The Worst Vacation Ever?

August 6, 2009 -

John Heald

One thing I always promised you and myself from the outset of this blog thingy was that it would contain the good, the bad and the ugly………..and that is what I have continued……..I hope… provide you with. I never wanted the blog to be a vitriolic ( thanks to Jenner De La Tights from PR who introduced me to that word earlier this week ) proclamation that everything Carnival and I do is perfect………….because its not…………and before I continue I want to thanks Gerry Cahill and the senior management at Carnival for allowing me to write what happens as it happens.

We arrived in Costa Rica as scheduled at 9:30am and by 10:00am which is our official arrival time the gangways were out and we were ready to get guests ashore…………..but we couldnt. There was some complication with the paper work that we are required to complete when we enter a port. And that meant that we were an hour or so delayed in getting guests ashore………and that is not a good thing.

So anyway, I had apologized and told the guests what had happened and that we were waiting for the authorities to check all the paper work…………..although as you will now see one or two had their own conspiracy theories as to why we were delayed.

Guest: MR——–Ref: 840007211A
Cabin: 2355 Booking#: 1Z2T73 Added-Changed: 08/05/09 – 08/05/09

Gst called the GSD to say that he thought the announcement made by the Cruise Director was a lie and that like Honduras there was a problem in Costa Rica and that it was unsafe to go ashore. Guest said that he would not be going ashore and wanted to cancel his tour.

GSA explained to the guest that this was not the case but the guest insisted on a refund.

Not much I can say about this one except I noticed the guest had a Latin last name and I wonder………..if sometime in his life he had been through a uprising or maybe he had lived through the Castro regime……….just a thought…………anyway, I will call and have a chat with him today.

So, eventually the guests went ashore and the Captain gave me permission to add on another hour so instead of a 5:30pm back on board time we gave the guests the news that they did not have to be back to the ship until 6:30pm thus replacing most of the time that they had lost due to our error.

And despite the fact that it was raining and despite the fact that there had been a delay, 99% of the guests seemed to understand totaly, except what had happened and moved on……………… fact…………the only negative comment we received apart from the one above was this one

Worst Cruise ever letter

The cruise from hell? ……..the worst vacation of their lives? While I have total sympathy for this family and will do everything I can to make the last three days as fun as I can ……………….. is this really………………really……………the first time anything has gone wrong on one of their many vacations?

Have this family never had massive arguments because nobody remembered to pack the magnetic Scrabble? Have their children not get travel sick and vomited all over the rent a car from Hertz? Have the kids never fallen over while riding their bikes and spent two weeks screaming as Mum picks gravel out of their knees?

Did they all remember their passports? Was their luggage never lost? Was Coca-Cola not knocked off the flip-down aeroplane table on to jeans that became sticker and nastier as the flight progressed? Are none of the children so embarrassed by their parents’ summer outfits as their Dad wears the briefest of Speedos on the beach?

Has nobody had food poisoning?

Is the air-conditioning working perfectly in every car they have rented and every hotel bedroom they have stayed in? Did nobody get lazy about the sun cream because it was a bit cloudy and then blister like purple bubble wrap? Has Dad never drunk a few too many Pina Colada’s and spent rather too long talking to the woman with the big hooters. Have there been no rushes to the toilet after eating weird looking shellfish? Surely a camera has been lost? Or a cell phone dropped in a pool…….or maybe because of the aforementioned shellfish you never made it out of the pool? No problems because Mum and Dad want some rumpy pumpy in the tiny hotel room just for once………you little bastards ………….. it isn’t all that much to ask, can’t you just go and play on your own for a bit like other children?

This evening I have sent this family some wine at dinner, a fruit basket to the cabin and some tokens for the arcade for the kids and later today I will be chatting with the guests to see if I can turn them around. But sometimes…… have to admit that this may be a lost cause. I would be an idiot to say that cruising is for everyone………it isn’t…… the same way as having your nipple pierced isn’t for everyone……occasionally you are going to meet someone who doesn’t have a great time no matter what you do………..but the worst vacation ever?………..The cruise from hell?………………my arse.

Time for today’s questions………………here we go.

KT Asked:
I am confused (happens frequently) about sea trials. When the ship went out for the trials there weren’t any tables or beds or other stuff on board apparently from the pictures. Now that equipment is being added. Then there will be lots of crew and passengers on board when she enters service. Does all that extra weight (equipment and people) make a difference in how a ship handles? I know my car handles differently when fully loaded but maybe not a ship at sea? Please explain this to me.

