There are certain things in this world that cost ridiculous amounts of money for reasons I can’t fathom. Take razor blades, for example. Can someone explain to me then why razor blades probably cost about 50 cents each to make, but are so sodding expensive to buy? Maybe they are so expensive as the company that makes them has to pay David Beckham millions of dollars to stand at a mirror shaving with a cucumber shoved down his underpants. There are other things that cost so much to buy that I wonder why they can get away with such baffling sums of money. Batteries, sun lotion and bottled water that has been “flowing through the Swiss mountains for hundreds of years” yet costs ridiculous amounts and come with a sodding sell by date!  Or at least that’s what I thought until I discussed the outrageous price of Gillette razors with Calvyn.

 

But looking through November’s credit card bills online I saw a huge leviathan expense on our card and had to call Heidi about it. Now, for all I know this may be as cheap as chips in America and Canada, etc. but it’s not in the UK. What am I talking about? The answer is………printer ink.

Printer ink it seems is more expensive than caviar. You can dine at one of our steakhouses and have a bottle of Chateau Laffite for less than it costs to print off a few sheets of paper at our house. And unlike the steakhouse, printers bring bugger all pleasure, only pain as they reduce you to tears by running out of ink or jamming just when you need to print your boarding pass ………….the vicious bastards.  The ink costs more money per milliliter than champagne, gas and a night with a Latvian prostitute……………… allegedly.

 

The printing industry is like the mafia with Don Kodak and his wise guys controlling the market. Some cartridges you can’t re-fill, some even having ink in them stop before the cartridge is totally empty. Heidi and I have a Hewlett Packard printer and if the colour cartridge has run out, it becomes a total bitch and refuses to print black and white unless I change that one and buy new colour despite having a full black cartridge.  The ink my father used on his typewriter cost virtually nothing……..I don’t know about you but I think it’s time to bring back the pen!

 

Time for today’s Q and A………..here we go.

 

 

Maria Pascoe asked:
We cruise on December 8 on the Carnival Breeze and will require a table of two booked for Michael and me and so far the maitre d emailed has not answered us which we think is not good customer service. Can you get us a table just for us is the question? We have done three Carnival, seven Princess and five Royal Caribbean so we are experienced cruisers!

John Says:
Hello Maria Pascoe,

Thanks for taking the rime to write and please do not be upset at the maître d. We ask that guests do not write to the ship’s staff. They are under no obligation to answer and while occasionally they may if time permits we do not want people emailing

Best wishes and have a great. cruise.

John

Carl asked:
Can you tell me how much is the pop card on the breeze?

John Says:
Hello Carl,

Yes, indeed, as follows;

For adult $36.00 + tax and gratuity – Total $44.28

For child $27.00 + tax and gratuity- Total $33.21

Please let me know if you have any other questions.

Best wishes.

John

Brandi Davidson asked:
I am 19 years old and will be cruising for spring break on the Carnival Fantasy in March next year. I am going to be with my parents and young brother Delwa who is 11. He was adopted and is from Chad, which is in Africa, and we want him to get something special done for his first cruise and first vacation with his new family so can you do something special for him. I do not know what information you needed, so mail me back if you want to know something.

John Says:
Hello Brandi Davidson,

I am sure you and your family must be so proud to be taking Delwa with you all on this wonderful cruise. Please can you go to my Facebook page at  and post me your cabin number two days before you sail and also please mention what ship so I don’t forget and remind me again about Delwa. I will make sure I send him something and I wish you all a great cruise.

Best wishes.

John

Jennifer Beal asked:
John,

can you tell me what ship Captain Volpi is on. We had the privilege of cruising with him on the Carnival Spirit and he was a gentleman to me and my husband and loved by the passengers. We would like to cruise with him again so please if you could tell us his schedule we would be appreciative.

Thanks.

Jennifer and Mark Beal

John Says:
Hello Jennifer and Mark,

The sad news is that Captain Volpi has recently retired from a life at sea and he is much missed by many. I have seen many such comments that say just what an impression he made on our guests and I am sorry you won’t be able to cruise with him again. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you.

Best wishes.

John

Joseph Petrov asked:
I was sent a fruit basket by you for our 50th wedding anniversary which my daughter arranged. I wanted to let you know that it was received with no knife to cut the apples or pears with and this should be standard, I think, especially for older people who want to peel fruit. The ship was the Carnival Elation in case you are wondering.

John Says:
Hello Joseph Petrov,

You are absolutely correct — of course we should provide a knife for this and I know utensils are usually included so am surprised that this was not done in this case. I will address with the ship and indeed pass this to the fleet just to remind them. I do hope you had a wonderful cruise and I wish you and your good lady many more happy years together.

