandson Mackenzie (The Wave) has been trying for a long time to get a job with Carnival and has sent in application after application and has yet to get one reply. It’s not just Carnival who fails to repond to job applicants. It used to be that all businesses would let you know that you you were not going to be considered for the job vacancy, but these days, unless they decide to give you an interview you never hear anything. So Nicolette you just have to keep trying, and maybe one day you’ll get lucky and somebody will respond to your job application.
    Irene Garner (still hoooked on cruising)

  7. Periwinkle says:

    John, the idea of living on a cruise ship as a retirement home is mentioned in Albert Brooks’ novel 2030 which is a look at the United States in that year. This is a wonderfully intelligent and funny book, easily the best book I read last year. Although in the book the ship was not that great. Surely Carnival would do it better!

  8. Chris Painter says:

    Around my parts ( Texas ) we just wait until nightfall to walk the dog if you know what I mean.

  9. Linda Krause says:

    Your story about your parents was so sweet! It really touched me! I feel the same about my parents who are soon-to-be 88 (dad) and 85 (mom). They have been divorced 45 years. My mom’s been married 3 times since (2 husbands deceased and one divorce) and my dad once (deceased) Now after all this, they have moved in together sharing my dad’s home and it’s absolutely amazing! Of course, they do not share bedrooms…they haven’t come that far yet, but at least they are getting along and taking care of each other. My oldest brother lives next door to them for their health concerns, thank goodness, but all in all, it’s working out beautifully. The acrimony once between them has dwindled after the 40-something years. They still have their moments, but at least I know they have each other if needed. Like you, I hate the idea of ‘homes’ for them, and am so thankful for my oldest brother to watch over them. My sister and I took my brother’s wife on her first cruise a year ago, and she’s as hooked as we are! I just wanted to let you know how much your stories mean to a bunch of us, and that this particular one really touched my heart. You are an amazing man, and Heidi and Kye are so lucky to have you…even if you CAN clear a room in one swoop!!
    Thanks for all you do.
    Linda Krause

  10. Robert says:

    I knew a lady who “lived” on the QE2 for more than 7 years. She only PAID $1,000 a week ($52,100/year). That is better than a retirement home.

  11. Catherine Thomas says:

    I agree with one of the posters above. I love reading your posts but wish that there was a John on the Princess site as well. It feels like there is no information about that line at all. I am booked on a Carnival cruise but am trying out Princess.

  12. PLEASE JOHN REPLY

    Good morning John. As far as Ken Byrne the singing maitre’d, I’ve been lucky to see and listen to his beautiful singing. You know, if the beards are thinking, they should have Ken Byrne sing and be the maitre’d on all the Carnival ships. In other words, spread the wealth. There, many other people would have the opportunity of enjoying Ken’s wonderful talents. This goes as well as you my fantastic friend.

    As far as your parents, they will be taken care of knowing of just knowing what type of son you are. It’s called LOVE and I know the love that you have for your parents. My other is 84 years of age and she’s enjoying as she enters the final part of her life. Mary Lou and I visit her every other day just to spend time with her. I want have as much time as we can with her. Basically, many children tend to forget their parents but not me and of course you John.
    Now the fact that you have to pick up your dog’s sh*t, when I see people stop to pick the their dog’s poo poo, I commend them because if they didn’t do this, it would be left on my lawn and then I would end up stepping on this sh*t and I wouldn’t want to so I respect those who clean up after their dogs even I know it may not be best of things. So John, I commend you for doing this even though it’s not the best thing. Others will respect you for it.
    Enjoy the final time with your family before you have to go back on the ship. See you my friend.

    Paul F. Pietrangelo

  13. Len Susman says:

    You would need to change the rules a bit on BB2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2B2
    Cruising but at 75 in 5 years might sell the homestead and book on. Now a little funeral at sea excursion to finish it up.

  14. Sue March says:

    Our dream retirement
    ….cruise…cruise…cruise!
    Now, if I could keep dear hubby out of the casino we could cruise more than once a year!!!!

  15. Jeanette says:

    John, you haven’t admitted it yet, but you love that little bugger Breeze. He is cute, he’s soft and cuddly, and when he looks at you after making a mistake you can’t help but say it’s ok…….

    Aging–my friend/former co-worker’s mother is turning 99 very soon. She still lives on her own in a seniors apartment and had a full kitchen so she can prepare her means. She is given meal coupons for a common cafeteria so she doesn’t have to cook too much and usually has dinner each night as it is a main meal for them. She still makes herself breakfast and lunch, does laundry, cleans her apartment, makes her bed…..Hopefully your parents will make it to 99 and be in as good a shape and still have most of the independence intact!

  16. Dana T says:

    Nicolette–Maybe you should think about how such a message as yours might be received by Carnival…also that perseverance, resourcefulness and tact might be traits a potential employer is looking for, along with a bit of good judgment….just saying.

  17. Renee Dubarko says:

    Hi John: I had a suggestion from a guest the other day that I would like to pass on to you. A guest asked if there was some way we could honor (sp correctly) hee hee our guests coming back from Iraq, Afganistan and where ever else they may have been sent. I think this would be an amazing idea and a great service to the brave men and women that protect us and our rights. Thank you for all you do.

  18. Jodi says:

    Bless you John! If I could live out my golden years on the Carnival Paradise! Wow, just wow! What a dream.

