Have I Got News For You

December 1, 2009 -

John Heald

I don’t know about you but I am sick to bloody death of this Tiger Woods thing in the news. Even this morning as I sit here in my hotel room in my underpants all CNN and Fox and MSNBC are talking about is poor Tiger…………….or Cheetah as some are calling him.

Why was Tiger Woods leaving his home at a little after 2am? How could he then hit a fire hydrant and crash into a neighbor’s tree while driving at less than 30mph, especially as police say alcohol played no part in the incident? ……………………and who cares?

OK……..Tiger is obviously far more human and less saintly than his image suggests but is this really more important than the war in Afghanistan……….Iran’s Nuclear Program and the news that I will be sharing with you at the end of today’s blog? Of course, Wolf Blister and his colleagues cant make fun of the whole thing so I thought I would see how many Tiger Woods jokes I could come up with in 8 minutes………8 because its 7:22am and by 7:30am I want to start with today’s Q and A session……………so lets see………………I cant promise they will all be funny………………but away we go.

Allegedly, the only person who can beat Tiger Woods with a golf club………………… is his wife. What’s the difference between a car and a golf ball? Tiger can drive a ball 400 yards. Tiger Woods was injured in a car accident as he pulled out of his driveway early Friday morning. It was his shortest ever drive.

What was Tiger Woods doing out at 2.30 in the morning? He’d gone clubbing with a birdie. Tiger Woods crashed into a fire hydrant and a tree. He couldn’t decide between a wood and an iron.

Perhaps Tiger should be using a driver?

Apparently, Tiger admitted this crash was the closest shave he’s ever had. So Gillette has dropped his contract.

Tiger Woods wasn’t seriously injured in the crash. He’s still below par though Tiger Woods wife was worried he was seeing another girl and had made a hole in one Tiger was driving a Caddy-lac.

The girl Tiger was allegedly seeing was the niece of fellow golfer Jack Knickerloose.

And on that note I think I will stop there………………………………Time to answer today’s questions………….here we go.

Austin Asked:
JOHN – Please reply

Hey John, (sorry this is long)
We just got back from our Carnival Liberty sailing. Our schedule was reversed because of the hurricane, however the first night we had winds of 70 knots, which I believe is around 80 mph??? Holy hell—our ship was a rockin’!!!!

Just wanted to pass the word along that we took the behind the fun tour and it was great. I can’t remember the Captain’s name, but he is Carnival’s senior Captain (at least for two more months, then he retires) and very entertaining. He said that he cannot control the weather, but he can influence it! The tour was worth the money; however I recommend more of an advance warning that there are several stair climbing’s to be expected. My mother had wanted to go, but decided not to, which was a good thing afterward due to the all of the climbing. My wife wants to know if the towel folding machine could be found on ebay?!?

The “safety drill” was exactly as it has been in the past, except with no life jacket–which was good; however seated in a lounge like you did on the Carnival Leg-End would have been more nicer!

Butch, the cruise director, was one of the better cruise directors we have had (12th cruise); however he needs to watch out for his assistant – (Chris, I think?) he is hilarious!! He has an annoying laugh, but fun to watch dance, he sits with the guests at different game shows and heckles the social hosts–a riot!!!

I did want to point out, and hopefully you will pass word along—our dining room waiter (Silver restaurant, deck 4 Starboard side) Leonardo A (forgot the rest) was outstanding, along with his assistant waiter. He was very knowledgeable with the Carnival product and promoted “carnival.com” if we had any more questions about different ships, etc. He has 16 years with Carnival and had nothing negative to say. He continued his excellent service from the dining room to the Lido deck service for lunch, as he would go out of his way to see if we needed anything special, or to simply ask how our day was going.

I only have one complaint, and of course it’s the same complaint that I have with all of the Conquest-class ships….PLEASE MOVE THE INTERNET CAFE AWAY FROM THE CIGAR BAR!!!!!! I noticed a door that leads to outdoor deck on deck 4. Perhaps an alternative entrance could be utilized?? Also, we were not able to get to your blog site without being charged minutes. We could get to Carnival.com, but not the “johnhealdsblog.com”.

Anyway, I can’t complain much, as my wife won the free-cruise raffle!! And something else that I normally gripe about, which has nothing to do with Carnival, but something that gripes you too…..Customs/Immigration/Border Patrol…..picture this: We have a late flight, so we stay on the ship as late as we can. We hear the final all-call, get off the ship call. We have our luggage in hand; make our way to the “cattle lines” of people waiting to go through customs. The officer asks for the customs form, asks how many people were traveling with me, I said 3, she looked for the three people, then told me to enjoy my afternoon. She didn’t ask for ID, birth certificates, passport, nothing. I went from deck 3 on the ship to the streets outside of the terminal in less than 5 minutes. So now I wonder, was she tired of being there all day, or are we slowly getting back to the pre 9/11 days and easing up on security?

Anyway, just wanted to make sure you saw the note of praise for our dining room waiter and assistant waiter, and that the ACD has a lot of potential—actually, shouldn’t all of the cruise director’s be a little worried this week, that all of the ships are being entertained by ACD’s—life goes on without the CD’s? Haha, thanks for your great blog thingy.

Hickory, NC

John Says:
Hello Austin

What a fabulous way to start today’s Q and A session. Let’s begin with the one negative and that’s the cigar bar being close to the internet cafe. There is no point in saying anything else here except that this was a mistake on our part from the Carnival Destiny through to Carnival Splendor. I realize that for non smokers having to pass through the bar to get to the Internet stations is not pleasant and I wish I could say that it’s something we are going to be able to change……….but unfortunately we cannot. I apologize for the inconvenience this caused you. Then there is the access to my blog which I know is still not available onboard………….I again have failed miserably here but let me see if I can ask again……………….hope springs eternal.

On to the positives………..the many positives………….that you mentioned in that great postings. I have said many times here on the blog thingy how proud I am of Butch and it looks like I will have to look out for Chris the ACD, he sounds great………….apart from his laugh!

You met Captain Casula and I can honestly say there is nobody like him…………………he is a true individual and we will miss him. He is a true man of the sea and so much so that as soon as he retires he will sail on the Queen Mary 2 on her world cruise……………..that’s how much he truly loves being on the ocean.

Thanks again for the words of praise and I will make sure that Leonardo receives a commendation for a job brilliantly done.

Thanks again for taking the time to write and for all your kind words.
Best wishes to you all

Linda Stein Asked:
Hi John. Please reply when you get the chance.

My husband and I just returned from our Miracle cruise 11/4 – 11/12/09. We had a great time. Everything was perfect from the food to the shows to the ports to the wonderful and friendly service of every member of the crew we encountered. I just love Miracle and was so happy to get back to her. She did not disappoint and I cannot wait until I book my next Carnival cruise.

You were right when you said we would love Malcolm as the CD. He was very funny and very informative and we really enjoyed him. He has a wonderful sense of humor. He really made me laugh over and over again. He also did a tribute to our American Hero’s on 11/11 which was Veterans Day and the night of our farewell party. He asked all the vets in the audience to stand up then invited them to come on the stage with him. There he had each one introduce him/herself, tell their rank and their type of service and how long each of them served. They all got a standing ovation and it was a wonderful way to remember our Hero’s on their special day.

