T Shirts and TV Trivia

June 10, 2007 -

John Heald

Good Evening.

Sorry for the delay in posting over the weekend, I guess you are all used to it by now but where as I have no life and no weekends, the support personal in our head office do and they need to spend time away from their desks. Henceforth, again, sorry for the delay but I will make sure I post a lot these next few days.
We have just left Venice. The mask parade is in full swing and I am about to run (OK, walk fast) to see how it is going. The weather was beautiful today in Venice again and it was also very busy with four megaliners in port. There was the Emerald Princess, The Costa Serena, an MSC ship and the Carnival Freedom.
This meant that the Vaporetto’s were very busy with so many guests wanting to come and go into Venice at the same time but the beautiful hot weather made up for any lines I am sure. Here are two photos of St. Marks at night. One is from last voyage when it rained, the other was taken last night with the crowds airbrushed out to show the serine beauty of the this most famous square.

Beautiful shot of Venice St. Marks at night St. Marks at night

OK, I am going to the mask party. I will be right back.
OK, I am back. The party was a huge success again with lots of folks wearing their masks, dancing and watching us sail from Venice. It is a quite a contrast to last cruise seeing all the kids on deck using the giant slide and having some fun in the sun.
I was on the bridge for a few minutes as well and it was interesting to see all the folks on the other cruise ships I mentioned above taking photos as the Captain reversed us into the turning bay. When I see other ships in port I often think of their cruise directors and what they might be doing and it is a shame that we never meet up.
Had a chat with a lady today who was unhappy with our library selection. She felt that the books had little choice for children aged 14 – 16. She is traveling with two children of that age and she wanted books for them. She is completely wrong that we have little choice because we have no choice as we have no books for that age group. I have no idea what kids that age read but I will find out and make sure we add some to our inventory.
That’s a perfect example of something that I would not have thought about unless told, so I am very thankful to this guest fro bringing it to my attention.
It is now 6:25 pm. I have received a few negative comments about the waiting time for the Vaporetto’s in Venice. I just spoke to one gentleman on the phone who said he waited 40 minutes for one and that Carnival needs to control them better. I tried to explain that we have zero control over the transportation in Venice and that it was extra busy today because of the weekend and also because there were 9,000 cruise ship guests all wanting to get into Venice.
I love Venice and so do the guests, but it causes me more problems than any other port. It’s nobody’s fault, it’s because the damn thing is built on water. Can you imagine living there and having to every day things like shopping, emptying the garbage and going to see friends, all by boat?
It got me thinking, and I mean this with no disrespect to this guest but if I was staying in New York and had to wait 40 minutes for the subway, I would not go back to the front desk at the Marriott and say that you need to get hold of the metro system………………….just a thought.
The above then are two examples of the different comments we get. One, absolutely correct and we must comply, the other, well……..let’s just say that there is nothing that can be done.
On a happier note, I have been calling bloggers all evening and chatting with them. Everyone is having a great time and I am hearing a lot of positive comments that the blog information on tours and ports really helped them before they cruised. The blisters are worth it then.
One lady I spoke to was the Tami Starr. We chatted about which tours her kids would and would not like and after some discussion, we decided that it would best to have her kids enjoy the fun and excitement that is provided by Camp Carnival. I am glad we spoke because I think taking her kids on the Classical Sightseeing tour in Dubrovnik tomorrow would have been so boring for the kids which in turn would have spoiled it for Mum and Dad. Terri made me laugh when she said her youngest got excited about Venice……………..not the Doge’s Palace or St Mark’s Square but because she saw a pigeon and a dog:)
Can I also mention Mr. and Mrs. Sergeant who are regular blog contributors and readers? They are having a wonderful time but today is particularly hard for them because their son Randy is being deployed with his Black Hawk Squadron. We all wish Randy a safe time and thank him for his service.
I chose some different movies for the big screen and these will arrive in Rome. It is hard to choose these movies as you want to make sure they are ones that everyone will want to see, this is especially hard with the newer movies. However, I choose three CLASSIC movies for the big screen. Tell me what you think.
1. GLADIATOR – this should look amazing on the big screen. I know it is a bit bloodthirsty but seeing as most people will be visiting the Coliseum anyway I think they should go there having seen how it really was.
2. TOP GUN……….The classic blockbuster and still brilliant even today.
3. CASINO ROYALE………..The NEW Bond version that ends with spectacular scenes in Venice.
Now, the biggest surprise is that there is no Angelina Jolie (AJ) movies on the list. They are onboard but available for my private viewing only. My friend Tim has now seen AJ in Original sin.12 times.
Do any of you have any other classic movies or recent releases that you would like to see?
Fancy some Q & A? Me too.

