Going Through Changes

January 15, 2010 -

John Heald

So my bad week keeps getting worse as Heidi had the audacity to catch my cold and last night went to sleep in the spare bedroom……by 7pm. This meant I had to put Kye to bed….. and change her diaper which I might add was full of stuff that I would have been proud to have created. Having disposed of that, I then had to put the new diaper on. I asked Heidi to help but she said she was too weak…….and that was me ………..in the same stuff I had just found in Kye’s diaper.

You see…….I am embarrassed to admit………..but I haven’t changed too many diapers ………. actually……I think I may have done 2……and both times Heidi was right there next to me.

However…..last night I had to do it on my own. And after introducing Pat Riley and Micky Arison on stage and the time I dreamt I was French…..it was the most terrifying night of my life.

I know this is supposed to be a cruise ship-related blog and there will be plenty of cruise stuff later but……….I feel it is my duty to pass on my advice to any new fathers out there reading this blog thingy on how to change a diaper………….this is exactly what I did last night……three times.

1. Wash and dry your hands with a mixture of soap, Grey Goose vodka and a just a dash of Chanel No. 5.

2. Remove any jewelery that might scratch baby’s delicate skin and to make sure that your wedding ring doesn’t change from gold to brown.

3. Attach gas mask and don Haz-Mat uniform. If like Kye you know broccoli has been consumed the night before, erect a Level-Ten Containment Force Field and call Jack Bauer.

4. Place at least 22 towels by the diaper changing mat thingy and have a white surrender flag ready………..these are available from all good French department stores

5. As you remove the dirty diaper, remember………………..you must maintain consciousness!

6. Manoeuvre robotic arm into place. Remove the diaper with the pooey part folded in.

7. If you used water or pre-moistened wipes, you’ll want to pat the baby dry. At this point, you may want your forehead dabbed by the au pair……….preferably one that looks like Megan Fox.

At this point, you will have just be about to put the new diaper on when Kye thinks its funny to poo again……………………bugger.

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

Christie Asked:
John, (Please reply)

I went on my first Carnival cruise in the summer of 2000 on the Fantasy. I was having a horrible year and a vacation at sea away from telephones and everybody I knew just seemed like the perfect idea. And it turned out to be perfect. Fortunately, I get to go about once a year — usually my birthday trip present to myself. I’m booked on the Dream this fall (yay!).

I don’t remember a whole lot about my first cruise. I think I was intoxicated most of the time. I recall generally that I had a fantastic time and in the pictures from the trip I look like I’m having a blast. My one actually memory is laughing like a crazy person at a super funny cruise director in a bee costume. Was that you? I seem to remember he was a bit, humm what’s the word… rotund.

Best wishes for a happy and healthy 2010.

PS: I was on the Liberty with Butch and his team last fall for my 2009 Birthday cruise. The Liberty crew is a really terrific group of professionals. Thank you for sharing the story of the Liberty team’s special holiday celebration with the children in Ocho.

John Says:
Hello Christie

It’s great to see that your cruises have been made even more memorable by the Cruise Directors who you have sailed with and once again Butch is on that list. The CD you referred to who dressed as a Bee was my friend Chris “Bubba” Roberts. He recently retired, got married and is living with his beautiful bride in Prague. We all miss him very much. I hope the next you sail that the Cruise Director once again leaves a lasting impression on you.
Best wishes

musingsofjustjon Asked:

Having just returned from a seven-day on the Carnival Pride, I can unequivocally state that all members of the crew speak FUN fluently.

We had a great time – Jaime is an absolute doll and I made a new friend in Kirk. The cruise itself was a very difficult voyage (the 12/13 cruise that missed Freeport and returned to Baltimore and it’s 20 inches of snow). Despite these issues, Kirk and the entire entertainment staff did a marvelous job of keeping the ship hopping and a boppin’.