Malcolm also organized the “On Deck for the Cure Walk” for breast cancer like you said he would. I was very glad to see that this was going to happen and thank you again for sending word along to Malcolm to see it done. Unfortunately, even though I did make my donation to the cause, I missed the walk.

Going through the capers while sitting on deck that day I noticed that the walk was taking place and the meet time was 11:45am outside the Bacchus dining room. You know I wanted to do this walk because someone close to me had just been diagnosed and had her surgery just before I left for the trip. So I went to the meeting point where I saw several people already waiting there with their walk T-shirts and wrist bands. “How did you get those already?” I asked. They told me that an announcement had been made over the PA system the night before saying to go to the Formalities shop to sign up for the walk. I never heard that announcement so I ran up to the Formalities shop. I was only gone about 5 minutes but by the time I got back the group was gone. I assumed that for a walk they would be going around either deck 10 or the walking track on deck 11 so I ran up there to catch up. I was wrong; they were nowhere to be seen. I never did find them and completely missed the walk. I later found out they were walking around deck 3. I felt bad that I had missed the walk but at least I got to make my donation to the cause. But I was really annoyed that I never heard the announcement.

That brings me to the only thing I have a beef with the entire week. Two times during our stay the alarms went off in the middle of the night in our cabins, each time at around 2am because someone was ill or hurt. It was very jarring and quite frightening and each time I had a very difficult time getting back to sleep. Now, do not get me wrong. When a person is ill or injured or in trouble the crew, the medical staff, the officers, absolutely everyone who can help NEEDS to know about it immediately. However, I do not see the point of waking up every passenger on board at 2am as if there was anything we could do to help. They were also the only announcements that were made over the PA system directly into the cabins. Regular, routine announcements, the ones we really wanted to hear like the announcements Malcolm made about activities or changes in schedules and/or the announcements from the Captain about weather updates etc. are broadcast on the PA system on the open decks and in the hall ways only. I missed basically every announcement they made when I was in my cabin with the TV on or if I was in the bathroom. The only way to guarantee that you hear the announcements while in your cabin is to keep the door propped open. A little awkward if you’re trying to dress. I missed the On Deck for the Cure walk because I never heard the announcement. But I on deck 7 knew at 2am that the ship’s doctor was needed on deck 5!

I just don’t get it! It was really annoying and the only negative thing about the entire week. It would be very nice if they could figure out a way to re-route the announcements so that the announcements that come into the cabin are the one’s passengers really need to hear like the CD and Captain announcements and true emergencies, like if there is a fire or if there is a true ships emergency every passenger needs to know about. The other announcements should be in the crew and medical quarters where the people who are trained to help can hear them but not disturb every passenger on the ship.

But all in all it was a wonderful, fabulous and unforgettable cruise. Well worth the 11 months wait to get there. I can’t wait to go back!

John Says:
Hello Linda

Another great review and postings like this are so valuable to us here at Carnival. I am so glad you enjoyed Malcolm as your CD and considering that he was in intensive care 6 months ago it is a miracle that he is on the Carnival Miracle and healthy and giving guests a great time. I am so sorry that you missed the walk on the deck, it appears that this was not communicated properly and my apologies for that. We never ever make announcements in the cabins unless it is an absolute necessity. Regular announcements such as those from the Cruise Director explaining the day’s events etc are never made inside the cabins as people may be resting.

However, in the case of an emergency or someone who has been taken seriously ill the quickest way and most proficient way to get the response teams to where they need to be is through the public address system. I know this as you said can be a little disconcerting but I promise you this is done only in extreme circumstances. It is very rare that you had two such calls in one week. If there was an emergency such as the ship being in difficulty, a medical emergency, etc then we will indeed use the emergency public address system. However, for every one person who wants announcements about bingo, activities etc in the cabin I promise you that there are many more who do not want them. ………………..actually Linda, thanks for this because maybe I am wrong here so let’s ask your fellow bloggers. How many of you would like all the announcements broadcast in the cabins……………..please let me know?

So, I am so glad that you had a wonderful cruise and I hope you can now appreciate why the announcements were made as they were.

Please let me know if you have a follow up question.
Best wishes

Terri Asked:
(please reply)

John: Can you please let me know for sure that you WILL be on the Carnival Dream, January 23rd. My husband has never met you, I usually sail with my friends, Leslie (Butlin girl) from Skegness and David from Yorkshire, I’m the Aussie (don’t hold that against me) they said to say hi and will see you soon a cruse.

I have talked my husband into going on the Carnival Dream and cannot wait for him to meet you. I’m sure I read someplace that you were on it thru March, but can you verify.

Thanks John for all you do to make everyone laugh. There’s been many days I’ve needed a good laugh being in real estate these days, when I do I go to your blog and immediately feel uplifted.

John Says:
Hello Terri

I love Aussies………….I am just jealous that you get to wear shorts at Christmas time and never understand why you bother having kitchens in your homes when you cook every meal on the barbi.

I will be on your Carnival Dream on the 23rd. I won’t be the CD as I will have a week’s handover with Todd but we shall still have a chance to meet each other and have some fun. I am so glad that I have a chance to me meet your hubo and thanks for all the kind words about the blog thingy.
See you soon
Best wishes to all

Steveo Asked:
John, Please reply.

My wife and I just completed our cruise on the Carnival Destiny, we got off the ship on Thursday 11/12/09. As usual we had a terrific time and hated to leave this beautiful fun ship. We did encounter the aftermath of Hurricane Ida, with some strong winds, but nothing to dampen the fun aboard the Destiny. I have to point out an incredible experience we had aboard the ship, we had the pleasure in being served by a headwaiter named Fu. Fu made our dinner experiences unforgettable; he offered us the very best service we have ever encountered on or off a cruise ship. After hearing my wife’s comments on how much she loved the pumpkin soup, Fu arranged to have a bowl (or 2) of this delicacy for her every night of the cruise, even though it was not offered on the menu. We expect great service aboard the fun ships, from our past experiences, but Fu is in a league of his own.

Captain Pier Paolo Scala has a great sense of humor and was very approachable, our CD Brent was terrific and we loved the shows in the Palladium lounge. I have to admit that I enjoyed the warm chocolate melting cake 5 times during our cruise, each was better than the one from the evening before! After I finish this entry I will be back online booking our next Carnival vacation, which will be my 7th and my wife Michelle’s 10th aboard the fun ships!!! We will be back on the Carnival Destiny during March of next year, and the Carnival Dream in September, as we celebrate another anniversary aboard a fun ship. Hopefully Fu will again be onboard the Carnival Destiny and we can rekindle the friendship started this week.

John Says:
Hello Steveo.

Today’s Q and A has included some great ship reviews and here is another one of the good ship Carnival Destiny. Captain Scala is a class act and I truly hope that one day soon we will have a chance of working together. Fu sounds like a great chap and I will make sure that he and Brent and the entire ships crew get to read your testament of praise. I hope you continue to enjoy the blog thingy.
Best wishes and happy anniversary

Alan Asked:

Hope you are well and that you got your cheeseburger. Sorry I missed the ceremony on the Carnival Web site but my work doesn’t allow streaming. I’m sure it was fantastic. But even though I missed it I will be seeing MY Carnival Dream in just 10 more days.

You may not remember but I wrote to you a while back voicing my concerns about smoking policy in the Casino and you re-assured me that it will be fine and even asked me to write back after the cruise to give you my impressions. (I thought that was VERY nice of you).