JOHN FROM MOUNT HOLLY – I think I speak for all 3,000 guests when I say a huge thank you for being so much fun. Your antics really made the cruise that extra bit special. Can you please send me your e-mail address? I won’t post it but one of the guys from the office will send it through to me. My best to your wife and thanks again for everything. See you on the bloggers cruise and yaba daba doo.
MARK TWAIN AND A HALF – It does seem that this blog has become time-consuming but as long as it does not interfere with my job as cruise director I will continue to enjoy the work. Thank you for telling your friends about the blog and the cruise experience and that is one of main wishes for the blog, to advertise the joys of cruising by showing the readers exactly what happens day to day onboard. See you in January mate.
PAUL.F PIETRANGELO – Good evening to you Paul and thank you for the great idea on getting AJ’s contact details by asking Kathy Ireland. I think this may be a very good suggestion and I have forwarded it on to the folks in Miami. Hope you are well and as always a big thank you for your continuing support of this blog.
ANITA DUNHAM – POTTER – Consider the teenage boys as free as Paris Hilton. Thank you for your suggestion Anita and indeed I have been reading a lot about Angelina’s charity work so of course you are correct that we must support this work if we are going to persuade her to be the Godmother. I have sent your thoughts onto public relations for their consideration.
So, soon you and your family will be here and I look forward to meeting them all (after locking away the teenage boys) and showing you this beautiful and exciting ship.
Have a safe journey and see you soon.
LOOKINGFORWARDTOTHE-NEARLEYSMOKEFREECARNIVALFREEDOM – I can only imagine that it must be wonderful to be trapped in an elevator with you and Mrs. LFTTNSFCF because the conversation would be marvelous. Both of you write with such feeling and passion, I can only wish I could do the same.
All the crewmembers you mentioned are perfect examples of Carnival’s goal to try to exceed all expectations onboard our ships. These expectations can only be exceeded because of the crew and shore side personnel that you mentioned and thousands more like them. So, thank you on behalf of all the crew and people ashore who are dedicated to make your cruise exceptional and I salute people like you who take the time to meet and chat with them. This enhances your cruise and makes the crew feel so special. It’s a recipe for continuing success.
Thank you also for starting the online petition for AJ to become the godmother of the Carnival Splendor. All of these suggestions I hope, will alert her to seeing that she is a wanted woman……………..and not just by me.
All the best and please write soon.
SHEREE – Heidi is having fun at home and I do miss her very much. Absence does indeed make the heart grow fonder and it also makes the laundry pile up and the cabin get untidy.
I am happy to hear that the Courtney is home and I am sure you must be very excited to sail. I think there will be a nice mixture of young and old during your cruise including some younger children and older teens and fellow graduates as well. All in all, a perfect mix. I have not received the mah jong sets just yet and if I had time I really would learn. However, any free time I have finds me blogging and occasionally watching AJ movies and staring longingly at my toy Aston Martin. I agree about the photo. Let me ask Roberto……………………ROBERTO – CAN WE CHANGE THE PHOTO ON THE WEB BLOG THINGY TO THE ONE OF ME DOING THE MORNING SHOW……………..THE ONE WE USE NOW MAKES ME LOOK FAT!
There, that’s done. Thank you Sheree and it won’t be long before I am saying Welcome On Board.
JONVHALL – Thank you for your kind comments. I am glad you had such a wonderful cruise and also happy that you enjoyed my shows. The best news is that you started your own blog and I hope it is very successful for you. I am sure other bloggers from this site will smash onto yours to see what you have written. Please stop by my blog as often as you can and I thank you for taking the time to write. Cheers.
MR PETE – So, we have broken you down. The torture and pain of reading this blog every day has forced you into submission and you have booked a cruise on the Carnival Victory to beautiful Nova Scotia, Canada. Great ports, especially Halifax where you must visit Peggy’s Cove. If you need any help deciding what to do I am here as always. Congratulations, good choice and now I am off to torture someone else into realizing cruising is the only way to go.
WAYNE MOONY – Sorry to disappoint you Wayne but I have no idea what Paul and Steve are talking about. It seems to me that both have very similar writing patterns and therefore I am forced to believe that they may be friends of my mate Alan Adkins and probably part of Alan’s gang that hang out at the Cliff Pub. I shall ask Big Ed to go into the pub in disguise and see if he can penetrate Alan’s inner circle and discover if he is indeed behind these scandalous accusations.
RICHARD D – Fawlty Towers provided some of the most fabulous put downs I have ever heard. My favorite and something I often say in my head — “A satisfied Guest, we should have him stuffed “.
