The most astonishing thing happened to me last night………….I was blamed for the BP oil spill.

Obviously I have a British accent both on and off stage. This might have something to do with the fact that well…………….. I’m British………… British as The Queen, Fawlty Towers, warm beer, spotted dick, cricket and curry.

There are times on stage when I enhance this accent and also adopt certain words to guests when I meet them on the Promenade Deck and I often finish my morning shows and announcements with the word “Cheers.”

Over the years, most people have told me that they loved my accent. When I first arrived onboard the Holiday as a bar waiter my first thought was that America was a magic country where strangers liked me on the strength of my voice alone, unlike back home where most people ignored me or where the female species would vomit if I spoke to them.

As I walked the decks selling my Fun Ship Specials for $2.99……yep…….$2.99, I realised that the passengers (as you were back then before you were promoted to guests) loved it when I spoke with a cockney, east London accent rather than the more rounded Brit accent I usually spoke with.

Therefore I started saying “blimey” and “bloke” and “darlin” and ” bugger ” and “bleedin’ ‘ell” and when a passenger asked me where the bathroom was I pretended not to understand and then would say “Ahh, you mean the bog love……’s ova there darlin.”

And over the years my accent has stayed mostly British although I do find myself saying some American words now and then……..garbage instead of rubbish and schedule instead of schedule. Being British has never been a problem for me as a CD on a ship full of mostly American guests. We were with you in Iraq and Afghanistan and the “special relationship” has always been a good thing……. I think.

So you can imagine my horror when this guest walked past me and asked if I was British and after saying yes………told me that I should be ashamed because of what has happened in the Gulf. He did so while wagging his finger inches from my face while I just stood there……..utterly bewildered. I was standing with the chief purser………..bugger………guest services manager at the time and he too could not believe this was happening.

Being British has always been something the guests seemed to have enjoyed about me and that along with my plumpness has I think helped me get away with being extra cheeky on stage. But now, as a company with the word “British” pissed apocalyptic quantities of oil into the ocean….. I am suddenly hated.

I wanted to tell this guest that BP is an international company and I had nothing to do with the oil spill. But I never got the chance…….. and besides……’s got the word British in the title and that’ll do for this guest who told me he wouldn’t be coming to any shows I was in…

Like you, I’ve never supervised the offshore drilling procedures of a major oil company, but after this man ranted at me……… I can’t help feeling responsible. It’s like finding out that your ex girlfriend decided to become a nun after dating you. I feel so terribly sad for the people who died on the oil rig and for the many millions of dollars that were lost in the tourism and fishing industries, etc. And to be honest, the Americans have been reasonable about the whole thing. If a company called Hazzard Oil belched a carpet of black oil in the English Channel killing our beloved cod which usually gives its life to become the fish with our chips………we’d be surrounding the US embassy and burning effigies of Boss Hogg within minutes.

Thinking about it this is old news now and also I spent time onboard in Texas, Alabama and South Carolina during the height of the spill……..and nobody ever told me they hated Britain or blamed me. But here I am, on the Carnival Splendor and suddenly me and Hugh Grant are total and utter bastards.

I have been blamed for many things since being a CD. Weather, missed ports, mosquito bites, etc. etc…………..but an oil spill…………….well that’s a first.

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

Dana Asked:
John (Please Reply)

First: as a previous Splendor ‘rider’ the aft pool being adults only is a great idea, possible to also go ‘topless’?

We are looking forward to boarding Splendor this Sun the 8th:

1. Do you know who the comedian is for this trip?

2. I am hoping to get my former waitress ‘NUNU’ on this trip, any idea how I can find out if she is still on the ship?? If she is I will proceed to strong-arm the maitre’d.

3. Is it possible to arrange dinner with the likes of YOU?? After reading your comments you seem like you would be a great dinner guest for an evening – my daughters and grand-daughters would likely ‘dig’ you??

