Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Gram's Online!

Before the cruise we stopped off to see Gram and give her the family Christmas gift. A new computer! All of her kids and grandkids chipped in to get her online since she spends the winters in Florida away from the family. I was surprised how enthused Gram was and impressed with how quickly she picked up the basics. We scheduled her DSL install (Free install and modem was free after rebate, only 25$ a month for 1.5M, a great deal) and left her with the computer and a "computers for seniors" book while we went on our cruise. Oh yeah, we left Angel too, thanks for dogsitting Gram!

When we came back she was already online and using yahoo. We set her up with an account and created all of her contacts with family email addresses we'd been gathering and shot off an intro email. After that she took over and we made sure she replied to several and understood the basics before we headed home. She really did a great job and she is actually learning how to type properly (not just hunting and pecking). We are very proud of her for taking on the Internet.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Carnival Liberty

Our second cruise for the year was outstanding. Carnival called a few days prior to and asked if we wanted an upgrade. I told Rikki if she could bargain with them to get the price down to go for it. She did and they threw in a free bottle of champagne. The room and balcony was amazing, larger than most hotel rooms. The bathroom had a double sink and a whirlpool tub, it was very nice.

The first port visit was San Juan, Puerto Rico. The ship was scheduled to arrive at 1700, but was a few minutes late. The mad rush of people to get off the ship for the very brief port call was crazy and took us 45 minutes. I'm not sure why they even stop so late. San Juan was nice but we'd like to visit during the day time when more places are open.

In St Thomas we took the skyride to paradise point which had an amazing view of the entire island. It reminded me of Diamond Head without the long hike. We spent the majority of the morning there and enjoyed the cool weather and amazing views. We did a little shopping/touristing in the afternoon and headed back to the ship early.

St Marteen/Martin was spent at Orient beach on the French side of the island. The water was colder than expected and not a very good place to do any snorkeling. We rented chairs and an umbrella then just relaxed. Our pale complexions couldn't take much sun though so we overdid it on the sunscreen and kept to the shade. The Taxi ride back was scary but we made it in one piece.

The rest of the cruise went well though the Carribean is a bit rough in the winter (9-12 foot seas) so Rikki did get a little queasy. No more winter cruises for us. We are already looking forward to the family cruise in 2010 and will keep everyone updated, Carnival only books a max of 18 months out.