August will be here before you know it. I see that you mentioned the shuttle bus from the airport to the ship. Do you require information on this? If so, please let me know. Please keep reading the blog and I am sure you will see something that may help your cruise before you get here. See you very soon.
DOUGNEWMANATSEA – Thank you for another Basil reference which we will return to in a moment. As far as who has bought out Orient Lines, I too have no clue but maybe I can ask my PA who has just returned from a paper clip and filing conference and may be able to help resolve this question.
It was a brave I know to publish a picture of the lady whose name cannot be mentioned and it was probably a little impulsive but it was not me it was the devil inside.
I have ordered some mah jong sets so hopefully this will not happen again and I have also sent the photo to my friends at Holland America and if they have any sense they also will………run away.
Thank you for the full quote on my favorite scene from Fawlty Towers. If ever I feel down and need inspiration I can always turn to the master that is Mr. Cleese.
So, what ship are you sailing on next? When is it my turn? Hope to hear from you soon.
JULIE CARTER – Hello Julie and it was great to hear what a brilliant time you had on the Carnival Miracle and especially your concern about your waiter Nicola from Croatia. I will try and discover if indeed he was promoted but it would be easier if you had his second name, if you do, could you let me know? As soon as I have any information, I will pass it on to you. All the best until then.
JENNIFER – Jennifer, the only mistake here is the one made by our staff member who seems not to understand that it is OK for you to cruise as a single lady. I am so sorry that she offended you and please know that it is quite normal, very safe and most of all it will be a great way to meet new friends. Now, I intend to look into this matter personally. I do not want to get anyone into trouble but I do need to find out what was behind the ladies attempt to virtually insist that someone sail with you as this is what made you consider canceling your cruise. I have a feeling that the sales person was trying to encourage another sale but this should not be at the expense of making you feel scared into thinking that you should cruise alone.
Please post the following information on the site. It will not be made public and I will reply to you personally. FRANK / ROBERTO – FYI.
The bottom line is that many single men and women sail as singles. Many meet new friends, some meet new friends for life and all have a fantastic time regardless. I will be back to you soon and please be comfortable and secure in the knowledge that you will have the best time on this cruise. I promise!
DEBBIE CARPENTER – Thank you for the kind words and it makes me so happy to know that you think I enhance your cruise experience………..I am blushing. I look forward to seeing you and your family on the Carnival Freedom and next year on the Carnival Splendor. If there is anything I can do while you are onboard, please let me know. See you all soon and thanks again.
KATHY KROLL – LA – is that Los Angeles or Lower Alabama? Hello Kathy and yes, it was a beautiful two days in Venice. The Vaporettos were extra busy and there were some lines for them but apart from that it was a perfect day in Venice. I did send something to Joan from you so I am sure it will be a nice surprise to know that her friend is thinking about her. We will be sailing on our Greece/Turkey cruise next voyage and I agree with you that Istanbul is by far the most enchanting port on that itinerary with Ephesus a close second. Please send my best to Paul and hope you are both well.
RowdyCamperetteDebbie – I have now seen all the tents pitched on Lido and even caught someone fishing in the swimming pool so I take it that is your camping group. I met the tent leader – PEG! Anyway, after that awful pun I have sent each of them a signed photo of the ship with your warmest regards and I will also make sure that Carol gets a special 60th birthday mention on my next morning show.
Thank you for mentioning the new Carnival T-shirt site where, as you mentioned you can design your own shirts before you cruise. Here is the link thingy.
Here are some T-shirt ideas for your next cruise
If you have any other suggestions, please let me know bloggers. Thanks Debbie and hope to hear from you soon.
SUSAN B – It does sound like begging doesn’t it and I know she wouldn’t like to see me beg. I hope that AJ truly sees the wonderful exposure it would provide for her chosen charity and together Carnival and AJ can make something magical happen.
Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise. Thank you for saying that I should get more pay for hosting the Bloggers Cruise.
Sorry, for some strange reason my mouse thing started copying and going mad and bolding things and stuff, how strange. Seriously, it is truly an honor to have a cruise named after you. I think I am probably the first crewmember that this has ever been bestowed upon and that is truly special for Heidi and I.
Please write again soon.

