John’s Vista Blog- Last Port Day

May 14, 2016 -

John Heald

Good morning from Marseilles, France, where for the last time guests will leave the ship to explore before arriving back to Barcelona at 6 am ready to disembark and start the sad journey home. Yep, I can’t believe this first cruise is over already and a new starts tomorrow but the question is of course was it a successful cruise? The answer is yes. Cheers.

OK, it would be easy to leave it there and for me to bugger off and enjoy a Guy’s burger but let me say a few other things as well before I do. You see, it really was a very successful cruise and I can tell you based on the iCare report at the guest services desk and the vast number of guests I have spoken to then it is obvious people have had a great time. The winner was the ship herself. I have heard nothing, truly bugger all but compliments and thrilling exclamations about your Carnival Vista’s design, layout, the atmosphere and décor and, of course, the brilliant crew. We had close to 4,000 guests here and yet never once did it feel “packed” with guests. Certainly having an upper and lower promenade helps this immensely as does having more outdoor spaces than ever before which as the weather got better this cruise became more and more popular. Yep, she is a beautiful ship — a ship for today with lots of new additions and the always present sense of Carnival fun still the heartbeat of the ship. Do guests love the ship – answer then is yes, they totally, absolutely do. Was it a perfect cruise? Of course not – no voyage is ever perfect. There were a few noise complaints in some cabins and we had a 24 hour period where the internet was very slow which I know had some very frustrated, me included. That has now been addressed and corrected.

That aside and taking into account that there were the usual comments that occur on every ship in the cruise industry each and every cruise one each and every ship, it was a brilliant first cruise and I hope and encourage everyone who was here to write me a review here on Facebook also we can praise those who deserve it. We look forward to hearing your thoughts on the ship design and ways that we can make this fantastic ship even better.

But the overriding sense here is that we have a true winner with Carnival Vista. The ship is gorgeous, thrilling, relaxing, and exciting and then in other places soft and tranquil and she is more fun than watching The Hog Rider drive his Harley into a lake full of piranha.  With the new technical aspects this ship has I can safely say that your Carnival Vista is  the most stunning piece of marine engineering Carnival Cruise Line has ever created. Carnival Vista has rewritten the rule book and in the process, given those who doubted this cruise line….. a bloody nose.

Anyway, I will let you know all about who is sailing with me on our next cruise tomorrow plus get up very early to take your requests and questions but first let’s talk about our last port of call, Marseilles and see if I can remember what I used to say in my travel talk when I was still a cruise director? Ahh yes, it’s all coming back to me now. I said something like: France is a very old country with many treasures, such as the Louvre and Euro Disney. Among its contributions to western civilization are champagne, smelly cheese and the guillotine. France has a population of 55 million. Fifty-two million of these drink and smoke – the other three million are small children. French men are very romantic and want rumpy pumpy all the time. Men sometimes have girls’ names like Marie or Michel, and everyone kisses each other when they meet …..… twice. France’s historical figures are Louis XIV, Joan of Arc, Jacques Cousteau and Charles de Gaulle, who was president for many years and is now an airport. Oh, and, of course, ……… Inspector Clousseau.  A tunnel connecting France to Britain beneath the English Channel makes it easier for the French government to run away to London during future invasions. France’s principal exports, in order of importance to the economy, are wine, nuclear weapons, perfume, guided missiles, champagne, guns, grenade launchers, land mines, tanks, attack aircraft, miscellaneous armaments and cheese.

Hold on, hold on, I am joking, well mostly joking. And before I get a le grand bollocking from Monsieur Je Sous Cruisecritic saying I am anti-French, let me tell you that you can bet that someone called Jean Pierre is sitting at his desk in his wife’s underpants and is writing about how pompous and arrogant us Brits are. At the end of the day, it’s all done with a smile and big dollop of humour.

I have had lots of fun times with my French cousins and I remember when my mate Alan and I were in Spain on holiday back when Wham were telling us to Wake Up Before We Go Go.

Yep, we were at a hotel that was occupied by us and 1,000 French people. Anyway, every time we would get in an elevator we would come down from our room, which was 733 (there were only 733 rooms in the hotel and guess who got that one) and would be joined by mostly French people.

We would say hello and we would be lucky if we got a smile back let alone a hello or bonjour.

Then, it became obvious that they spoke no English so being… well … me, I would get in the elevator, smile, nod and say things in such a pleasant voice like “you are as ugly as the back end of a yak with after taking a huge s**t” or… “your breath comes straight from Satan’s jockstrap,” but in a way that they thought I was wishing them a good day and Viva La France.

Anyway, Alan thought this was hilarious and that night as we came down for dinner a man got in the elevator, he was in his 60’s. Alan said, “Bonjour,” and got back nothing….. so to emulate me, Alan looked at the man and said, “your gentlman’s sausage is the same size as a toothpick.”

The man punched Alan in the face…. he was from Australia.

 

Cheers and have a brilliant day. Wywh.

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