October 1, 2012 -

John Heald

Oh, FFS! I am sorry to start today’s blog with that now well-known phrase but I just got my tickets for my trip starting October 16th. And with flights to London, Miami, New Orleans, Miami, London and Venice, it means I will be flying six times in 10 days and that’s why I started with a huge oh, FFS!

Flying these days is about as much fun as spending a week with Noro Virus and no toilet paper. But on the 20th October, Calvyn and I will get in my car and drive to hell or Heathrow Airport as it’s sometimes called. Once there, I will park my car at the £700 a day parking facility and walk to check in where a 17-year-old Virgin will ask me if I had packed my suitcase myself or if I had a butler do it for me. Oh, by the way, when I say the 17-year-old was a Virgin, I mean she works for Virgin Atlantic, not that she was a virgin because she is 17 years old which means she obviously isn’t these days.

And then, of course, the fun really starts as it’s time to do the security dance. Belt off, bend my fat arse over to surrender shoes depriving myself of oxygen as I do. Place laptop computer and all jokes about exploding underpants in the tray and then walk through the magic arch to be fondled and groped by bearded security person. Yep, I am mentally prepared for this and now, of course, I have to be mentally prepared for the security people to see my gentleman’s sausage.

I will pass through the metal detector, the Harry Potter wand and receive my latex massage. My carry-on will have been emptied of all food items and my hemorrhoid cream will be wiped with a magic tissue to make sure it isn’t actually C4 explosive. And that used to be that but not anymore as now Heathrow puts all its passengers through the full-body-naked-no-dignity-scanner thingy so that the security staff can check I don’t have a bazooka inserted up my bottom and so that they can have a better day by realising that there are indeed people with smaller penises than them.

It is truly a weird experience standing there knowing that a few feet away, there is a chap called Bob looking at you naked. It is tempting to do something funny to break the ice like touch yourself inappropriately or do some hip thrusting so your dangly bits shake and wobble. But don’t, don’t do any of that because they could have you arrested and taken to a small dark room where you would be water boarded and hung upside down and whipped before being flown to some former Russian state……………….. and shot in the head.

So take my advice. Stand there. Say nothing. And accept that after the scan is complete and as you walk through duty free, know that Bob the security guard has made a printout of you naked to show his mates that night down the pub.

I wonder if we will ever see this kind of thing on the ships? Will one day all our guests have to go through this kind of machine? Maybe and not only will it enable us to introduce some new high tech security thingy but also and nearly as importantly, it will allow us to catch all the Cruise Critic “Rum Runners” who have a vat of rum taped to their inner thigh.

Anyway, six flights in seven days in coach and with Calvyn! Oh. the things I do for this company.

Time for some Q and A – off we go.

Michelle asked:
Hi John,

My husband (from Ashford Middlesex England:)) and I are flying from our hometown, Tampa, FL to Spain in November. We are meeting his brother (Surrey, England) and his family in Spain for their first cruise…the transatlantic to Miami on the BREEZE. Please, Please,
Please tell me that you will be the CD for that cruise. I want my brother and sister-in-law to have the best experience they could possibly have. Thanks! YOU ARE AWESOME.

John says:
Hello Michelle,

What a wonderful way for me to start my Q and A session today and I will indeed be here as CD for the trans-Atlantic crossing. I look forward to making this the most wonderful cruise and if there is anything at all I can do to make it even better, please let me know. I wish you all the most fantastic cruise.

Best wishes.


Melissa Baldwin asked:
Hi John!

My husband and I will be sailing on the Carnival Splendor November 11, 2012. This will be the second time we have gone on the Mexican Rivera (4 years ago we sailed on the Pride). My question is: Does the ship stay tendered for two days in Cabo, or does the ship leave port at night?

We love cruising with Carnival and cannot wait to set sail again in November!

Thank you for your help!


John says:
Hello Melissa Baldwin,

The ship leaves and then comes back the next night day, Melissa. This allows us to open all the ship’s facilities including the casino and shops and of course tendering guests at night is a challenge for sure. I hope you have a brilliant time and if there is anything else you need, please let me know.

Best wishes.