Best wishes.

John

Tina Moreno asked:
Hi John,

We just returned from an amazing cruise on the Carnival Breeze. I have to say when we found out you were not going to be cruise director, we were very disappointed. We were looking forward to sailing with you a third time, but I think the angels were looking down on us when we were sent Jaime Dee as our cruise director. Jaime and her staff (specifically 6’3 and Alex) were one of the best group of people we have encountered on our 32 cruises with Carnival. We will be following Jaime and hopefully be able to cruise with her again on the Carnival Dream. She is truly a special lady. She took care of us well. Always very visible. Sometimes you don’t get that in a cruise director, but Jaime was there all the time, whether just walking along Promenade or even when we got off the ship. It was so nice to be able to say goodbye to her and Amy (6’3).

I wanted to give a special thank you to several others who touched our lives for 12 sensational days in the Med. Our dining team was probably one of the BEST we have ever had. Martina, Srdjan (Ricky Martin) and Jovan made going to dinner every night a joy. In fact, when we went to the steakhouse and Cucina a few nights, we missed our dining room team! Our room steward and assistant Constantine and Tea were again some of the best we have had. Can’t say enough about them. One other person stood out on the Breeze, Sebastian at the Red Frog Pub. Sebastian was always there with a smile on his face and a dish of pigeon peas waiting for us!! Thank you Sebastian. John, I also wanted to mention Alex from the entertainment team. We were able to see a different side of him in place of his always energetic and fun self. We had a situation that was quite unexpected and unusual. It was announced that a guest that had been taken off the ship at an unscheduled stop needing medical attention had passed away. The entertainment team had put out a large poster board for people to sign and then they were going to send off to the family of this passenger. While my husband and I were signing the card, Alex came up with extra poster board and asked me to help him draw something on the card. I told him that I thought it would be OK just to have it plain then people will fill it in. He was also concerned that he only had white poster board and not colored. I just reassured him that white was just as good as colored and not to worry. He was so warm and concerned it was a wonderful side of him that most people do not get to see. Please let Alex know he did a wonderful job. Sorry this is so lengthy but I wanted to be able to share with you this special group of people.

Thanks, John, also for arranging for the chocolate covered strawberries and champagne for not only my sister who was celebrating her birthday while on board, but also for sending Russ and me some as well as a fruit basket. All was so yummy and appreciated. You are the best and I hope your journey to New Orleans was a success. Good luck on the trans-Atlantic. Hope to see you next year on the Legend.

Your friends,

Tina Moreno & Russ Groman

John Says:
Hello Tina and Russ Groman,

I was disappointed that I could not be there with you both as well but I am glad that you had such fun. What a brilliant review and what a wonderful chap Alex is and you have no idea how thrilled he will be when he reads this. It’s young people like Alex who really make a difference. I saw the cards that Jaime made and bravo to her for doing so. Thanks again for taking the time to write and I do hope we will see each other one day on board.

Best wishes to you both.

John

Joe Harris asked:
Hi John,

On July 21 we were on the Carnival Breeze for our fifth Carnival cruise. The ship is wonderful and the staff, as always, very accommodating. We now have reservations on the April 7 trans-Atlantic cruise on the Carnival Legend. My question is on voyages such as this, with many days at sea, are there any additional activities or classes planned? Days at sea are always my favorite and I was hoping I could use those days to learn something new. Just wondering. Thanks for your wonderful blog. I always look forward to your Facebook comments.

John Says:
Hello Joe Harris,

Another great comment on the Carnival Breeze which is brilliant news indeed. Yes, we will have arts and crafts lessons, dance and bridge instructors and, of course, Calvyn and I will be there to make sure the fun is continuous. Please let me know if you have any questions and I will be here to help. Thanks for the kind words and see you soon.

Best wishes.

John

Samantha Perry asked:
What happened to the fake tattoos you used to do? My kids were so upset that they couldn’t get them this time on the Carnival Paradise and cried real tears they were so upset. Not happy about this, John.

John Says:
Hello Samantha Perry,

I am so sorry to read that the kids were crying, what a shame. We have taken the temporary tattoos off all the ships for now but I do hope you all had fun on the cruise and that the tears were replaced by laughter and that we will see you again soon.

Best wishes to all.

John

 

And that’s all for today. Thanks once again for all your comments and suggestions.