As much as my family and I are looking forward to our “DREAM” vacation coming up the week of Thanksgiving I there is a department within Carnival that is leaving me with a very bad taste and causing more gas than if I had eaten several bowls of chili. It concerns the people who handle the Early Saver Program. I know there was a comment about the ES a couple of days ago but I have to vent about my problems with the program. First let me say that I love the idea of the ES program that allows us to make sure we can ALWAYS take advantage when we find lower fairs after we originally book. Also the program worked great…up until I made my final payment. Since that time, trying to get the credits for my OBC from rate reductions I found has been like pulling teeth. It took 3 weeks to finally get the credit I was applying for the first time I found a reduced rate. I am now involved in another fight to get a new reduction I found.

I submitted the online form originally on Oct 18th ($279.00 senior rate for passengers 3 and 4 which is GREAT…if I can get it!). I re-submitted on Oct 31st because I had not heard back on my request. I also sent an e-mail to my PVP to let her know about what was going on. She wrote back and stated “the supervisors are asking me you to wait until Monday” which was Nov 1st. I waited and no response so I gave it another couple of days. On Nov 3rd I wrote to my PVP and she replied “The Early Saver Department is working on your request. We should know by Friday” that would have been Nov 6th. The 6th comes with no answer or e-mail from either PVP or the early saver department. On November 9th I talked to my PVP again and she talked some supervisor and requested to fill out the online form again and that I would hear in 48 hours! So…I did submit again!!! So now we are here on Nov 13th and still no word. Sooooooo (are you detecting a trend here John?) I called my PVP at 11 AM eastern time about this continuing problem and she said she was tied up with another customer and would “call me right back”. Well I got home from work at 5:15 PM and checked my e-mail since I had not heard back from her. Upon opening my e-mail I found an email from her which was sent at 3:49 PM (so much for calling right back). And to my shock…surprise…dismay (pick any term you would like) she tells me that my request was never received and that I have to re-submit (if we are counting that will make 4 times!!!!!) and have to allow yet another 3 days to see if I hear anything!!!! Needless to say that was NOT acceptable to me and after some conversation back and forth she told me that “her supervisor” is going to handle this problem and I will get a call on Monday.

Now you can call me a cynic…but I do not have a warm fuzzy feeling about how this is going to work out.

John, I truly do love Carnival and am so looking forward to our upcoming cruise but this is leaving a VERY bad taste in my mouth. The best way I can describe the frustration I am feeling is the following: You, John, by using the ES program that I will get to have “rumpy pumpy” with 3 of the most beautiful women in the world…at the SAME TIME (you are obviously trying to kill me but that is a different story). Anyway as the selected day for the rumpy pumpy approaches you let me know that I will have to wait a few more days. And then you postpone the time again and again. Finally the day arrives after being put off again and again and you tell my “sorry…no rumpy pumpy for you BUT you can wash, dry and fold all the underwear I used over the past 6 months instead of having the rumpy pumpy”

At the rate this is going it will finally be resolved 2 weeks AFTER we get back from our Thanksgiving week cruise. PLEASE…PLEASE…PLEASE tell/ask the people with beards to either get the ES program to work or drop it all together. As it is running now the program is taking away from what should be pure and total anticipation of a fantastic cruise.

Thanks for allowing me to vent and in a long winded fashion explain a serious shortcoming to what should be a wonderful program.


PS…can’t wait until I can finally be on a cruise with you.

John Says:
Hello Alan

I know that I am writing this on the day you leave the ship and the day I join so I will start by saying that I truly hope you had a brilliant cruise and I truly look forward to reading your review here on the blog thingy. I will especially look forward to reading your comments on the casino smoking policy.

I know that the early saver policy is rather complicated but it is as you said very popular. I wrote yesterday that within the next few days I would be writing more about what this program actually is all about and have asked one of our Vice Presidents to list the simple guide to using this program. However, it appears that in the case of your sailing we had a communication breakdown and that is simply not good enough and I sincerely apologize for this. I will be asking one of our CARE team to contact you plus I will make sure that the manager of all our PVP’s read this comment. Normally, I receive nothing but words of praise for the PVP program so I was disappointed to read your concerns but thank you for letting me know so we can make sure we do better.

I hope you had fun and someone will be in touch soon.
Best wishes

Emily Asked:
Hi John, Please reply…

My name is Emily and I am 13 yrs. old. I love sailing Carnival cruises. My favorite so far was the Freedom, and I LOOOOOVE James! I was called up on stage when we cruised with James to play little bear. It was a lot of fun. I am cruising on Nov. 23rd. with my family and am bring along my best friend Maria. She has never cruised before. But is super excited. We are sailing on the brand new Carnival Dream !!!! This will be my 9th carnival cruise, and I can’t wait to hit Platinum. My mom Tammy has been on 17 cruises with carnival (you can see I don’t always get to go ;(…I have always boarded VIP status with my mom, and love how we get to get onboard ship a little early and have nice comfy couches to wait to board on. BUUUUUUUUUT we are in an adjoining cabin to my mom, and the Carnival people are saying only “her” cabin can board VIP…IS this true John? I mean we are in adjoining balcony connected with an inside door I sure hope you can fix something to let the four of us board Platinum status. Please fix it Mr. John if you can….

Thanks and jellybean hugs,
Emily from Philadelphia

John Says:
Hello Emily

How kind of you to write to me and thank you for mentioning James Dunn who is your favorite so far. He is very funny isn’t he but he is not as funny or as good looking as me.

You should be very proud that at the age of 13 you have already done 9 cruises and I know you must realize how lucky you are. I just saw this comment and obviously you have already sailed and I am so very sad that I didn’t get a chance to reply until your cruise was over. I just got onboard your Carnival Dream the same day you left and I wanted to apologize that I didn’t reply in time. I hope you all had a wonderful time and I am sure it was a wonderful surprise to see James again.

Please write to me and let me know how much fun you had.
Best wishes to all

Cassandra Asked:
Please reply…

I was just wondering if you could ask your breaded tofu eating friends why Carnival doesn’t have a mobile site! I would love to be able to look at and book cruises using my blackberry! A Blackberry App would also be cool! Thank you for all you do and I love reading your blog and hope to sail with you again soon!

John Says:
Hello Cassandra

I am so glad you enjoy the blog thingy and as requested I spoke to someone with a beard who in between hugging a tree and eating tofu on toast told me the following.

“We currently do not have a mobile site. With that said, we have looked into developing a mobile site especially for guests that are booked and I will keep you updated in the weeks ahead as to our progress.”

Thanks Mr. Beardy and I will make sure that I post any further news on this Cassandra.
Best wishes

That’s all for today. May I once again kindly apologize for being so behind in answering questions and ask that you allow at least three weeks if you need me to do anything for an upcoming cruise.

So as you know the port of Isla Roatan, Honduras has become one of our most exciting and most popular Caribbean ports of call. Carnival Corporation has spent lots of time and money to make sure that as many of you get to experience this great port and its diverse and stunning scenery and beaches. This is why we have developed the new pier facility called Mahogany Bay which includes the first ever ski lift in the world……………that leads to a beach.

This coming week the Carnival Glory and Carnival Legend will be calling there for the first ever time but the first ship to do so was part of the Carnival Family and she was the Seabourn Legend (followed by the Crown Princess………here are some photos of the ship docked and beautiful Mahogany Bay Isla Roatan.)

