Thursday, January 01, 2009

Cruise VI

We swam with Dolphins today! Got in the water and had rides and pushes, and got to swim in the lagoon with three dolphins. It was a lot of fun! More interactive than the "dolphin touch" that they did in Ochos Rios, and definitely a cool experience. The dolphins seem to enjoy it, too.

The dolphin we had in our group, Marina, was quite young, and she sometimes decided she didn't want to do what the trainer asked, so she'd do something else and then circle around. I think if dolphins could actually laugh, she would have.

Peter was great - he swam out to get a belly ride, held his arms just like he was supposed to, and laughed the whole way in as she pulled him along. It was really fun. I snorted a bunch of seawater trying to get my mask on. I'd totally do this again if I had the chance! Nin didn't come on this one (she went to get a massage instead), since she finds the rubbery skin of dolphins kind of squicky.

We all went back to the boat for lunch -- it rained on the way back up the pier. It's pretty funny to see people who are already wet, already in swim suits, squealing and running in the rain. It came down in sheets, but c'mon, you're already wet! Jenna and Nin went shopping in Cozumel and we met them after lunch. The two nurses in the group - the Adorable Husband and Nin -- were alternately horrified and intrigued by the vast array of drugs available in the drugstore. Heart meds, serious antibiotics and antidepressants -- the sorts of things that would be dangerous if taken incorrectly! Serious stuff.

My SIL commented on an earlier Cruise post that she'd always imagined that a cruise was kind of cheesy -- more like Love Boat with people playing shuffleboard and a perky cruise-director and that sort of thing. I have to admit I had much the same thought. Our vacations are 180 degrees from this planned, organized, well-run sort of tourist trap that I imagined a cruise would be. But it was very liberating not to have to plan everything, and to know that there was any one of a dozen activities going on at any time that I could join, or a hundred others that I could do on my own. Hang out with family when you want to, hang out alone when you want to - plenty for everyone to do and enough that interests everyone that it's a lot of fun. There was a fully staffed Kids program (three, actually, for kids 2-7, 8-12, and 13 and older) that had activities just for them, pools to swim in, movies to watch, live entertainment (jugglers and magicians and comedians) in the plaza, and about a dozen different venues to sit and have a nice glass of wine and enjoy something tasty (sushi, anyone? lovely little plates from the international cafe, cheese plates, etc).

While there actually was a shuffleboard area, it was dwarfed by the electronic golf, the spa, the daily Wii-competitions on the big screen, and cooking demos. If you wanted an active vacation, there were a hundred different hikes and walks, and zip-line tours, and watercraft to rent in every port; on board there was a full-sized gym and even fitness classes. If you wanted a lazy, lump-about vacation, there was the balcony, the pool, the beach, the theater. Punctuate that with excellent meals, and it's pretty nice.

We wandered down to find gelato and little munchies after a quick walk through town. It was too humid after the rain, I was actually getting tired just trying to breathe it! We listened to the violinist in the plaza, enjoyed a cookie and a glass of wine, and just relaxed for the rest of the day. It was a great day!

No comments: