I have a friend who works for Carnival on the ships who is very short. He’s not a little person but he often bangs his head on coffee tables and has to sit on the front row of the cinema so he can see the film. Being short he obviously has a bad temper as that’s the law and he cannot play basketball very well. If you’re small, it doesn’t matter whether you’re rich, poor, British, American or French, you will be consumed with a sense that people aren’t just physically looking down on you, but mentally as well. This will make you permanently angry, and equipped with a chip so large you could be mistaken for a bag of family sized Doritos.
Please note today’s blog will on several occasions feature the word plonker. Here is the definition — British origin… Means “thingy,” used as a derogatory term or an idiot, but also often used affectionately. I hear it morning noon and night. That sodding glockenspiel riff that goes “tum, tum-ti tum tum, tum-ti tum-ti tum tum.” It’s the theme tune to my daughter’s favourite program, the replacement to Barney who has been discarded like a pair of soiled underpants and I may as well get used to it because it’s going to be ringing in my ears for the foreseeable future……I am talking of course about Peppa Pig. I hated Barney and I hate Peppa Pig even more and want to serve her up with some apple sauce and some crispy roasted potatoes.
When I was talking to James Charlton about being the cruise director on the Carnival Magic’s trans-Atlantic crossing I went through with him all the different things that I had learned during the three crossings I have done as CD. Things like you can never have too much trivia be as visible as you can and be ready to meet the one or two very cranky people who should in all retrospect be wearing T-shirts that shout loudly “Born To Moan.” That’s because while 95% of the guests will have the most wonderful time, ask any crew member who has done a crossing and they will tell you that they do tend to bring out one or two grumpy buggers. But so far, James has reported as has Calvyn that things are going well. Yes there have been the usual comments as Calvyn will report shortly plus the usual one about the lack of TV in the middle of the Atlantic. But overall it sounds like the majority of the guests are all having a great time.
I am feeling very, very grumpy today. It all started with a movie I ordered on the TV in my hotel room last night. No, it didn’t involve Latvian women doing naughty things with a man called Foot Long Tom…….I have seen that one already…….twice. What got me hopping mad was that I ordered a movie called Margin Call about the debt crisis. I was hoping that this movie was going to give me an insight into how AIG spent all my savings at lap dancing clubs and that the movie would show the bastards all losing their jobs and living in a box under a bridge. So I settled down to watch some fine acting from Kevin Spacey and Jeremy Irons when twenty minutes into the movie it froze. Bugger!
November 1, 2011 -
John Heald -
I hope you all had a fun Halloween. I spent it in my hotel room with the door locked and bolted in case a child staying in the hotel decided to knock on the door and say “Hola, tricko oro treato.” The ships on the other hand celebrated in full Halloween style all except the Carnival Miracle which has a nude charter and where every night could be a potential horror night.
I have, these past few weeks started a new ritual involving my morning coffee. You see, for the first few months here on the Carnival Magic, my lovely assistant Mel (who I’ll speak more about later) would at 9 am sharp bring my skim milk cappuccino, extra hot with two Splendas to my cabin. I would drink it, go through the mail and the business of the day and then sit down to continue my blog or, if I had been a lazy sod and slept in until 8 am, actually start my blog. (more…)
Ref: 872294249A Cabin: **** Booking#:******Added-Changed: 08/21/11 – 08/21/1
Guest called the GSD at 6:15am and asked that someone come immediately to their cabin as the red stand by light on the television was stopping them from sleeping. Guest also asked that the stateroom steward remove the Bible from the cabin but he had not done so. Joiner on duty went to cabin and placed a piece of black tape over the red light on the television and the guest handed the Bible to him which was delivered to the GSD.
Added-Changed: 8/22/11 – 8/22/11 – Mrs. _______ removed all gratuities from cabin ______. GSA asked if she would like to discuss why this was done but she refused.
Red lights, Bibles and canceling gratuities. Let’s discuss this and try and work out what’s going on here. Ummmmm……….ummmmmmmmmmmm……..well honestly I haven’t a sodding clue. Do you?
Yesterday on departure from Naples found me on the bridge escorting a family of eight people who the captain had invited to join him. The family consisted of mum, dad, grandparents and three children, two of whom were about to enter United States Coast Guard training like their father who was a high-ranking USCG officer. Anyway, I went to meet them and on the bridge I listened to the radio chat on the VHF between the captain and the port authority, which interestingly, like all bridge commands on Carnival ships, must be carried out in English, not Italian.
Just a week or so after the terrible earthquake in Japan, I remember I had a Japanese guest on stage with me during the Welcome Aboard show and how I treated him so carefully and was nervous about saying anything that would cause him any embarrassment. I actually felt quite uncomfortable and a little nervous. But the guests were magnificent and applauded as one when I said that we were all thinking about him and his country during those horrific days. Well, last week it happened again and with the “bag lady” and everything else last cruise I haven’t had time to tell you about it. Except this time it wasn’t a Japanese guest I had on stage but a guest from Norway.
The audiences in Europe are rather different than, say, a seven-day Caribbean cruise. One of those differences is that here on Carnival Magic I rarely have to deal with hecklers whereas in the Caribbean they are quite commonplace. However, last night at the show I faced one of the most challenging situations since we brought the ship out and more about this later.