    I see Capt. Alcaras carries on the tall, dark and handsome tradition. Who ever it was that decided the masters on Carnival should be Italian was, well brilliant! Gives us ladies something to look at while you gentlemen are searching for Latvian lovlies who like to sail!(something tells me they are not all Latvian though)

    Seriously though with each new ship I seem to be looking more forward to how good looking her Captain will be, and less concerned about the well, other amenities. Silly huh? Can’t wait to find out who, I mean which ship, will be “replacing” the Carnival Spirit in Alaska and Hawaii. How exciting.

    Have a great one, Jodi:)

  19. Theresa Martin- Taylor says:

    Amen John…. my parents are same age as yours. I pray they have continued good health and happiness… I know you feel blessed to have them…. but they are equally as blessed to have you too.

    As far as Breezy goes….. I have raised many dogs…… and in some ways they are like people , respond well to different motivations. Take my dachsund Sissy who I got from a shelter almost 3 years ago. She never responded to treats as a training tool, but my heavens, when I learned how she responded to praise and affection it was a piece of cake to train her. I suggest only giving Breeze a treat with praise when toileting….. immediately after each or she won’t know what she is being praised and treated for…. then…. scoop the poop. German Shepherds are smart….. I think she will pick up on it ….when we are consistent with it. Best of luck….. and tell your parents that there are a few Americans…..especially me wishing them all the very best. You are right…. they deserve the best of Paradise.
    See you on BC5

    Theresa

    • Hi John! We are also sailing On the BC5 in March! also with Theresa My hubby and all the other BC5. Theresa and we started talking and found out we both love our babies, which are our dogs! She has 2 dogs and we have 5..Yes they can be a pain at times but we would never want it any other way. Our youngest daughter is in her second year of collage, so for us our dogs are like our kids, but we can go places when we choose to..Once you get out of the potty part you will adore your new dog as your girls probably have already. You should have a cruise for pets!! lol…No I am kidding. There is a lot of pooper scooping with our 5 dogs, so when you get a little frustrated be glad you only have one :) Our dogs, didder,shylow who is one of our shelter dog a beagle..that is another story with howling when he is talking..sadie,sparky who is 10 years old. Enjoy your dog and give him a hug from us..see you in March!

  20. Jamie Doucette says:

    Hi, I have just discovered your blog and I LOVE it! Today is my daughters 16th birthday and we are departing on the Miracke this afternoon. During this sailing we also will celebrate my youngest daughters birthday on the 12th (she will be turning 8), and my husbands birthday is the day after we get back on the 14th. I’m tired already just thinking about it but so ready to relax. What do you suggest for some fun birthday ideas while on board?

    • The Cruzin2some says:

      Dear Jaime,
      Most Carnival Ships have what is known as the Steakhouse or Supper Club. There is an up charge but it is worth every penny. The Miracle is a Spirit Class ship so I know that they have the Steakhouse.

      Another idea is to send the CD a note when you get on the ship letting him or her know that it your childs Birthday and most of the CD’s have a morning show that is on the television every morning and they read these notes and wish your chils a Happy Birthday. If they are in Camp Carnival then every other kid will know that its their Birthday too and they will get lots of new friends wishing them a Happy Birthday. The CD may even send them a solid gold plastic ship on a stick.

      Have a great cruise
      The Cruzin2some

  21. Lynda Ulrich says:

    Hi John, love the blog today. And yep I already know that when Bob dies I will be on a ship 24/7. Hell we were on ahips 90 days this year alone. No better way to pass your days while waiting to pass.

  22. Al Zimmer says:

    I too read many negative comments on (THAT) site and with an open mind sailed the Splendor last Oct/Nov for my first Carnival cruise.
    I am diamond on another line and was truly impressed with total package. Sailed solo but am returning in June with daughters and grandkids.
    I got nothing but wonderful greetings from the entire crew. There was a bump in the road and this was delt with much more than I expected. The Splendor ranks right up there with my best cruises.
    I simply love your sense of humor. az

  23. Tim says:

    John, I have not heard of assigning groups for boarding, like they do on airlines now. They do give you a card after the photo which shows what group your photo will be in, once it is printed. I think that is what Vanessa is talking about. If so it would probably be the group number assigned to the camera that took the picture.

  24. DannyK says:

    Congratulate the dog when it learns to crap in the plastic bag you put on the ground for him.

  25. Kathy G. says:

    John,

    Going on our 11th CCL cruise on the Carnival Spirit on 1/20/2012 from San Diego. Since it is my husband and myself, we would really like to be seated at a large group table in the center of the dining room. Have you got any tips on accomplishing this? Or, better yet, can you pull some strings for us?

    We met you on the Carnival Magic during the transatlantic voyage when we were docked at Freeport (our 10th CCL cruise). Our very first CCL cruise was aboard the Carnival Mardi Gras in June 1989.

    Also, have the corporate folks ever decided if they were going to publish the Lorraine Turner print of the Magic/Mardi Gras which appears on the corporate web site?

    Thanks for your assistance,

    Kathy G.

  26. Laura says:

    Yes, Breeze should be praised for doing his duty. I praise mine and he has a yard he can go anywhere in! A “good boy” goes a long way.
    YES, book me my room now! I am already sailing on the Paradise in March…but when I retire…you bet I will go for Carnival Sunset (retired folks only)…make a way for it to happen…the ship will always be full and have a waiting list!

  27. Larry Meador says:

    John, I already had the same idea about my retirement long ago. My long term disability insurance plan has a Carnival contingency…..

  28. Joleen says:

    I just read your Blog from Jan 4th about picking up dog logs & laughed my ass off.
    And I gotta tell you, you ain’t right, you just ain’t right. And I like that in a person
    So I’m subscribing Mate.

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