SARA M asked:

Got back a couple of weeks ago from a cruise on the MAGIC from Galveston. Had a great time even though the weather was not great. We are Brits who are lucky enough to live in Texas. The only problem was that my husband, as a Yorkshire man, achieved the “world record” of eating an Indian curry every day for lunch! Great for clearing out the elevator though. Thanks go to all the crew and staff for such a lovely time. On a personal note, being a lamb lover, would Carnival “please have mint sauce not the green stuff that has never seen a mint leaf in its life. You do make me titter.



John says:
Hello Sara M,

Your husband and I are cut from the same cloth and pity the poor bugger who would be in an elevator with the both of us. I am sorry the weather was not good but I will pass on your kind words to the staff and crew and thanks so much for taking the time to write. I agree with you, mint jelly is disgusting and I shall bring on the mint sauce.

Hope we see you both soon.

Best wishes.


David Cridland asked:

Please stop the dances in the restaurants. It’s embarrassing for the waiters and embarrassing for us to have and sit and watch them. They hate it, most of the passengers hate it, so get rid of it.

John says:
Hello David Cridland,

Respectfully, I have to say on both counts I am afraid you are wrong. The crew does enjoy it, they love to dance and have fun. Plus, for the most part, we find the guests really like it and knowing the guests like it, means the crew enjoys doing it all the more. I can understand that like anything, it’s not going to be enjoyed by everyone and I am sorry to read that you do not enjoy the dances but we have no plans to stop doing them. Maybe next time you sail, you can ask me to find you a table further away from the main area where the dances and parades take place so you can enjoy the meal more. Let me know and I will be happy to help you.

Best wishes


Leanne Haart asked:

I am 22 so spend lots of time on the Internet and when on my vacation on your Fascination ship, I noticed that the cost of using the Internet was off the charts. It’s 75 cents a minute or a special with 250 minutes for $100 which then translates to 25 cents a minute. The service is satellite and therefore so slow this time will be used up in no time at all. If places like Holiday Inn where I stayed the night before getting on the boat, can offer free Internet, so can Carnival.

John says:
Hello Leanne Haart,

I don’t want to sound disrespectful but while I will agree that the Internet aboard ship is more expensive than on land, the reason hotels offer free Internet is because they don’t have to use a satellite. Most of the cruise industry uses the same satellite provider which is why most charge exactly the same. However, I will agree that it can be slow and the people with beards are working on ways to improve this including looking at the trial currently on the Carnival Magic that includes unlimited Internet for one price and I will keep you informed about this. I do hope you had a great time and that we will see you again soon.

Best wishes.


William Eves asked:

There is constant controversy, Heald, on the boards that you dislike. The controversy is about the flat iron steak. It is despite what you may spin the lowest grade cut of meat available and while you serve shoe leather, Royal have a filet mignon available every night at dinner. Playing catch up again, I see.

John says:
Hello William Eves,

The flat iron steak is not the “lowest grade cut of meat available.” I eat the flat iron steak regularly and I enjoy it very much as do many guests who order it each night on the ships. As ever, I won’t be drawn into what other ships do and, instead, I will simply say that I hope you try the flat iron steak because I am willing to bet that so far…………………… haven’t.

Best wishes,


Bob Hannie asked:
Hello John,

First of all, let me say that I love your blog and I love to cruise with Carnival but I have a concern about our next cruise which is on the Carnival Glory. We are on the last cruise before she goes to her refit and we have read stories that on the last cruise like this that things are shut down and not open and that the crew don’t give the service they would on normal cruises, you see, John. Please can you set my mind at rest.

John says:
Hello Bob Hannie,

I am not sure where you read this but please ignore it as it is simply not true. Nothing is shut down, everything is open until the end of the cruise and the crew will as always give the best service possible and make sure this cruise is the best ever. Thanks for the kind words and I know you will have a brilliant cruise.

Best wishes.


Susie Pawlak and Amanda Jane Bettencourt asked:

We are a lesbian couple who will be coming from Houston for the cruise on the Magic 10/20. We want to be sat at meal times with other lesbian couples and is there any way to make this happen?

John says:
Hello Susie Pawlak and Amanda Jane Bettencourt,

I had to think about this for a moment and after doing so, realised that no, there is no way, I am afraid, to make this happen. Obviously, we don’t ask for personal details like this when you book and so there is no way for the maître d’ to know who has a same sex partner. Now we do have the Friends of Dorothy meetings each night so please go to them as I am sure it will be a wonderful way for you to meet new friends. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Best wishes to you both.