Just a quick follow up about the iced tea question which has reappeared again. I saw that Bill Zydecocruiser had mentioned that yes we do charge for the soda style tea served in a can as we do Coke products etc. But the ship made ice tea is still complimentary…….and there is as I have said no plans to change that.

Well, it’s been a while but here is a quick note from Heidi and Kye.

Here we are. This is what we call a lazy Sunday…..

Kye woke up and had a nappy change and a feed and is now playing with her noise making mini lion, one of her favorite toys. The weather is not inviting us to go out and with a busy week ahead we will just take it easy and stay indoors. Until lunch time that is, where we will go to Grandma and Grandpa. Grandma will cook and that is worth facing rain and storm for, as it doesn’t take us long to get there in our polar bear killing machine.

So, I won’t bore you with details on how I am doing as since Kye was born that is not a topic anymore……

To anyone who reads this and is pregnant at the moment, enjoy all the attention as once the baby is there no sod is interested in you anymore 🙂 Well, apart from your baby that is.

Kye is doing really well. I can’t tell you exactly how much she weighs as we are going to have her weighed again on Wednesday but she is at least 16lb’s. She is 28 weeks and 2 days old and is more active than 10 Energizer Bunnies! She rolls over and back, tries to sit up, wants to stand when she sits on your lap, makes noises galore and eats really well. We started solids now, sweet potato and bananas are her favorite at the moment complimented by bottles, breast and baby rice. Her high chair arrived yesterday and putting that together I thought…..this is going way too fast! (Not the putting it together…..her growing up)

Why can’t they stay like this for 5 years before they move on? Every day she does something else new and her book is full of “The first time I did…”

She is still a very happy and content baby who doesn’t give me any trouble and I hope she will be like that until she is 21. Haha! Dream on Mama!

Talking about Dreams………many of you will join John on your new dream, the Carnival Dream very soon.

For all of you who will sail, have a safe trip traveling to the ship and I wish you a wonderful time but as I have been looking at photos of this amazing new vessel, that won’t be a tough thing to do.

That’s it for me for now.

Kye and I will check in again before Christmas.

Heidi and Kye Xx

Thanks Heidi and I hope at Christmas time we can include a family photo for you all to see.

As I write your Carnival Dream is sailing from New York after a very successful few weeks here. I made an announcement on behalf of everyone at Carnival for their hard work and then at 10:20am Captain Queirolo backed the vessel out of pier 88 and sailed towards the Statue of Liberty. Normally the crew never has time to enjoy this experience as they are working so it was great to see the decks lined with most if not all of the 1,300 crew. I played Andrea Botticelli’s Time to Say Goodbye as we left and his vibrant and emotional tones added so much to this already incomparable experience passing the Statue of Liberty. You can imagine how special this site is for Mr. Ketut the stateroom Steward from Indonesia or Savio the waiter from India or Christina the Russian bar waitress…………to be sailing pass one of the most iconic features in the world ……………..is something that each and every crew member will never ever forget.

It is safe to say that the ship has performed brilliantly during hr stay in New York and let’s face it ……….if we can please 12,000 New Yorkers we can please most anyone. There were some challenges……….of course there were………….put 4,000 guests on a ship and adjustments have to be made as you go along. I know that embarking and disembarking guests from deck 0 was something of a major challenge and that is an area we will have to improve on should we come back to New York with a Dream class ship. I spoke to Ken just now and our Senior Maitre D said that there were one or two areas that they had to change service wise but said that once those changes were made the dining rooms were running smoothly and that guest comments were wonderful as usual.

Todd the Cruise Director is considering having three performances of some of the shows. The main theatre seats 1,500 people and with two sittings that 3,000 people who can see the shows. However with a count of 4000 this means that 1,000 people cannot see them and for the more popular ones such as Dancin in the Street that is a concern. It is a bit strange though because it is close to the same situation on a Conquest class ship. Last week they had 3,500 guests and their lounge seats 1,300. This means that if every seat was taken on a two sitting basis only 2600 could see the shows leaving 900 not able to see them. However, the shows, while well attended and by the way they are great shows……………were not as busy as the ones on your Carnival Dream. I suggested to Todd that maybe with the audience mostly from New York and therefore being “show people “that this may account for why both performances have been extra busy. There is also the fact that the weather outside during the first two nights in and out of New York has not been too good and so people are not outside watching the laser shows and enjoying the big screen movies and features. Anyway, we will have to see what happens when we get down to Port Canaveral and if needed we will go to three shows…………………………..I am though already concerned about when I take over here as Cruise Director, which for sure I will have to show on the big screen live as well.

I am sorry our blog is a little rushed today but I have to spend the afternoon organizing the bloggers cruise events, preparing the capers and meeting department heads etc…………more on that tomorrow. However, I cannot finish today without saying that yet again our super spy PA 007 was correct when he or she said that there would be breaking news today……………because there was…………..and here it is.

New 130,000-Ton Cruise Ship Ordered for Carnival Corporation & plc’s Carnival Cruise Lines

What extraordinary news this is. The economy is still a bit wobbly yet Mr. Arison and the Board Of Directors have given their first new ship order since all that credit crunch stuff started ………….to Carnival Cruise Lines.

However……………they haven’t just given her to Carnival…………….they have given her to you………………..our loyal Carnival guests. So congratulations to each and every one of you…………..because Santa came early this year……………….and gave you a brand new Dream class ship…………….the Carnival Thingy.

Your friend

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50 Responses to Have I Got News For You

  1. Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    Great news about the new Carnival DREAM Class Thingy. I hope CCL does the same as Seabourn did with their naming contest. Two tickets for the person who can come up with a new name that hasn’t been used by any of the other major cruiselines. It seems that each company uses the same names. What do you think? Besides in todays economy it may help me get an extra cruise in. LOL! I could sure use it. The Seabourn naming contest is almost over so I should find out when I will be receiving my tickets to cruise the BEST SMALL SHIPS in the world. I sent in thirteen (13) different names that I hope do the trick. As you see I am not supersticious as I stopped at thirteen.
    I love reading the reviews that the bloggers have sent in and I hope the BC3 bloggers will do the same so we the poor sods who couldn’t afford it this go around will hear all about your little d….. I mean Dick Little and Mary and all the rest.
    Fair seas to all and Friendly skies to all you who have to fly to get there. Yuck!!!
    The Cruzin2some
    James & Nancy Enslow

  2. Linda Hernacki says:

    You are so funny John, all I can say is when you finally do retire you need to do stand up comedy. That little monologue on Tiger Woods (aka Cheatah) is marvelous! On the news tonight they said he has actually had two affairs, one just recanted her story and another came forward. One of them was seeing him for almost 3 years! How did his wife not suspect anything? Very naive on her part! I hope you do put a family picture on your blog, anxious to see it, I bet Kye is a little doll! Well in just a day you will be hosting the bloggers cruise and Big Ed, and all the other blog cruisers that can make it, will be there. I can’t wait for my friend Michele to meet you and I have already instructed her to have someone take a picture of the two of you, to give to ME! HA! HA! Won’t be long till you will be home to Heidi & Kye. Ask Heidi to email me to let me know if she got our package yet ok? It was mailed 2 weeks ago. You have my email address John! Ciao, Linda & Mike

  3. Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    By the way with two (2) new Dream Class ships to come, one (1) for sure should be used in Europe! At least for the first year, then sent straight to the Left Coast to make up for the Carnival Elation being stolen from us.
    The Cruzin2some
    James & Nancy Enslow

  4. slickabrina says:

    Hello John~
    With a ship on order, I think this would be a perfect time to share some info on the Carnival Magic. Don’t you think? :o)

    Sorry to be missing the Blogger’s Cruise but looking forward to hearing all about it!!


