June 29, 2010 -

John Heald

One of my roles as senior cruise director is to help some of the younger CD’s when they have problems or concerns or need advice. This can range from improving onboard revenue and guest satisfaction to advice on how best to schedule events and shows and sometimes cruise directors need advice on how to become better lovers, a subject I am always happy to help Butch with whenever he asks.

Yesterday I had an e-mail from a CD telling me about a situation he has just been through on his ship. Unfortunately, a guest had become very ill and needed immediate medical attention ashore. This meant calling in the brilliant men and women of United States Coast Guard who sent a helicopter to rendezvous with the ship at sea.

Now, during the rescue operation, which was around 10 pm the helicopter crew radioed the bridge asking that the passengers not take flash photography because the flashes were hindering the pilots from hovering over the ship.

So, the CD in question made an announcement not to take flash photos………an announcement that many ignored. So the helicopter radioed the bridge again and the captain got very upset at the CD demanding he make them stop taking photos.

Now, I have been in many of these situations and having 50 tons of fuel-heavy helicopter hovering over lido deck aft is indeed stressful for the pilots and the captain and crew and, of course, the patient. And I know that despite what we CD’s ask, there are always going to be guests who think to themselves “Bugger that, I’m taking pictures.” This is because every single thing that happens in the world today is photographed and videoed and of course that includes anything “unusual” on our ships… These videos and photos are then either posted on the internet or sold to the newspapers. It’s the way of today’s world.

You see, everyone has a camera or a phone with a camera in it in their pocket or purse all the sodding time, everyone is paparazzi thingy.  I cannot imagine what it must be like to be famous. I mean, I have my photograph taken all the time when I am on the ship and there are over 300 videos of me on YouTube that neither I nor the 344 Stephanies have put there.

I’m not complaining because, obviously, life will be a lot more worrying if I walked down Promenade Deck on the last day of the cruise and no bugger took my photo at all. Oh, just one small request though. When you stop me at the Mongolian Wok to ask for a photograph, have some clue about how your phone camera works. That way, when you ask another guest to take a photograph of us, he won’t spend 20 minutes holding it the wrong way round and taking endless shots of his own nose.

Anyway, back to the helicopter story. So now the CD has made two announcements and still there are multiple night flashes filling the night sky. After the operation was finished and the guest was being flown to hospital the captain gave the CD a huge bollocking. I know the captain who administered the telling off and I can see his arms flying around like a demented windmill and his nostrils flaring.

So, the CD who is pretty new wrote to me asking for suggestions on what to do. Now this is a tough one. First of all I asked the CD to tell me what he said in his announcement. He told me and the only thing he missed out was to say that the request came directly from the helicopter.

Here is what he said, “Ladies and gentlemen, please do not take any flash photography of the helicopter as it can be dangerous for the pilots.”

Now, add the words “I have had a direct request here on the bridge radio from the pilot of the United States Coast Guard Helicopter …….please do not take any flash photography etc, etc” ………..and there you have a much stronger and more personnel request. And it’s a request that comes from a United States Coast Guard pilot and not from a 24-year-old CD who a few hours ago was telling jokes about suction toilets.

It’s a learning experience and as I reminded the CD, the Italian football team came bottom of their World Cup group and next to their mamas, rumpy pumpy and looking good, football is the most important thing in an Italian man’s life…….so maybe that’s why he was in such a bad mood.

But even with a personal heartfelt request like the above I know that there will always be guests who will ignore whatever we say. I feel fairly sure that if I were to catch fire while performing the bedtime story, no one would try to beat out the flames or find an extinguisher. They’d simply record the event on their phones.

Think about all those silly videos we send to each other via e-mail and the millions of videos on YouTube. Many seem to be of people who have fallen into lion enclosures at zoos. What would you do if you saw someone being eaten in a zoo? Throw things at the animal? Try to find a rope so what’s left of the person can climb out? Yes. I’d do something like that, too. But most people, if the internet is anything to go by, whip out their cameras and film the lion eating the poor sod’s pancreas.

So, on behalf of the all the brave men and women who fly helicopters over cruise ships can I ask that you don’t take flash photography. I am sure that the pilots and the chap who has just suffered a massive heart attack and is being winched up to the helicopter would appreciate it very much.

