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kimberussell

Navigator of the Seas 10/21-10/25 Basic Tourist Style!

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Hi! I'm Kim! You may know me from my Enchantment of the Seas trip report 2 years ago. We're baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!

Me: 47, cruised with Royal Caribbean 2 years ago for the first time and Disney 15 years ago. I love warm weather and palm trees. 
Mom: old enough to be my mother, cruised with Royal Caribbean 2 years ago for the first time. She also loves warm weather and palm trees.

We both love to eat. She's gluten-free, I'm gluten-full. We get along very well. 

We are Basic. We have no Star, Pinnacle, or Diamond statuses going for us. We are our own Genies. We have matching t-shirts that say "Resting Beach Face." We accept every photo op. We lose money on bingo and gambling. All of those things that experienced cruisers laugh at and wonder who they're aimed for? Us! They're aimed for us!

Our story: we took our first cruise 2 years ago because Mom had a medically crummy summer and I wanted her to look forward to something once she put in the necessary PT work. We had THE BEST TIME and at least once a week every week since she mentioned taking another cruise.

Mom: Let's take another cruise!
Me: We could do that. Or we could go back to Virginia Beach! Or find a nice place in Florida...
Mom: But then we'll have to go out and FIND food instead of just walking to a restaurant and having all the food we want. Don't you remember just grabbing the bag of chips from that stand? And there's no Solarium. And just the hotel is more money than the entire cruise and that's WITHOUT food and...

I created a monster who wants to be able to grab a bag of Sun Chips and walk away.

She wanted to take the same exact cruise again, because this time since she's back to 100% and won't have to use a cane. She's even going to the gym now. I know, right? I also know who'll be lugging our suitcases.

But our beloved Enchantment of the Seas moved to Galveston and the Navigator's 5-day doesn't include Key West. 

Mom: I don't want a smaller boat than Enchantment, though!
Me, looking at Navigator photos: I...don't think that will be a problem.

And here we are, booked on Navigator and headed to Nassau (day 2), CocoCay (day 3) and a day at sea (day 4).

What we are keeping the same:

  • Same ocean-view room. We were barely in it last time and I think that we'd really waste money on a larger room.
  • Same VOOM 2-device surf and stream package. 
  • Still not booking an excursion in Nassau; we're using a map I found online to create our own walking tour with a goal to be back on the ship for lunchtime. I might purchase a bottle of rum to bring home. 
  • Still not booking fancy dining - we were completely happy with MDR and Windjammer last time and I'm excited to add free tacos to our lineup. Can't forget the free chips.
  • Still not buying beverage packages - even when it goes to buy one, get one 50% off, neither of us can sustain the pace to make it break even. And we don't mind regular coffee.

What we are doing differently:

I kind of fibbed about the lack of STATUS. Because we are Crown & Anchor GOLD LEVEL, baybeeeeeee! ha-HA!  We'll be strolling down deck 3 with our four points like this:

bruno mars GIF

(Which is why we'll never be let into fancy lounges.)

  • I bought lanyards from an Etsy shop to replace the "Bristol Meyers Squib" medical conference ones we had before. They befit our GOLD status.
  • My husband is my favorite person but NOT a tropical-loving guy so he is staying behind with my beloved dogs and retinol. He will be driving us to the airport. We are flying directly into Miami the night before to spare me the agita I had last time when we almost missed the plane in Philadelphia. I'll disclose the hotel once we've checked out because I'm paranoid.
  • We are not buying Evian water to be delivered to the cabin - 12 1-liter bottles = WAY too much water. Instead, I'm going to pick up a 6-pack of bottles in Miami to carry on and satisfy Mom's bottled water demands. I'm sure the complimentary C&A Gold status sherpa will help us. (disclaimer: there is no sherpa) I was raised on NJ tap water, so my body has evolved its own high-end filtering system.
  • I pre-rented a floating mat at CocoCay.
  • But with the construction on CocoCay's South Beach we don't have the opportunity to rent a lounger for the day. For just 2 of us, dropping hundreds of dollars on a daybed or cabana isn't cost-effective.  I'm very concerned about snagging seats with an umbrella. Even though the map shows little umbrellas all over, I don't want us to scorch. 

I have feelings about CocoCay. It's just ... we had the perfect day there 2 years ago before it became capital-letter Perfect Day. We're not doing the waterpark and my brother would kill me in my sleep if I hooked Mom up to a zipline. I just hope Royal Caribbean remembered that some people's perfect day entails just lying on the beach under an umbrella, drinking and eating. Other than weather, norovirus, airplane crashes, the softening of my jawline, and the ship catching on fire at sea, this is what I'm worried about. I am often wrong, so I'm hoping my wrongness streak continues.

Goals:

  • Flush myself down the Riptide slide. It looks to be 25 seconds long. I can do that. As long as I keep my mouth shut (tall order) I won't drown.
  • Try a Lava Flow. 
  • Have a FANTASTIC time.

