Heidi's Blog Number Four

July 26, 2007 -

John Heald

As John writes about our daily adventures during the cruise, there is not much for me left to say about that, he covers just about everything….So, I thought I share some of my favorite memories with you…

As I am working closely with the Shore Excursion Department on board, I thought I share 2 of my favorite tours with you, but the other side of the world instead of Europe.

1. Swimming with the dolphins……
For anyone who has ever done this, you know exactly what I am talking about. It’s an experience of a lifetime. I swam with dolphins in Cozumel, in Playa del Carmen and in Ocho Rios and every time it was just wonderful. The dolphins are so sensitive and careful that you feel very relaxed when you get out of the water. For any cruisers who read this and think about doing this, most of the time we also offer “Dolphin Experience” tours, where you stand on a platform and touch the dolphins and get educated about them, but I think it’s worth paying the extra money and actually get in the water and play with them while you feed them, hold on to their fins while they pull you through the water or even let them push through the water with their noses on your feet.
They normally take photos as well, which of course you can’t leave without.
2. Horseback riding in St. Lucia….
On our Millennium cruise on board the Carnival Triumph, John’s mum and dad and his sister Suzanne and her husband Paul were on board with us. The Millennium party was amazing. It all took place on the Lido deck with the band playing and John emceeing the whole evening.
There was not a place on deck where guests were not dancing, it was a fantastic party! Someone in our family (I won’t tell who) had the bright idea to book the horseback riding tour in St. Lucia THE DAY AFTER…..
This tour departed from the pier at 8:00am!!!!!!
Now, do I need to say more??? I absolutely LOVE horses and grew up with my own Shetland Pony, but that morning through some strange reason, my head felt different than any other morning and all I wanted to do was hug the horse and go to sleep on his back….Anyway, the sights were beautiful and we went through the water and once again, it was a day I will never forget.
I won’t tell you about my horseback riding experience in Jamaica, although I love this country with all my heart….the spiders there HAVE TO GO……can someone arrange that for me????
3. A personal (not CCL) tour….
My first time to the city of New York……
Sailing on what was at the time biggest ship in the world, the Carnival Destiny, in 1996 we arrived in New York and I was in awe of everything. What a way to arrive to the U.S.A for the first time in your life….
I remember standing on deck with my friend Denny, who was the Youth Director at the time, covered in thick clothes as it was COLD!
The sky was blue and the sun was out and the photos I took that day are amazing, as you can understand. In our home, we have a blown up photo of John and myself on the bow of the ship with the Statue Of Liberty behind us and of course we have one with the Twin Towers on the background…..a photo that has more meaning now than ever.
Well, we arrived at the pier and as we pulled up I saw a police car on the pier and a few men pulling something out of the water….it was a body.
I could not believe my eyes. It was then covered by some sort of plastic blanket. Wow, Welcome To America!!!

There are so many more great memories, after all it’s been over 10 years that I have been working for Carnival Cruise Lines, I started in November of 1996. I will save some for another time.

Now, over to the comments:

It’s always nice to hear from you (two) and your name obviously catches my eye when reading the comments. You will absolutely love Wee Jimmy.
Ask him how Mr. Robinson is doing when you see him, he might even let you meet him (his teddy bear, and while I am writing this, I know he will probably never speak to me again….) Enjoy your cruise!
Hello Ed. With regards to the wedding photo, I am sure John’s mum taught him to sit up straight…… especially as we were sitting on the exact same chairs that my Queen and her fiancé were sitting on their wedding day. The hotel “The Grand” used to be Amsterdam’s town hall, before it was a hotel and the top table and chairs are still the same as then…..
07262007now.jpg Now
Council Chamber:
Restored to its majestic glory from when it was the Council Chamber of the former City Hall, with wood paneling and glimpses of the city’s illustrious past evident throughout the chamber. The same table the Aldermen and the Burgomaster already used in 1926 is now used as the head table for any function. The chamber was the setting for the marriage of Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands who was married here in 1966.
The whole room has a special “feel” to it, the carpet and floor creek and you feel special just walking through the door.
If you would like to take a tour from Cannes to the Southend pier, I will personally arrange that for you…now problem 🙂 🙂 🙂
Hello Mark. I will start my blog with announcing that it’s me from now on. I am not allowed to make any more refrigerator comments, so I won’t as otherwise I will be in the dog house myself….Don’t bother going to Southend to walk on the pier right now, summer has not yet arrived in the U.K. It breaks my heart to see those poor people on the news, knee high in the water with all their belongings floating around them. Maybe I should send some Dutch engineers over to help built dykes and dams……
Thank you for the comments on my wedding gown. To tell you the truth, I had to drop 2 sizes to fit the dress. I saw it in a magazine, probably a year before the wedding, of course when I went to the store to see if they actually had it, the lady made numerous phone calls and she had it sent over from a store on the other side of Holland. It was the collection of the year before, so she wasn’t able to order my size. When it arrived, it was a size 36 and at the time, I was closer to a 40…so…..she urged me to try on other dresses, but I only wanted that one and got it, against my mum’s and sister in law Sandra’s advice… I lost the weight and it fit me perfectly on the day. It is still hanging in my wardrobe at home and when I look at it, it still puts a smile on my face.
When we worked on the Glory, Wee Jimmy was one of the Social Hosts, I now work with another Asst. Cruise Director. Her name is Stephanie and she is great. We have worked together since the Glory as well and she came to this ship as a newly promoted Asst. Cruise Director. There is so much to do on this ship that we share the responsibilities and where I work closely with John, she looks after the activities along with the Social Hosts. It works out well that way.
No news yet on AJ as Godmother…….we’ll keep you posted.
Congratulations are in order as you became a Grandma again, to Joshua Daniel. What beautiful names. I hope mum and son are doing well.
Keep writing, but I understand if you are busy with the new arrival in the family…
Hello Ethel. Thank you for your nice comments re the blog. I hope you like the photos I have attached this time. Keep reading!
I am glad you like the little “inside” information there. Our wedding album is really amazing, but has the size of a wall paper book….so, not easy to travel with. It’s safely kept at my mum’s.
Thank you for reading my blog thingy too.
Hello Aussie Chic! Of course I reply to your comment, even though you won’t be offended…..   🙂 Hope to meet you one day, so we can talk about Aussie land.
While I am writing this, you are in the process of traveling to the ship.
Can’t wait to meet you. ……….Just called you in your cabin and THANK YOU AGAIN (you will probably read this when you will be home again) for the root beer. You have no idea how happy you made John
Hello Sir! Thank you for all your nice words. You asked if we ever have any real private time for ourselves. I will be honest to you, not much…
But, that’s the job and therefore, when we go home (on vacation) we don’t do much, but see family and just relax. We can then spend a whole Sunday with just the newspapers around us (ALL of them, as John goes and gets them all and every single gossip magazine for me) and not talk for hours. It’s nice sometimes not to “have” to say anything. It might sound strange to you, but if you work on the ship you are always “on.”
Our time we spend together is when we go ashore in the ports and have a bite to eat or watch some of our favorite T.V. series. We both love 24 and The Sopranos and John absolutely loves The West Wing.
The real “us time” will have to wait until we get home… I like your slang term for going to bed by the way!