Johnathan Parvin asked:

I want to make sure that during my cruise on Elation 11/28 that the ship provides a meeting time for Geocachers to meet. It will need to be a big space to meet as I am sure there will be many attending. I am the main speaker and manager of the Geocaching Society in VA and will offer my knowledge to share in this event and will need assistance in setting up the PowerPoint presentation using my Apple MacBook Pro. Other cruise lines have made this a big event on their cruises and I am sure after you see how popular my event will be that you will make this a regular part of your programming. I will need the name of the contact person when I board to discuss my audio and my visual requirements. My guess is that there will be 300 – 400 passengers attending, maybe there will be more.

Thank you!!

John says:
Hello Johnathan Parvin,

I am as thick as a Yak’s dangly bits. I am afraid. and have to admit that I asked Uncle Google what Geocatching was all about and now I understand. I will be happy to ask the ship to organise a time and a place for you to meet and I am sure we can help you with the PowerPoint presentation. When you get on the ship, please keep reading the Fun Times which is our on board program that is delivered to your cabin and this will let you know where and when the meeting is and then someone will be there to help you. Have a great cruise and I hope you and your fellow Geocatching guests have a great time together. The GPS in my car is a woman and gives me an almighty bollocking if I miss a turn. She’s German, I think.

Best wishes.


Sean O’Donoghue asked:
Hello John,

I’m actually contacting you for a few things. First off, I’m hooked on cruising thanks to a cruise on the Liberty in February. It was a great experience. That said, I’ll be sailing with you again on December 9th on the Glory. Coming with me (obviously, separate cabin) on this cruise is a couple celebrating their 10th anniversary. Is there anything
special that can be done for them if I notify the crew?

Secondly, I do have a small issue. Carnival doesn’t recognize the apostrophe in my name. It was awkward boarding the Liberty after difficulty at the port check-in. I suppose a few others run into this too. Do you foresee any fix to this?

Lastly, the Glory is supposed to have the 2.0 upgrades by our sailing in December. Will the Glory have the main lido whirlpools moved to positions like the Liberty? Also, will “Kaleidoscope Blvd” receive updated furnishings? That part of the Liberty was one of my favorite places of that ship. Any chance you or Karl will be the CD?


Sean O’Donoghue

John says:
Hello Sean O’Donoghue,

I am glad to see you enjoy cruising with Carnival and thanks so much for your loyalty. I have sent this to a colleague to see what we can do with your name and get the apostrophe added as it really should be easy to do but something tells me there will be a reason why we haven’t done so up to now. Anyway, I will let you know what they say. The Carnival Glory will have a full dry dock soon although we won’t be moving the whirlpools as we did on Carnival Liberty and I will check and see if we will add new furniture on Promenade Deck and she will get many of the 2.0 upgrades as well. Keep checking here and my Facebook page as there will be updates and photos of her dry dock and the Carnival Conquest before her as well. Karl will have returned from vacation and so you will see him on the Carnival Liberty as CD. Please send me your friends’ names and I will send them a little something as you requested and please do this one month before the cruise here or two days before on Facebook. Have a brilliant time and let’s see if we can get your name corrected.

Best wishes.


Rick Williamson asked:

I see some talk about Carnival stock ownership and would like to know if there is any advantage to us cruisers owning it as far as when we go on a cruise with Carnival? Or is it just something that is cool to own?

John says:
Hello Rick Williamson,

I am sorry that I am not permitted to talk about Carnival stock ownership except to say that there is an onboard credit for those who have purchased 100 shares or more. Thanks, Rick. Please let me know if there is anything else I can do for you.

Best wishes.


And that’s all for now.

Let’s take a pause and meet the employees for the month of September here on the Carnival Breeze as voted by their department heads. Congratulations to them all.


So today we start a new cruise. Goodness me, this European season has gone so quickly. Anyway, let’s have a look who is sailing with us this time and where we are going.

USA 1682
UK 501


And here is where we are going.

