Sunday, October 31, 2021
By the time we got up at 6:30, the ship was docked at Port Canaveral. The Coffee Bar was open so I was able to get us our coffee. We went to the dining room for breakfast.
As we were in the dining room, the Cruise Director came on the intercom and said that the port was having trouble with one of the gangways and one of the escalators so disembarkation was delayed until further notice. He asked everyone to vacate their room by 8:15 and go to a public seating area except on 3rd floor where the gangway is located. He made that announcement several times.
At 8:50 we arrived at the Northern Lights Dining Room with our passports, sail and sign cards, and our paperwork. The room was packed. All the Diamond and Platinum guests that were already supposed to be off the ship were sitting in there. The poor Guest Services people were asking the B2B guests to move to the far back of the Dining Room.
It was 9:45 before they started letting the Platinum and Diamond guests disembark. I know some of them probably had early flights and were distraught. However, all the cruise lines recommend that you never have a flight that leaves earlier than 11:00. You never know if there is going to be an issue with the weather (fog especially), the ship, Customs, or, as in this case, the Port itself.
Once most of those guests were off, the two ladies who were on their third leg of back-to-backs said it would go fast now for us – get our cards, meet Customs, back on – 15 minutes tops. Ha! No.
There were 200 people doing the same thing we were – staying on for the 6-day western Caribbean. There were 3 Guest Services ladies who had to check us off their list, scan our old cards like we were disembarking, and then hand us our new cards for this cruise. Then they had us all line up and head toward the Port and Customs.
I guess the sheer number of us overwhelmed the Customs so they made stop in the hallway, turn around facing the ship, and they checked us in the hallway. We had to pull down our masks to show we were who we said we were but they didn’t ask us if we had anything to declare, etc. I think they just wanted to get out of there. They will deal with us more in-depth next Saturday when we truly disembark. By now, it is 11:00 and I know the people waiting to get on the ship for this next cruise are very anxious.
We were presented with a mimosa when we got back on the ship and offered a free picture. My hair was standing on end and I was in a t-shirt and shorts. No thank you. If I had known they were going to take a picture, I might have tried harder to look presentable.
Got back to the room so I could finish getting the laundry ready to go. I had put everything in the bag but I needed my new folio number on the inventory slip so I could get my Platinum credit on this bag. We were surprised when we got back that our steward had straightened the room, emptied the garbage, and took the laundry bag. We thought he would save our room for this evening like normal since he knew we were staying on.
I tracked him down to retrieve the bag but he said not to worry about the paperwork. “It will be fine” – which is the answer they give to most everything. I guess I will have to wait and see if (1) I get my laundry back, and (2) will I get charged for it. Either issue will require a trip to Guest Services. Sigh.
We decided to get some lunch before the first new passengers start crowding the venues. Chuck ate at his favorite Bar-b-que spot – The Pig & Anchor. I got a salad from the soup and salad bar and a chicken leg from the Pig & Anchor.
We also had to go back to our muster station room and get re-checked and watch the life jacket demonstration again.
After that demo was over, we could have some pool time and people watch. We did just that until sailaway. Since today is Halloween, a lot of people boarded in costume and others had Halloween-themed clothing. There is a Halloween party tonight. Once Port Canaveral was in the rear-view mirror, the Casino and the Shops opened.
While Chuck was in the Casino and I was in the room getting cleaned up for dinner, I heard a very loud woman coming down the hallway. I never heard her companion (I assume she was not talking to herself) but she was griping about where her room was located, the rules about mask wearing, and declared she would “never sail this bucket of bolts again. And her luggage better be at her room or “they” hadn’t seen pissed!” Wow. Hadn’t been on the ship 4 hours and already upset. Doesn’t bode well for her cruise.
We were in a brand-new section of the dining room this evening. Our team was led by Zurine – very fast and efficient. I enjoyed my sweet and sour shrimp and Chuck enjoyed his beef roast.
We did not go to the Welcome Aboard Show but did go to the two comedy shows. The first comic was also on the last cruise and his show was a repeat for us. The next comedian was new and we enjoyed his routine.
Tomorrow is our first Sea Day of this cruise. Know the pool area will be crowded.
We didn’t get a towel animal but we did get a fruit basket and a bottle of Brut for being a back-to-back cruisers.