  5. Host Mach from Cruise Critic says:

    Ooooo… I wanna sail on Carnival’s Thingy! Well… that didn’t sound good at all but whatever the name I have every intention of being on board as soon as physically possible!!

    I believe Todd is right… the Dream class ships could use three shows. I think it’s a brilliant idea. They could also use some less rude passengers but that’s another story.

    Mahogany Beach looks AMAZING!! I can’t wait to get there!! Make room for me, Stitch and hundreds of Crazies!!! WOOOOHOOOO!!

    It was wonderful to hear from Heidi again. Has Kye started telling your jokes yet, John?? 😉

    All the best to your lovely ladies!!!


    Host Mach

  6. Ernie says:

    John, we who are waiting for your arrival in Port Canaveral are hoping you will arrive soon, much like, as children we waited for Santa Claus. We are following the ship’s travel hour by hour!!

    Wonderful note from Heidi & Kye, I know how much you must miss them and will hold them both in your arms as you now hold them in your heart.

    To address your question about the announcements. Both my wife & I agree that announcements should be made in the staterooms, but with a cut off time such as 8 PM. There are many times when we have been in the room, such when unpacking and announcement are being made (First day) that we usually miss some of because of running (?) to the cabin door to see if it was something we wished to hear. Many first time cruisers may think the same way.

    Thanks for all you do,

  7. retirementman says:

    How wonderful John that I will once again be able to enjoy a cruise in a new ship along with all the other fanatstic cruise ships that Carnival gives us. I will be cruising on the Carnival Dream this January and further on the Carnival Magic and then the Carnival ?. I plan on being on the Carnival Miracle one day and especially the Carnival Legend, my first cruise ship.
    I really enjoyed the photos of the Mahogany Bay Isla Roatan which I will be going there in January. What a beautiful sight. Well you seem to doing a great job my friend. Keep it up and congratulations to you and Heidi on your anniversary. Is it 6 years? It must be time to have a brother for Kye. See you.

    Paul F. Pietrangelo

  8. lambknuckles says:

    This is WONDERFUL… My shareholder news told me about the latest order!!! WOOO HOOOO!!!!

    Heidi!!! What a great update and news about you and especially how Kye is growing!!! She must be WONDERFUL and full of wonder!!!!

    John, be your OUTSTANDING and SWEET self and relax and enjoy the cruise!!! Oh, you do so much!!!!

    I must tell you… my latest convert from the CARNIVAL HOME PARTIES cruised this past week on the Conquest!!! She LOVED IT!!! Absolutely LOVED IT!!! She will be booking another one before long!!! And this time… she says her three year old grand daughter will NOT share her cabin!!!

    Those HOME PARTIES were a great idea!!! I know of six new cruisers, personally, from mine!!!!

    Love you and Hugs and Kisses to you, Heidi, and Kye!!!

  9. Frank & Bridie says:

    “What was Tiger Woods doing out at 2.30 in the morning? He’d gone clubbing with a birdie” OH god john I am still laughing on the floor at this one. I agree with you on the news media and this we have the bad situation of living here in Central florida so of Course that is all our local media is talking about no-stop day and night tiger this and that. Aparently the media has camped out on the road leading into his gated and security patroled multi-million community. Seeing they can’t go in the community it is now causing traffic problebms for others on the road and causing lots of police involvement. What a nightmare. On the other hand I think they should name a part of the new ship after Mr. Zonis maybe one of the rooms or something maybe they could put photos of him in there. Just gought would be a wonderful memorial to him.

    Big Fans as allways,
    Frank and Bridie

  10. John, another new ship, Hip Hip Hooray. So lets see 2009 Carnival Dream BC3, 2010 Carnival ???? BC4, 2011 Carnival Magic BC5 and the 2012 Carnival Thingy BC6.

    Nike better supply Tiger with two different types of drivers. One for his car and a rubber one for his wife to use on him.

    See you in 2 days.

    BIG Ed

  11. Cheryl K says:

    Woohoo for the new Carnival Thingy! A new ship to sail on for the next 3 years–that’s so exciting.

  12. And there we have Carnival’s response to Bankruptcy of the Seas. BOTS was the wrong ship then, now, and in the future. Incompetence is the only lame excuse possible for building such a monstrosity.

    But enough of that – How ‘Bout Dem Saints!!! New Orleans football team is 11-0!!!! Woo Hoo! Carnival Magic is going to look so nice sitting in New Orleans!

  13. Jeanette says:

    Please reply

    John, the pics of the new pier at Ilsa Roatan is awesome. I wonder, where is he chairlift to the beach located? I think it’s amazing that they built a lift to get people to the beach! How far is it away from the pier that was used before Mahogany Bay pier opened up. I see there are building around the pier, so yipeee shopping!!!!

    The new Carinval Thingy–Any idea on a name for the new bouncy baby ship?

    PS: can you tell me where my fave maitre’d is going to be in January? You know who, Alex K, otherwise known as a hot Lithuanian. He is, as far as I know as if Dec 1, on the Liberty still…If he is on the ship then I hope we’ll be in that dining room, I need some eye candy! My friend is platinum and our reservations are linked for dinner (we each have separate cabins), so I hope we can get a good table, a round table in the center main floor would be nice!!

    Hopefully your first Xmas with Kye will be magical, but do remember, she’ll likely enjoy the wrapping more than the items that is wrapped!!!!


  14. Timoneer says:

    John, concerning announcements, I do not want to hear automatically every announcement in my cabin. That said, couldn’t the electronic bearded ones develop a procedure to devote a TV channel to carrying announcements? Perhaps the ship position screen or a channel with the forward view camera?

  15. Marty Paul says:


    I knew this would happen! Congrats to Carnival and all her loyal customers (including us)! No surprise for me, as I knew Carnival had a winning design here.

    Why doesn’t Carnival open up the naming for this 3rd Dream-class ship, and have a naming contest?

    Marty & Jeanne

  16. Marybet says:

    I think it would be great if you could hear the announcements in the cabins. If I am dressed I will open the door to hear them but don’t always hear them all.

  17. Mr Derek says:

    Great blog as usual.
    Regarding the announcements on board, I would prefer to have them available in the staterooms on a channel of the TV. Maybe the “front of the ship cam” channel. At least if you wanted to hear what is being said, you don’t have to hang out your door…or fling yourself out of bed!
    Have a great Bloggers Cruise… someday I will join you!

  18. flipflopcruisequeen says:

    Thank you so much for the wonderful blog! We have missed hearing from you and have really missed the darling photos of Kye!!! It is so sad that one lousy person had to wreck so much enjoyment that we all had when Kye Friday would roll around! PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE send us a Christmas photo of the 3 of you! You are such a good mommy. John will be home with you soon, and then we will get more wonderful Kye stories. Thanks again for the informative blog!

  19. Dream class vessels are warm water ships which pretty much rules out the left coast, Alaska, New York (too many whiners, anyway), etc.

    The Big Easy is Ready!