Now, just before I forget, I am going to post a note that the purser’s office sent me while I have been writing this blog.
See below CRS, FYI.
Pursers office
[6/10/2007 9:14:57 PM MAUD]
Mr. ***** came to the Purser asking if he could make a complaint about the cruise director. The guest said that during his travel talk John had said that you could not get to Venice except by boat. When Mr. ******* got off the ship he said he was angry to find cars everywhere and wanted to know why the cruise director had lied. I explained that we were not docked in Venice itself but another area but Mr. $%^& insisted on speaking to the cruise director. The guest also was unhappy with the show last night because it was all Beatles Music and said maybe the Beatles were popular in England but they were not popular in the United States. Purser tasked to CD who will call the guest and revert for CRS.

I have obviously hidden the name and cabin number and tomorrow I will call the guest and have a chat with him. I hope you do not mind me showing you these sorts of things and they are certainly not normal and not exclusive to this ship or myself. I think there are probably similar comments on every ship belonging to every line.
Of course, I will explain that I meant the center of Venice is accessible only by boat but maybe he is correct, maybe I should be clearer in what I say. I shall also tell him that both Ticket to Ride performances this cruise received full standing ovations and the entire audience from all over the world including the United States were all singing Let it Be and Hey Jude. However, maybe the show was not for him so I shall promote the Big Easy and Jump Jive and Wail shows as well as the beautiful singer we have coming who will be performing International music.
You zee (as one of our Captain’s says a lot), it’s all about perception and I have to make sure that I am clear and precise in everything I say and do. I may have been doing this 20 years this month but I certainly am still learning each and every day.
Oh, I also wanted to mention this trivia question. Do you remember I mentioned about the Mary Kate and Ashley movie I was in? Well, here is a quick question to ponder. What famous 1980’s TV show had a full episode shot on the Carnival ship, The Tropicale?
Let’s see who posts the correct answer first. WANT A CLUE? – IT SOUNDS CANADIAN! OK, time to head backstage for the show.

Hope you all had a great weekend. Only 4 more days and Heidi will be back. She gets back on a Friday, but trust me……it will be THURSDAY !
Your friends John and Heidi

Hi, I’m John, and this is my blog. So please don’t mistake my opinions — or those of my dear friends, fans or commenters — for those of Carnival Cruise Line or Carnival Corporation. My apologies in advance for anything I may say that upsets you, but this disclaimer covers Carnival and puts the blame directly on me………….. bugger.