  • Sat, Oct, 13 Barcelona 5am-5pm
  • Sun, Oct, 14 Monaco 9am-8pm
  • Mon, Oct, 15 Livorno 7am-7pm
  • Tue, Oct, 16 Rome 7am-9pm
  • Wed, Oct, 17 Naples 7am-7pm
  • Thu, Oct, 18 at sea
  • Fri, Oct, 19 Venice arr @ 2pm
  • Sat, Oct, 20 Venice dep @ 2pm
  • Sun, Oct, 21 Dubrovnik 9am-7pm
  • Mon, Oct, 22 at sea
  • Tue, Oct, 23 Messina 7am-4pm
  • Wed, Oct, 24 at sea

Last cruise was a good one with great weather for the most part and only one rain shower in Venice which this time of year is pretty good. There were some characters, for sure, though. We had a lady who rented a car to see Venice and when she realised that Venice had a bit of water around it and that her Hertz rent a car didn’t come with the option to turn it into a submarine, she blamed me. I broke up a fight between two male guests during my travel talk, was subjected to a drive-by stomach rubbing (bastard) and yesterday morning, as I walked to the morning show I saw a couple having a blazing argument outside of the Sapphire Dining room where comedy brunch was going to take place. They were really shouting at each other and as I watched for a moment, this middle-aged couple scream at each other, I had to think if I should or not intervene. I didn’t because the husband (I presume they were married) turned on his heels and retreated quicker than a French soldier.

There’s nothing quite as riveting as a couple arguing in public. The ship is a place of such pain, anger and misery can be found every week. Warring couples whisper angrily, “Who left the key in the cabin? And “I didn’t come all this way so you can play poker.” Or if it’s the husband, “I didn’t come all the way to Rome so you could go shopping.”

I liken having a blazing row in public as the married version of shouting at the Guest Services Desk or sending back the wine…………..mostly, it’s for show. There are no rules of engagement when it comes to arguing in public. I once heard a man and woman screaming at each other outside the ship in Venice. I remember this argument well because as Heidi and I walked past the arguing couple, the lady said, “If you shout at me anymore, Jim, you’ll wet yourself again.”

While most of the time these arguments are quick and painless, some have led to arguments that were serious enough that we have had to either ask the guests to leave the ship or one of the partners has asked to leave on their own accord. And that’s such a shame.

OK, let’s finish today by talking about drinking and the fact that as you know, I don’t. For those newcomers to the blog thingy, let me quickly mention that since heading to the bridge in 1995 to make an announcement under the influence of some cognac and my announcement sounding like it was being made by Bob Dylan………..I haven’t touched a drop of alcohol since. Really, I haven’t.

People ask me if I miss drinking at all. The answer is mostly no, although I do miss occasionally a good glass of Paradis Cognac with my cigar. But as we cigar smokers have banished from the face of the earth anyway, I really don’t miss alcohol at all.

However, being a nondrinker does have its own problems. Being happy, pissed, wankered, sloshed and totally blotto is fun, I imagine. It’s fun for you and fun for those who are also drunk. However, when you are with a group who are all drinking and you are sober, I am afraid everyone else just looks stupid, they sound stupid, they laugh at things that aren’t funny and you start to despise them. You look at them and as they giggle and laugh at nothing, you start to imagine how you would like to blow torch their nipples off.

But then there is another side. How do the happy, giggling drunk people feel about some fat miserable bastard sitting there sipping a carbonated diet drink? A gathering of good mates is supposed to be happy and filled with laughter. The last thing a group of happy people want is me sitting there wanting to talk about my carpool tunnel or the fact that the Carnival Sunshine will be beyond breathtaking.

These days, if I am invited out by the small band of mates I still have at home, then for the most part, I say “no thanks” and make up an excuse of a conference call with Miami or that I have explosive diarrhea. Yep, if they call and say that they are heading down to the pub, I don’t go because I know by the end of the night, they will be clinging on to trees to stop from falling over and I will find my mates totally annoying and they will most likely feel the same about me.

So why have I just bored the underpants off you all with my talk of drinking? Let me explain, please. As you know, I will be heading to New Orleans in two weeks’ time to spend a night in a zoo surrounded by people in Halloween costumes and being vomited on by kids who have eaten too much sugar. There will be a whole group from Carnival going including Peter the Hair and Jay The Recently Married who are our video team and will beam back film of me talking about the event from an enclosure of yaks right to your computer. There are Carnival PR people and Carnival operations people attending and indeed this is a big event.
The problem is that during our time there, one of the Carnival shoreside chaps will be celebrating a landmark birthday and is organising a visit to a ” famous Bourbon Street Strip Club.” And therein lies my problem………..there is no way I am going to a “famous Bourbon Street Strip Club” …………as sober as a nun.