Time for today’s Q and A……….off we trot.

Susan V Asked:

I hope you are enjoying your time at home with Heidi and Kye! She is really a doll! I need your help on our upcoming cruise, we have 18 cruising together on the Carnival Dream on 9/11 and when we booked as a group, I requested dining together for all. We were trying to figure out how we can all be close together. I know there isn’t any way for everyone to sit together but as a group. I know the largest table is 10 but is there any way to make sure we are all in the same section. We all cruised together on the Carnival Valor in 2008 when Hurricane Ike was out there and we now call our group the Ike Dodgers since we dodged the hurricane.

I have been bragging like crazy about the comedy club I had on the Carnival Glory last year during the test phase on there and wanted to put a special request in for our cruise since I have been bragging about our favorite Carnival Comedian! Is there anyway you could persuade Chris to make sure that KIM HARRISON (2nd Lady of Carnival behind Al Ernst) will be one of the featured comedians on our cruise! I love this lady and want all of my fellow Carnival fans to enjoy this wonderful woman! So if you can put a bug in Chris’s ear, I will love you forever (well, I already do, but don’t tell my hubby, lol). Just in case the date got lost, we are cruising SEPTEMBER 11th on the CARNIVAL DREAM and NEED KIM HARRISON TO MAKE US LAUGH (lol).

Now for my next question from some of those cruising with us. I know the Carnival Dream has a different smoking policy than other ships and I just want clarification on where smoking is allowed. I know the areas are only a few but they are asking if you can smoke outside on the port side near the pool area at the tables like you can on other Carnival Ships. Some want to sunbathe but would like to take a smoke break and wanted to know if it’s allowed since it is outside. I figured if anyone would know it’s John so please help!

Scott and I will celebrate our 22nd Anniversary the day before we sail. We have made it a annual cruise (and try and sneak in another when time allows) to celebrate our love but now it’s also not only to celebrate our love, but we also get to reconnect with our dear friends we have met over the years on different cruises.

We are hoping for our 25th to do a cruise from Europe. We have 3 years to plan that trip but will be on several other cruises before the big one comes.

I am sorry this is so long but I have been really good about not asking questions since you are overloaded. I know you are behind and I figured I would get a head start since you are home and they are only going to overload you.

Thanks again John and tell Heidi to spoil you at least a little while you are home!

Till next time,
Susan & Scott

John Says:
Hello Susan and Scott

It seems that you are very excited about your September cruise on your Carnival Dream and I can certainly try and help you with your dining request. On August 1 please send a post with the cabin numbers and names of your group and I will ask the Maitre D to do his best to put you on adjoining tables. I am sure this will be possible.

I know Kim Harrison has become one of our most popular comedians or is it comedienne? Anyway, she has fitted into the Carnival Comedy Club concept perfectly. I will certainly ask if it is possible for her to be with you when you cruise. Smoking is not allowed by the pool but remember that the port side of the Lanai is a smoking allowed area. The Lanai concept has really cut back on the number of comments we get from non-smokers and doesn’t punish smokers by shoving them into a dark corner somewhere. I really think we got it right on this ship especially when you throw in the mostly non smoking casino as well. Please don’t forget to tell me those cabin numbers so I can try and help you.

Thanks for the kind words

Best wishes

Sean McGrath Asked:
John, please reply.

As ever John, many thanks for the enjoyment I get out of the blog and I hope you have a great time back with your family.

I refer to what I have heard on cruise critic about the increase in the single supplements from 150% to 200% for 1A category cabins.

Can you confirm if this is the case or is it just a rumour that started on cruise critic?

If it is true I would like to thank Carnival for my previous cruises as I doubt I will be able to take anymore. This change will price me out of the market. Obviously I had a low margin for price variance but this is the straw that broke the camel’s back as they say.

I have no doubt that this is the correct business decision made by Carnival, and just simply want to pass on my feedback that at least one solo traveller will no longer be able to avail of your wonderful holidays if it is the case.

So thanks for the memories mate and I intend to keep reading the blog.

Sail her easy.

