Wednesday, April 22, 2015

More travels - April 17-22

We stopped in Delray at Doris and Michael's after our cruise to do laundry and spend the night before our short cruise to the Bahamas leaving from the Port of Palm Beach.  By coincidence they were going to be spending the weekend in Florida so we got to see them too!

We went to lunch at a great hamburger place, BURGERFI,
that wasn't there the last time we were.    Delicious!
We had dinner with Mary, Alan and Peter (who brought the yummy take-out Italian) and the next morning we went out for breakfast before leaving for the next port.

We were on the Grand Celebration to the Bahamas.  It used to be a Carnival ship but when the old ship this company used ran aground they bought this one,
I practically lived in this dress/cover-up, it was multipurpose for our cruises.

the worst part about this trip was that there was so much hanging around time.  When we got to the resort around 10 we had to wait until 3 to check in.  When we checked out at 10 we had to wait until 2:30 for our bus back to the port.  Larry entered a dart contest that a woman won.  We both entered the bocce tournament.  We didn't win but we became friendly with the couple that did and when they were leaving they gave us the bottle of rum they won because they were flying back to Florida.

It was our anniversary the night we sailed back and we
got to have a table by ourselves and got this special cake.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Western Caribbean Cruise - April 6-17

Our cruise started in Ft. Lauderdale

We had an aft cabin

Looking out through our cabin 

We met our next door neighbor Rick the first night and spent many nights
together on the deck of his suite enjoying the sunset with a glass of wine.

Larry winds up on stage on all our cruises.

We loved the glass blowing shows.  We live so close to
Corning and have never been there but now we really want to go.

We went to a complimentary wine tasting on our first sea day
On the days we didn't do tours, we walked did two miles around the deck.  That was 16 times around. Every trip back and forth to our cabin from the stairs (or elevator) was 1/8 of a mile so my fitbit really racked up the steps.  I usually always did the stairs when I wasn't with Larry.  His knees didn't like the stairs but my hip didn't mind.

Our first port was George Town, Grand Cayman.  We enjoyed staying on the ship that day with so many people gone.

On April 10 we did a city tour in Cartagena, Columbia.  This statue of a woman was given to Cartagena by Fernando Botero, a famous Colombian artist. It is made of bronze and everyone wanted to get their picture taken with it.  Larry made me do it.

We bought Columbian coffee from people hawking it on the street and it wasn't until we were in Florida almost a month later that we got to test it.  I still like Starbucks.

The most amazing thing we saw was this ring around the moon.  By chance I happened to look at the sky, don't know why, but was so surprised to see this.  It wasn't until I had an internet connection that I could find out what it was.  It looked like a rainbow ring around the sun.  It is actually called a "halo" and can be seen around the sun or moon.  They occur when high thin clouds are drifting 20,000 feet or more above our heads and they contain millions of tiny ice crystals.  The halos are caused by refracting and reflecting of light.  The crystals have to be oriented and positioned just so with respect to your eye, in order for the halo to appear and depending on where you are standing will determine what you see.

This is only one of the pictures we took but it is the only one we were able to capture the entire halo

Coming and going to the ship we walked through an area filled with all kinds of birds and other creatures.

On April 11th we were in Panama but since we're doing a Panama Canal cruise in October we decided to stay on the ship.  The next day we were in Puerto Limon, Costa Rico and did a Greenway Tour which included a hike in the rainforest and a river boat ride.
 Below is a poisonous strawberry frog.
 I don't think this guy was poisonous, one of the few things that wasn't.
This is called a walking Palm Tree because it's roots are above ground and it is said to move and follow the sun.  So just now I was looking up information about the tree and saw that it is a myth that tour guides like to tell tourists.  Well, I was taken in.
This millipede wasn't poisonous but it was big and fat. 
 This is a handful of termites.  If you're ever stranded in the
rainforest without any food, this is a good source of protein.
Here we have the poisonous green and black frog.  All these creatures were
so tiny.  It was amazing how our tour guide was able to find them for us.
This is either a two-toed or three-toed sloth.   I don't remember which we saw first.  We were riding along the highway and stopped so we could get pictures.   An interesting fact in case you run into a sloth and can see it's face, the three-toed sloth looks like it's smiling.
 We're on the river here when we saw the rest of these.

 Here's the other sloth, in a tree along the river.
 All of these boats were seized from Columbian drug dealers.
Columbians say the cartel is now in Mexico

Our final tour was in Belize where we did cave tubing.  We couldn't
resist having all the guys stand under this sign and take their picture.
 Here we are in our tubing outfits.
18 tubes were tied together and our 3 guides had to push/pull us through the cave. 
"Butts up," was a frequent call since the water would be really shallow in spots.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Wedding and Florida

We had a nice weather day in Williamsburg.  The best part of this resort is that it was .7 miles from an Outlet Mall that you could walk to.

We went to Bethesda for Brittany and AJ's wedding.
All the grandkids
And the kids

We arrived in Orlando on Monday, March 30th around 4:00 PM after a 7 hour drive from Florence, SC where we stayed at the tiniest Fairfield ever and it was 80 degrees - boy did that feel great.
Tues. conversation:
L:  What do you want to do?
B:  Go to the hottub
L:  I meant tomorrow
B:  I thought you wanted to play golf.

That was the go ahead to hit dial and make a reservation.

Next it was Ft. Lauderdale.  We stayed in Weston and fell in love with Lester's Diner.
Close by was Sawgrass Mills, a huge mall with outlet stores and department stores.
People come from all over and shop with suitcases.