I love the Friday blogs with the beautiful pictures of Kye. There really should be a “Carnival Kye”

Thank you

John Says:
Hello Kathy
Thats a great question. When a ship goes on sea trials she is tested for many things, balance, speed, handling etc and even though things like people, bedding and toilet brushes are not onboard yet the people with beards scribble things down on bits of paper while munching on a tofu sandwich and calculate what the ship needs to do to compensate for this. The sea trial involves not only performance testing the vessel and its engines, but is also the time when many major systems are checked out. A sea trial is used by Carnival and the Fincantieri shipyard as a crucial time in evaluating the vessel’s operating mechanics and instruments. I am sure there is a more professional answer I can give you to your question and so this was to keep you going until I ask the Captain ………… which I will and get back to you soon……………in fact……… about making soon………now!

Hello Kathy,
To answer your question, of course during the sea trial the ship was lighter than in a normal operations, but not that lighter to create a difference on handling the ship.

I can only tell you she is the most beautiful ship of the fleet.

Ciao Carlo
Capt. Carlo QUEIROLO

There you go Kathy – a personal message from the captain of your Carnival Dream.

Thanks so much for the kind words and maybe Kye will be with me for the naming ceremony of the Carnival Magic…………that would be brilliant.

I will write again soon with your answer.
Best wishes to you all

Marty Paul Asked:
Hello John, I have now become a loyal daily reader of your blog and I’m hooked! Thanks for all the great information that you provide.

My girlfriend and I are booked on the 10/15 sailing of the Carnival Dream, and I had a question about the spa deck (deck 12). We are in spa balcony cabin 12204 and I’ve noticed on the deck plans that there is a large unnamed space forward of cabin 12202. What is this space?

Is there where Fun ship Freddy lives? I know it is a mystery…

John Says:
Hello Marty
I get very excited when I read that new people have discovered my blog thingy and as we approach 5 million readers I hope that more and more will join this wonderful family that everyone has created here and that people like you continue to enjoy my daily musings ……………. bugger…………I just did the hit the caps key thing and then think I un hit it and therefore spent the minute typing, deleting and typing the word musings over and over again……bugger……I hate CAPS LOCK.

Congrat…………bugger did it again…………..congratulations on booking your Carnival Dream cruise for October 2009.

The space next to your cabin is an Air Conditioning station and by the way……Fun Ship Freddy lives in the smokestack.

Have a wonderful cruise and if you need anything else before you sail please let me know

Best wishes

Vetfriend Asked:
John please respond..
John I wonder if anytime dining is making it more difficult for guests to receive confirmed dining seating’s? I have been trying to book a cruise for the first week in October 2009 out of Florida and everything that looks good to me is waitlisted for early dining… Eating late at night is not an option for me so I have not booked yet.


John Says:
Hello Joe
I don’t think it’s anything to do with anytime dining. It may be the fact that it’s quite close to the sailing date. Anyway, go ahead and book and let me help with your dining request. Let me know your cabin number and sailing date etc and I will see what we can do for you mate.

Best wishes

Bball24 Asked:
Dear John, (please reply)
Sorry if I’m posting this in the wrong place (I’m new to the whole blog thingy). My parents are taking my friend and me on a cruise for my 16th birthday. We will be sailing on the Fascination on August 17-22, 2009. It will be my second cruise and my first cruise with Carnival. I just have a few questions.

First, since we booked kind of last minute, both dinner seatings were full and we had to be waitlisted. Does this mean that we will definitely be able to eat in the dining room but might have to wait for a table? I sure hope we’ll still be able to eat in the dining room every night because that’s one of the best parts of a cruise.

Also, I’ve seen a lot about the program for younger kids but not much about activities for older teens. What kind of activities are offered for 16-year-olds like my friend and me?

Last, I’ve seen cards for unlimited soft drinks or for a number of alcoholic beverages, but are there cards where I could get a number of drinks like non-alcoholic strawberry daiquiris and stuff like that?

Thanks a lot. I know you probably get a lot of questions, and I appreciate you taking the time to answer them.

Thanks Again,

John Says:
Hello Natalie
Your post made it to me Natalie so let me see what I can do to help you. You must be very excited that your parents are taking you on a cruise for your 16th birthday. My parents took me camping and I had to poo in a bucket.