John Says:
Hello Sean McGrath

Just in case you missed yesterday’s blog thingy I can confirm that this is indeed correct. I wasn’t going to talk about this again as it was well covered yesterday but in this case I had to. I was so sorry to hear that you won’t be cruising with us again and although there is little I can do to change your mind I did want to let you know that I will send your comments to one of our vice presidents so that they know of your situation and those like you. And I also wanted to say a huge thank you to you for being a blog fan and that I sincerely hope that somehow you are able to cruise with Carnival again. Thanks again for taking the time to write.

Best wishes

Angela Asked:

I had no idea how to write to you- except as a comment- cause I’m absolutely horrible with computers…I’m a disgrace to my generation, in all honesty.

I’m writing to you because my mom reads your blog like it’s going out of style. I have to say, after this one, I’m probably going to be reading more, too. I laughed out loud to the disdain of my sleeping boyfriend more than a couple of times.

Anyway, my mom, sister and I cruise a lot, always Carnival. She (my mom) was so excited about this one coming up at the end of the month because she was going to be VIP. It’s going to be my 21st birthday, and none of us thought she’d be around to see it. She was diagnosed with breast cancer about a year ago, when she booked the cruise. I suppose she booked initially because she’s so damn stubborn- she probably felt if she had plans then there was no way at all she wouldn’t be around to keep them.

She spent more money than she had through all of her medical expenses and my sister took the year off of school so we could take care of her as best we could. Luckily, she went into remission a couple of months ago! But, because she went all-out with this cruise, and spent more than she had cause she figured ‘why the hell not,’ I was wondering if you could give me any suggestions on special things to do while we’re out and about in the Bahamas or on board. (Something affordable for a woman with massive amounts of medical bills, that is :-/)

She’s saved my life more times than I can even list, from my abusive father to battered womens shelters, so on and so forth. I want to do something for HER this time. She is by far the best mommy anyone could ask for and I’m at a loss as what to do to make this her most amazing experience of her life. As she says “Well OF COURSE there isn’t anything more for you to do, I can handle this! See, I can get any man I want now- if they like small boobs I got one of those, and if they like big boobs, I got one of those!” She’s got an amazing attitude and I want to surprise her with something great.

Thanks for any suggestions you may have, it means a lot to me. We’re leaving at the end of the month for the Bahamas, June 27th on the Pride. I’m super excited, another vacation with my mom, and I’m gonna be 21 on the 28th, two whole fun days at sea to enjoy being an adult, lol.

Thanks again!

Angela Seaman

John Says:
Hello Angela Seaman

Congratulations on successfully posting a comment on my blog thingy. Don’t be embarrassed about being technically deficient. I sit here, in my underpants, everyday at the computer and I have no idea what all the buttons do and basically its just one very expensive typewriter to me.

You must be so very proud of your Mum and that after all she has been through that she has fought of breast cancer and now wants to rejuvenate herself and her loving daughters by taking a cruise on the Carnival Pride.

Fun is a brilliant medicine and I suggest you see one of our comedy shows and laugh out loud. Go down the slide as a family and take her to the disco and let her dance the night away. Then one night, have a meal all together at the steakhouse. It’s a stunning 5-course dinner for just $30 per person and as you enjoy this fabulous meal you can toast each other and thanks Mum for being…….well…….Mum. I will ask my mate Kirk who id the CD to send Mum a little something from me. Have a super time and please if you can, tell us all about it when you get home.

Best wishes to all

Janet Thames Asked:
Hi John, Please reply

I just got off of the beautiful Carnival Dream June 5, 2010. I just wanted to thank you and all the Stephanie’s for seeing that we were seated at tables in the back of the Scarlet Restaurant at the windows. It was amazing.

I would like to say that our waiters William and Edgar (table 429) were wonderful and my room steward (Richard) was fantastic. I love the cove Balcony. I sat on the balcony late at night watching the wave’s crash into the ship. I love everything about the ship. The Carnival Waterworks was awesome. We especially loved the Carnival Seaside theatre. The laser shows were fantastic. My Grandchildren loved the Circle C and Camp Carnival. The food in the Gathering, the ocean plaza, and the restaurants were wonderful. I did not have a bad meal on the ship. One other thing, I was on the Dream in December and the hamburger and hot dog area always had long lines. They eliminated that problem by offering hamburgers and hot dogs at the Pizzeria as well as the grill. I found that all the food venues were wonderful. We did not have to wait in long lines at any time on the ship.