  20. JavaJoe says:

    Let me think how to answer your question about the in-cabin announcements. No way.
    Absolutely not.
    Please, please, please do not start making routine announcements in the cabins. I go to my cabin to get away from everything, relax, and even- GASP- sleep. You would drive us stark mad if we heard bingo and art auction announcements all day long.
    When I am in the cabin, and I do want to hear something, I simply open my door.

    I understand that this may not be easy to do at all times, but you don’t have to open the door all the way to hear.

  21. MattInSoCal says:

    Regarding PA announcements in the cabins –

    There are times that I have propped the door open to hear what’s being said, but a great majority of the time I am glad to not have the announcements in my cabin. Forgive me for saying so, but I find most CDs prattle on incessantly at times. It is nice to have brief updates on happenings about the ship, but for example I really don’t want to hear the 270-second long plea to come play bingo (though I know it is a big revenue source and you want as many players as possible). Likewise many other announcements are long-winded rehash of information in the Carnival Capers.

    That said, it would be nice if there were a switch and/or a volume control to allow each guest to decide when and how much of the CD’s announcements shall be allowed into the cabin. When we want to have a nap or a round of rumpy pumpy we could choose silence, and in the evenings as we are lounging about we might choose to be better informed.

    What I would find to be truly wizard would be that one channel of the Interactive TVs be used (not available on all ships, I know, but maybe even a standard channel could serve the purpose) as an announcements channel. This would be particularly handy for those who can’t keep up with all the announcements but don’t want to be out of touch with all the goings-on.

    ~ MattInSoCal

  22. Michael says:

    The Carnival Dream….then the Carnival Magic…….

    Can we have a naming competition for the new one? How about the Carnival Allure? Or the Carnival Mystique?

    Thanks for all the info, John!

    Michael from Seattle

  23. Kathy M. says:

    Dear John,

    Please reply,

    I know that you are three weeks behind, but could you please give us an update on the Captain of the Splendor who had the heart attack 0n 11/27/09. I have been keeping him and his family in my prayers, but some of us on Cruise Critic would like to know how he is doing.

    Give my love to Heidi and Little Kye.

    From your #1 Bloggy Thinggy Fan
    Kathy M.

  24. Kathy M. says:

    Dear John,

    I would like to have the announcements in my cabin, but please not loud, or maybe they could break into the TV with announcements.

    From your #1 Bloggy Thinggy Fan,
    Kathy M.

  25. Linda Stein says:

    Hi John (please respond)

    I agree totally with all the Tiger Woods stuff. Who really cares? To me it’s just a way for the 24 hour 250 channel news machine to find something to talk about until the Prez made his Afganistan announcement. If it hadn’t been Tiger they would find something else to obsess about. You’ll see, agree or not with the Prez, Tiger’s story will drop away or down to sports where it belongs by days end. The media seems to think that EVERYONE wants to know EVERYTHING about famous people. Personally, I couldn’t care less, unless, like you and Megan Fox’s bottom, they are showing me pictures of Sawyer and Jack from LOST. 😉

    Thanks for your response about my comments regarding the on-board announcements when I was on Miracle. I can see your point about people resting in their cabins not wanting to be disturbed about bingo being rescheduled and such. I guess I hadn’t thought of that, especially those “good morning, here’s what’s happening today” announcements for people who only got to bed at 6am!

    I don’t know what the answer is and I suppose you’re right that having it happen 2 times in one week was probably an oddity. It never happened at all when we were on Miracle in July 2008. Obviously if there is a real danger or emergency the passengers need to know about there is no other or better way to do it. But you would think, that for medical emergencies that the passengers have no control over and no power to help with there would be a better way to get the word out to the crew who do need to know. I mean, it’s the 21st century after all. I can pinpoint my house from Figi on GPS if I want to, doesn’t Carnival have access to pagers, cell phones, walkie-talkies, etc. to alert medical personal on-board of emergencies? Seems relatively simple unless there is some technical, can’t get a signal in the middle of the ocean, type of problem with these devices. But my daughter was able to send me text messages from Philadelphia the whole week so my cell phone worked.

    As to the general announcements it is very hard to hear them in the cabins and even on the balcony, if our neighbors were out there talking, we could barely make them out. You’d here that tone that sounds right before Malcolm would start talking, run to the door to open it so you can hear it and half of it would be over before you got there. Even on the lido deck, when we were sitting by the pool or in Horacio’s. You had to strain to hear the announcements over the kids, the drink glasses and silverware clincking, the wind, the water, etc.

    Maybe there should be a small speaker on the balcony for the cabins. Maybe they should just pump up the volume a bit so you can here it through the door and over all the stuff going on around the pool or in the buffet. There were several things I would have liked to do while on board that I never knew even happened because I never heard the announcements.

    Well, thanks for listening. We really did have a fantastic time on Miracle. She really is a wonderful ship and her crew is the best. No wonder she wins awards! I hope to get back to her very soon. Thanks John. My best to Heidi and Kye. Keep writing. You make my day!

  26. John,

    That’s such exciting news about the new ship!! I love the Dream and I am already planning on booking one of the Magic’s first sailings. I will definitely be on the new 2012 ship when the time comes!

    Best to you and the family.


  27. dwa76 says:

    Hi John!
    Congrats on the big announcement but I aree that i’m also looking forward to hearing info about the Carnival Magic.
    Love the pictures posted. Looks so peaceful and tropical.
    Hope all is well.
    Take care!

  28. JD in BC says:

    Hello John (please reply),
    I have a suggestion and I’m not sure who to talk to about it. I have been on over a dozen cruises (all with Carnival) over the past 10 years. Everyone I come in contact with knows this as I talk about them all the time. One of the biggest complaints I here from people that have only gone once or twice is the tipping. I try to tell them it’s just part of vacationing and you just put it in your budget. One of the complaints I hear is we never go to the dining room yet they want us to tip for the service there. I always tell them that that server depends on those tips and it’s not fare to them or their income because you didn’t want to eat there. I was wondering if there was a way Carnival could offer a buffet only dining choice along with the any time and scheduled time. If you choose the buffet only your S&S card would read buffet and your tips could be lowered by $3.50 per person per day. This way the wait staff would not get stiffed by having empty chairs and people wouldn’t complain about the tipping. I know some people don’t have their kids go in the dining room so maybe they could get it for their kids only. It was just a thought I had but I wasn’t sure where to go with it. I know you are the man with a voice so let me know what you think.


  29. proudpatriot07 says:

    I was on the Destiny in October, and I agree with Steveo about Fu. Fu wasn’t my server (my server was Lilies on the Destiny- who was also awesome- sing my praises to her as well, especially for remembering that I was a vegetarian and always recommending good dishes for me). But Fu had the table next to mine and he was cool too- he danced with me and others during the dining room dances. Also, at the table next to us, there was a little boy about 3, and each night, Fu gave him piggyback rides and the little boy LOVED it. On his last night, the kid even cried when he had to say goodbye to Fu. Brent was also an awesome cruise director and he and the rest of his staff were hilarious on the deck games and made the shows very entertaining.

    All in all I can’t wait to go on my next cruise :). I’d go back on the Destiny in a heartbeat too. It was great even if it’s not the latest and greatest ship in the fleet.

  30. Alan says:

    Hello John, please reply if you can…if not, that’s OK because this is my followup to your reply that was included in your Dec 1st blog.