As you didn’t get a confirmed dining reservation there is a good chance that you may have to eat bread and cheese in your cabin and if your lucky…….we will send a few bits of leftover chocolate melting cake to you one night ………….. kidding…………of course silly………you will be able to eat in the dining room and you will love the food and the fun service.

When you get onboard you will receive your Sail & Sign card which is also your cabin key and will have your dining information written on it. As a 16 year old you are going to be in 16 year old heaven that is Club O2. This is a club for 15 – 17 year olds and includes a room dedicated just to you and the new friends you will make. There will be daily and nightly activities such as dancing, kissing and listening to Pee Diddly and Snoopy the Dog music. There will also be scavenger hunts, deck parties and much, much more. When you get onboard have a look at the Club O2 Caper which will be in your cabin and go and have fun.

The fountain soda cards are only for unlimited sodas, ice tea and fruit punch. However, your Sail & Sign card will enable you to purchase strawberry thingies and other non alcoholic drinks…………as long as your parents don’t mind. It’s going to be a great cruise and I am sure you know how lucky you are to be on your second cruise and I hope you have a wonderful birthday.

Peace out my dog

Tracy T Asked:
Hi John! Please Reply!
I really enjoy your blog thingy. I will be cruising for the 3rd time on the Carnival Dream in Jan. 2010. I am so excited that this definitely helps stay in cruise mode for the next few months.

We are bringing several new cruisers with us on our upcoming cruise and they have been asking a lot of questions, which I am more than happy to answer. However, they asked about the different foods on the ship and wanted to know if they serve crab legs on board, too. I don’t recall seeing crab legs on the dinner menu or at any of the many buffets. Don’t get me wrong there is a HUGE selection. Can you tell me if they serve them at some time during the duration of a 7 day cruise? If not, then why? We are from the Midwest and it seems that if you are cruising that crab legs would be an obvious menu item.

You are awesome. Thanks for your response.
Tracy T

John Says:
Hello Tracy T
It won’t be long before your Carnival Dream cruise is here and I will do my best to keep you informed and excited until January arrives. Please don’t worry about asking questions, that’s what I am here for and especially as you are introducing new people to the fun world of Carnival for which I am very grateful. While we serve a lobster in the dining room as well as crab cakes in the steak house but we don’t serve crabs legs. We do have so much choice that I guess the simple reason is that there isn’t room on the various menus to serve everything. I am sure you are looking forward to trying the new pasta station on the Lido deck as well as the amazing Mongolian Wok. So, no crabs legs and although that may make you a little sad there are many happy crabs tonight running free along a beach with their partners …….and none are limping.

Have a chat with your friends and let them know if they need anything to please let me know.

Best wishes to all

Kathy Asked:
Hi John,
Please Reply,
Hi John, I hope you are starting to get over your cold; I have kept you in my prayers that it does not go into any worse since you are unable to just stay in bed and nurse it as they ask.

Now to my question. I have been wondering about this since I cruised the Carnival Pride last October and was just reminded about it when you were talking about the comment cards. The CD said that out of all of the comment cards one would be pulled to win a cruise, now this is where it is confusing for me. I was told that that only one cruise is given out a month from all the ships, not from individual ships per week. Is that true and would you mind explaining how that contest works.

Please send my love to Heidi and Kye, I really look forward to their pictures every Friday.

Best Wishes from your Bloggy Thinggy fan,

John Says:
Hello Kathy

Thanks so much for thinking of me. My cold lingers on but I have to keep going off course and knowing people like you are thinking of me makes it easier. The comment card drawing is made on each ship at the end of each cruise. The winner’s name is sent to the Miami office and on the 30th of each month the names are placed into a drawing and one name is chosen randomly to win the cruise. The names of the winner and what ship they sailed on is then sent to the ships so we know who won. I will start to publish the names here on the blog thingy and I think it would be nice if we did so also on

Thanks so much for the kind words and Heidi, Kye and I all send our best to you and the family.

Wes and Liz, Manchester England asked:
Hi John
Please reply if you get the chance.

When you are over the pond, the time difference allows me to read your blogs first thing when I get into the office when I am doing my ‘environmental scanning’ (reading the morning news headlines).

It gets me in a good mood for the rest of the day

I agree about the exceeding expectations comment, as a seasoned Carnival customer, like you said I know what the Carnival product is and I know what to expect, that’s why we keep coming back. Time it was changed.

I notice on, I think it was yesterday’s blog that you mentioned that as we passengers were boarding the Dream for her inaugural cruise, you would be walking down the gangplank and heading home. I take it that we are not going to see you at all on that cruise, last time you wrote about your schedule you thought you may be on board for the first few days.

If we miss each other I suppose I can keep the cigar I was going to get you until perhaps we finally make a Bloggers cruise in Sept 2010!!!

Mind you we do hope to be onboard as early as possible as we are staying in Civitavecchia the night before the cruise, so might see you as you disembark!!

I also noticed that the naming ceremony and celebrations are going to take place in New York and not on our cruise…..As our American cousins might say …’what a bummer’ we were looking forward to something special.

Can’t wait for the photos of the Dream staterooms.

Regards and best wishes to you as well as Heidi and Kye.
Wes and Liz

John Says:
Hello Wes and Liz
It is obvious that the majority of you all agree with me that the “exceeded my expectations” wording on the comment card does not sum up people’s feelings about the fun they have had on the cruise. I am working now with the office to see if we can get this changed without three months of meetings to decide to do so. I will indeed not be there for the beginning of the cruise but…… looks pretty certain that I will join you all in Bermuda so we can have a bloggers get together and sail back into New York. I will confirm this very soon but it looks like that’s the plan so keep that cigar handy. There will be photos of the staterooms next month and I will focus on all the different type of state rooms that your Carnival Dream has to offer.

So, fingers crossed it will be a cigar and a cup of monkey tea then soon.

Best wishes to you both and put the kettle on for me

MARY Asked:
Dear John, (please reply)
I have read your blog from the beginning and continue to enjoy it very much. Thank you for your dedication.

Lately, there seems to be a few who write to you asking why you have not answered their question and replied to them etc. They don’t realize, as you have posted and stated numerous times that you have so many queries that you cannot get to all of them all at once. It could be that they have not read all your postings to have seen your previous comments re regarding the above or they may be new posters who are not aware that it takes a few days before they will see their question.

May I make a couple of suggestions? Post the date the questions were sent to you underneath the name of the sender so the readers can see the date the questions were received and/or in the section where we leave replies and comments, have a note there to state that replies may take a few days to be answered. That way they will realize that their question may take a few days to be answered.

I do not know if you answer them in the order that you receive them and if not, then disregard this whole posting and do not post this in your blog as I do not want to open up a whole new can of worms for you to deal with. I can just read all the postings asking why someone else’s question was more important than theirs to be posted first. If however you answer them as you receive them, then my suggestion might be a way to let readers know of the time delay.

Keep up your good work as many continue to enjoy your blog,

John Says:
Thanks for the words of support. The questions marked John Please Reply are sent to me by one of the 344 Stephanies each day. I ask them to send me 10 per day as that is normally all time permits me to answer while I am on a ship. I can answer more when I am home but for now, it’s ten a day although I will try to answer more.

This means that there is probably a good five days minimum gap between bloggers posting the questions and me answering them. I hope everyone understands and the date idea is a very good one and I will see if Stephanie can send me the date when the questions were posted so everyone can see where I am up to.

I will continue to do my best to provide a good level of customer service and just hope everyone has a dollop of patience when it comes to my replies.

Thanks again Mary and best wishes

Katiel53 Asked:
John, (Please Reply)
I just wanted to give my opinion of the free drinks at the end of the cruise. I personally would prefer the drinks be at the Captain’s party. That night is the most festive and I believe sets the tone for the week.

I do understand having a type of farewell and thank you, but it seems, to me, that we would be too busy packing etc. to attend. Also, it is just before early seating for dinner which may be inconvenient for some people.

If Carnival wants to do both, as mentioned in your blog, perhaps the discount on drinks could be the last night. That would leave guests with the idea that Carnival cares about them, and if the discount were available for several hours, or all night, everyone would be able to participate if they should desire.

Thanks for letting me give my opinion as well as posting the pictures of Dream. We are excited to be sailing on her. I wish we were sailing on her when you were onboard, but I’m sure your time at home is well deserved.

John Says:
Hello Katiel53
The main stay of this blog thingy is the chance for people to express their views and know that they are read and acted upon by people at the highest level at Carnival. Sometimes we may agree and sometimes we may disagree but your input has never been so vital. Thanks then for taking the time to write. At the moment the swapping of the Captain’s Party complimentary drinks to a farewell party is still in a trial basis on the Carnival Valor and we shall see soon if it is something that we will continue with. I promise to let you all know as soon as I do.

Thanks again for taking the time to write.

Best wishes

Tim Kriebel, MCPO US Navy (Ret) Asked:

John: Please Reply:
Does the Carnival Dream have a Sports Bar???? I have scoured the deck plans on Carnival’s site and do not see any mention of a Sports Bar. What’s the real scoop?

John Says:
Hello Tim
Your Carnival Dream does not have a specific sports bar as we have on the Destiny and Conquest class ships but it does have full sports coverage in the casino bar. This remember is open plan and behind the bar we have four huge plasma screens ready to show the Miami Heat winning the 2010 NBA finals. The Casino Bar, The Ocean Plaza and the Lobby will be fighting each other to be the hub of the ship……..wonder who will win.

Thanks for writing in Tim and my best wishes to you and the family.

Jo Asked:
John — Please reply
I am very interested in the “behind the scenes” tour. I apologize if this is a repeat and you have already answered — I try to read the blog but sometimes have to skim it in the interest of time. We are sailing on the Dream 2/6/10. If I read correctly, it says that if you want to do the “behind the scenes” tour, you must sign up at the excursion desk on the ship. Is this correct? Also, is there a charge for this tour? I think this is the BEST idea. I have been so interested for a long time. This will be our 6th or 7th cruise and I’m very excited! Thanks in advance for the info!

John Says:
Hello Jo
Sometimes I wonder if my blogs are too long and like you, most people just “skim.” Anyway, yes the Behind the Fun tour does have a fee applied to it and it will also be ready for your Carnival Dream voyage next year. It will not be widely advertised outside of the blog thingy so the best advice to anyone who wants to take it is to sign up as soon as you come onboard. So you have the Behind the Fun tour on your Carnival Dream……… wonder you are excited

Best wishes

Richard C Asked:
My wife and I are sailing on the Dream March 20 2010 which I think you will be CD. We had you as our CD on the Triumph in 2002, our first cruise ever. We’ve had good CDs since, but you are the best.

I have a question for you. We booked an aft balcony for the first time ever. We thought that it would be nice to have the larger balcony. However, an experienced cruiser warned me that aft balconies tend to get dirty from the soot coming out of the funnel. Do you know how bad this can get? I seem to recall in one of your blogs that you had relatives stay in an aft cabin on a cruise with you.


John Says:
Hello Richard
Thanks so much for those kind words. I will be the CD when you sail and I will do my very best to give you the best cruise ever. With regard to your concern about the smoke stack causing soot to land on you and your balcony I can honestly say that I have not heard of this problem. Certainly not on the new ships I have been on in the last ten years. I have not seen it reported on board or read about it here on the blog. What ship did your friends sail on when this happened I wonder? What I can assure you of is that your state room balcony will provide views and cruise memories that will be everlasting.

See you soon. Best wishes.

Robin Asked:
Hi John, (please reply)
What great pictures from Alaska! Hubby and I are headed there on the Spirit 8/19/09 for our 10th anniversary (and our first kid/family-free vacation since our honeymoon!)

Do you have any suggestions for fun/romantic/couple type things to do? We’ve already got the steakhouse booked for our anniversary (8/21), but what else can two second honeymooners (that don’t drink!) do?

Also, what kind of vegetarian dishes are available in the Steakhouse? I know there will be plenty in the Main Dining Room, but I’m worried about the Steakhouse.


John Says:
Hello Robin
Please don’t worry about the steakhouse. Although the menu is obviously geared to meat lovers there are dishes for the vegetablists out there like you. The appetizer is a goat cheese and pumpkin thingy and the main course is a gorgeous mushroom struedel which I have had myself and it is excellent. Try the wasabi mashed potato as well and of course, the deserts………..well as a vegetarian you should have two really………’s only fair.

Make sure you walk the deck at night, see all the shows and do something you have never done before. Maybe sit in the piano bar, let your hair down and have a good old sing song around the piano…… life and be spirited and most of all enjoy quality time together.

Have a wonderful time. Best wishes to you both.

Mr. Derek Asked:
John – Please Reply.
I am thinking of sailing on the 19th of December and would love to sail with you. The list of CD’s does not include your name for that period. Does that mean you are off?

