Friday, March 12, 2010

Chad and Tina cruise the Southern Caribbean (Part 3 of 3)

Previously on Chad and Tina cruise the Southern Caribbean:
Part 1
Part 2
And now for the exciting conclusion...

Day 7 - 3/5 - Dominica

Either champagne has a funky morning-after taste, or a cat came into our stateroom in the middle of the night and took a huge dump in my mouth.  Either way, toothpaste has never tasted so delicious.
But enough about that, we have a new island to explore!  We began our day with a ride to the top of one of the many mountains of Dominica (pronounced dahm-in-EE-kuh).  Here we snapped a photo of downtown Roseau with our ship in the background.

Here's a shot of the professional cricket stadium.

I guess the grasshopper's still maintain their amateur status...hmmm, that joke sounds funnier when you're still champagne drunk on 5 hours sleep.  Hopefully they'll get better.
I can't quite decide which caption works best here:  "School Bus For Sale: Needs Body Work." -OR - "The dangers of trunk driving." - OR - "Woody fell down on the bus before his first day of tree-school."

During our island tour, we stopped at the Morne Trois Pitons National Park and hiked about 15 minutes through the rain forest to Emerald Pool.

The water wasn't "extremely" cold, but there was definitely some shrinkage.  Here's a picture of me enjoying the cool water while my weiner impersonates a scared turtle.

It was too cold for Tina, but she did manage to get in all the way to her knees.  Coward.

Our next stop was the nearly deserted Mero Beach, one of the many black sand beaches of this volcanic island.

After an hour or so, we headed back to the ship.  Each little town that we passed through had the same roadside planters.

I'm not sure if they got "tired" of using clay pots or just wanted to start a new "tread" in landscaping.
We get back on the ship, bid adieu to Dominica...

...took naps, cleaned ourselves up, and headed to dinner where Tina once again tries to master the cork trick we learned on our last cruise (link HERE for those that missed it).  

After that, we played some late night trivia.  The category was movie quotes - The host reads a quote from a film and you have to guess what movie it's from, what character said it, and which actor played the role.  I'm fairly confident going in that we're gonna be leaving with another free bottle of the bubbly.  Some other passenger spotted me walking in and "somewhat" jokingly said that I've won enough bottles of champagne and I should let someone else win.  My response?

We were pretty tired at this point so rather than crack it open, we decided to save it for the next night.  We went back to our room and caught a bit of Transformers 2 on TV.  What an awful, awful movie.  Nothing quite puts me to sleep like the storyline of a Michael Bay film.

Day 8 - 3/6 - St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands

We awoke bright and early to a rainy, overcast day...

...but luckily it did clear up right before we left the ship at 8am.  
These big suckers were everywhere, like cockroaches in NYC, gays in San Fran, and morons in Texas.

Since St. Thomas is the patron saint of snorkeling and booze cruising, that's what we booked.  We hopped aboard a catamaran and set sail for a deserted island.

Our first stop was at a shallow reef where Tina saw a manatee:

At our second stop, the aptly named Turtle Cove, we enjoyed swimming around with the sea turtles.  Because they were eating about 20-30 feet below the surface, you had to hold your breath and dive down for a closer look.

After about 1 1/2 hours of snorkeling, we got back on the catamaran, the captain killed the motor, hoisted the sails, and the crew passed out cup after cup of delicious pineapple-orange rum punch.  Tina liked this cocktail...ALOT.  About an hour and 10+ drinks after we left Turtle Cove, we arrived back at the ship.

Tina was feeling bulletproof and decided to do something really outrageous.  She's a regular Evel Knievel.

We took a short cab ride downtown to do some shopping and I saw these great Blackety Ann dolls.  I assume that the the Blackety Andy dolls are in prison.

After relieving ourselves of rum punch in this 5-star bathroom...

...we sampled some of the local brew.

How does a piss warm shot of rum sound?

