Showing posts with label Miami. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Miami. Show all posts

26 February 2012

Join the cruise and sail

< Fly to Miami | Index | Day at sea >

Today we boarded our ship, the 'Norwegian Dawn' and sailed out of Miami towards the south and east. The rest of the day we were busy exploring the ship and eating our first two meals on board.

The Norwegian DawnI managed to adjust to the time difference without a problem, going to bed a little early and waking up around 07:00 local time. We relaxed in our room, reading and writing. We had to vacate the room at 11:00 but the shuttle to the ship left at 11:30 so that was very acceptable timing.

In the hotel lobby we met several others aiming for cruises. We chatted with Doug and Diane who were sailing on the Norwegian Pearl and he gave me his email address, hoping to keep in touch with us. We boarded our cruise ship, the Norwegian Dawn, after one of the longest queuing experiences ever, about two hours. Our ship was on its first outing after a refit and the computerised boarding systems were new. Much of the delay may have been due to lack of familiarity with  the new system.

Following the Norwegian Pearl out of MiamiA welcome buffet was available in the Garden Restaurant. What a spread! Leaving port a little late at about 16:15 (we had to wait for some passengers who phoned from the airport to say they were just heading for the port), we sailed out into the Atlantic and some choppy water in a strong wind. There was a bit of rolling, but nothing too bad and I didn't suffer any ill effects.

We explored the ship systematically, it's a very nice vessel with lots of facilities and some excellent restaurants. We ate in the Venetian this evening, a large and ornate space filling the full width of the ship. The food on board is very good with something available 24/7 and an option for room service at no extra charge. Buffet in the Garden RestaurantThe restaurants range from an enormous buffet with an extraordinary range of hot and cold options, through pleasant restaurants like the Venetian, to some unusual alternatives attracting a surcharge.

We went to the theatre to see the day excursion presentation and left with a pretty good idea of the available options for each of the islands we are going to visit.

And finally, back to our bijoux cabin, officially known as our 'state room'. That's a rather grand term for a space just about large enough for a bed and an en suite shower and loo.

I wrote up the day's events and we turned in for the night.

< Fly to Miami | Index | Day at sea >

25 February 2012

Fly to Miami

< St Neots to Heathrow | Index | Join the cruise and sail >

We arrive at our hotel in Miami, tired but looking forward to exploring the cruise ship tomorrow. The eleven hour flight felt longer and the hotel was disappointing - but we're on our way!

The view from our hotel windowWe slept well but were up early as our flight with Delta was mid morning. The shuttle bus took us to Heathrow Terminal 4 and so to check in and an 11 hour flight to Miami. Somehow they'd given us seats that were not together, but the cabin crew sorted that out for us.

There's not a lot to say about an 11 hour flight (except it seems longer). I watched Dr Zhivago for the second time (the first time was when it was originally released back in the late 1960s)

I read some more of Ross Rhode's book 'Viral Jesus' and enjoyed it immensely. Dozed a bit, read a bit, listened to Igor Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms, read a bit, dozed a bit.

By mid afternoon Florida time we were in Miami Airport trying to find the hotel shuttle - and failing. In the end we took a taxi (I almost lost Donna in the process) and made our way to the Miami Ramada Airport North. This place is actually quite some way from the airport and a bit run down, very different from our Holiday Inn experience at Heathrow yesterday.

We had slight hopes of relaxing by the poolside, although the hotel details online had mentioned that the area was being renovated. When we went to look we found that the pool area is currently a wasteland of gravel. 'Renovated' is a misnomer, it has been ripped out and a new pool is going to be developed. Back to the Kindle books!

We finished the day with a strange hotel restaurant meal, I had a pizza that looked and tasted like a frozen 'value' pizza from the local supermarket. Not great but it filled a gap. We headed for bed looking forward to joining our cruise ship in the morning.

< St Neots to Heathrow | Index | Join the cruise and sail >

Copyright

Creative Commons Licence

© 2002-2014, Chris J Jefferies

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. A link to the relevant article on this site is sufficient attribution. If you print the material please include the URL. Thanks! Click through photos for larger versions. Images from Wikimedia Commons will then display the original copyright information.
Real Time Web Analytics