Having a few drinks takes the blame of lusting over some stranger’s breasts and bottom but doing it sober……nope……I can’t do it.

Ten pints of beer and a few tequilas is the only thing that would make it possible for me to sit there glimpsing at my own fat ugly face in the mirrored walls without shrieking, “What the sodding hell am I doing here? Why am I watching some French Quarter girl called Claudette gyrating her freshly waxed lady garden up and down a pole?”

There is another problem as well. If Peter and Jay’s wives discover they had a 20-year old naked girl drill for oil on their laps, they can blame it on the alchol and be forgiven.
If Heidi finds out I had had a lap dance, I could hardly say, “It was the Diet Cokes that made me do it, darling.”

The dancers probably prefer you drunk as well because you’re more likely to stuff $20 bills in various orifices.

Anyway, I am sure they will have fun and, meanwhile, I will be back at my hotel room with Calvyn watching Steel Magnolias while Peter and Jay and the rest of the shoreside team will be at a strip club with two bagfuls of silicone in their face ………the lucky bastards.


Your friend,


Comment Policy

Look, friends — there are a few things you should remember before you comment. The space below is for you to post your comments about the post I've just written above. Now, while I may not be able to reply to your comment below, I do sit in my underpants almost every morning and read everything that is here. So feel free to comment on the comments and then if someone wants to comment on the comment to the comment then go ahead as well. Please be courteous, unless the poster is French...........then you can say whatever you want.


  1. Velva Rowe says:

    John, I love your blog and I love Carnival, but I must respectfully disagree with the quality of flat iron steak. It was the only disappointing meal I had last December on Glory. Thankfully, it was my first night on board, and the rest of my week was fantastic, including two blissful nights in the Emerald Steakhouse. And to address the questions about Glory…..going to dry dock or not, I can’t imagine the crew delivering anything less than superior service. Gede and Vladimir in the Platinum dining room…what a team! And Kaleidoscope Blvd is perfect and beautiful, so even if the furnishings stay the same, it is still a wonderful place to enjoy a cocktail or play some trivia. Here’s to praying Josh has made a full recovery by these gentlemens’ cruises…he is great!

  2. Peggy Martin says:

    Great job, John, as always. Had to chuckle though when I saw the breakdown of the passengers on board –

    United States 1682
    Montana – 2

    Isn’t Montana still part of the US???

    Have a great cruise!

  3. Edvado says:

    John, as a fellow tea-totaler, I do empathize. It seems like a large number of cruisers just look at a trip through the Caribbean (for example) as an excuse for a three or four day drunk. Watching them fall around the decks can be entertaining, but gets boring after the first night. maybe we need F.S.B.N.A.A. (friends of Sobriety But Not AA) socials somewhere on board.

  4. Cheria Ruedy says:

    John :
    I wanted to take a monent and tell you what an amazing time we had on the Liberty.. the staff was hard working and oh so friendly, and Karl with a “K” was indeed funny… Please send a big thank you to Lizette and Raymond form the dinning staff, what an incrediable job they do….
    We are headed out on the 28th our son is getting maried on the Sensation and then after is Honeymooning on the Miracle.
    thank you for all you do and a big thank you for the staff !!!

    Much Apprciation ,
    Cheria and John

  5. Tim Kriebel, MCPO, USN Retired says:

    Well John, the Flat Iron Steak is indeed a less expensive cut of beef that has been recently discovered. It is in the “Chuck” area of the cow, and is relatively inexpensive. I’m sure that’s why Carnival now features it. It has a reputation of being relatively tender and tasty , provided it is cut from the Chuck Blade area properly. make no mistake, it is not a top quality steak… will never find it in any top name Steak House ( e.g. Ruth’s Chris, Flemimgs, etc), and not even Carnival’s Steakhouses. Nice try to spin it that way, but it just ain’t so”

  6. Elissa says:

    Oh John, I must say that your blog as the written word is funny enough…

    you ought to see what happens when it is read out loud with feeling!! 🙂

    Thank you for helping to make MY husband smile this evening!!