    Anyway, I promised a review of my DREAM vacation and my impressions of the new smoking policy on the Dream (particularly in the casino). I will try and keep this short and will be posting a much larger review on Cruise Critic (my nick there is Fire Lt if you or anyone else wishes to view it.

    So here we go…

    My first impression on driving up to the dock in NYC was “Dang she IS big and beautiful”. embarcation was a snap. The port authority and Carnival had obviously cleared up the problems from the 2 night CTN. We entered the terminal at 11:35 and enjoying lunch by the waves pool by 12:05. Talking to others who arrived after 12:30 that it took about an hour and a half to board, which when you are trying to get that many people on board is not surprizing.

    I was surprized to here Todd tell us at the welcome aboard show that we were setting a record with 4,300 passengers for this cruise (over 1,300 junior cruisers). Despite that number of people I never felt that the ship was crowded although it did get a bit cramped in the buffet area during peak times.

    My wife, son, daughter and myself had a GREAT time on the Dream. There were tons of things to do and in fact the only down side is that we are going to have to book another cruise on the Dream to catch up with the things I didn’t have time for (oh darn the bad luck).

    I will just hit a few points for now:

    1. Casino smoking policy: I found that it worked out VERY well. There were enough tables where I could play and have a smoke while playing. I saw just a couple of people violating the rules and the staff were quick to correct the problem. They did this in a very discrete (the only way I realised a person was being reminded of the rules was because I was watching to see what would happen) and proffessional way. There was only 1 able game I wanted to play which was not in the smoking area. This was easy to get around by just stepping away from the table and onto the port side deck for a quick puff or two and then back to the table. No problem at all. Well done Carnival.

    While on the subject of the casino…please pass on to the higher ups…this was without a doubt the BEST casino staff I have ever delt with on any cruise (3 other Carnival as well as 5 cruises on other lines). The head of the casino is to be commended as well as all the dealers and supervisors. It was trully a wondeful casino experience!!!!! The fact that I came out $250.00 ahead on a 8 night cruise didn’t hurt either…ha ha)

    2. Buffet area…This is an area that need a LOT of work. Although I did not have much in the way of any problem, this was because I adjusted my eating times to avoid the crowds. However, I talked to around 100 different people ( I love meeting and talking to new people when on a cruise…my 23 yo son Carnival should give me a Carnival jumpsuit to be an onboard embassador for the cruise…my 13 yo daughter accused me of being “just too dang friendly”) and 90% of those people had compliants about the crowds and set up of the whole buffet area. I will go into much more detail of this in my CC review). However one thing that would cut down the crowds would be to open one floor of just one of the main dining rooms for lunch.

    3. This is a request…please join Todd in trying to get the rating system used in the questionare changed. It is fine for new cruisers. But for us who have cruised before it does not work as well. In my instance I filled it out prior to seeing the debarkation show with Todd. I mainly used the “met my expectations” choice because as a seasoned Carnival cruiser I have come to expect superior service and entertainment and that is what I got! I did use the exceeded my expectations choice for a few of the questions because the staff involved was just so beyond belief!!!!

    Well John I should close for now because this is getting a bit long but I do just want to relate one more tidbit.

    John…you could have gotten me in trouble. Do you remember during the lead up to the Dream coming on line you would always refer to the Dream as “Your Carnival Dream”. Well I might have taken this quite litterally and it was a good thing that the crew members who I talked to (and it was a LOT). When I would meet someone from the crew (especially one of the casino dealers) early on I would say to them “I want to thank you for being here on My Carnival Dream.”

    Anyway on the morning of our second sea day I was having coffee by the waves pool with my wife and a crew member was mopping the deck (it was another day of light rain) and I noticed that here name tag said “new crew member” and that was all. So I said high and that she had an uncommon name and she sheepishly ( she seemed a bit shy) explained that she had just joined the ship in NY and that here name was Cindy and she was from the Phillipines. SO…you can see this coming…I said “Well Cindy it is very nice to meet you and welcome to MY CARNIVAL DREAM.” She gets this look of horror and says “you mean you are on the ship all the time???” I think she was afraid I was some impotant person from Carnival and that I lived on the ship. So I set her mind at ease that I was just another passenger and would not be on the ship all the time.

    That’s it for now John. As I said in the beginning feel free to resond…or not.

    Take care and hope you and your entire family have a great Christmas season,

    Alan D.

  31. kiciaski says:

    Hello John,

    Great news about the new Carnival ship. It’s good to see that Carnival has confidence in the future’s economy.

    As far as cabin announcements go maybe a switch could be in the cabin so the occupants could decide if they want to hear the announcements in the cabin or not. Of course emergency announcements would override that. I think other cruise ships have that capability.

    Enjoy the bloggers’ cruise. Wish we could be there.

    George and Linda

  32. Katiel53 says:

    It is good news that there will be another new ship for Carnival. I loved your jokes about Tiger. We live near Orlando and are soooooooooo tired of hearing about him and his accident. Obviously, there is more to it than he is willing to admit.

    I would like to hear announcements in my cabin when things in the Capers change. As posted someone missed the breast cancer walk as she didn’t hear the announcement that it was not going to be at the time posted in the Capers.

    I don’t feel that the regular announcements need to be heard in the cabins. I can imagine that hearing any announcement at 2AM is disturbing, but I guess if I were having a heart attack or something that required immediate help, I would welcome the calls for help.

    I loved hearing from Heidi. I know you are anxiously awaiting returning home for Christmas. Enjoy your holiday time and I can’t imagine anything more fun than being around children at Christmas. Even though Kye won’t remember this year, you and Heidi will. Take care.

    Frank & Gerri

  33. techmom says:

    So many ships to choose from I may have to retire to keep up!!! Oh darn that would be awful.

    Regarding announcements, I too prop my door open to listen. Volume control might work but if there was an emergency and you had your volume off, that may be an issue. I would think some techie person could come up with something so you could here it in your room with volume control except when it is one that everyone needs to hear. TV would be a good idea with announcements scrolling at the bottom-like CNN does.


  34. BIG MIKE says:

    Quick question for anyone. When is the Dream due into Port Canaveral Dec 3. ???

  35. Kathy says:

    A ‘switch’ in the room. Turn it on if you want to hear announcements. Makes sense to me!

  36. John says:

    Last week we were on the mouse cruise line (free cruise) and the CD announcements could be heard on the in room TV if you turned to a certain channel. Fairly easy once you heard the chimes to tune your set before the announcement started.

  37. Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    I decided to post again to add my 2¢ worth. A volume control knob on the speaker that could be overridden for emergency anouncements seems to be the best idea and then run the announcements on the TV for those who missed them. This give the option to the passenger which is where it belongs.
    Bill Zydeco you must try a Mexican Riveria Cruise so that you know that the Left Coast definitely has warm weather ports. Acapulco, Puerta Vallerta, Matzatlan, & Cabo San Lucas are all 90 degrees in January. I know because we did one for our 25th Anniversary. New Orleans or Mobile would be two more good ideas as they had a ship with the evolutions of fun upgrade stolen away from there too! Iam easy like the Big Easy. You guys already stole Drew Breeze away from San Diego. Saints are looking real good with him running the show. But still, GO CHARGERS!
    The Cruzin2some
    James & Nancy Enslow

  38. joyce geraci says:

    The news about the upcoming Carnival ship must mean that my Carnival stock continues to be a great investment. That’s very good news!
    If Carnival could just get back to Europe permanently, that would be better news!
    Thank you for the Kye update. I know how you feel being shoved into the background when the first child is born. For many years I thought my name had been changed to Allison’s mom!
    Now my name has changed again to Granny!
    That’s OK, as I don’t remember what my real name is anyway!