The shows are amazing. Every night we went to the Encore theatre for the shows. The entertainers were the best I have ever seen and the Dancing in the Street production was better that a Broadway revue. People would pay a large sum of money to see this production in Las Vegas or New York. I will go on the Dream again and I am patiently waiting on the Carnival Magic. I wish there were some way of adding more cove balconies. I like being close to the water. We saw Manatee, flying fish, dolphins and a sea turtle.

Enjoy you time at home with family. Thank Heidi and Kye for sharing you with us and once again thank you for all that you do. As you are reading this letter I’m planning my next Carnival Cruise.

The only bad thing about the Carnival Dream is having to leave the ship after my cruise.

John Says:
Hello Janet James

I just wanted to say thank you for taking your time to say thank you. And what a brilliant review of your Carnival Dream. I will send this to the ship and I know the management will enjoy reading it very much. The cove balconies are very special and it looks like you took full advantage of the views that they give although I think you are the first to report having seen a manatee. I hope it’s not too long before we see you again on another Carnival cruise….maybe your Carnival Magic?

Best wishes to you and the family.

Reverendjeff Asked:
John, Please Reply:

John, A few comments and a question.

First let me say that I enjoy reading the blog. It gives some insight as to what life on a cruise ship is and makes the whole cruising experience a little more personal.

Secondly, I must say that I am not only tired of reading about power strips, I am extremely tired of how some folks who write on a certain discussion board believe that they can somehow flex their muscles to change Carnival policy. Please people, give it a rest.

Lastly I have a question. My wife and I will be celebrating our 25th on our Carnival Dream during the 7/17/2010 cruise. I would love to surprise her with the Chef’s table dinner on the 19th which is the actual anniversary day and a sea day. How can I reserve a place for us at this special table?

Oh, and just so people do not get the wrong idea, I am not asking for a freebie, just a reservation.

Thanks John and enjoy your wonderful family.

John Says:
Hello Reverendjeff

I am glad that you enjoy the blog so much Reverend Jeff. Unfortunately I am not able to make bookings for the Chef’s Table in advance. I am not sure why although I guess it may be that they are worried that people will book and then cancel, although we do this for the Steakhouse….. let me ask again actually and see what can be done.

You won’t have any problems getting a place though as the cruise directors and maitre d’s really don’t promote this until the first sea day. So may I suggest that you go to the Celebrations shop on Promenade Deck 5 or the guest services desk on deck 3 to book this as soon as you board.

If anything changes and I am allowed to do reservations for this on the blog I will let you and everyone know. Thanks for all the support and I wish you both a fantastic cruise on your Carnival Dream.

Best wishes

Frank and Bridie Asked:
John Please reply,

Review – Carnival Dream – May 29, 2010

Embark – two words “very smooth” Port Canaveral knows how to treat VIPs and we were on the boat in record time.

Sail Away Day/Night – We had dressed our son in his bathing suit so he could swim and do the water slides first thing. Unfortunately, they weren’t open at all the first day. He was very disappointed. He did enjoy the pool for a bit. The only other unfortunate part of today was waiting for our luggage. We finally walked down the hall 20 minutes before dinner and saw a few of our bags, one of the men offered to help carry them to our room. The other bags arrived 10 minutes later. Since we got on the boat at about 11, and dinner was at 6PM, that was a long time to wait. We understand that there is a lot of luggage to load and distribute but we have never had to wait so long. Yes, they say you can go to dinner “as you are” but we would have felt ridiculous in our shorts and T-Shirts.

Day At Sea – Both of us had massages while our son went to Camp Carnival. As usual the spa staff was great and there wasn’t too much of a “buy this lotion/potion” sell. Then we attempted the water slides and pool, which were very busy. Since we ate breakfast early, due to early massages, we would have liked to eat lunch at about 11:30, but they were still serving breakfast, seemed late to us. This was also the first formal night. We had fun dressing up and taking pictures, and didn’t have to wait long for any of the poses.

Cozumel – Did the excursion called “Sub Ocean View” and loved it. We were a little apprehensive because friends said they’d done a glass bottom boat tour before and were very hot and got sea sick. This was a really neat tour. You sit below deck (cushioned seats) and the boat has AIR CONDITIONING!! There were about 20 of us total and we spent about 45 minutes to an hour putting around a coral reef. The guide was very informative and patiently answered all the questions that our 6 year old son and his 5 year old friend could toss out.

