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Well, actually we’ll fly on down, but you get the idea. Warnings/Disclaimers: This blog is the sole opinions and thoughts of just the old guy who is writing it. It doesn't reflect the thoughts, opinions, clarity, good sense or tact possessed by those sailing with me. And to be clear, I don’t have the sense of humor, literary skills, or good judgement of most of you who post these live blogs. But I'm going to do it anyway. I guess I can be labeled as a “lurker” on this site. I read it daily but have made only a few comments. So today I take the plunge and become one of you by just jumping in the deep end with a live blog! Two weeks from today I will be in the air traveling from Palm Springs, California to Miami to begin our next Star Class adventure. In 2017 we sailed on the Oasis in a crown loft suite and thought we had found the ultimate way to cruise. But no, there was more to discover! In 2018 we booked another crown loft, this time on the Allure. A month or so later while checking for a price reduction I stumbled across something called the.Royal loft Suite! After watching a quick YouTube video of that suite I quickly booked it. YOLO as someone on this blog always says. We sailed in July with Dave Mac as our Genie and there was no turning back. In May of 2019 we cruised in the RLS on the Harmony with the amazing, wonderful Ariceli who I think has spoiled us for life! As I said, there’s no turning back now so two weeks from tomorrow we will be in the RLS on the “new” Oasis and will have Allan as our Genie. If this blog goes as planned you will see and hear much about each of us and what we will be doing during the week. So let me introduce our merry band of sailors: Stacy, my bride and partner. I many times refer to her as Pollyanna, which is defined as “an excessively cheerful or optimistic person.” Defines her to a T. She sees the good in everything and everyone. Poor thing. My Pollyanna uses those traits everyday as she toils as an RN, or BSN to be accurate, in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Desert Hospital in Palm Springs. She is our cruise planner, specializing in the culinary aspects of the Star Class experience. As she takes her break from those 12 hour shifts at the hospital she will be seen around the ship with a permanent smile on her face and a blended Love Connection drink in her hand. I expect she will pop in on this blog and provide you with some of her excessive cheerfulness! Shari who I refer to as Polyanna2. Yeah, no kidding. Another one. Stacy’s identical twin sister. The Oasis is a big ship but I’m not sure there’s room enough for this goodness! She and her family have cruised with us the last three trips but this time she will leave them behind at jobs and school while she gets a well deserved week of relaxation. Shari is the 24/7 caregiver for her mother-in-law who suffers from dementia. That’s a task where that Pollyanna thing coms in pretty handy. I expect the twins to be side by side everyday and although they act and talk alike you can tell them apart by their hands. Shari’s will be holding a Bud Light! Daughter Taylor, almost 21. Young T, as I call her, is a preschool teacher with with a gaggle of I think 3 year olds. Can you imagine? A classroom full of germ carrying, tantrum throwing, runny nosed 3 year olds and Taylor is too young to drink! T is the calm, chill one in the group. She gets that from me. You will find her sleeping late, spending lazy days in the sun and with one of two things in her hand. Her Starbucks or a virgin Pina Colada. I told our Genie that I think T holds the Harmony record for most virgin Pina Coladas consumed in one week! We might also find her in the casino which she discovered last year. Daughter Kaitlyn, 30 something. The party girl of the bunch. She is also a nurse like her mom. But she is in the other Intensive Care Unit – the one for adults. Same hospital as her mom. On December 19th Katie received her Doctorate of Nurse Practioner degree which we will be celebrating on the cruise. So now she has more letters behind her name: Dr. Taylor, RN, BSN, DNP, EIEIO. I asked the Genie for time in the engine room for this one because she can talk and drink like a seasoned sailor! You’ll recognize her by her flaming red hair the the gin and tonic in her hand. Or a Margarita. Or a vodka and soda. Or…well you get the idea. Rounding our our group is yours truly, Jim. The quiet one of the group. I will usually be found on that massive balcony at our suite, on the quiet suite sun deck or in the suite lounge. With a Jack Daniels and sprite in one hand and a camera in the other. My plan is to try and share as much here in words and photos as I can. I have enjoyed and learned so much from reading others blogs here so I hope to return that favor. I’m sure much of the blog will deal with Star Class aspects as I try to justify why we spend a bazillion dollars every year to do this! I will be doing Genie recon for those sailing after us and will certainly try to answer questions anyone has once we board. We plan on eating everywhere except the Chef’s Table this year. We’ll even work in the MDR for a breakfast or lunch and a couple of trips to the Jammer. I think we will do all of the shows. Even Cats. Yep, I’m gonna do it. I’ll spend the afternoon in the suite lounge slamming the Jack and sprites and then go experience the feline extravaganza! We have no plans for Cozumel or Falmouth. Just maybe a little shopping and back on the ship. We are looking forward to Labadee which we all love. A relaxing day on the suite beach. In the lead up to our sail day I plan to share more about our travel plans, our night in Miami, our previous experiences with RC and how we survive the Miami airport as we disembark on Super Bowl Sunday. I might have to involve Jack in breakfast plans that morning! I know its somewhat early to post but I’m hoping we can all share and get to know each other by our sail date. It’s not too early by Matt or Sabrina’s standards but it is early! So come along for the ride with this crazy bunch as we embark on our 3rd Star Class adventure. It’s a long way from my first sailing on the Song of Norway.
Because we have already had 33.5 inches of snow here in the Mitten State and I am not a big fan of that nonsense, I spend a lot of time thinking about upcoming cruises. I love reading about people's experiences and living vicariously through them to pass the time. I'm sure a lot of us have countdown to cruise apps on our phones and I've read in numerous posts "Only 623 or 17 more sleeps until we board!" I am currently sitting in my 6 x 8 jail cell (oops, I mean cubicle) at work looking out the window at a dull monochromatic landscape and since I am a numbers person, I have been thinking of other milestones to use for our countdown to cruise. Only 3 more hair appointments! Does anyone else have a fun way for countdown or do you stick to days and/or sleeps?