  39. Trish says:

    Hi John,

    Please reply

    What is going on with the Destiny ? ?

    I keep reading all over the boards about past cruisers who are furious over the change in itineraries.

    The issue has been going on for months now and it seems they keep making temporary fixes that keep breaking. Specifically the propulsion problems causing the change it ports.

    I have to agree with the disgruntled cruisers the small credit of $50 per person for the port charges are not worth the port changes.

    I understand, per the contract, changes to the itinerary is allowed at the decision of Carnival. But when Carnival knows in advance they are not going to be stopping at the scheduled ports telling the cruiser 24 hours before they sail is not right. I would rather be told in advance so we could make an informed decision on if we should go or reschedule at a different date or on a different ship.

    We are booked on back-to-back cruises – 9 days on the Destiny – and really don’t wish to spend the days circling and stopping at the same ports because of engine problems.

    Have you heard anything about this? Are there any plans to dry-dock and fully fix the problems she is having?

  40. Peg Dunbar says:

    Oh John you are sooooo funny, loved the Tiger jokes. I have to admit I am getting really tired of all the news of Tiger but the jokes like your do seem to dull the pain LOL.

    Loved the note from Heidi and the news of Kye. She is growing up so fast. That first year is probably the most of the firsts. It is hard to believe she is almost seven months old. I am so happy that she is doing so well. I can only imagine how much you miss you girls. Hopefully soon you will be back home with them and especially for that 1st Christmas of Kye’s.

    The “news” I was hoping for did not come but your news of the new ship does sound good.

    Keep smiling John, you truly are one of the good guys.

    My best to Heidi and Kye.

  41. Hi John,

    Yes, I have done a left coast cruise on Carnival Pride before Baltimore stole the ship. I very much enjoyed it and even went snorkeling in a couple of places but the water was a little chilly. I don’t know that much Spanish, but do know a number of curse words, and I think the guide used all of them when we told him we wanted to snorkel in Mazatlan. I do think he was a wus – the naturalist was a tiny girl and she didn’t complain at all, but she sure was shivering when she got out. Cabo was a little warmer and the whale watching was excellent.

    It is just that without a covered pool, the Dream class ships seem to be customized for the Caribbean.

    Here are pictures from that cruise:

  42. Carol says:

    I vote for TV announcements. Often by the time I got to the door I found out I was getting in on the end of the announcement. We usually turn the TV on as soon as we get in the cabin just to see where we are or how fast we are traveling, etc., so I think that the announcements on cabin TVs as well as in the public parts of the ship would serve the guests well. Thanks for the blog thingy it is nice to be kept informed.

  43. Gary says:

    Hi John,

    I really enjoyed the entire blog today. I rarely get to read the blog these days. Here is my thought on the PA announcements:

    PA announcements should be made in the cabins and indeed throughout the ship from 0500 until 2100. Between 2100 and 0500 only the emergency type announcements should be made. Yes I am serious. OK the times can be adjusted easier than installing a switch $$$$ for the passenger to try and figure out how to use.

    Congratulations to Carnival Corp. for the construction of a new ship. That really speaks volumes for the confidence in the loyal following that Carnival enjoys.

  44. Linda (Mom of DJ) says:


    It won’t be long now.

    We are having a fantastic “precruise” ship.

    We arrived at the Radisoon at 10AM on Wednesday and they were kind enough to allow us to check in early.

    See you SOON!!!

    Linda (Mom of your friend DJ)

  45. Cheryl in FL says:

    Dear John (geez, that sounds like a bad start to a not so good letter !lol)!

    First of all – you all but make me spit out my tea laughing when I read your blog – now on a daily basis! What visuals you create!

    I do have a question for ya – on our last cruise on the Victory in May 08, our dining room seating was HORRIBLE – we were all the way in the last table on the second floor of the dining room – not very fun. Could not see anything and it was not very entertaining! How can we get good dining room seating on our Dream Cruise this coming May 2010? We have 4 of us going!

    Boy, I sure wish we were cruising in March to see you on the ship! Who will be our CD at that time!

    Be Blessed, John! Keep us laughin!
    Cheryl in FL!

  46. Eva Bartolo says:

    John, the news regarding the new ship is great and we’re looking forward to travelling on her first voyage, hopefully it will be Europe!!!!

    I have a question for flipflopcruisequeen or anyone that might be able to answer. I obviously seem to have missed something on this board while I was away in Africa. I always looked forward to Kye Friday and see a picture of Kye. Yet something was said by you about “one lousy person” ruining it for us all. Can someone enlighten me please??? Is there a reason I’m not seeing any pictures anymore of Kye. Thanks guys.


  47. Julie Anne says:


    On the announcements, I was surprised on my first Carnival cruise that you didn’t have the speaker control in the room. On my previous two cruises (with other companies – one a ship, the other a steamboat) this was a standard feature in all cabins. I like to hear all announcements during the day but only want to hear emergencies that effect me at night.
    A nice alternative would be to use the channel on the TV showing the maps (Ship position) to broadcast those announcements. Generally speaking we had that channel on in the room unless we wanted to particularly watch something else.
    For disabled guests, popping up and propping open the door is more than just a hassle. By the time you get to the door, the announcement is over and you are left wondering what you missed. Also, our door (being an automatic door for the disabled) was very heavy and would not stay propped open.

  48. Joko Joan says:

    Dear John:
    In regard to the PA announcements, may I contribute a suggestion??? Say, take one of the TV channels and broadcast the announcement there. Most of us hear the beginning of the announcement but wind up tripping over the beds and each other to reach the door. Those of us who might have the TV on anyway, can just simply tune into the announcement channel and Whallah(sp.) we don’t have to miss it (unless we are otherwise occupied with sleep or rumpy-pumpy.

    We would also like to wish you and lovely Heidi a wonderful anniversary. In your honor, we have a box of melting cakes in our freezer, that we will enjoy in your honor. May you enjoy many, many more years of joy, happiness and love . . . from us older biddies who have been married for 50 yrs.
    Joko Joan

  49. Roger Tollerud says:

    My wife and I are just back from a wonderful week on the C. Splendor. The meals on the Lido deck were sooooo good that we never went to the dining room. The variety and quality was best ever and included such dining room offerings as Fkat Iron Steak, Prime Rib and Chocolate Melting Cake. The Rotisserie was a nice change and also just excellent.
    Please don’t PA announcements into the staterooms we think that is too intrusive.

  50. Allie says:

    Loving your blog… just discovered it tonight! Booked Jan 31/10 aboard Splendor to Mexican Rivieria (or however it’s spelled). First cruise for hubby and I.

    Re: announcements: I am deaf and therefore I will not hear any announcements, regardless of door propped open or not, which will probably mean that I will miss out on schedule changes, etc. I would vote for a “ticker” at the bottom of a channel or a dedicated channel for announcements. Doesn’t even need to be on the in-room tv’s… if there are screens anywhere in public areas, those tvs could be used. We used to have tvs in the hallways at my high school and college that broadcast general messages on a loop. Also could have “fact of the day” or “joke of the day” type things with a cruise focus…

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