  7. richstowe says:


    Didn’t know that a pair of Montanans now demand to be counted separately.

  8. Brian Davis says:

    In response to the question and answer that John put in his blog about the unlimited internet trial on the Magic, I must say that I recently sailed on the Magic and it was wonderful. The speed was good (not land based DSL or fiber speed, but good for ship satellite) and you couldn’t beat the price for the full week. It was of course more than you would pay on land and I’m sure I didn’t use it as much as I figured I would when I bought it. However, the peace of mind knowing that I wouldn’t “go over” was well worth the expense.

  9. John says:

    We just went on a cruise on the Destiny 9/22-9/25, and the dances were wonderful there was more clapping for the crew then some of the shows. Please don’t let a few people ruin it for us.

  10. Linda C says:

    Hi John:
    I just want to congratulate you on handling the objectors today. I love the dancing and singing waiters and I love dancing with them! You said it well.

  11. Bonida says:

    The gay couple need to ask for ‘anytime’ dining. Then go to the Friends of Dorothy meetings and make arrangments to eat when other gay couples eat. Of course all the other couples would have to also have booked with ‘anytime’ but that could be remedied by just eating in the lido diningroom if necessary.

  12. candace says:

    Maybe your song for the day should have been “Roxanne” you don’t have to turn the red light on john. Went to a strip club once in Vegas just to see what it was about, and this very large semi naked lady asked if I wanted to play “around the world” so I drunkenly said sure! Needless to say she turned a quarter inch and told me to place a tip so I did, then she turned another quarter inch and wanted more money. It continued until 40 bucks later I had seen every round inch of this rather large woman. Have you seen norbit? Don’t worry I’m sure you won’t be missing out on anything but spending your hard earned money. You should have told the lesbians you could seat them with men, they also tend to like women. Have an awesome time!

  13. Sharon says:

    OH John, It is quite possible to have fun while not drinking. Do what I do when I am not drinking, act as stupid and obnoxious as your drunk friends. I, of course, am a social drinker, turns out, I am really social.

  14. Carolyne Wilson says:

    I just LOVE the fact you can say “Wankered” without batting an eyelid!! Do Americans know what this means?!! So you’re looking forward to your trip then John? Not arf!! Take care & see you next week

  15. Randall Smith says:

    Hi John! This is a response to David Cridland’s comment about the servers dancing in the MDR at dinner. Amazingly, I posted a photo of two of our grandsons dancing with our servers on our BTBs in July a few hours ago on your Facebook Wall. This is always one of the highpoints of our dining experience on every cruise. My grandsons, daughters, and sons-in-law love dancing with out great servers each evening. After 20+ Fun Ship Cruises, we still love the dancing and singing. The only part we don’t love is the sad song bidding uas farewell on the last night of our cruise. Except for BTBs, this song really makes us tear up. Keep up the good work!

  16. Barbara says:

    For William Eves, from that cruise forum we don’t mention (and where I discontinued a 5 year membershp after the freaks and clueless took over the place)

    1. Most of the folks on that forum wouldn’t know a good piece of steak from a hot dog. Their favorite eatery usually has something to do with pretend-hamburgers and childrens playgrounds.
    2. The Flatiron steak is delicious….a truly tasty and flavorful steak. To those on that forum, here’s your problem. If you order it well done….you will get a piece of steer with the texture of shoe leather. That applies to almost any cut of steak but particularly the flatiron…which is very lean. Order is medium rare or medium well…and your taste buds will thank you.
    3. With at least 6 different entrees every night…and several “all the time” items on the menu, you cannot possibly be forced to eat anything you don’t enjoy.
    4. Please don’t come over to my new cruise forum….where the grownups come to play and discuss cruising……

  17. Marion Cochran says:

    Just made my day! Blog brought much laughter as always! Understand the diet coke; feel same as you when in group of over intoxicated people. And, years ago, I, too thought it was fun. Now, at least I can halfway remember what I do with my diet coke! REMINDER: oops, sorry for the caps… Magic, 10/28/12, booking 195505. Cabin 8260. After lengthy request (lost but found) you asked to give you my info re: our cruise (12th) best friends 1st. Hubby 69th & best friends 59th birthday! Something amazing for her cruise! Gotta get her on another in January (Breeze) so, want this to be the time of her life. Hubby’s too as he is so excited about the Magic; never in 12 cruises has he reacted this way! Last October had to postpone cruise due to major surgery; we thought he was leaving this world but made it on another cruise this past January! Carnival, of course was awesome in changing our cruise dates! He & his adventures remind me of many of yours! Ok, as I said in initial request/post, a phone call over the ocean would have been quicker. Thanks & do let me know if you have original request from September.