We returned to the boat and took our son swimming again. After about 30 minutes, we told him 5 more jumps. Well, on jump number 2 he spun in the air and slammed his chin into the deck on the way down. He didn’t cry much but when I looked I could tell we were going to need help. We made our way to the medical center with dread. Sure enough, the nurse said it was too big for the bond glue and would need several stitches. The doctor came and gave us the option of her doing them or sending us to the closest hospital where they could sedate him if necessary. Being six, and stubborn, he was a little difficult. They called in another nurse for assistance and she was awesome. Nurse Sharon who was amazing helped us explain to him what would happen, and helped to hold him while it was going on. The numbing shots were the worst part but they were so patient with our son (and his mommy and daddy). When we finished, they didn’t even charge us, saying there was no charge for accidents on the boat. We were so pleased with how the whole thing went. Guest services called the next day to check on him and the doctor herself called to make sure everything was okay. Amazing!

Isla Roatan – Here we did the “Pirates, Birds, and Monkey’s of the Caribbean” tour. The port area is very nice and I think if we went again I’d like to just use it as a beach day and take the chair lift over to the beach area. For the tour, we rode in a van to Gumbalimba Park. Our tour guide had us put our belongings in a rented locker ($3) and then we took a walk through the park. We saw hummingbirds, several kinds of lizards and iguanas, and parrots on our way to the monkeys. They had a baby monkey (18 mths old) for the little kids and they kept him on a leash the whole time. The rest of the monkeys were free to roam and would jump on people’s shoulders for pictures. There was one spider monkey who was chained to his house as a “time-out” because he’d be bad earlier in the week. We then went into a cave to learn about the history of the island. By this point we were VERY hot, as the humidity was about 90%. Once we got back to where we started we were given the option of leaving or staying at enjoying their beach and pool area. We chose to leave because we were just very sweaty and uncomfortable. However, the park area was very nice and I would recommend the tour.

Belize – This was our fourth visit to Belize. Twice before we have done cave tubing and each time we would drive by the Belize Zoo. So, since we had our son with us this time, we decided to try the Belize City and Zoo Tour. My one warning to anyone choosing this tour, TAKE BUG SPRAY! Even with borrowed bug spray from one of the ladies with us, we got eaten up. We started on the bus driving around the city for about an hour. Carolyn, our guide, was very informative and answered lots of questions for us. Then we drove about 35 more minutes to get to the zoo. Jenny took over as our guide for the zoo portion. She took us to see the different animals, they kept us moving but it didn’t feel too rushed. The highlight for my husband and son was Junior, the jaguar. For $10pp, they took a group of about 6 people in for an encounter with the animal. After removing the jaguar, they took the volunteers into a smaller cage and then released Junior. The trainer fed him chicken and had him walk by the cage so they could “pet” him. Then he had junior jump on top of the cage and he would lick each participant’s head. It was very cute. Probably not something that would ever be done in the US but my husband and son loved it.

Costa Maya – We chose not to do an excursion today and the plan was to enjoy the water slides and pool, hoping they’d be a little less busy. However, our son was scared of the pool after his chin mishap and he wasn’t in the mood for the water slides for whatever reason. Instead, he insisted on going to Camp Carnival. So, hubby and I just got off the boat for a little shopping in the port area. I think that our son would have enjoyed the pool and fountain at the port had he realized what it was, but he was just as happy playing in Camp Carnival. He really liked when they would go to eat as a group and always ate more for them than he would for us.

Final Sea Day – My husband went on the Behind the Fun tour on our final day at sea and he really enjoyed himself. They got to see many areas of the ship that are usually off limits, such as the galley, the behind stage area in the main lounge, place where they take the trash, the laundry, the crew quarters, crew laundry, morgue and brig, the engine room, and the bridge; where they got to meet Captain Carlo Queirolo, who spent some time talking to them. The captain even made his sea day announcement while they were there. When they finished they got a bunch of goodies (a hat, bracelet, backpack, carved soap, and they delivered a plate of goodies to our room also).

