Tag Archives: Nassau

I’m Back

It’s been a few weeks since I last posted because this is the beginning of the warm season. I say ‘warm season’ because it starts a little later for some. If you are south of the equator, it is the beginning of the cool season. No matter, I was away on a cruise and had a good time. There was a couple of reasons my wife and I decided to take this early cruise, it left from Norfolk, Va. (twelve miles away) and it is just before the hurricane season. The other day, I saw on television that there is already one named storm in the Atlantic Ocean, but it will turn east and not strike the USA east coast.

This was our first time sailing with the Carnival Cruise Line. We normally travel with the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and what a difference. We’ll stay with Royal Caribbean from now on. However, we went to Nassau, Half Moon Cay and Freeport. All three stops were great. We have been to Nassau and Freeport before. We love those areas, in fact, we love the islands and try to go as much as possible. The one island I love the most is Puerto Rico and would love to live there.

We returned to the USA, spent a few days taking care of business at home and, the following weekend, off again. That is what being retired is all about. Come and go at will. No clock to punch. No cares except where to go next. We have three major places to go to (that I am aware of. There may be others that have escaped my memory) this year. I just love being retired.

One of my old military outfits is having a get together in California next month. Unfortunately, unlike what I requested of them, they gave short notice on the date of the reunion and we have something in that time slot that we cannot undo. I was stationed in California; my daughter was born there but my present wife has never been there. I would love to show her my old base and other things. Maybe we’ll go on our own. I know everything have changed since I was last there and it would be a refresher for me.

Since I have been incommunicado for three weeks, I see the political scene is really heating up (or should I say, getting hotter). The most shocking thing is the abortion laws being put into place by the southern states (I don’t remember any northern states being listed. I may be mistaken). This make it seem like secession all over again only, this time, against women. It is not a civil war although it is a war waged by Trump and his loyalists. Being that it is a war against women will make it a bitter fight. There are also the people called to come to a congressional committee, but they are refusing to appear (ordered to do so by Trump). Now there is all three branches of government involved.

Well, I am back, and I will attempt to put out my weekly blogs, but with a few lapses here and there, it’s the warm season and we’re retired. We have places to go and fun to have. I’ll leave you with a half dozen pictures or so.   

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Vacation Cruise

We have returned (my wife and I) to land after nine days at sea, on the Grandeur of the Seas, with stops in Bermuda, Nassau (Bahamas) and Coco Cay (Bahamas), over twenty four hundred nautical miles, round trip. I loved it but I did not love what we returned to, the aftermath of a terrible storm. Trees down, roads blocked because trees were across the roads and power lines and no electrical power anywhere. I have been through and seen worst but that is something a person can’t get used to. It’s an inconvenience, to say the least, but I’ll get to that later.

First let me write about the cruise. We traveled from Imperial Plaza by bus with twenty six other people and checking in/boarding was a breeze. It was better than what I anticipated plus the weather was perfect. In fact, the only day we ran into rain was at the last stop, Coco Cay, Bahamas, and that was an off and on rain. In fact, when I took the picture of the sailboat with the lightning strike behind it, it was a sunny morning. When the off and on rain hit, I was reclining in a beach chair on the beach, letting the warm rain wash over me along with a gentle, warm breeze. What a relaxing day.

The first stop was at Heritage Wharf in Bermuda. We took a tour of the entire island with frequent stops included. That night we cruised the waters in a glass bottom boat, looking at the fish and the old ship wreck that was sticking out of the water which have been there a couple hundred years. This is proof that Bermuda is surrounded by a reef and there are only two ways past the reef. It was quite warm but a nice breeze gave relief from the humidity. Lovely place but it would be expensive to live there. Michael Douglas and a couple other stars have property there but they can afford it. While we were on the tour, we stopped in the capitol, Hamilton, and did a short tour downtown. We also did the same thing at the far end of the island, St. Georges.

The next stop was Nassau, Bahamas and it was a little hotter (I don’t mean that in a bad way. I love the heat.). We toured a cigar making factory, a chocolate factory and the Natural History Museum. Of course I had to get some nice, fresh, hand rolled cigars. Love a good cigar (I know smoking is bad for you but to each his own, I say). From what I could see, Nassau is small and densely populated. My wife and I concluded that the reason people there moved and worked slowly was because of the heat, humidity and the closeness of everything. The more (faster) you moved, the hotter you become.

The last stop was Coco Cay, Bahamas (owned by Royal Caribbean). As we were entering the port I took the picture of the sailboat and never saw a lightning strike. Later that night, when I reviewed my pictures, I was startled to see the lightning in the photo. Now it is one of my favorite photos. It was sunny as we were coming into port but it later turned into on and off showers. The weather was warm with a nice breeze. I lazed under an umbrella and, as the showers came and went, I only got wet from the knees down but was never cold. The cruise line had nice food (hamburgers, hot dogs, BBQ, fruit, and beverages). Then the seagulls started flying all around us and occasionally stole food. They were very aggressive and would get as close as a couple feet (can anyone say aggressively hungry?).

On board the ship was fantastic. I could write a book about the things that went on, the fine service, the wonderful shows and, of course, the duty free shopping. The food was greater than great and there was a different menu each day. The on-board casino kept me and my wife occupied (she won the slot machine contest. I came in thirteen out of the many people that entered) and the drinks flowed freely (not free). I love being retired and on a constant vacation. It was so wonderful that we signed up for a cruise in December 2017, but all good things must come to an end and it did.

Getting back to Imperial Plaza, via Imperial Plaza’s bus, was easy, especially with the traffic (only a couple slow downs). Then the bottom fell out. We knew there was a wind storm but we didn’t expect the power outage or the destruction the wind caused. Trees were down everywhere and electricity was out. Oh well, can’t fight Mother Nature, just cope with it. We returned on Saturday afternoon and Imperial Plaza’s power came back at four thirty Sunday afternoon and then the fun began. Saturday night we stayed in a hotel and returned Sunday afternoon. Then, forgoing unpacking, we began emptying the chest freezer and refrigerator/freezer plus cleaning both. Now we will restock with the insurance payout. The company we are with is making a fast payout for the lost food.

Monday, we walked the area taking pictures of all the devastation and carnage that had occurred. It looked like a war zone with so many trees down, broken trees, trees on cars, trees on houses, and traffic lights not working. There were many vehicle accidents because where the traffic lights were out vehicles had to come to a stop. Some didn’t and, of course, there was an accident (one death that I am aware of). There was even damage to one of the buildings of Imperial Plaza. The wind was a “straight line” wind, not a tornado, as I’ve heard some people saying.

Well, I’ll close this and say “stay tuned because it’s not over yet”. This year’s traveling is not over yet. This weekend we’ll go to Maryland Live (casino) for my wife’s birthday, then the following weekend is to Colorado for my grandson’s wedding. Then to Pa. for a family reunion and I don’t remember the rest. I’m retired and I love this traveling. I’ve worked many years to have and enjoy this time in my life. You all should do the same. I wish all a good summer and safe travels. Enjoy life!

Lightning Strike

Lightning Strike

Coco Cay, Bahamas

Coco Cay, Bahamas

Grandeur of the Seas showtime

Grandeur of the Seas showtime

A resident of Coco Cay

A resident of Coco Cay

A small piece of the wind damage

A small piece of the wind damage