Let the Fun Begin

January 6, 2008 -

John Heald

During the last few days I have been reading in newspapers, watching on the tele and listening to friends and family as they all talk about the same subject…………..New Year’s Resolutions. Obviously the most common denominator is the will to lose weight and I indeed need to join that band wagon pretty quickly and return to my no carb diet. I have put weight on over the last two months and this was noticeable when I looked at myself in the mirror this morning and realized as my friend Al would say that I did indeed……..I looked like the letter Q. So, a diet is definitely going to be part of my new year’s resolution starting once I walk back onboard. Where as most people find that taking a cruise is a guarantee of gaining extra pounds and profanity as you try and do that favorite pair of jeans up for me, it is a little different. When you are busy and have no comfort time then eating three basic meals makes it easier to shed the pounds………………so…………….that’s something to look forward to then. OH, sorry, I forgot to say good morning by the way on this Sunday morning. Now, don’t worry, this blog is not going to be dedicated to my weight loss program but it is a nice segue into the subject of New Year’s resolutions. As I have said you hear so many with topics such as weight loss, getting fit, stopping smoking and putting the toilet seat down toping the list. However, do you ever hear anyone say that their resolution for the New Year is……………..”to have fun.”……………………..nope, me neither but you know what, as well as trying to lose the equivalent weight of a hippopotamus’s left buttock ………is……….to have fun.

What does that mean?…………….I really don’t know……………but I do know that I am going to dedicate more time to laughter and not worrying about the small things and enjoy every day of my life to the full.

You know when I was young I wanted to run away and join the circus. I had dreams of standing in the center ring dressed in my red suit and top hat (very English) and introducing daring trapeze acts, hilarious clowns and dodging the huge piles of Elephant poo. Yes, I wanted to be a Ringmaster……………………I always thought that might be fun and in a strange way I guess I am a Ringmaster and although I do not get to introduce Trapeze Acts and Clowns I do get to introduce the finest shows in the world ……………….there is no sign of the Elephant poo although after I have eaten an Indian Curry……………….well………you know.

This reminiscence of fun was brought back to me when I heard that aboard the spectacular new P & O ship Ventura a Circus company will indeed teach guests the art of Trapeze, Clowning and other circus skills during your cruise……………….what a fantastic idea and I am sure that will be very popular. How many of us would love to learn the art of clowning. Dad’s, Granddad’s, imagine treating the kids and grandkids to a circus show held live in your living room……………….you certainly would be the most popular dad and Granddad in the world.

I heard they will also be teaching Trapeze. I would love to have a go at that. Imagine looking up in the Grand Lobby and seeing me swinging from a trapeze dressed in a violet spandex suit……………………OK, don’t think about that but congratulations to P & O for this wonderful idea and another example of how to put a bit of fun into your life.

Fun, it comes in many different ways but we all need more, especially these days when we are deluged with doom and gloom news 24 hours a day. However, its kids that seem to have fun in different ways than we were their age. This was brought home to me when I sat watching a friends 11 and 13 year old kids yesterday when we when visited their house. It was a beautiful day with a light splattering of snow that back in my day would have guaranteed snowball fights and the building of a snowman complete with a carrot used not for his nose but for his……well……..you know.

However as I watched the kids or teens as they are called today I realized that indeed times have changed as both sat in front of the big screen TV with their Playstation, X Box, Wee Game only pausing to surf You Tube, My Space and something called Faces Book and checking their e mail and texting their friends who are no doubt doing the same……………………indeed as the snow lay ready for kids to have fun in……………..they remained empty………………….what a shame.

These are two kids and there are millions like them who need to runaway and join the circus……….learn to be a clown……………..now they can…………..on the Ventura.

I must admit that it is not always easy to find “fun” in everyday situations as proved on Thursday as I shopped for a new mobile phone……………………because, I lost mine, yep, I lost mine on Wednesday night. I had gone to dinner with Heidi and somewhere between The Boatyard Restaurant and home my phone disappeared into hyperspace never to be seen again. I tried calling the number hoping some fine example of the human race had discovered it but it just rang and rang leaving me to think it was lying in the middle of a road somewhere. Anyway, I had no choice but to call Vodaphone and inform them in case someone had found it and was now calling their Great Aunt Betty in Willabongo, Australia.

Now, the number to call Vodaphone is a local number but once I had pressed the various numbers and hash keys to finally speak to someone from the human race I was transferred to their service center…………………..in Bombay, India. Now, I know its cheaper etc etc etc but I just wanted to report my phone was missing and to cancel the number………….did I really need to speak to Mr. Patel in Bombay to do this……………. pparently I did and after he asked me enough security questions to allow me to join the CIA or MI5 I was told the number would be deactivated until I went to a Vodaphone store, bought a new phone and then a new SIM card would be given to me. This operation to over 20 minutes. It’s not just Vodaphone of course that have moved their service centers abroad……………it is cheaper, I understand that but using the words    “service” is like using the words “deodorant” and “French” in the same sentence.

Anyway, I headed off to the nearest Vodaphone shop to buy a new mobile. I have to say that I had my old phone for 3 years or more. It was a Samsung and the reason I liked it was that it was………….a phone. However, as the 12 year old salesperson showed me various phones telling me how many pixies lived in the camera and that it had 1 billion ring tones and blueteeth and that if I pressed this button it would make a cappuccino. I felt like screaming…………..I wanted a phone………………a phone that has a battery that allows you to say more than “Hello” before it turns itself off (something that happened to me when I looked at myself naked in the mirror today)…………… a phone that did not require you to be a NASA scientist just to turn it on.

The 12 year old then went on show me various models with companies mission statements proudly displayed on the box …………..Nokia, Connecting People. etc etc. I saw something called a Razer, a new phone buy a company called LG with the words “Life Is Good” on the box. After a while, I just gave up and chose a phone by Sony Erikson, not because of the features or the kids sales pitch……………..I bought the phone because there was a poster of Uma Thurman advertising it………………… and she has a nice bottom……………..therefore I found something to smile about and the fun returned.

Carnival Cruise Lines has always proudly called itself “the Fun Ships and as the incomparable Mr. Ted Arison brought cruising to the masses he also delivered “fun” to them as well. The ways we have fun onboard may have changed but even with all the new and exciting additions to the onboard experience the basis of Carnival’s Fun has not changed… However, we are going to rejuvenate the word Fun and this will start with Carnival Cruise Lines new advertising campaign which you will all start to see on national T.V these coming weeks. They are brilliant and all have the rally cry of………………….LET THE FUN BEGIN.

This will I have no doubt have you reaching for your phone or your mouse and booking your feast of fun. Enjoy the commercials and what ever you do this year …………….make a promise to yourself and ……………………have fun. Click here to see the commercial.

Just before I go I have to report that I am back in the doghouse and it’s all the fault of my Raspberry e mail thingy. Last night I was getting e mails thick and fast from Miami and was so involved in reading them and typing my replies I had not heard Heidi who apparently talking to me without receiving an answer. Heidi had told me a few days before that “ever since you got that raspberry all you ever say to me is…..Mmmm.”

As I typed an e mail I realized that Heidi had been asking me a question and was getting frustrated that I had not answered…………..so trying to have FUN I let out a long and extended Mmmmmmmm………………………..the bruise from the TV remote control which landed on my head should be gone soon and Heidi has informed me that my raspberry will be unusable as where she intends to shove it…………..there will be no signal.

Have Fun  
   
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.