4. Is it possible to do any advance table reservations for the evening dining?

5. Is the crew worried at all about that little tropical depression forming about 250 miles south of you??

I know you will be on a conf call or brushing your teeth or adjusting your ‘shower curtain toga’ so I will understand if you cannot get to my questions. Feel free to tell me to ‘pound sand’.

John Says:
Hello Dana

I think the topless days are long gone. I actually read that in places like the Mediterranean where it was invented that even there it is becoming less popular. Strange how values have changed …… I always say seen one……you’ve seen them both. Now obviously I have missed your sailing and I think I am right that we actually met during your cruise and that I sent something to your cabin. Regardless, I am so sorry that I am late answering this and I am writing in the hope that you had a brilliant time. The weather I remember was gorgeous and the depression you mentioned never caused us any concerns short of a rain and thunder storm late into Wednesday night. So please let me know you had fun and I hope to hear from you soon.

Best wishes

Betty Miles Asked:
Hi John,

Have sailed w/ you 4 times & your the very best C.D. there is. I’m going on C. Glory 1/23/11 for my 13th. Cruise & platinum.

We love Carnival. Will you be on Glory on 1/23/11??Hope so.

Is possible could you please help. Looking for early seating on lower level for 2.We were on upper level in middle of all waiter’s,busboys,traffic & almost wore a few trays over the week. It was horrible seating & hope you can help. Thanks.

I’ll look for your response on your blog love your blog. Hi to Heidi & Kye. Cruise lover, Betty

John Says:
Hello Betty Miles

I thank you so much for those very kind words and congratulations on booking another fun for all Carnival cruise on the Carnival Glory. I will be on that ship in February for bloggers cruise number 4. I have no idea though when I will start there or finish for that matter. I am sure we will be working on the schedule very soon and I will let you know. I will be honoured (spelt correctly) to ask for the seating you requested. Your voyage won’t be in the Maitre D’s computer yet so please post this again in early December and I will make sure that I ask for you then.

Until then I hope you continue to enjoy the blog thingy

Best wishes

Mary H Asked:
John, Please Reply

I am booked on Oct 16th Carnival Magic Med cruise but it is fast becoming a Magical Mystery Tour. First we were going to Livorno, and then it was changed to Genoa, now has been changed again to Savona. Would you be able to find out for us what is going on? Also we have noticed that the itinerary has been changed around.

Please encourage Ken Byrne to join us.

John Says:
Hello Mary

In case you missed the great news, Ken Byrne and his velvet voice and Irish wit will be joining us on your Carnival Magic. There have been some comings and goings regarding where we will be docking and the final decision is indeed Savona. I have been to this terminal before and Costa have built a gorgeous place to dock the ship and we will be offering excursions to Pisa and beyond from there as well. I am working with the shore side chaps on the exact tours that will be available and pretty soon I will be writing about them here on the blog thingy.

The Mediterranean is the place to be it seems with more and more ships wanting to sail to the prime destinations, which I promise you the Carnival Magic has. By the way, did you see the video of the ship? If not have a look at ……it’s bound to get you even more excited than you already are.

I will see you soon and remember if in the months ahead you have any specific excursion questions, please let me know

Best wishes

LookingforwardtoBloggersCruise#4 Asked:

By the time you reply to this comment, you will probably have solved all these issues, but I thought I would comment nonetheless.

When I booked Mrs. MTSFP and myself on BC#4, I explicitly asked about the higher fare and was told it was to cover the special events, gifts, etc.

Like Linda, I find this practice questionable, to say the least. I realize that Carnival does incur some extra costs for the Blogger’s Cruise, but our cost was, if I remember, in excess of $100 higher than other fares we could have gotten – not much reward for being a platinum guest.

I look forward to BC#4, but would love to see a proper pricing that recognizes our past guest, military service or whatever discount one is eligible for.