Sometime around 4, Todd, the cruise director, came on to announce that there was going to be a helicopter coming out to take a sick passenger back to shore. He said they would need to clear the back of deck 11 and that he would give us more information shortly. Well, they ended up clearing almost all of the top several decks. When the helicopter came and flew around the boat a few times they even cleared parts of the lanai. It was exciting to see the helicopter but, of course, we hoped for the best for the sick patient. It took a lot longer than we thought it would and there were never any more announcements from the staff, which was a little disappointing, I would have thought they would be more forthcoming with information regarding closings, especially since the kids club couldn’t open as scheduled.

We also ate at Chef’s Art Steakhouse on our last night. The food was excellent and the service good too. I couldn’t believe the size of the cheesecake I ordered for dessert! They were also very accommodating. Due to the helicopter rescue, the kid’s club couldn’t take the kids for dinner and didn’t open until about 6:20. Our reservations were for 6:30 but when we called they said to just come when we could make it.

Overall it was a great trip and the Dream is a pretty boat. There are definitely a lot of people. One of the nights we tried to get seats for the show. They reversed the times and the early show was for late seating diners. There was a line before that show even let out and there was lots of pushing and shoving as those in the show tried to leave and people coming in tried to get seats. I think if they are going to do the times like that, they should have people exit on one side and enter on the other side.

Sparky are room steward was also amazing. She lit right up to are 6yoa son. So did he to her. She felt so bad for him after his stitches and was making him towel animals every night and talking to him. Are son loved seeing her and couldn’t wait to see what the towel animal was the next night.

My only complaint would be the seat saving. Now I understand one or two for you wife/husband or kids. But there were people saving entire rows. Almost 12 or 13 seats. That’s ridiculous! Even though multiple times they came on the speakers in the show lounge and would say no seat saving. Is there a way they could enforce this more so?

John Says:
Hello Frank and Bridie

I am so glad that you both had a brilliant time on your Carnival Dream and I know that many future guests of the ship will find your comprehensive review very useful indeed. I am going to make sure that the ship’s management get to read this to so that your words of praise can be passed to those who gave you such fantastic service and fun.

Having been the cruise director of this ship I know that at some shows seating is difficult. I am still pushing for a third performance of Dancin in the Street as it has rapidly become the most popular show at sea and we should allow for every guest to see it. I will, until then, ask Todd to keep making stronger announcements about seat saving although as with the flash photography we just mentioned at the start of today’s blog….not everyone listens….or cares. I think we need to have the entertainment staff do their best to walk the lounge and asking anyone saving seats not to do so. I will certainly bring the subject up again. I hope you received the gifts I sent you and can you say hello to Linda Hernacki if you speak to her as I haven’t heard from her recently.

I hope you all had fun and thanks again for the great review.

Best wishes to you both

That’s all for today and I will have more questions and answers tomorrow.

OK, it’s time to highlight one of our ships and those who will look after you while onboard. I am not sure why but it seems to me that if I ever ask people what their favourite (spelt correctly) ship is they often say Carnival Miracle……actually the will say “Miracle” as I continue to lose the battle with Carnival employees and our guests to include the word “Carnival” when talking about our ships.

Anyway, yep…….it’s the Carnival Miracle that seems to be one of our most popular and she is a ship of course that I have never been on. I wonder, is it the interior design, the itinerary or the guests that sail on her that make her so popular? Can someone tell me? Talking of the itinerary, let’s have a look at where she is sailing.

Saturday          NEW YORK, NY 4 pm

Sunday            FUN DAY AT SEA

Monday,          FUN DAY AT SEA

Tuesday          GRAND TURK 7 am to 3 pm

Wednesday,    HALF MOON CAY, BAHAMAS 9am to 5pm

Thursday         NASSAU, BAHAMAS 7 am to 6 pm

Friday             FUN DAY AT SEA

Saturday,         FUN DAY AT SEA

Sunday,           NEW YORK, NY 8 am

She also has a couple of these special cruises

Sunday            NEW YORK, NY 4 pm

Monday           FUN DAY AT SEA

Tuesday         FUN DAY AT SEA

Wednesday     SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO 3 pm to midnight

Thursday         ST. THOMAS, USVI 7am to 4pm

Friday GRAND TURK 1 pm to 7 pm

Saturday          FUN DAY AT SEA

Sunday            FUN DAY AT SEA

Monday           NEW YORK, NY 8 am

And then of course from October she will revert back to Fort Lauderdale and this totally brilliant itinerary.