In particular, two events jump out – first, the concert that they put on when we missed Freeport. In particular, the dancer’s “If I weren’t on a cruise ship, I would be . . .” bit – HILARIOUS. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house.

The other event was the Christmas show. It was great how they integrated the children from Camp Carnival into the show – and Santa managed to find the ship despite the high winds and seas.

My sincerest complements to a great staff for a great cruise – it was well worth our cruising at the last minute. Mrs. MTSFP even commented that I was much more relaxed when we returned than when we left.

Anyone who doesn’t think that Carnival are fun ships simply has never sailed on one of the fun ships.


John Says:
Hello Jon

Thanks for this brilliant review which I have sent to Kirk and the entertainment team on the Carnival Pride. The “If I Were Not upon the Sea” is a cruise ship favourite. In fact, if you look on the YouTube thingy you will see most lines feature this during their cruise. Nobody knows where it all began. George Solano will tell you he invented it but then again he also says he invented the line “good evening ladies and gentlemen.”……………………good old Jorge.

Anyway, it is as you said a priceless skit which no matter how many times you see it never fails to have the audience laughing hard. Most of all I loved your line that stated all the crew speak fun……..brilliant.

So, thanks for the review and my best wishes to you and MMTSFP

Janet Willis Asked:
Please Reply

John, we will be sailing with you on the Dream on 2/27/10. There are four couples who want to be seated together in the dining room, but for some reason, the fourth couple, who came in late, cannot be linked to us. We were told by our TA to arrange it with the dining room when we embark. Preferring to arrange this in advance and hopefully have a table that is well placed in the dining room, can you help us? This fourth couple, from Spain, have never been on a cruise and have no idea what to expect.

We are looking forward to have you as our Cruise Director.
Janet Willis

John Says:
Hello Janet

I would be very happy to try and help you with your dining requests. However, I asked the office to check the booking numbers and it shows that those booking numbers are not correct. Please can you send me the names and cabin numbers of the people you wish to be seated together and I will send those directly to the Maitre D.

Best wishes and see you soon

Linda Stein Asked:
John (please reply)

I wholeheartedly agree with you about skiing. I went a couple of times when I was 25 years younger and about 50 pounds lighter and NEVER AGAIN! I almost killed myself when I slid down some ridiculous thing called the “bunny hop hill” on my face, one of my skis came off and slip down the hill without me and I was forced to make my way down on one ski and one boot with a spinning head and bloody face. I spent the rest of the ski trip getting to know the bartender really well! I figured if I fell off the bar stool at least I wasn’t going 50 mph when I hit the floor and it’s warmer in there too. So, I am totally with you. I’ll take sun and fun and a great cruise any day!

I hope you and Heidi and Kye had a great holiday even if you had to trek to see the lights. Just the thought of Kye laughing up at Santa makes me smile. I remember my daughter’s first trip to see Santa. She’s 20 years old now and I still remember how bloody cute she was. Enjoy it. It goes by soooooooo fast.

John Says:
Hello Linda

Great posting and I am glad that I have someone else who agrees that skiing is not the best vacation experience in the world. Thanks so much for taking the time to write and for all these kind words for my family. I send my best wishes to you and yours.

Big Ed Asked:

Where are all of the videos Peter the Hair took of the Bloggers Cruise on the Carnival Dream? Is he waiting for the perfect time to blackmail me with my crash landing ending up on Utube.

John Says:
Hello King Edward

That’s a potato here in the UK Big Ed – did you know that?