 

Our shows continue to be so popular and the new Playlist Production shows have been received with big standing ovations. Here then is the current list of the shows you will see on your next cruise plus some other changes for 2013.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Carnival Triumph:  Wonderful World, Big Easy, Magic Show and Carnival Legends

 

 

  • Carnival Spirit:  Big Easy, Jazz Hot, Singing With The Big Band and Carnival Legends

 

  • Carnival Pride:  Wonderful World Vroom, Jazzin’ and Carnival Legends

 

 

 

 

  • Carnival Miracle:  Ticket to Ride, Generations, Singing With The Big Band and Carnival Legends

 

  • Carnival Valor:  Far From Over, Nightclub Express, Magic Show and Carnival Legends

 

  • Carnival Liberty: Wonderful World, Just Rock, Singing With The Big Band and Carnival Legends

 

  • Carnival Freedom:  Big Easy, Ticket to Ride, Jump Jive & Wail and Carnival Legends

 

 

  • Carnival Dream:  Dancin in the Street, Get Ready, X-Treme Country and Carnival Legends

 

  • Carnival Magic:  Destination Unknown, Groove Line, Win and Carnival Legends

 

 

There will also be some changes next year as follows…

 

 

 

 

  • Carnival Legend:  Starting February 2013 – a new high energy magic show featuring Justin Illusion

 

 

 

These great shows will be complemented by new variety acts that we are hiring and of course the best in comedy as our Punchliner comedians continue to make you laugh out loud.

 

On Monday’s blog, I was talking about my fear of having to ride a bike next to Kye and yet I know I have to try because I have my yearly medical in January 2013 and so I have been trying to prepare for my “stress test” which I did last year. I passed that test but it left me sweating like a cocker spaniel in a Korean restaurant. So each morning while I was on the Carnival Breeze I went to the gym and used the treadmill and last week I did the same at my hotel here in Miami and I have started to notice something. Next time you are at your gym, you will notice it’s actually full of older women pounding the various machines as they try to become cougars, and men, middle-aged men like me who are married but want to have rumpy pumpy with a cougar which makes them of course……cheetahs. What you are unlikely to see are younger people because they have metabolisms that crush pizza and burgers into six packs.

 

I have really been feeling my age lately, a fact that I think I have expressed here in the blog but going to the gym has me feeling even older. Gyms are places of misery where I go to recreate something that I lost back on the Carnival Destiny in 1996 which is when I became fat. Gyms are places of hatred and of sweat and hope where we pant on the treadmill, pretending to listen to our Eyepods where really what we are doing is mourning the loss of our youth. It’s the regret that gets me, not just the awning I have built over my gentleman’s sausage but the lost fact that when I was young I could eat, drink and be merry with the best of them and that now as a diabetic that has all buggered off and won’t be coming back.  All men my age, fat, slim, and muscle bound are scrunching, lifting and puffing to push back the years, have a particular look.

 

I recognise it. I catch myself wearing it: it’s a look of hope, fear, bravado, vanity and panic that the doctor will tell me I am too fat to be a CD. I particularly stored fat around my waist, like one of Kye’s rubber rings she uses in the pool, only bigger, and I know have Simon Cowell like man  breasts or moobs as I think they are called. I am at the point now where I avoid below-the-neck mirrors and so you can imagine the hell I have to through every time I sit on the toilet at my hotel here in Miami because the bastards have put a full length mirror on the inside of the bathroom door. Seeing myself naked was something that made me laugh out loud and then cry with shame. There I was naked; sitting on the toilet, legs open wide……I looked like a yawning hippopotamus.

 

Anyway, I am writing this to you on Tuesday afternoon and tonight I shall continue my exercise regime by carrying a big heavy bucket up three flights of stairs to my hotel room and not take the elevator. How about that. Impressed aren’t you? Yep, I shall then sit on my bed, turn the TV on and empty that bucket of KFC and watch the Miami Heat kick the crap out of the Washington Wizards.

 

There are certain things in life that have a huge build up and then once experienced are a major disappointment. ….my first proper kiss for example. My mates had told me what to do and I was so excited to “snog” a girl called Sally…….we did and for me it was a huge let down. Her tongue was as rough as an elephant’s scrotum …….I was a very disappointed 25 year old.

 

These days I am always careful of not over hyping something as I did with the loyalty program and which resulted in me getting a public flogging from H82SEAUGO and his/her mates. But saying that, there is an exception to the hype surrounding one particular ship. I said right from when I first stepped aboard her in May that she was special and that she was our best ship ever and now it seems that hundreds of you have agreed, in writing here and on our Facebook pages. Yep, most agree…the Carnival Breeze she’s our best designed ship yet and that she delivers massive amounts of fun and we are honoured that Cruise Critic awarded her their “best new ship” in a recent poll. I hope you get to sail on her. I hope you get some Carnival Breeze WOW time very soon.

 

Goodnight

 

Your friend

 

John

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.