January Cruise 2013 – A Quick Getaway (Part 3)

We’re back on the boat in Progreso, headed to Cozumel and I just realized I had forgotten about “Formal Night” on the Carnival Elation.  I left my phone/camera in the cabin and didn’t take a single picture myself.   I was pleased to see more people than usual dressed in formal attire, especially the ladies in their assorted short skirts and heels!

All throughout the promenade are various photo backdrops, and it doesn’t cost a thing to give your best pose.  If you see a photo that you like, you can buy it.  If you don’t, just leave it in the rack.  This is a great opportunity for you to get that new Linkd-In, Facebook, or Twitter Profile shot – or a family portrait without expensive sitting fees.

Meanwhile, I worried about Ruby, our Blue Doberman, and if she was having seperation anxiety.  Turns out she wasn’t, thanks to our dear friend Julie, who also is a profressional “dog-person.”

Ruby' suite

Tuesday morning, the Carnival Elation arrived on time at Cozumel, and the day was going to be simply gorgeous!   Shown here is the Pilot Boat that drops off and picks up a “Harbor Pilot” from each incoming and outgoing cruise ship.  The “Pilot Boat” has got to be a great scam!

Pilot Boat

In Cozumel, Elation was docked right next to its younger twin sister, Paradise.

Elation and Paradise along Cozumel Pier

This was the first time we have docked at the older downtown pier in many years.  All things considered, I like it better.  Downtown is still the hub of activity for this great port!

Carlos and Charlies Downtown Cozumel

A large part of our group wanted beach time, and Carlos and Charlies Beach Club was the destination!  The van driver they hooked up with told them it was no longer there, but he had a better beach for them.  I could give a rat’s ass about getting sand in my crotch, so six of us decided to rent our own car and see just what happened to Carlos and Charlie’s Beach Club.

Carlos and Charlies Beach Club Entrance

Not only was it still there, it was even better!  The food is great, and the selection of drinks is endless.  It is located about 10 km south of the newest cruise ship pier.

Carlos and Charlies Beach Club Beach

Carlos and Charlies Beach Club Inside

After a few snacks and drinks, we decided to ride around the back side of the island of Cozumel, making a complete circle before heading back to the ship.

Back Side of Cozumel

The shopping area at the cruise pier has a shop for everything you would imagine, even a Drugs and Deli.

Cozumel Drugs and Subs

Elation and Paradise at Cozumel

And the rest of our gang made it back for the Cozumel sail-a-way!

Sail-Away Party Cabin v-4

We enjoyed great service from our Dining Room server Sydney, from Indonesia.

Sydney, from Indonesia

I regret not having a camera with me for more of the cruise.  We had a great experience.  Cruise Director Willie Lee had everything on the ship “in synch” if that is a term.  His staff was cheerful and was always around making sure everyone had a great time.  the Wednesday Night Deck party was one of the most lively I have seen.  If I had my camera then, I probably would have dropped it!

There was always a creature waiting back in the cabin.  I wish they could make one of Ruby!

Towel Bear

towel frog

We were off the ship and in the car headed home at 8:15 am on Thursday!  The weather forecasts were not sounding good through Alabama, but since when is a weatherman right?

Alabama Snow

We made it just past Cullman, Alabama before we hit a large traffic jam around 4:00 pm.  There was no turning around.  Mile Marker 313 on Interstate 65 North would be our home for the next 9.5 hours!  At least the Greyhound Bus next to us had free wi-fi!

I65 Traffic Jam mm 313

We arrived back in Nashville at 3:45 am Friday morning.  You know what?  I’d still do it all again!!!   You should too!

“Give me back my bullet.” Part 2

While within the confines of the Homeland Security office, David Hartley called me from Lido deck to see what the problem was.  I quickly told him “they found a bullet in Beth’s bag….gotta go.”   As I hung up , all I could hear was his laughter coming from the phone.   “Whats so funny about a bullet?” 

If you haven’t read Part 1 of this ordeal, here is the link:   https://nashvillehomesblog.com/2011/03/25/give-me-back-my-bullet-part-1/

OK, we’re back on board and found the group up on the bridge deck, just in time for a sail-away picture.

 

Then the questions and comments started flowing.  “Why is a silver bullet a security concern?  How embarrasing!”   

I am almost “over-the-hill” and sometimes slow to catch on.   Then,  it hit me.  They thought the fuss was all about one of those battery-operated bullet things that are made for women to play with.  Poor Beth.  This will be a cruise joke for ages to come.

On Monday morning, we arrive at the port of Progreso, Mexico.   If you want to see what real life is like in Mexico, you must ride the bus into downtown Progreso and check things out.  This was our sixth time to visit Progreso, so we decided to make a quick run through the “tourist village” at the pier and then enjoy the day relaxing onboard Triumph.

The “tourist village” has grown considerably since our last visit.  I found a neat sling shot in one of the stores that I plan to use at the lake this summer to shoot rubber balls and stuff at friends.  Beth bought a Mexican pottery thing.  There is a neat little bar on the beach with an excellent view of the pier, and they have gotten real creative with their marketing:

From the looks of the bras and panties they have gotten, they probably had to give away more drinks to whoever was there to watch.

The view looking outside of the bar was a bit better!

After a few cold ones, we headed back to the ship, jumped on board, and went through the security scanners.  They pulled Beth aside …. “Maam…pleese open yoor bag… look like weapon.”  (You should have seen the look on her face.) 

She opened her bag and there was my sling shot!   “Pleese go there to security.”   She was not about to… and made me go instead!  I guess that is fair.  It was my sling-shot.   Now, it looks like we both are now on “the list.”  LOL  

The harbor pilot “gig” has always intrigued me.  Someone from the port has to be on the ship when it is in a particular country’s port area.  When you are clear, they jump off on the Pilot Boat.  This happens in every port, arriving and departing.   I know there is a good reason, and I’ve heard them all…but it still sounds like a scam to me.  What a neat job!

The next day we were in Cozumel, where there are a zillion things to do.  Margaritaville appears to be the new hot spot, although Carlos & Charlies still takes the cake for being wild.  Panchos Backyard is a must if you are hungry, and if you are not, stop there for a drink anyway!    Enjoy a few scenes from the rest of the day.

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The highlight of cruising is getting to know people from all over the world.  This cruise was no exception.  Our head-waiter, Nolan Villamor from Phillipines, along with Alejandro his assistant, made each evening meal very special.

Another highlight of dinner is the entertainment.  After the meal, all of the dining staff dances and sings for the crowd.  Some may think this is “hokey” but we have always enjoy it.  Perhaps we are “hokey” too!

 The morning of debarkation, they had a lounge set up to return everyone’s “contraband.”  I was comforted to see I was not the only one that bought a sling shot!  On the way out of the cruise terminal, I almost stopped by the Homeland Security office just to see if they would “give me back my bullet!”  My better judgement prevailed…this time.

Our next cruise will be aboard Carnival Elation – its last cruise from Mobile, Alabama, October 15 – October 22, to Belize, Roatan, and Cozumel.  We’ve already got a great group going and more are planning to go.  You should join us too.  Just leave your bullet at home!

 

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, and Spring Hill, Tennessee