Your mate in blogging.

aka Jon

John Says:
Hello Missingthesmokefreeparadisebutlookingforwardtobloggerscruise#4

There has been much discussion about this. And as we don’t want anyone to lose out on past guest discount or military reward discounts we are allowing everyone to book with these if they are applicable. We will then do a roll call at the end of the year to make sure who is booked and thus part of the group. There isn’t a $100 charge for gifts and drinks etc, so please if you can, book with whatever discounts are applicable to you and Mrs. Missingthesmokefreeparadisebutlookingforwardtobloggerscruise#4.

I am very happy indeed that you are coming.

My best wishes to you both

Nicole Asked:
John Please Reply-

Hi John,

You were the CD on our first ever cruise. It was on the Carnival Liberty in February of 2006. Now I would simply like to pay you a compliment and say that your talks and shows were fantastic and truly made our first cruise great and memorable. I was so happy to have found your blog thingy. I follow it daily and could care less if your talking about ship stuff or your family. As a mother of a 3 yr old and a 10 month old, I can very much relate to the adventures of parenthood. The happy and the sad… (Like when you just left them from your well deserved time off work.). I sure hope you somehow get to see them again soon!

Anyhow, yes, I am going to be one of those people who asks for something. Which again, I don’t understand why people get upset that you help people out with things. Honestly, I think It is very kind if you. Not just saying that because I am trying to get something too.

We are sailing on the Carnival Fascination on October 2nd, 2010.

First of all, who is our CD and can you tell me a little about him?

Secondly, we are traveling another couple Lucas and Niccole Carpenter.

The purpose of this trip is to celebrate her 30th birthday on Oct 3rd. Is there anything you can do to surprise her a little on her birthday? Doesn’t have to be anything big just something she may not expect. We would greatly appreciate it and we cannot wait for our vacation. Thank you and keep doing what you do!!

We are on the Oct 2nd Carnival Fascination sailing and her birthday is Oct 3rd.

Nicole Thompson.

John Says:
Hello Nicole Thompson

Those were very nice comments at the start of your posting and I am glad you have so many happy memories from your Carnival Liberty cruise. Thanks to you also for supporting the blog thingy and please don’t worry about asking for something as I am happy to try and help. I am sending this to my colleagues on the Carnival Fascination to ask them to send Nicole Carpenter a birthday gift. So, you asked about your cruise director and his name is Trevor Block… he is.

As you can see, Trevor is sports mad as that photo is of him and some football star called Doug Fluke or something like that. Anyway, Trevor is a great CD and I know he will make sure that a birthday gift is delivered accordingly. His wife had a beautiful son just a few weeks after Kye was born so I know he is missing his family a lot just as I am.

Have a wonderful time and best wishes to all

Nina Asked:
Dear John (please reply),

I wrote to you a few months ago, but you probably don’t remember (which is okay)!! Anyway my parents are taking me on the magic on July 3rd 2011 for my graduation present and tonight at dinner my mom and I were talking about food. We were wondering what kind of food they serve in the dining room and lido deck on a med cruise. This probably is an idiotic question though!! Do they serve what would usually be served when you go to the Caribbean or is it food that you would normally see in the ports we are going to??

Thank you in advance and John this whole thing on cruise critic is absolutely insane! Who cares what you do for other people. The truth is if these people who are upset about what you are doing needed something they would probably come to you for help!! Don’t let them get to you because I think it is wonderful what you do for people you are such a great person!!!

P.S.-Are Heidi and Kye going to be on any of the magic med cruises??

John Says:
Hello Nina

Actually that’s not a silly question because although the dinner menus are mostly the same we certainly serve some European dishes on the Lido deck at our Taste of the Nations buffet. I am sure that next year the chef will have some surprises for us as well.

Did you see The tour through the ship is brilliant and you will see the new Cucina del Capitano which is the new specialty Italian family style restaurant which will be open at night. There will be a minimal charge for this but like our steakhouse it will be exceptional value for money.

I will be able to give you more details about the food and other Carnival Magic highlights soon. Heidi and Kye should be able to be with me much more next year because the flight to Barcelona is only 2 hours. Thanks so much for those kind words and if there is ever anything I can do for you, please let me know.