GRAND TURK 7am to 3 pm


ARUBA noon to 10 pm

CURACAO 8 am to 4 pm




And some of these superb eastern voyages




ST. MAARTEN, NA 8 am to 5pm

ST. LUCIA, WI 9 am to 5 pm

ST KITTS, WI 9 am to 4 pm




Look at that. Aruba, Curacao, St. Kitts and St. Lucia………now those are some very special destinations and lets have a look at the ship now and meet Captain Giuseppe Donato, Hotel Director Pierre Camilleri, Executive Chef Angelo D’Souza and of course Cruise Director Malcolm Burn.

Brilliant photos and what a beautiful ship she is both inside and out. I hope to hear from you as to why you love the Carnival Miracle?

Now that photo slide show thingy was put together by Stephanie H who is one of the 344 Stephanies and so very important to the blog thingy. It is she that posts the blog everyday and along with many other Stephanies make sure that your comments are posted etc……..even on weekends.

However, the original Stephanie is still with us but has moved onto greater things. Stephanie Leavitt was with us on BC1 and BC2 and became a friend to many who read this blog. She is quite brilliant and has been responsible for much of the content on the blog thingy and on carnival.com as well as establishing our Carnival Facebook thingy page which has upwards of 170,000 friends!

Anyway, she has been with us pretty much from the beginning of the blog and her hard work has resulted in her being promoted to Senior Manager of ummmm……..things. Anyway, here is a photo of her before she grew her beard.

Congratulations to Stephanie L and thanks to her for all her hard work.

Well Holland is still in the World Cup so Heidi is cheering them on and because England is crap and the players have returned to their mansions and Lamborghinis……..so have I. But Heidi is to be honest more interested in Wimbledon which is now in full flow. My wife and other ladies will tell you they are interested in the tennis but that of course is bollocks……. because it’s all about that Spanish chap Rafael Nadal.

And I can understand why as it’s been so long since female tennis fans have had anything to drool over. Now while us men have had Sabatini, Sharipova and Navratilova the male tennis players of recent years have not been Brad Clooneys have they?

Remember the last time that tennis served up such a genuine dreamboat. Tennis has been something of a desert for the female libido these past 20 years. Pete Sampras? The human computer who, you suspect, would fold his clothes neatly over a chair before commencing the 30-minute window he has scheduled for rumpy pumpy? My washing machine has a more interesting personality.

Andre Agassi was follically challenged and as high as Everest most of the time.  But while Heidi and the rest of the female world watches Nadal, I can’t be bothered because he may be a pretty boy but bloody hell…….he is soooooo boring………because it seems that’s the law in tennis these days.

John McEnroe might have had the temper of a two-year-old and the looks of a young Woody Allen but I’d love to have dinner with him any day over the joyless Federer. The grunting, clownish Jimmy Connors may have looked as though he still let his mother cut his hair but at least he had personality and looked more likely to crack open a beer and bugger of to a Latvian lap Dancing club at the end of the match than pore over a video of it, analyzing his mistakes.

Just once I would love to see a player get so angry that he tips over that huge ladder thing the umpire sits on. Just once I would love to see one of the Russian model type players wear a G string and at the end of every game seductively bend over to pick them up. Just once when the umpire says “new balls please” Roger Federer pulls down his shorts and underpants and do a little jig shouting “Will these do?”

But this will never happen because tennis is boring.

And people who go to watch Wimbledon are …..ummm….different. They will applaud everything from a double fault made by anyone who is playing anyone British to the umpire asking everyone to turn their cell phones off. Yep, Wimbledon is so British and attracts enormous television audiences from all over the world and I often wonder what these sophisticated people from abroad are going to think of Britain when they see some hysterical woman with fanatically applauding a pigeon that has just landed on center before devouring a huge bowl of overpriced strawberries. They’re going to think we’re all mad.

Anyway, time for me to go as I have to carry the new parasol umbrella thing Heidi bought for our garden. The parasol/umbrella thingy is OK but the stand weighs a ton and my back hurts. I could do with two people with huge muscles to help me………….I wonder if the Williams sisters are available?

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.