  18. Marion Cochran says:

    What happened to my comment? John, my given name is: Marion Cochran. This is how my booking for the Magic on October 28th.

  19. Linda Bolin says:

    Me and my husband took our first cruise in Febuary 2012 on the Magic. WE ARE HOOKED! We are scheduled to go one our second cruise on the Triumph on October 27. We will be celebrating our 22nd anniversary on board on the 31st. Is there something special that can be done for us. I know they are already having a big costume party in our honor, but something more personal would be nice. LOL. We are in room 2230. We are so ready to be at sea! Thanks

  20. Steve says:

    Hey John,

    I am loving this blog. In fact, it is the only one I read.

    Regarding the “My Awesome Bar Program” that has generated so much excitement: What are the chances of having a permanent fixture to your blog site where all MABP updates would appear? I know I am interested in having it on the Carnival Pride by 2 June 2013 and a place to check for regular updates would satisfy my curiosity, and that of many others.

    And don’t think I fail to realize the irony of my question and request in light of your addressing your (non) drinking habits above.

    Happy Underpantsing!


  21. Matthew Terry says:

    John, in regards to the lesbian couple from Houston that wanted to be seated with other couples like them, have them sign up for Your Time dining, that way if they meet other couples who have done the same, they can meet in front of the restaurant and go in as a party of 4 and be seated together. Not a total solution, but a possible way to help them enjoy themselves.

  22. greg price says:

    hate flying myself mate. but..England! Love it! please bring me back some Bangers and Mash! cherrio!

  23. Marion Cochran says:

    Commented twice. Hasn’t posted?!

  24. MattInSoCal says:

    We are aboard the Carnival Spirit at this moment. Last night was the first “show time” and having read the Q&A above earlier I made a point to look around. There were in fact a few crew members that did not look absolutely elated to be doing The Macarena, but most of them – including those dancing on top of the steward credenzas – and at least 50 guests were out there dancing, singing, and having a good time. We happen to enjoy the more relaxed atmosphere. We think these kinds of things bring us closer to the crew and we feel more like family than guests.

    It’s unfortunate that Mr. Cridland and his party did not find this acceptable. I wonder if maybe much of the rest of the entertaiment and atmosphere were not to his liking as well, and if he took offense to these meager efforts to get him into “vacation mode.” Some people want to be served, not catered to, and if that’s how you choose to enjoy your holidays then good for you. Perhaps another more formal cruise line would be his cup of tea.

    ~ MattInSoCal

  25. Cam Kayser says:

    In reading the CD schedule, I was a little confused for our sailing. We will be on the Liberty departing on Oct 13th.I have heard alot of reviews about Karl. Can you tell me which one it will be? This will be our 5th cruise and love every bit of it. This year again we will be celebrating the hubbys birthday! In 2010 we were on the Glory and there was a couple that played the piano and sang. I believe they were from Hawaii, maybe the Milos?? They were one of the best entertainment on the ship. I could just listen to them all night!! 11 more days cant wait!!

    I enjoy reading your blogs and comments

  26. Debbie Skelton says:

    Come June, 2013 I will be taking my 1st cruise…and to say I’m excited is an understatement! We will be on the Freedom and my question is this. Do the public use computers have USB outlets? During the cruise I would like to transfer digital photos from a SD card to a memory stick. And, since there is no need to get on the internet to do this…is there still a charge for this?