Best wishes to you and Mum

Joseph Asked:
John Please Reply

I sailed on the Carnival Conquest on the 25th of July and had a fabulous time. I was with my 19 year old daughter whom is much taller than I am and more than once we were mistaken as a couple. She made a point to call me “Dad” a lot. 🙂 We also sailed with my Mom, my 2 younger brothers and their families. I wanted to pass on some much needed kudos to some of the staff and I hope you will pass them on to their appropriate supervisors.

First off, Chris the cruise director was fantastic. He was very humorous and when there was a passenger scare the last sea day, he handled things remarkably. My second set of kudos go to the cabin steward, Mark and his team members, Eveginia and Elliott. Their service was spot on and we never needed to ask for anything. When there was a problem with a broken shower head, one call to Mark and the problem was rectified within 10 minutes. I cannot put into words how much their dedication to making the cruise an enjoyable one paid huge dividends.

Next there was our wait staff, head waiter I Gusti Wijaya and his team waiter Made Arma. Again, their service was top notch. They both knew us by name and went out of their way to making our time in the Monet dining room a memorable one. They should be recognized in front of their peers and promoted as soon as possible.

Lastly, we had dinner in the Steakhouse on Friday evening. What a treat and well worth the additional money. I’d highly recommend it to anyone. The portions were more than enough and when dessert came, the cheesecake was more than I had imagined it would be. One slice could feed 4 people easily and we had 5 pieces between the 8 of us.

Carnival once again surpassed my expectations and we are already in the early planning stages of a family and friends cruise for 2012! Can’t wait.

Great job on the blog thingy. It’s very comical and engaging and I look forward to your new post. Have a wonderful cruise on the Carnival Splendor and welcome back! You were truly missed.

Joseph Raggette, Carnival Conquest, Cabin 7446, 25 July 2010

John Says:
Hello Joseph

That’s funny…..I can picture your daughter walking down Promenade with you making sure she says the word Dad loudly every time she passes a somewhat attractive young man. It is so super of you to take the time to write in praise of the people who exceeded your expectations on the Carnival Splendor. It means so much for people like I Gusti, Made Arma and Mark and his helpers to see their names in print like this and I will make sure that they all get copies of this. I am not surprised you enjoyed Chris so much because he is simply one of our very best CD’s and I have so much respect for the work he does. So thanks for making their day and thank you also for the kind words about the blog. I hope you continue to read it and I hope we will soon be welcoming you and your family again onboard a fun for all ship.

My best wishes to you all

Carl, Jane Michael and Trina Scaringelli Asked:
Reply please 🙂

John I want to thank you for making our sons and his now wife something to remember, as well as myself and my wonderful hubby! We had the most amazing time with the Chef Table. We learned a lot, had food that was to die for, and even learned how to make warm chocolate melting cake!! (or as I said to our waiters shakey shakey ) who were also amazing given we had about 25 friends and family with us) The chef also made a goodie for our son and daughter in law a special cake the night before their wedding…which by the way, it rained cats and dogs on the beach..I think I would have freaked out, but Trina and Michael handled the entire wedding like real troopers and made the best out of it, had fun. We were a tad late getting back to the ship, the rain water was horrible…but again, we had a great driver and he made that fun too! Carnival knew we were coming back, so when we got back to the ship the crew were so welcoming when we made it back! The Dream was amazing! It was our 9th cruise and as much as we liked Marti Gras the dream is now our favorite. I don’t understand all the griping that people have complained about…unless it’s just the fact that some people choose to be negative and others of us don’t. We were on deck 11. Balcony. Other than hearing the treadmill at 6am most days (it made for a good alarm clock) We could not have asked for a better cabin…ok maybe we could..Son and his wife had the grand suite and they loved it!! We did get to see one of the rather large (and somewhat tacky) ship leave a few people at the dock as they got back about 5 mins after they had started backing out…the poor girl only had a bikini on, no towel but boy did she know a lot of swear words lol Lesson learned for her I hope!!