Please Advise.
Mr. Derek

John Says:
Hello Mr. Derek
Thanks mate for wanting to sail with me in December. Unfortunately I will not be on a ship but home for the holidays with the family. I return to work on your Carnival Dream in late January………..can you sail then?

I hope we get to meet on board one day soon

Best wishes

Elizabeth Asked:
Please reply

I love balconies but I don’t know what a cove balcony is. Could you explain it? Would I find one on the Conquest?


John Says:
Hello Elizabeth
Balconies ……….they certainly do make a difference to the cruise experience and the new cove balconies which can only be found on your Carnival Dream are another great way to experience fresh air and stunning sea views. You will find these on deck 2 and a cove balcony stateroom will have a partially enclosed veranda that from which it feels like you can reach out and touch the ocean. They are not available on the Carnival Conquest.

I will be taking photos of them during my next visit in September so keep reading the blog.

Best wishes

Paula Asked:
Hi Jon, (please reply)

Have been enjoying your blog thingy. Last December on Imagination was our first cruise – my hubby 60th celebration. Enjoyed it enough to book Destiny on August 10, to celebrate my same milestone. I understand from other requests, that bridge tours aren’t allowed due to security risks (damn the terrorists – they have won). Anyway, are there any “behind the scenes tours”, such as the engine room perhaps? We would really like to see what keeps the ships running. Please let me know – thanks, and we are looking forward to a great trip!

John Says:
Hello Paula
Yes, in a way those bastards did win because the industry has had to stop taking people en mass to the bridge and the engine rooms. We will soon be starting a tour called Behind the Fun which allows a very small group (16 max) to purchase a tour that will offer three hours of guided tours of the bridge, engine control room, store rooms and much more. This will be a fleet wide tour by the end of the year. So, I am so sorry that there are no tours this time although the Carnival Destiny will offer a galley tour.

Thanks for sailing with us again and I wish you a wonderful cruise

Best wishes

Michael Tomlinson Asked:
John, (Please reply if you would like)
It has now been over a month since you said you would be sending my friends a gift that had never been sent to the cabin. I know that you get a lot of requests like this and I know that it is easy for things to be overlooked. There is no need to send anything as this point but I wanted to let you know that they never received anything.

As they say in Jamaica, “No worries, mon”. I will continue to follow your blog as I enjoy your humor so much. I wish you and your beautiful family my best. Your girls are indeed beautiful. I am looking forward to my next cruise on the Dream in June of 2010.

Thanks for everything that you do.

John Says:
Hello Mike
I am sorry that they never received the gift when they cruised and the cruise director who forgot can’t be named but can be recognized because he is walking around with my shoe hanging out his arse.

I have not forgotten and I will mail it this weekend from Fort Lauderdale……or someone else will as I can’t get off the ship.

Please forgive my tardiness and thanks for the very kind words mon

Best wishes

Canuck Cruiser Asked:
Hey John,
Please reply………….
Just a quick question. Seeing all of the great pictures of the new DREAM has me wondering about one of the new slides. Particularly the one that ends up in a BOWL . Is this where all bad passengers will be sent and then the bowl flushed into the ocean? Where do you end up? I can’t see any exit point!

Please advise…………..thanks LOL

B&D from Canada

John Says:
Hello B and D
That’s very funny and as I have promised to be one of the very first to go down the slide I guess it’s actually true. The exit point is a door on the side …you step over the rail and exit. We will have a staff member there on radio to tell the other staff member that is clear for the next person to slide on down. It’s going to be brilliant.

Thanks for the great post. Best wishes to you both.

Linda Hernacki Asked:
John Please respond: I love the bedtime story, and hope one day soon when Mike and I cruise with you again to see it again! I have never seen you do the Dolly Parton dress up; do you do that every cruise? I hope we get to see you in that get up. If you still do it, please post a picture soon. Also, I hope you find the teenagers that did this to Bonnie & Charlie’s scooters; their parents should pay for their kids’ behavior! Thanks for being who you are – a great friend, and most importantly a Great CD to ALL! We love you! Linda & Mike

John Says:
Hello Linda
While the bedtime story may provide you and other guests some merriment the sight of me in a dress is something that could replace the stomach pump in hospitals.

I truly hope that one day I can perform the bedtime story for my friends Mike and Linda

Best wishes

Len Fernman Asked:
I have just read on the Cruise Critic website that we are to register with you for a cruise gift. I am sailing with my wife on the Valor on Sunday September 6th. Our cabin number is ****. I also have another cabin with friends sailing and their gift should be sent to ****.