All that's left is the packing, folks.

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2 hours ago, kimberussell said:

I kind of fibbed about the lack of STATUS. Because we are Crown & Anchor GOLD LEVEL, baybeeeeeee! ha-HA!  We'll be strolling down deck 3 with our four points like this:

bruno mars GIF

(Which is why we'll never be let into fancy lounges.)

Hahah this is me, too! NOTHIN SHIMMERS LIKE GOLD!! 

14 big points and countin' 

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Oh my...I thought I time traveled and read my own live blog!! 🤣

On Nov 4, I'll be on Navigator, with my mom, for a 4 nights cruise. It'll be our very first cruise. 
For package, we purchase nothing but internet for 2 devices. 
We both don't drink at all, but we LOVE to eat. It REALLY doesn't matter what to eat. We have pretty cheap taste anyway.
Gourmet dining environment sometimes actually makes us uncomfortable. Our preferred style is "just give me the god damn food and leave us alone".
My mom is suffered from chronic knee and back pain, so for Nassau we're just gonna walk around the port, take some photos and maybe buy some rum cakes for our friends back home.
For CocoCay, I thought about getting myself a Waterpark Pass for the slides. But since it's our first cruise and my mom is not fluent in English, I wanna stay with her as much as possible. Again, we just wanna chill and EAT. That's all. I can already see my mom "stationed" at Skipper's Grill, snacking non-stop while watching her favorite videos and chatting with friends online.

I have a question. How do you pre-rented a floating mat at CocoCay? I'm too thinking about renting one, but don't see it anywhere in cruise planner.

It'll be great if you can also upload the Cruise Compass with your live blog. Only if you have the time.

I seriously can't wait for your live blog! 

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11 hours ago, ChrisK2793 said:


We’re getting on Navigator on 10/25 after you get off ..... so don’t destroy it lol.

 

I'll tell Mom to leave the spraypaint home!

12 hours ago, zillono said:

I have a question. How do you pre-rented a floating mat at CocoCay? I'm too thinking about renting one, but don't see it anywhere in cruise planner

I had to look for it! I logged into Cruise Planner, then clicked on Perfect Day in the top nav. There's a section called Other activities that for me had parasailing, jet ski, etc. Under that there was a heading that said + VIEW ALL ACTIVITIES and when I clicked on that, it revealed more options (swimming pigs?!) and at the VERY bottom of that was the beach mat. Hope this helps!

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8 hours ago, kimberussell said:

I'll tell Mom to leave the spraypaint home!

I had to look for it! I logged into Cruise Planner, then clicked on Perfect Day in the top nav. There's a section called Other activities that for me had parasailing, jet ski, etc. Under that there was a heading that said + VIEW ALL ACTIVITIES and when I clicked on that, it revealed more options (swimming pigs?!) and at the VERY bottom of that was the beach mat. Hope this helps!

Ah ha! Found it.
Thank you so much 🙂

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I will be on the same trip! Worried about the weather though. Doesn't look good from what I've seen in the forecasts.  I wonder what a cruise would be like if it rained the entire time. Anyone had this experience? Will the water attractions still be open?

 Haven't cruised in 20 years so I am excited and will make the best of it regardless. Celebrating 34 years of marriage on this trip!

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I'm trying to keep upbeat about the weather. Monday I see about a 10% chance of rain in Miami, Nassau looks to be between 5-7% on Tuesday,  Wednesday in Nassau is 20%, but we'll be at CocoCay.  I know it's a crapshoot, but I"m thinking Nestor's going north of where we'll be. Keep the faith!

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Holy cats were you all correct about arriving early. We left the hotel at 10:45 and with expedited boarding we were on  the ship about 11:15.(Our set sail passes told us to report at 12:30, btw) 

She’s gorgeous.  Detailed write up later but  here’s Mom and me holding court in the Gold Lounge (there is no Gold Lounge) on deck 12. 

6BBADA03-7B1C-4DCF-A240-D807732AAAC6.jpeg

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Greetings from Nassau! Last night we sat in the solarium until dinner, then met the other 2 lovely couples at our 6-top in MDR. After that we saw the Ice show (great!), hit the casino, (not so great), and collapsed at 10. 

This morning we ventured out for a Kim-planned walking tour. We visited the Watling Distillery, Greycliff, Christ Church Cathedral, and the Straw Market. This afternoon brings and appointment at To Dry For for mom, and a trip to the spa for me. The special is a full body massage, skin brushing, facial, and scalp massage for $149. Maybe it’s the rum talking, but that seems much more reasonable that what I saw in the planner a few weeks ago.  
 

Full write up at a later date ...VOOM is not great in our cabin this time. Must be the GOLD plating 😉

This is me completely blending and not looking like a tourist. Classy broad. 

5410BF91-9818-46EB-B6CB-7852D18BB598.jpeg

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