At any rate, we had a wonderful time; we even got the 100.00 pre booking that good for 5 years along with the OBC when we do decide which ship will be next! I would like to say, we sailed our first time back in 1976 and as you know they apparently didn’t keep records of who was on the Mardi Gras, and for the longest time we couldn’t find proof that we were on that ship….but to the rescue comes hubby (of 34 years)..He found receipts for several things as well as our cabin number and things we bought on the ship again with our name on it…so we are hoping that this next cruise will give us VIP status!! I’m sorry it took about 2 weeks to write to you, We have an older daughter 32 and our son who got married right after his 30th birthday and also a daughter who was not able to come on the wedding cruise with us as she has been in soccer training for college, so the day we got back from the cruise, the next day we had to get her off to college and have been down there several more times , thus this is the first time I have been able to write back to you! I would also like to think Host Mach for help with the Chef Table…it was everything and more as he said it would be!!

One question for you! We are thinking about doing a cruise, of course on Carnival, but it has to be in the month of May, what ship do you think we should choose…and we would want 7 days or possibly 8. Thanks so very much John, you keep me laughing each time I read your blog. Your wife and your daughter are beautiful and no doubt you miss being away from them! Enjoy the new ship, we hope to go on her sometime in the coming years~~

Jane Scaringelli!

John Says:
Hello Scaringelli Family

And congratulations on the wedding and welcome home from the fabulous cruise on your Carnival Dream. The Chef’s Table is rapidly becoming a highlight for many and as the word spreads I am reserving more and more spots via the blog thingy which means the readers of this little blog get first choice……which makes me very happy indeed. Thanks for mentioning Host Mach because as always he is a huge supporter of Carnival and has as you said been a big help with getting the message out there about this great event.

I am glad everything went well and while there will always be some who find the larger ships are not for them there are many, many more who have raved about their Carnival Dream experience.

Now as for May and your choice of ship. Well, I wonder…….have you ever sailed on a Spirit class ship. I say this because it will be much different to your Carnival Dream experience with a guest count of 2,200. I thought you might like this itinerary and I know you will love the ship ….. the Carnival Legend. Here is an example of her itinerary.

Sunday, May 15 Tampa, FL 4:00pm

Monday, May 16 Fun Day At Sea

Tuesday, May 17 Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands 7:00am 4:00pm

Wednesday, May 18 Cozumel, Mexico 10:00am 6:00pm

Thursday, May 19 Belize 8:00am 5:00pm

Friday, May 20 Isla Roatan 8:00am 3:00pm

Saturday, May 21 Fun Day At Sea

Sunday, May 22 Tampa, FL 8:00am

The ship has the Steakhouse and all the usual Carnival features and for many the Spirit class and the Carnival Legend in particular is a favourite. Now, I am not sure what itinerary you did on your Carnival Dream so here is one more to consider on one of my favourite ships………Carnival Liberty.

Saturday, May 14 Miami, FL 4:00pm

Sunday, May 15 Half Moon Cay, Bahamas

9:00am 5:00pm Monday, May 16 Fun Day At Sea

Tuesday, May 17 St. Thomas, USVI 9:00am 6:00pm

Wednesday, May 18 San Juan, Puerto Rico 7:00am 3:30pm

Thursday, May 19 Grand Turk 11:00am 5:30pm

Friday, May 20 Fun Day At Sea

Saturday, May 21 Miami, FL 8:00am

This features one of the very best of our itineraries with Half Moon Cay and Grand Turk the ones that are a must visit. So have a chat together and please let me know if you have any more questions. Thanks again for taking the time to write and I am so glad everything went well.

Best wishes to you all

Beachbum Asked:

I am one of many Cruise Critic members who have stopped reading this blog because of the begging letters you publish every day. Why do you not post these on a separate area so that all the beggars can be put together and then maybe you would get more readers who at the moment can’t be asked to have to try and filter out the garbage to get to the facts about what Carnival is doing or not.