With some ice cold banana daquiris in our bellies, we headed back to the ship for some hot tub action and a long nap to sleep off the alcohol.  We awoke at 6 pm, pulled our bottle of champagne out of the ice...and put it in our luggage.  Neither of us wanted any more booze or to even leave the room for that matter.  Instead we packed our bags, grabbed some pizza and burgers, and spent the last night aboard the cruise snuggling in our bed.

Day 9 - 3/7 - Coming Home

Up at 6am, quick shower, breakfast, off the ship at 8:15, and at San Juan International Airport by 9am with 2 hours to spare before our 11am flight.
I didn't pay any attention to the airport the first time around, but now that we got to spend some time there, I have to say that it's pretty disgusting.  They must have exported all the good maids, tile installers, drywallers, and painters.  I didn't want to set my carry on down for fear that it would become part of the floor.  It's as if maintenance said "instead of remodeling, why don't we just cover the floor with millions of pieces of chewed up gum and rub dried boogers on the walls?"  But I digress...
We boarded the plane, me at the window, Tina in the middle, and Puerto Rican "Precious" next to her.  This girl was so big that in the event of a water landing we could have used her as a floatation device.  Luckily, she moved to the back before takeoff, which is good because it's unlikely that the nose of the plane would have gotten off the ground had she stayed up front with us.  But enough about that "cerda".  It's spanish, look it up.
Right now we're cruising at 33,000 ft, and watching "The Blind Side".  And while it should never have been nominated for Best Picture over "500 days of Summer", it's not terrible, and Sandra Bullock will win Best Actress.
I'm hoping we get home in time for the 2:30 game between the Magic and the LA Lakers.  I predict that Kobe Bryant will miss a last second shot and the Magic will win 96-94.

So I guess that's about it.  I'm certain that's there's things I've forgotten, but overall it was a great trip.  If you would like to read more Chad and Tina travel misadventures, please send us money and we will book more vacations.  Or at least click on a couple of those Google ads on the left side of the screen.  Seriously though, send us money...and aloe.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Chad and Tina cruise the Southern Caribbean (Part 2 of 3)

Previously, on Chad and Tina cruise the Southern Carribbean:

(This is the part where you pretend we have a really cool photo montage set to some badass music, like in CSI:Miami.  YEAHHHH!!!!!!!!)

Day 4 - 3/2 - Aruba

After another restless night's sleep on what I believe to be a bed of nails with a sheet over it, we got cleaned up before breakfast.  One of the best things about the staterooms on cruise ships are the efficient bathrooms.  Where else can you wash your hair WHILE taking a dump?

Then it's on to the buffet for another heart healthy meal.

To quote Chris Rock, "I'll eat a pig's ass if they cook it right!"
We disembarked the ship for some shopping in the capital city of Oranjestad.

Awww, look at this adorable little goat-horned figurine.

I'm just gonna pick it up and take a closer look and OHMYGOD HE'S GOT A KNIFE!!!!

To ease our nerves, we made a quick stop at Senor Frogs for a morning daquiri.  How adorable are we?

Next, we took a $15 cab ride to Palm Beach.  The beach was extremely crowded and it was really windy out so it wasn't really that enjoyable.  I'm quite certain that I'm peeing in the ocean here.

After a couple hours, we headed back downtown.  On a tip from a fellow traveler, we took the bus back.  It only cost $2.60.  The lesson here: Bus>Taxi.  While waiting for the bus to arrive, I got a can of the local beer, "Balashi," which is the same word that Tina's used for years to describe my manhood.  I'm starting to believe that she's not being complimentary.

We went back to Senor Frogs for a few more cocktails.  Our last one was called a "Poison Frog" which contains 4-5 types of liquor topped off with red wine.  I've had erections that weren't this stiff.

Tina bought that hat on the island.  It appears to be equipped with a built-in maxipad, so she's got that going for her, which is nice.

We bought a bottle of red wine and a 6-pack of Amstel Light, then went back to the ship and took a nap.  That night, we had the Bavarian-themed dinner in the buffet.  It was a total sausagefest.

