April 29, 2014 -

John Heald

I am staying in a guest cabin this cruise here on the Carnival Miracle, so I want to start today’s blog with an observation, if I may. In the bathroom the stateroom stewards (or “stewarts” as they are sometimes called – FFS!) place three sizes of towels for us to use. There are the big ones used after a shower and there are the medium-sized ones that we use to dry our hands and faces after a wash or a shave and can also be used to wipe away that stubborn toothpaste mark from around the sink. (more…)


July 17, 2013 -

John Heald

I was talking with a fellow cruise director a few days ago and as we chatted on the satellite phone — me in Dover, UK, and my colleague just waking up in the western Caribbean — he told me about the difficulties he had recently gone through, thanks to Tropical Storm Chantal. It wasn’t the storm that had caused him difficulties — no, it was a couple of guests who went beyond the usual disappointment that every guest feels when a change of itinerary occurs and became abusive and angry. This is, as the great Welsh, hip-gyrating Tom Jones says, “not unusual.” Not only on Carnival but on every other cruise line in the world………maybe with the exception of P&O because Brits never complain about anything in public. But seriously, on every ship that is affected by Mother Nature, there are people who do not and will not understand that the cruise lines make these changes to avoid ……..ummmmm………….how do I put it ………. ummmmm……ummmmm……oh, yes, I know…………..DEATH! (more…)


May 20, 2013 -

John Heald

Want to see how a creamy pastry got me in trouble? Then read on.


Sent: Saturday, May 18, 2013 2:44 PM
Subject: **** – comments made by CD


Hi John,

Mr. _______ asked that you contact him, John. He was at your travel talk this morning, John, and was unhappy to hear a joke you made about the Mafia in Italy. Guest is of American/Italian family and would like you to speak with him. Thank you and kind regards.

Guest Services Associate, Carnival Legend
Carnival Cruise Lines (more…)


November 9, 2012 -

John Heald

So far, touch wood, things are going well here on Carnival Breeze. Today we are in Malaga, Spain and the weather is a bit cloudy and there have been a passing shower or two but overall the cruise is going well. However, as I have said before here on the blog, trans-Atlantic cruises tend to include a few guests who by tradition will be a bit grumpy and who will find things wrong because for them, finding things that are wrong is their favourite activity on board. It is important to note that they are the minority and 98 percent of the guests will have a brilliant time. I should add the price of a 16-day cruise is brilliant value for money, with wonderful food, entertainment and activities all included in the price. Anyway, let me give you an example of what I mean about being grumpy, have a read of this.



September 7, 2012 -

John Heald

So here I am back in the cruise director chair again which up until this morning was brilliantly occupied by Butch Begovitch who will return to be the permanent CD here after the crossing. He has left the ship in good order and really has left me with no major headaches…… except one. You see we have a new staff member who is going to require some “counseling,” as tofu eaters would call it.


So during the show last night, I took some people from the audience for some pre-show fun before the Divas revue. It included a young couple who, when I asked for their names and where they were from, they replied they were from Denver, Colorado. I then shocked myself by instead of saying, “Are you having fun?” or “What’s your favourite port so far?” or “Bugger me your wife is gorgeous, are they real?” I went straight into the, “I am so sorry, how dreadful, it’s awful, I hope they cut his bollocks off and shove 50,000 volts through his arse.”

So, Wimbledon is over for another year and no, we have three weeks of rest before London hosts the Olympic Games where our opening ceremony will consist of a double decker bus, David Beckham in a pair of Speedos and that other British institution Simon Cowell introducing some Bollywood dancers. Yep, compared to the opening ceremony China gave us four years ago, this will look like it has been produced by the London Retired Ladies Knitting Association. (more…)


May 16, 2012 -

John Heald

On Friday, I will fly home for two nights to celebrate my daughter’s birthday. I made a promise to her after missing her first and second birthdays that I would not miss another and thanks to the beards, I will head home on Friday and providing Ryan Air doesn’t fly me into a mountain or poison me with their in-flight sandwiches, I will return Sunday morning to the ship.


May 4, 2012 -

John Heald

There are many ways in which you can tell you are getting old. The forest of hair in your nose and ears for example or those weird noises I make now as I get out of a chair or off a sofa ………. aggghoooo. However, these past few days I have experienced two situations that make me think that 47 is the new 73. Firstly, while at home last week a friend called me at 9:30pm and asked: “I didn’t wake you, did I?” Bloody hell! Is that what people think of me? Do they believe that I have just had a cup of cocoa and am in bed asleep, dreaming of a nice retirement home in the country at 9:30 at night? I felt like telling this friend who called that actually I was in the middle of “a little action,” but he would rather than think I meant some rumpy pumpy that a “little action” referred to a good bowel movement.



April 13, 2012 -

John Heald

I remember when the mail used to be fun. Not email, not the offer of a larger thingy which, by the way, I decided to apply for and for my $45 I received a magnifying glass…..no, I mean real mail, the stuff the mailman brings. You know, back before e-mail, when I would receive a birthday card and check. Or even better, a birthday card with a check. There was nothing better than opening that white square envelope knowing that inside there would be money. It was such a letdown when it was just a card except when it was from my Uncle Norman who I knew was a cheap bastard and that the card would be as empty as Frenchman’s soap dish. Mail used to be exciting because every day was a new opportunity. You never knew what you were going to get. A handwritten letter, an invitation – maybe there would be a postcard from a friend on a Carnival cruise. Now, the only postcards that arrive have ads on them. Do I want a pizza? New decking? I have been used to getting emails for a larger gentleman’s sausage via email but yesterday I actually got a got a card in the mail offering me a bigger one and the handwriting on it looked very much like Heidi’s.

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.