What a shame Esmee to hear that you cancelled your cruise…..It would have been great to have met you after all those years. Remind us closer to the time of your group’s name and we will definitely “show them some love.” John and I will be on the Splendor next year, so maybe you can book a cruise for next year! I know some great places in Amsterdam…..will I be able to persuade you??? Keep reading the blog.
Our Cabin Steward is wonderful. He is from Indonesia and used to work in a hotel there that was run by a Dutch couple, so he speaks a bit of Dutch too. He definitely has his job cut out for him, with John leaving all his stuff laying around. 🙂
Stephanie is sitting next to me at the moment and she had to explain “sitting here in Podunk,” but now I know what that means….learn something every day. I will arrange for grass seeds to be put on the stage the cruise before you get on, so you can watch grass grow while waiting for me to call your number. Deal?
Hello Vikki. I bet I will still be looking at my wedding photos as well in 17 years. It’s just such a nice memory. I am happy to share John with ya’ll!
Thank you for your nice words. It is busy, but we do it together, and as I say myself…we are a good team! John probably looked as if he was in shock at the wedding photo as the lady was reading out some things we had told her about the other. We both wrote a little something about one another and about our “witnesses.” In Holland you don’t have bridesmaids and a best man, etc. but you need two witnesses each to be able to get married. John had Alan and his dad and I had my brother Piet and my dad. We then had to write a little something about them all and the lady who married us read that out in Dutch and in English, which was quite emotional as you probably understand. We had left the Carnival Destiny by October 1997. I think we left in September of that year, so your Cruise Director would have been Greg Kneale. He is British as well, but no longer works for the company. Keep reading the blog thingy!
Hello Nancy. My dad always told me, you can do anything you want, as long as you put your mind to it. Believe me, when I held a microphone in my hand for the first time with over a thousand people in the room, I had to really think hard of him telling me that and did the job. And every time you do something of which you thought that you never could, it makes you feel great and motivates to go on. Having John always telling me the same helps too, I supports me 200% in anything I do, which makes me a very lucky girl.
Hello Bear Friends. Talking about bears, did you ever get to see the baby polar bear called KNUT?? He was born in the Berlin Zoo. Now I have to attach a photo …….sorry, can’t resist…. He even made the front cover of Vanity Fair… Until we meet on the Spendor…keep reading the blog!
Born at the “Zoologischer Garten Berlin” on 5 December 2006  is a captive-born polar bear that was the subject of international popularity and controversy. After being rejected by his mother at birth, he was raised by zoo keepers and has since become a popular tourist attraction and commercial success.
The Baltic Inaugural AND the 2nd leg of the South America Cruise AND your favorite cabin. I always wonder which deck our guests prefer.
Close to the restaurant, close to the pool, close to the show lounge….
Can you tell me your cabin number and why you chose that one?
I am just interested. Thank you for reading my blog thingies.
Thank you for your nice words Bill. The summer is dreadful in the UK, isn’t it? You might have been right, it might have been July or August when I did that walk when my ears almost fell of from the cold….
Luckily the floods don’t come down to Southend, let’s spare a thought for all the Brits without water and electricity or without their home at the moment.
Hello Mr. Big Ed. The ship’s launderette is at the aft of the ship on deck 8. (opposite cabin 8351) Your cabin is closer to the front on the port side, so you need to walk aft on the starboard side opposite cabin number………..
Hello Terri and Larry. If you stay on board in port there will be water in the pool:), the bars will be open, but the casino and the gifts shops will be closed. I am not sure what activities are being done on the ship as every ship has it’s own activity program, but I am sure you don’t have to be bored whilst on board in the port. Enjoy your cruise!
Kathy and Paul, thank you for your lovely comments. It’s too funny that everyone has commented on the way John looks on that photo. Maybe I should have chosen another one. Congratulations on 35 years this December! We’ll celebrate 4 years this December…
Of course we will meet on the Bloggers Cruise. We’ll do all sorts of fun stuff and definitely get time to have a coffee!! See you in January.
Hello Paul. Yes, we have dominos on board along with all kinds of other games. We even have MAH JONG….  🙂 🙂 🙂 (COULDN’T RESIST)
See you and your wife in October.

Well, that’s it for now from me. Another cruise has started and many bloggers are on board and brought us all kinds of treats which is very exciting. Thank you from me, for all your lovely words, presents, comments and for reading our stories….


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.