Thank You
Len Silva

John Says:
Hello Len
I hope you and your friends have a great cruise and I will be happy to send you a little something.
Best wishes

That’s all for today. There will be more tomorrow as I try and catch up.

Time for today’s Carnival Dream photos and as promised it is time to have a look at the Lido deck restaurant .and one of the most famous cruise ship smokestacks in the world

Dream 1

Dream 2

Dream 3

Dream 4

Dream 5

Dream 6

Dream 7

Dream 8

Dream 9

Dream 10

Now, what’s been happening in Italy from the hotel side of things? Here is the latest news from Donato the Hotel Director of your Carnival Dream.

Since last we chatted and after the sea trials, many of the rooms and storage areas have been delivered and we have spent time inspecting and making sure that all in is in order. Since July 20 we had quite a few crew members from Storeroom Operation and Housekeeping arriving, and since then we had already loaded approximately 60 containers of general merchandise and equipment on board. On site today we have 118 crew of which 61 belong to Hotel Operations. The final total hotel crew count will be 1,163 out of a total 1,332 on board.

My favorite place and I’m sure it’s also many other people’s favorite place is the atrium which on the Dream is spectacular. The new light technology and elevated entertainer’s stage over the atrium bar is also a must see. As I also mentioned in our previous chat, the Lanai and the new Ocean Plaza are great additions. I am looking forward to seeing these areas filled with guests having fun.

Thanks Donato – we all appreciate this very much and we will continue to check in with you as we reach the inaugural cruise.

Tomorrow…….a rare and special treat…… we go inside……..the engine room …………… of your Carnival Dream………….have you booked yet?

Last night while waiting for the show I sat in my underpants in my cabin flicking through the channels on the TV when I came across a talent show for dancers called So You Think You Can Dance? It appeared to be the finals or semi finals at least and even though I am to dance what Paris Hilton is to celibacy I have to admit I was hooked. There is a car, $100,000 and a part in a Las Vegas show up for grabs and — the biggest winner though — has to be dance itself.

Our production shows celebrate dance and the young professional dancers we feature on all of our ships continue to amaze and astound and even though other iconic features begin to sprout up on board our lavish and luxurious stage shows continue to lead the industry. Take the Ticket to Ride show here on the Carnival Freedom. My wonderfully talented and reasonably pretty long time pal Kerry Stables took the music of John, Paul, George and Ringo, added amazing choreography and stunning special effects and along with a cast of dancers and singers produced a show that everyone…………I mean everyone who sees it will never forget.

I may hate dancing………I may say that I would rather dip my thingy in a pool of piranhas than take to the dance floor…………..but I will say that dance lives………and here on the ships of Carnival Cruise Lines it lives at the very highest level.

Congratulations to Stephanie Leavitt and her team for the new front page of It looks fantastic and have a look at the video about the stunning variety of activities available on your Carnival Dream – featuring amongst others …….Jaime….and me.

Now, if I could just bribe Stephanie Leavitt to mention a tag thingy to my blog somewhere on the front page ………oh and one more thing……… is a message to all at Carnival……………’s CARNIVAL Dream…………’s CARNIVAL Pride………it’s CARNIVAL Imagination………….the next person I find calling a ship by its last name only will be tied to the smokestack and gagged using a pair of my underwear.

It’s been obvious on occasion that you all know more than me about what we do here at Carnival. Take the menus on the TV subject for example. There am I going “mmmmm, sounds like a great idea” when we have them on the bloody TV’s already. I mean …….. you would think I would know that, wouldn’t you?

Anyway, my apologies, we do have them on some ships and not others so I will rectify that. Thanks for putting me straight everyone.

The other day I was mentioning my Marriage Show and how strange it was. However, even though a woman swore…….even though a man lost control of his bowels and turned our seats from blue to brown……….that wasn’t the strangest thing……….oh no.

That title goes to this honeymooner who, when I walked out on stage, immediately grabbed my ..attention………….this is why

Guy in green suit

Yep……..I was dumb struck…..I stood there open mouthed ……… oh ……. Sorry ………not because of the man dressed from head to foot in kinky green spandex ………. oh no……….look behind him……….there is someone wearing a Miami Heat T-shirt ……… made my day.

Let’s Go Heat
Your friend

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.