One of Cruise Critics frequent posters Mr. Pete wrote I stopped reading it because of all the “gimmes.” Why they have to be posted, I’ll never know. The only one interested in getting a free cruise because mom died and I didn’t have insurance would be the guy whose mom died. Do exactly what your readers and clientele hate or are irritated by. Why do you do what many hate so much? You would attract more readers.

John Says:
Hello Beachbum

My apologies to you and Mr. Pete and the others who don’t like it…….but this is it. I am quite honestly tired of having to justify this so respectfully let it be known that I shall never again answer this question. I want to help people if I can. It’s my blog. Please………..let me be me.

Best wishes

cruisingeagle Asked:
Hi John, Please reply

I am sorry this is so long.

First let me apologize for taking so long to write and say thank you. My husband, youngest daughter and I cruised on the Carnival Elation on July 17-22. This was the tenth Carnival cruise for my husband and me and the seventh for our daughter. We love being platinum. Our daughter was a little jealous but she will be platinum before long. We had a great time.

John, thank you for the gifts. I appreciate the time you took to contact Steve and have the gifts delivered to our cabin. Thank you again for all you did to make the cruise wonderful for us. We had requested a table for 3, but we did not get that. We are not upset. The ship was very full and I am sure it just wasn’t possible. We had some very nice table mates and we enjoyed our dinners in the main dining room each evening. The food was fantastic. Our waiter, Robertino, was very efficient. We did not get the name of our bar waitress, but she was also very good. We enjoyed Steve as our CD.

I do have to tell you a funny story. Steve does his TV show at noon. Chuck and I were sitting on the Serenity deck on the first sea day when Steve did his show. Our daughter had gone back to room for a few minutes before she was going to meet us for lunch in the dining room. She turned the TV on and was watching his show. The next thing I know, she is beside me going “Mom, what have you done!” I had no clue what she was talking about. She proceeded to tell me that Steve had read my email to you on his show and he had been trying to contact me in the room. I don’t stay in the room. I had missed his calls. Needless to say, she was surprised. But it was funny to see her reaction. Yes, we did see the show later that day when it was replayed.

We had a great time on the Carnival Elation. We did miss the water park. Our room steward Anthony was wonderful. Everyone was very friendly. We have nothing to complain about.

In Cozumel, we did the Isla of Passion by Twister. This is a fantastic shore excursion. We had a blast. The beach was very nice, the buffet lunch very good, and the boat ride was fantastic. And the rain held off until we got back to the pier.

We did the Behind the Fun Tour and had a great time. We had also done this on the Carnival Triumph in June. It was interesting to compare the 2 ships.

I do have one suggestion. There needs to be some way to go back on line and edit the Fun Pass section for your onboard expense account. At the time we did our Fun Pass, our daughter was going to be responsible for her own sail and sign account. As we got closer to the cruise, her dad and I decided she could just put her charges on our account. I could not go back in make the change. When we checked in, I told them we wanted her charges on our account and they said ok. We thought everything was fine until she got a letter from guest services about half way through the cruise asking her to come to guest services about her account. I went and told them we wanted her charges on our account and it took them less than a minute to make it happen. Guest services were very nice every time we had a question or needed some type or service. It just would have been nice to fix this before we left home.

Another interesting observation: We were on the Serenity deck on the first sea day. When we arrived we found 3 chairs together in the shade. There was a lounge chair in front of us that was in the sun that had a towel on the back of it. After we had been there for 30 minutes and no one had come to use the chair, we decide to use the chair. My daughter and I both used the chair, another lady used the chair and even a couple sat in the chair together for a while. The chair stayed vacant for a while and my daughter decided to sit in it again. This time a Carnival employee (he was dress in an all-white uniform) came over and asked her to move and had the Carnival employee working the towel desk on the Serenity deck to cover the chair with a towel and to place another towel on the chair. This was around 11:30. No one showed up to occupy the chair until 12:20. The lady came, put down her bag, left and returned 10 to 15 minutes later with a drink. Even though there are small no smoking signs on the Serenity deck, people smoke there and no one says anything about it. But I just thought it was odd that a Carnival employee was holding this chair for someone and the chair was unoccupied (except by those who sat there before being told not to) for several hours. I don’t know how long she stayed and used the chair because when she took out her cigarettes I decided it was time for lunch.