I actually called one of the 343 Stephanies about this yesterday and she assured me that the highlight video of our wonderful bloggers cruise will be ready very soon. We certainly did have fun and I really want all the bloggers to see the night you fell for Stephanie Meads!
Best wishes to you and Pat

Sharry Veil Asked:
Dear John:

I’m Sharry the PVP who Bearded Bill from Boulder wrote about. I just had a thought. I am leaving tomorrow for New Orleans so I can join 40 of my guests who are traveling on the Triumph. They are big Louisiana State University football fans and that team is in a Bowl game which is going to be televised at 1:00pm on Friday. They have requested that the game be shown on the big screen. I thought you may be able to help me make this happen for them. Whatever you could do, would be greatly appreciated. Thanking you in advance. Sincerely, Sharry

John Says:
Hello Sharry

As you can see I am very late in replying to your request for which I truly apologize. However, I did send the request to the ship ……….or should I say one of the 343 Stephanies did and I hope therefore you were able to watch the game. Please let me know if there is anything else you need.
Best wishes

Geri & Jack Asked:
Hello John, Heidi and Kye – please respond

We will be away over New Years Eve so we want to wish you all a very, very Happy New Year and all the best in 2010. You are such a delightful family and we love hearing from you.
We are now PLATINUM and we don’t know what ship to sail on soon as we cannot wait that long for the Magic – too exciting to be platinum. Any ideas for the two of us to go on a different ship with ‘lots of ports; for about 7 days?

We have been on Carnival’s beautiful ships C-Valor, Freedom, Splendor and Dream each several wonderful times.

Again happy sailing and best of luck to you all!
Geri & Jack

John Says:
Hello Geri and Jack

Congratulations on becoming a member of our Platinum club and I thank you for you patronage over the years……………..long may it continue. You mentioned that you wanted to try a ship with lots of ports. Well, I would recommend the new Carnival Glory run out of Miami and of course the Carnival Miracle‘s new voyages to the Southern Caribbean including Curacao and Aruba. Then there is the Carnival Legend and her four ports of Belize, Grand Cayman, Isla Roatan and Cozumel. Lots to choose from. If you have a follow up question please let me know.
Best wishes

Linda Bigus Asked:
John, (Please reply)

We are set to sail on Jan. 16th, 2010 on the Freedom. My husband and I, with another group were to be linked together for dinner (early seating). The group, Shary Gibson’s Radio station From Freeport, IL (her real name is Shary Meinert) has about 29 people booked together. We booked separately as I have cruised on Carnival many times, under the name of Linda Krusey. (First marriage) Our TA were to link them. Ours, was told and we received confirmation from her that they were linked. However, the Radio Stations TA did not link it, and they got late seating, even though they had requested early (waitlisted). We got early through our agent. Is there any possibility that you could help us out by getting us all together as promised for early seating? It would be Gregory and Linda Bigus, and the Radio station with Shary Gibson. (Shary Meinert)? If you could help us before we leave on the 16th, we would be so grateful! Have a wonderful New Year…I was so hoping you would be on the Freedom. ( You might remember me as I cruised with Storm’n Norman 4-5 times about 7 years ago. We are still friends, however, both of us have moved on.
Thanks again.
Linda Krusey Bigus

John Says:
Hello Linda Krusey Bigus
I am sure you and your group are looking forward to your vacation on the Carnival Freedom tomorrow. Stephanie will send your details to the Maitre D today so he can do his best to accommodate you. I know you will have a wonderful time and of course I remember you and my dear friend Stormin Norman.
Have a brilliant time.
Best wishes

That’s all for today and there will be more on Monday.

I cannot let today’s blog pass without mentioning Haiti and what we now know is a tragedy that has reached biblical proportions. We continue to think of all of those affected and in particular the Haitian crew members on the Carnival ships who await news of their family and loved ones.

We watch on the news a population having nothing……..yet seeing everything remaining taken away.

Let’s do the news. And we start with the great news for all of us Carnival stock holders that yesterday our stock hit a 52 week high. I won’t bother reflecting on the reasons why but simply say …………………..”YIPPPPPPPPPEEEEEEE”

Now, let’s have a look at an e-mail from my friend and colleague Ryan Fitzgerald who is the Cruise Director of the Carnival Glory. Ryan met a family last week who were sailing onboard the ship and he thought we would be interested in their story……………he was right.

Have a read of this…

Hi John,

I thought I might pass this along to you. It was a family that sailed last week on the Glory with a bit of an excessive vacation.

