December 27, 2008
Ecstasy 5-night 12-27-08 New Year's Cruise!
We stayed overnight at the Hilton on the Seawall and ate at The Spot overlooking the beach. We did a little last minute shopping and headed to the hotel.
We arrived at the ship at 11:15, walked straight up the stairs, through VIP and were the first two people through the photo line and onto the ship -- Wow!
We called and text our friends and family, dropped my husband's Blackberry phone into the ocean accidentally (we have insurance) then went to our cabin E-244 to dress for 1st night's dinner. I left $5 and a note asking our cabin steward (who we never saw and that's okay with me) to leave me an extra pillow and a blanket. When we returned to our cabin, both items were there.
At dinner, we were assigned a booth for 6 people, all were our age, one was a honeymoon couple on their first cruise and feeling motion sickness, they left during appetizers and we never saw them again. Unfortunately, we did see the other couple again, we went to the maitre'd and asked for a table change after missing the next two nights at dinner. We thought of the NCL commercial where the man keeps talking and talking and talking, well it was something like that. Anyway, the maitre'd moved us to a beautiful table and we very much enjoyed our last dinner there. We tipped him on the last night by the way.
Even though the sun was shining through our cabin window, we slept 11-1/2 hours the first night, after going to bed at 7:30pm! That's unheard of, I guess we really did need some rest.
The sea was like glass until about 11:30am, it was so eerie and beautiful at the same time and remained calm all the way back to Galveston. Ate a light lunch, walked around the ship, went to the specialty coffee shop on the promenade and had latte's and the carrot cake. We returned to our cabin and our customs info was there along with party hats and blow out horns for the festivities later. I spent some time filling all the customs paperwork out while thinking of what to wear to our last night, New Year's Eve dinner without the "dreaded" table mates. At our newly assigned, lovely table, we had clam chowder, rib eye steak, apple dessert and the cheese assortment -- excellent!
The New Years celebration parties were held in several areas, there was food, music and specialty champagnes if you cared to purchase them. At midnight, the Captain came on the speaker and did the 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 countdown and blew the ship's horn. It was all very fun.
I told her I'd come right back and be there in about an hour, she told me where to come and I thanked her. We returned to the port, I handed security my sign and sail card and told them my story, they had me sit and wait. The nice lady took my sign and sail card and went to find my clothes. After about 30 minutes, she returned with my clothes and a smile on her face. I thanked her for all her trouble and we headed back towards Galveston again.
Excellent cruise in every way -- way to go Carnival!