We had a wonderful time on the Carnival Elation. When does the Carnival Elation get the rest of the Evolution of Fun upgrades? Chuck and I are already looking forward to our next cruise on the Carnival Valor. We are doing the Eastern Caribbean itinerary with stops at Half Moon Cay, St. Thomas, San Juan, and Grand Turk in June, 2011.

Thank you again for taking the time to write the blog and for helping to make our cruises the best they can be. Your blog will help make the next 300 days pass by while we wait to cruise on the Carnival Valor.

I hope Heidi and Kye get to join you soon. Hopefully, they are already with you.

Again, thank you for the gifts and for blogging.

John Says:
Hello Cindy

Thank you for that wonderful review and I am sorry that the table didn’t work out. Normally the maitre d’s honour most of my requests but occasionally during the very high counts it is not always possible. I am glad though that you found your table mates to be fun and enjoyed sharing meals with them. It looks like we have some work to do on the Serenity deck and I was very disappointed about the smoking. We have to enforce this period. No exceptions. If we advertise an area to be non-smoking then that is exactly what it must be. I was puzzled about the whole towel situation and I am sending this report to the hotel director for his review.

The Fun Pass suggestion makes sense and I am a bit surprised that you can’t already do what you suggested. I will send this to the beards and see what they can do to improve this. I have said many times before how one of my main jobs here is to act as a go between and pass on suggestions and comments to the right people. I’ll check on any future upgrade plans for the Carnival Elation and let you know. I am glad you had so much fun and my sincere thanks to Steve for following through and delivering your gifts. I hope you continue to enjoy the blog and thanks again for taking the time to write

Best wishes

That’s all for today and I will return with more tomorrow.

I wanted to share a beautiful photo with you sent to me by our man in London and Cunard’s President Peter Shanks. It was taken from the bridge of the Queen Mary 2 as she sailed through the Norwegian Fjords into the town of Alesund. Peter is there to mark the retirement of Captain Bates who has spent 45 years at sea. Peter will be writing a special tribute to this true gentleman of the sea for us very soon.

On Saturday Host Mach and his faithful Carnival “Crazies” gathered for a reunion barbecue and get together. I was asked to call and speak to some of them and when I did I could tell that as they do when they are on one of our ships that they were having a brilliant time. Here is a photo of the group and it was an honour to spend some time talking to some of them.

Well there is a lot of buzz about your Carnival Magic‘s new features and as I was just telling one of the bloggers in today’s Q & A, the Cucina del Capitano (or the Captain’s Kitchen) restaurant is certainly one of the things people are talking about. There will be a nominal charge and I am trying to find out what that will be. I can tell you that during lunch it will be open as a complimentary pasta bar as on your Carnival Dream but at night it will be transformed into a fabulous place to gather as a family and eat some wonderful Italian fare. I will get back to you with the cost as soon as I can.

Here on the Carnival Splendor we continue to monitor the progress of Tropical Storm Frank. Here is the latest news from the Captain.

Good morning,

Good news…!!..The last Bulletin/ Forecast brings the track of the center of “FRANK” well off Westward of the Southwestern shores of Mexico. On its forecast track it will be passing about 200 miles South of Puerto Vallarta tomorrow Wednesday 25, 2010 of August. The Northerly outer bands of “Frank” might produce some rainfall and fresh winds over the area. As for our call at Cabo San Lucas next Friday, the center of Frank is forecast to pass at a distance of about 250 miles South of Baja California, there won’t be a direct impact on us, nevertheless we might have surge and high swells which will eventually might preclude a safe and sound Tendering Operation. We are still closely monitoring the progress of “Frank”, hopefully this favorable Forecast will not change and therefore our cruise itinerary won’t be affected.