The story comes from the DeBenedittis Family. They cruised last week on the Carnival Glory as part of their 376 Day vacation…that’s right, 11 days more than a full year of vacation. Talk about a road trip! The vacation will cover 32,000 miles, most of it in an R/V and include, Mom (Kathleen), Dad (Kevin), and the kids: Andrew, Rachel, & Daniel. 26 of these days will be spent on Carnival Cruise Lines. The goal of the trip was to visit all US and Canadian capitals, including territories and Virgin Islands. This is why they were on our Eastern Itinerary which visits San Juan, Puerto Rico and St. Thomas, USVI. The other cruises will both be on the Carnival Spirit in order to reach Hawaii & Alaska. Quite the story!

Kevin can be followed on ttp://naroadtrip.blogspot.com/
I thought it might be blog worthy! It was, at minimum, worth a solid gold plastic trophy for each of the family!

That is one lucky family…………..nearly one full year of vacation, some of which has been spent on the fun for all ships of Carnival. What do you think……………….lottery winners?

Over now to the Carnival Destiny and some great photos of a very special event. These were sent to me by my mate Tim Cabral who is in charge of all the technical aspects of our major group bookings. This includes the groups and charters that bring on their own music which has included over the past few years, Jon Meyer, Motley Crue, dozens of Elvis’s and of course New Kids on the Backstreet ………or something like that.

Anyway, Tim is at the heart and soul of these groups and he has sent me these photos of a concert in the main lobby and the huge balloon drop at its conclusion to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Carnival’s proud association with Rock the Boat (http://www.rocktheboat-cruises.com)

Next week it’s the Lynyrd Skynyrd cruise!

Great stuff…………..and my thanks to Tim for sharing these photos with us all.

Many of you have been enjoying the new Funville addition to Carnival.com. Here is the official press release all about it.

Carnival Enhances ‘Funville’ Site to Include Shipboard Blogs, Videos, Games and More

I hope you all enjoy surfing this funtastic site. Did I just use the word “funtastic “……bugger.

Well, even though I joked at the start of today’s blog about Heidi not being well……….she really isn’t and is, as we speak, in bed. That means I have to look after Kye and honestly having been responsible for doing so these last few hours I have new massive amounts of respect for Heidi and all you Mums. Obviously I worry what would happen if I was away and she was ill but I am slightly comforted by the fact that she has my parents and lots of friends who I know she could count on.

Anyway……I really have to go and make Kye’s lunch and then go back to the brown stuff …….which was actually a little more yellow than brown………..too much information?…….. oops.

Well, Monday will be a very special day. That’s because last night I received a phone call on a secure line from our Super Spy PA 007. He……or she………told me that on Tuesday Carnival will release a very special press statement and as he……..or she…….has done many times before ……… PA 007 has managed to get me the information ahead of time. I cannot tell you what danger he…….or she………….is putting himself………or herself……..in by telling me this but I can tell you that thanks to his …..or her……..bravery……Monday will be a day you should all look forward to.

I am sure the people with beards at Carnival will once again give me a huge bollocking for doing this (time to put the telephone directory down the back of my underpants to take away the shock of Gerry Cahill’s foot going in my bottom) but………..well……………..that’s what I am here for.

I will be announcing this through the form of a video using my $80 flip video thingy.

So, some of you are probably trying to guess what I am talking about. Maybe it’s the announcement that I have been made Senior Vice President of Banning Stupid Office Jargon like the word of the month “chillax.”

Maybe it’s an announcement that we have hired Tiger Woods to manage the mini golf course on your Carnival Dream.

Well, it’s only fair I guess that I give you a clue. Let’s start with some photos

Still don’t know?

Well, one last clue then and for this I turn things over to one of the greatest bands in the world ………………..ever. Ladies and Gentlemen…………….Queen!

See you on Monday.

Your friends
John, Heidi and Kye

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.