Love and Marriage

February 14, 2008 -

John Heald

It was around 11:00am and I had just finished our production meeting where we discuss the technical aspects of the department and our shows. Myself, Heidi and Matt, one of the technicians, were lingering behind having a chat when I saw a man hovering around us. Sensing he needed assistance I asked him if I could help. I was already programmed for the standard questions……..where is the internet café……………what tour do I recommended in St. Marteen……….where is the gangway……..etc etc……………..however nothing had prepared me for the words that followed……………….I need you to save my marriage……….all three of us stood there waiting for a joke or a witty remark from him but as we waited the single tear that cascaded down his cheek showed us that he was entirely serious.

I invited him to sit down and was about to ask Matt to give us a few minutes but the kid was smart and turned on his heels and ran………………leaving just Heidi and myself with a man who we had never met, who was now crying like someone who has peeled a hundred onions. Heidi went to get the man some tissues and eventually he stopped crying…………….now what was the problem I asked.

Well, it took Mr. Kleenex 30 minutes between fits of uncontrollable sobbing to tell me that last night he got very, very drunk and returned back to his cabin at 5:00am………..yep……….5:00am. His wife was of course not happy and accused him of ….well……seeking entertainment else where if you know what I mean. ………………..so, what exactly did he want me to do was the question I asked………..his reply “help me.”

Now at this point I was wondering why he thought I could help………….asking me for marital advice is as pointless as putting a snooze button on a smoke alarm………….I am certainly no expert and considering I spend more time in the dog house than out of it, it seemed that there would be little I could do.

However, Mr. Kleenex had a plan. He remembered going to the casino but can remember little else after that as his evening apparently was sponsored by Budweiser. He wanted me to do two things. Sit and review the security camera footage from last night and then talk to his wife telling him that I had done so and had not seen him staggering to Easy Elsie’s cabin or smooching on Lido Deck with Slack Alice.

What was I to say…………the man was really upset but obviously I was not going to be able to honour his request of looking through classified footage. However, I did offer to meet with them both later to see if we could resolve the issue. He agreed and got up to leave. I had begun to actually feel sorry for Mr. Kleenex but both Heidi and I both noticed that as he got up he staggered and nearly dropped his glass of Ice Tea ………which seemed to have the same smell as his breath……more sponsorship from Budweiser. We have arranged to meet at 5:00pm this afternoon so stay tuned for another exciting episode of our favorite soap opera….All My Budweiser’s………..or the Drunk and the Restless.

After our impromptu session with Mr. Kleenex, Heidi and I were planning to go ashore in St.Marteen. However, just as I was putting on my Michael Jordan’s, Mother Nature decided that I did not deserve some shore leave and sent a large black cloud to hover over the Carnival Freedom and empty its bowels upon us………………..bugger.

So, that was me putting together a rainy afternoon activity program. It fell down in torrents for a good hour and just when I was considering rounding up 2 of every animal…………..it stopped. It was 3:00pm…………too late for me to go ashore and therefore once the activities were in place I sat down to write to you all.

I spend every day thinking the same thought………….I wonder what it would be like to eat a jelly bean from Jessica Simpson’s belly button……………sorry……….it’s the other thought………….I wonder if I will be able to think about anything to write in my daily blog. I often wonder if there will be a day when …………well…………….nothing happens……………and just when you think you will have nothing to say………something happens…………it always does………..whether you find it interesting, that’s another matter, but living and working on a cruise ship is a constant source of blogging material.

You know, I forgot to tell you the guest facts and figures this week ………….sorry.

GUESTS – 3030

CHILDREN NUNDER 18 – 161

NON US AND CANADIANS – 204

TOP NON US/CANADA COUNTRY – AUSTRALIA – 78 GUESTS.

Here are some very random photos.

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The photo lab and photo staff

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 The shore excursion team on board the Carnival Freedom

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Two of our security staff

Here are today’s letters and drawings from the In Their Own Words Section

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Time to answer some of the questions you have asked in today’s Q and A session. Today’s selection is from the blog called Pole Dancing.

GREG BALDASARRI………………Any photos of me doing the Polka have since been burned and the photographers who took them have begun mysteriously disappearing. You asked how many hats a CD wears. Well, honestly, that is up to the CD in question……..me………..well I think the answer is too many. However, all of them are as important as the next and having Heidi with me helps share the hat wearing burden. Thanks again for your posting and as always your kind words of support. Cheers.

NICO R………….Good to hear from you mate. You asked about the situation with the Carnival Splendor’s Godmother. The honest answer is I have no idea. We failed to get my two choices of Catherine Zeta Jones and Angelina Jolie and at this point I think we should just put George Hamilton in a Roberto Cavalli dress and have him chuck a bottle of Asti Spumante at the ship. However, great minds are at work I am sure to capture the best lady for the job and PA 007 is keeping their nose to the ground and I am sure will advise me once a choice is made so we can break the news here first. Thanks mate and thanks for reading the blog as often as you do.

HOST MACH……………..It was with great excitement that I read your posting telling me that you have a Cruise Critic group forming for the 2009 Bloggers Cruise. As you said, it will be a terrific way to celebrate the rebirth of The Big Easy and to meet new friends. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help and if you have any questions. Cheers and a big hello to all my friends at Cruise Critic.

CHERYL……………….Congratulations on choosing Costa for your next cruise and the Mediterranea is a most beautiful vessel. You asked what to expect. Well, you can expect loads of Italian flair especially from the dining room because the food is amazing. The entertainment is superb and the “animators” who are the Costa entertainment staff will make sure you have the most fantastic time……………….watch out for the weekly Toga party…………..its world famous.

You asked what ship I will be on in 2009…………I am not sure at this time but hopefully I will soon and will let everyone know. Meanwhile have a great cruise and please let us know all about your Costa experience when you get back. Ciao.

KICIASKI…………………Hello George and Linda. I still have no news on the Dream but you are right in saying that as it is an October delivery and it will not stay in Europe for long. I have PA 007 working on this project as I know many of you want to book so hang in there and I will let you all know. As for the Carnival Splendor we should have an idea on when the naming ceremony is very soon. I can tell you it will be in Dover U.K. and very soon I will be able to tell you more. As for me doing the Polka again……….not while I have breath in my body…………….I looked ridiculous…………..it’s great music but dancing and me just do not get along. See you soon and our best to you both.

KATHY KROLL………….I passed on your website to Kerry in the office. I am sure she will enjoy reading it. Cheers.

LONGING 2 CRUISE…………Thanks for the link on European Immigration. I have never doubted the seriousness of the job these ladies and gents do but as you said it would be so much better for everyone if they could do this in a civilized manner. Marcus Anthony is indeed still performing for our guests and remains a firm favorite with our guests. Thanks for writing again and please keep reading the blog thingy.

BIG ED…………..I tried pronouncing Mrs. Big Ed’s last name but I ended up washing the computer screen. I have a telephone conference next week with Stephanie, Roberto and top management to discuss the 2009 cruise and of course I already know that you and your “crew” will make it even more special. One thing is for certain and that is Alan is going to bend over backwards to assure that he is part of your circle and joins us next year. My best to you and Mrs. Sukiewicz.

DIVETRASH………….Did I stand on your feet during the Bloggers dance? I remember someone screaming in agony….was that you?

I am glad you are enjoying all the photos and especially glad that you appreciate, like I do, the folks behind the scenes of any job and in this case our brilliant backstage staff. Look out for more random photos and next week we will start crew interviews again. Cheers and sorry about the foot………oops.

Ok, I AM GOING TO STOP THERE. I STILL HAVE 12 PAGES OF COMMENTS FROM THIS BLOG TO ANSWER PLUS THOSE FROM THE ‘Copy That’ blog but unless I stop now this will get posted too late so look out for more tomorrow,

I am now off to my Save My Marriage Meeting………….back soon.

Well, that was interesting. In an ideal world I would like to tell you that I sat there and because of my charm and incisive outlook on life that they kissed, made up, skipped of into the sunset and lived happily ever after. …………………unfortunately………..this didn’t happen. Instead I met with the lady who seemed nice, normal and very upset at the way their hard earned vacation was going. We sat and chatted for ten minutes and eventually her husband turned up………….and…………….he was totally hammered……..I mean he could hardly walk. As he arrived I started to regret that I had decided to hold this meeting in the lobby as the sight of her husband, beer in hand bouncing of the walls of the atrium turned her into a Tasmanian Devil as she went into a whirlwind of abuse, swearing at him and trying to knock the beer from his hands……………….it was then I realized that suddenly………..I was in an episode of Cops. I separated the two and called for security to come which they immediately did. ……..and………………that was that……………we are currently trying to find a different cabin for the husband and no doubt there may be more incidents involving Mr. Bad Boy and his wife. They now have two long days to survive. We will be watching them carefully and monitoring the amount of drinking Mr. Bad Boy does.

I left feeling rather rejected. I guess I had gone into the meeting with the ridiculous notion that I could make a difference and as I sit here and write to you I am actually quite mad……………..at myself for having ideas well above my station and to be honest I am mad at Mr. Bad Boy for coming to me and asking for help………………and then wasting my time.

It’s now time for the talent show in which Heidi tells me we have a Yodeler, a Jodaler, a Yo De La…………you know, someone who goes you de yode hoo hoo and some other great singers. However there is one lady who is really not happy with me. She wanted me to lower the big screen at the show tonight and play a DVD she brought of her 11 year old winning the state Horse Jumping trials gold medal………………I tried to tell her the show was for live entertainment and when she realized I was not going to change my mind she turned away and, as she did, her parting words were …………..”you have ruined my cruise. I hope you are happy.”

So, that’s my day. I have ruined a family’s cruise and caused a marriage to go from bad to worse…………………..hope you are having a better day than me. It’s time for me to get ready for the show and, while I do, it’s time to play my happy song. This was made famous by a great comedy duo from the UK called Morcambe and Wise and the words have always meant something to me

Here they are…………….this should make me feel better.

Bring me Sunshine, in your smile,
Bring me Laughter, all the while,
In this world where we live, there should be more happiness,
So much joy you can give, to each brand new bright tomorrow,

Make me happy, through the years,
Never bring me, any tears,
Let your arms be as warm as the sun from up above,
Bring me fun, bring me sunshine, bring me love.

Bring me Sunshine, in your eyes,
Bring me rainbows, from the skies,
Life’s too short to be spent having anything but fun,
We can be so content, if we gather little sunbeams,

Be light-hearted, all day long,
Keep me singing, happy songs,
Let your arms be as warm as the sun from up above,
Bring me fun, bring me sunshine, bring me love.
Nope………….it isn’t working and I am not in the mood to host the show………………hold on…………….I have an idea

Bad boys bad boys
Watcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they come for you
Bad boys, bad boys
Watcha gonna do, watcha gonna do when they come for you
When you were eight and you had bad traits
You go to school and you learn the golden rule
So why are you acting like a bloody fool
If you get hot you must get cool
Bad boys, bad boys. Watcha gonna do? Whatcha gonna do when they come for you?
Bad boys, bad boys. Watcha gonna do? Whatcha gonna do when they come for you?

Cops is filmed on location with the men and women of The Carnival Freedom. All suspects are considered guilty until proven guilty by their wife.

That’s better

Goodnight 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.