Today it’s a beautiful day at sea…!!!

I will be keeping them informed of course. Today in P.V. the weather is very humid………95 degrees and later I have to head across the road to El Walmarto to buy some things for Heidi and Kye’s arrival on September 5th. Here is my list:

+ Pampers diapers – baby dry – 3 packs (Kye weighs 11 kgs / 22 pounds so have a look on what it says on the pack for her weight. Here it’s size 4+)

+ Johnson’s baby wipes – 5 packs

+ Johnsons baby bath

+ Johnsons baby lotion

+ bread sticks ;-)))

+ baby milk snack little biscuits in a plastic bottle

+ nipple pads

OK, she doesn’t want nipple pads………..I just like writing the word nipple…………sorry.

When I host my morning shows I read lots of letters of dedication for birthdays, anniversaries, honeymoon and sometimes just the love of someone special. Occasionally I get letters about sad things as well…………….like this one.

What a sad story and one that made this guest very angry indeed.

Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 2010 10:06 AM

Good morning,

Please see notes from our CRS and kindly update.


Gst called GS and stated that he was up on the Lido this morning eating breakfast when the morning show was playing on the big screen. Gst said there was a letter being read out about people who had cancer, which he felt was ruining his time in the sun. Guest wants an apology from the cruise director.

Best regards.

OK, well I can look at this two ways. First of all maybe he is right. Maybe that’s not the place for a letter like that but it was sent to me along with many others and I can’t not read it out based on the subject………….can I?

And if you read the letter it was more of a chance for David to say a very public thank you for the love and support his wife has given him through some very tough times. But again, I can understand that it was upsetting and he will get his apology.

I have read these types of letters at my morning shows before but never has anyone commented about them before. And after all this is a fun for all ship…… there place for sentiment onboard ……. now I am not so sure. One thing about cruising out of California……….the guest are certainly not frightened to tell you what they think.

But as usual that’s just two guests who have voiced their opinions in a negative way, everyone else is having fun and I am having loads of fun with them. Here is a video from the welcome aboard show. Now, it’s not particularly funny but I am trying to learn some “street language” ………… you will see here.

What a great guy…………but I am hardly Pee Diddly am I?

Meeting the guests on the ships is still one of my all time favourite things to do and at the Captain’s celebration I met the wonderful Lacanilao family from Hawaii. They had a photo taken with me and the Captain.

I then spoke to a terrific 8-year-old called Sam. He told me that he thought I was funny and liked my jokes.

Sam is a very bright and intelligent kid with a smile that would light up the darkest of rooms ….. he is essentially a normal kid……….except he was born in Darfur and when he was two years old his Mum, his Dad and his elder brother were killed right in front of his young eyes by the warring factions that plagues the country for so many years.

Sam……..and I have changed his name by the way…..was……..well………..let’s just say that Sam was lucky to survive. But survive he did and now here he is………living in Hawaii…..and taking his first ever cruise.

Sam is a cheeky young thing and you would never know the living hell he has been through. I asked his new Dad if Sam remembered what happened. He told me he doesn’t ever talk about it but still has nightmares……one can understand why. What amazes me is that Sam’s English is so good…….yes, there is a strong African accent there still but he is 8 and speaks as well as every other 8 year old at Camp Carnival………. amazing.

So, meeting Sam was a highlight for me so far this cruise. I really wish I could post a picture of this African Angel but in the world we live in posting photos of kids on the Internet is never a good idea……..however……..I can show you a drawing that Sam made for me. It’s one of me doing my morning show on the big green chair which I have christened “the booger bank”

Here I am on the booger bank

Here is Sam’s drawing

After the BP thing and the Morning show complaint I was feeling a little down……..but receiving Sam’s drawing made up for that and then some……..and it’s a drawing that I will treasure forever.

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.