Wow, they actually HAVE pig's ass...AND they cooked it right.

We went to two shows that evening.  The first was Fernandez, "America's premiere comedy hypnotist."  Not only wasn't he funny, but he failed to hypnotize most of the folks on stage.  He did, however, succeed in convincing many audience members to walk out.  Well done, sir.
The second was "hilarious comedian" Cary Long.  The moment they announced him as a "5-time winner of Star Search", I looked at Tina and groaned.  That show hasn't been on the air in 15 years, and that's your claim to fame?!  Time to retire; him from comedy and us to our stateroom.

Day 5 - 3/3 - Bonaire, Netherlands Antilles

The name of this island makes me giggle like an 7th grader learning about reproduction.  

It's pronouced Bow-Nair, as in "Sacre Bleu! That beautiful mademoiselle is giving me a Bonaire!"
The last time we were on this island, Tina retired from scuba diving because of difficulties equalizing the air pressure in her ears at depth.  It's unfortunate because it's one the world's top diving destinations.  Here's the beach where she quit last time:

We did a bit of shopping, grabbed a daquiri, and walked along the beach.

Since this was an early departure day and there wasn't alot to do in town, we headed back to the ship, but not before spotting this old man at an internet cafe...

...playing Farmville.  So sad.
We got back on the ship in time to watch the ice carving demonstration.  The sculptors begin with two 300+lb ice blocks...

...and started chiseling them down... a finished sculpture.

Unfortunately, we failed to elect a Pope while onboard.

Bonaire (hee-hee) is a big exporter of sea salt.  I believe half of this is used to season the food at Macaroni Grill.

I wish I had some of that salt now so I could rub it into my eyes.

We went below deck for another trivia beat down followed up by another waste of $20 at Tina's favorite.

Feeling dejected on this winless cruise yet elated with alcohol, Tina and I shower up, eat dinner, and go to an invitation only Captain's cocktail party for return customers.  Tina met the Captain...

...and I won a raffle for a bottle of champagne.

Next, we played the Passenger Family Feud gameshow onstage and destroyed every team we played.  Our prize?  Another bottle of champagne!!  Time to get drunk...

...and check out some more produce sculptures...

...before this creepy eggplant baby scared us away...

...and we wound up at the top deck for a PARTY!!

We drunkenly stumble back to our rooms with a plate full of snacks.  The rest is a none of your business (wink).

Day 6 - 3/4 - Grenada

Pronounced "grah-NAY-dah", which is coincidental because this island should be blown up.  We'd been here before and found the vendors to be very aggressive.  They'll grab you and pull you towards their wares, and you have to yell at them "LOOK!  I didn't travel 500 nautical miles to buy your fucking nutmeg!  PISS OFF!!"
With that in mind, we decided against going into town and instead booked our first shore excursion, which of course was a "booze cruise."  Here's the boat that we hopped on:

The crew began handing out rum punch right away.  Tina did not like it at all because it was flavored with nutmeg, and instead grabbed a beer.  I wasn't a big fan of the punch either, but after the first 3-4 glasses, it was just lovely.  We took a few photos on the way to a private beach... Tina sipped on beer...

...and we listened to the steel drum band.

We stayed at the beach for about 2 hours, splashing in the ocean as the crew was bringing trays full of rum punch off the boat and wading out to us in the waist high water.  After about 10 drinks, I began calling our waiter "LeBron."

And I think this lady was on Everybody Loves Raymond.

On the way back to the cruise ship, all the drunken people starting doing the conga...

...and the limbo.

Raise your hand if you're drunk!

We got back to the pier, high-fived our fellow booze-cruisers, and ambled back to our ship.  We went to a wine and cheese tasting before drinking a bottle of cabernet with dinner and to be honest the rest of the evening was a blur.  We did take this photo for some reason:

Yeah, we definitely need to go to bed before we embarrass ourselves any further.

Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion on Friday...