  27. The Cruzin2some says:

    Dear John,
    Your take on going out with a group of people that are drinking and your not is kinda what I am thinking about the new drink program that Carnival is checking into. A card for all the alcohol that you can consume is asking for a whole lot of falling down drunks which for a family cruise line I think is out of place. Don’t get me wrong I love a couple of the Drinks O the Day myself but sometimes not having a limit on the amount of FUN someone can have leads them to being totally out of control. I am interested in seeing what the beards are going to do with this one.
    The Cruzin2some Jim and Nancy

  28. Donna Gregory says:

    John, I feel your pain about the airport security dance. My home airport (one of only two airports named after a man killed in a plane crash) pats me down AFTER the full-body x-ray. Why? Because I’m fat, and I don’t wear skin-tight pants.

    I wear loose clothes as my way of giving to humanity, but it’s very under-appreciated by Large Marge the Latex-Gloved Security Maven. So I’m thinking that on November 3, when I leave Oklahoma City to fly to San Juan to board the exciting Carnival Victory for my 50th birthday (yay!), that I will wear royal blue spandex disco pants just for my friend who insists on patting me down every freaking time. And as for Billy Bob, our Oklahoma City x-ray operator, I pity him. Imagine having to look at average naked people all day. Eventually, not even the finest Latvian woman is going to turn his head or any other part of his body. He should receive combat pay (as should you, my friend).

    Meanwhile, I promise if the sisters or I get into a fight in public, I will turn to one of them and say, “If you shout at me anymore, you’ll wet yourself again.” Because nothing will break up a sister cat-fight like laughter. Thank you for that tip!!

    Safe travels to you and Calvyn. Have fun!!

  29. Mark Thomas says:

    Ah, security before getting on board the ship. Right after 9/11 we cruised out of Miami with my daughter & her husband. My wife hadn’t finished putting a button or something on a dress and had put a pair of cuticle scissors (1″ blade) in her pocketbook. They scanned it and caught it, took it away and let us board. So, we go up to the Lido for lunch and grab a big 6″ long steak knife to cut her sandwich! Go figure.

  30. sierra says:

    How can I can I find your shipping schedule as CD

  31. Rick Williamson says:

    John thanks for partly anwsering my question about owning Carnival stock. I guess I didn’t make my question clear. I wasn’t asking you to disclose something you couldn’t. Just was there some reward when you Cruise with Carnival if you are a Carnival stock holder. And if there was how do you let Carnival know you are a stock holder of Carnival stock (which at this tiome I am not). In your anwser you did say you to get an on board credit. So the next part of my email is ..ok say I do buy 100 shares or more, how do I let Carnival know and or prove ownership of the stock to get this credit when going on a Carnival cruise? Thanks for your time

  32. Resa Glennon says:

    Dear John,

    We just returned home to Ft. Lauderdale Florida after enjoying a beautiful cruise on the new gorgeous Carnival Breeze. My husband and I are Platinum Carnival cruisers and we were married on the Fascination 8 years ago and we are looking forward to our sons wedding on the Victory May 2013! I just wanted to say…you are fantastic!! I have been on many cruises..not just Carnival although Carnival is out favorite.. by far you are the best. I will admit we watched your morning show on board and were hysterical with the “John and Calvyn antics! Whats the story with him? Are you preparing him to be a cruise director on another ship? I hope to see you here in Florida again. Keep up the great work. Everyone we met on the ship thought you were the best! We are looking forward to some new itineraries as we have exhausted the Carribean down here! Where will you be? Best of luck and keep those Perm Markers handy! (for you know who! “Stop touching me!”)

  33. lisa m says:

    John, I read with interest your no alcohol comments. We start on the very next BREEZE cruise on the 25th and I want to tell you I am thrilled that Carnival offers no alcohol beer – it has been a recent addition to my life after getting rid of the booze as it didn’t work for me. In fact, the No Alcohol is about the cheapest drink you can buy on the ship! And, I’ll have my wits about me in case I need them! So thank you Carnival for having a little something for us who can’t handle it. I did notice that it is NOT ON THE MENU for the red frog pub so I guess I’ll do my “drinking but not really” in the sports bar or the casino or poolside bars instead. (funny that)

  34. Anisa Beeman says:

    Got a chucke as I catch up on your blog…reading this as it is the 20th and your are probably heading over the pond.

    See you on the12/2 Breeze!!

  35. Darryn says:

    Just got off the Europe cruise that ended yesterday! Awesome time! Pity you didn’t mention your South African passengers on your list though! I do have some suggestions regarding the cruise and was wondering where I could submit these too?

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