I woke naturally this morning around 9am, to find Flar out on the balcony reading. I went out and visited with him awhile before getting dressed for the day. While I was out there, a pelican flew within 5 feet of us, on its way out to sea. That was a treat.
Flar and Tigger had time to go for a swim in the morning before we packed up to leave the condo. The service at The Bath Club is apparently worthy of the steep purchase price: there was an attendant who placed towels on their deck chairs when they arrived, and there are cabanas available for cooling off in hotter weather.
After Critter repacked the Audi, we drove to Sobe, with a brief stop at another Walgreen's on the way. I bought 12hour Sudafed, sunglasses to replace mine (I've no idea where they ended up -- I did remember to bring them, but they're nowhere to be found), and ziplock bags for collecting sand. My nailtech asked for sand, and I've found the most adorable ceramic box to use to give it to her: it has a flip-flop on top of it, and she's in charge of insuring that my feet look good in flip-flops. :)
We ate breakfast at the Cheeseburger. Flar and I had Macadamia Nut Pancakes and eggs; Critter had a cheeseburger; Tigger had regular pancakes AND a belgium waffle. Critter and I camped out after breakfast nursing our drinks and reading, while Flar and Tigger headed off to walk in the beach (and collect my first specimen of sand).
We left the restaurant (unfortunately, somehow missing Flar's reading glasses -- they have not made it onto the ship with us) and drove to the port. First we dropped off our checked bags, then Flar dropped us off with the carry-on luggage, while he parked the car. The line for check-in was long, but it moved very quickly. We had about an hour to unpack the carry-on luggage before it was time to muster for the life-boat drill. After that, we went to the Lido Deck to watch as the ship left the dock.
We're in cabin 8243, which is in the furthest forward group of rooms, on the floor with the bridge. We have an inside cabin, with two single beds and two upper berths. We've decided to ask our steward to leave the upper berths down all day, as they provide more space when they're down. They are sufficiently high enough that there is no danger of bumping our heads in the lower bunks. Tigger is in the berth above my bed, along the wall that is perpendicular to our direction of travel. Critter is in the berth above Flar's bed, along the wall parallel with our direction of travel. There is empty space in the corner between the feet of the two berths, filled with the life jacket locker/TV stand on the floor.
We have three closet spaces: Mine has one rod under a shelf, Flar's has two rods with no shelf, and the boys are sharing the third, which has two shelves (one housing the safe) and one rod. The bathroom has a shelf under the counter, as well as a generously deep medicine cabinet with three shelves. There is more than enough space under the beds for all of our luggage, so we are able to keep the floor space clear. There is a counter-top in the bedroom area, across from my bed, with a cabinet and three doors underneath. Tigger has set his laptop up there, and he's been playing video games for the entire time that he's in the room.
When we are in port, the cell signal doesn't reach inside here to our stateroom, so we'll be gathering somewhere on deck for our Christmas calls home. If we don't get sufficient cell strength asea for the $2/min calls, we'll probably shell out for ship-to-shore, it being Christmas. When we're at shore in San Juan and two day later in St. Thomas, I'll be able to call home with no roaming charges, and check email and LJ.
We have the late seating for dinner, which means we'll have the option of eating in the formal dining room every night except Tuesday, when we expect to eat in San Juan. Tomorrow night is the Captain's Cocktail Party followed by our first Formal Dinner. The boys have brought suits to join Flar and me in our finery, and we'll sit for one a formal picture. Tonight we ate dinner in the formal dining room, but I expect that the boys will desert us most of the week for the buffet lines or casual eateries.
I managed to find my way to the dining room easily before dinner, and then snagged deck plans for all of us, to ease in further navigation. We've found the miniature golf course, slide pool, shops, photo gallery, our dining room, and the Caribbean Lounge. I was interested in the Christmas show tonight, but I didn't have the energy after dinner, and came on back to the room. The material I read before the cruise mentioned a Christmas service aboard, but I couldn't find anything about it the Carnival Capers for tomorrow.
We're having a continental breakfast delivered to the room around 9:30 to 10 in the morning, and now I'm going to wrap this up and get some reading in before bedtime.