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Adventure of the Seas - July 10th 2021 - How many questionable life choices can I fit into a week?


joshgates
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Didn't end up taking too many pictures yesterday, well, didn't end up taking too many pictures that I'd subject you to that is.  

Checkin at the hotel was the complete opposite of the airport, they have it down.  I showed up at 11:50 and by 11:55 I was on the bus headed to the pier.  It still hadn't really hit me that I was getting back on a cruise until I was at the pool bar getting my first drink, but it finally did.  Woohoo!

Overall yesterday was pretty uneventful for me, went and made dinner reservations for the week, grabbed a quick lunch in Chops and started exploring the ship. Ok, I started trying to get a drink in every bar I could find.  Grabbed dinner at Izumi with a friend and then just hit up the Schooner bar for the rest of the night with some people from the FB group.  

I can honestly say that this is one of the strangest but best cruises I've been on so far.  The service is insane, there are no lines, no waits, everyone is extremely friendly and happy, and they're so proactive about it.  It also feels empty, it's a different vibe with only about a third of the people on, the noise and energy of the venues is different.  Not in a bad way, just different.  So far though, loving it.

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I'll have to check what I've got stuff set to with Flickr, but till I figure out how to get a better quality version to show here clicking through to there gives a higher res copy.

Today I have nothing planned.  We're in Freeport, I'll probably spend most of the morning/afternoon reading and just enjoying being unplugged for awhile. 

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What a fantastic morning.  Most of it was spent on the pool deck just reading and people watching, with occasional bouts of wandering around the ship to stretch my legs.  I can not overemphasize how amazing the service is.  The weather's perfect, maybe a little hot but what else can you expect for The Bahamas in July.  With a nice breeze though you don't even really notice it.  Going to grab a quick shower and some coffee before heading to a couple of spa treatments. 

Nice view off the balcony this morning

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Grandeur is docked next to us, I hope they're getting her into shape for the December trips

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Last night was pretty much three things, dinner at Chops, catching the ice show, and running into a bunch of people at the blue moon.  There's a bit of shock to my system, I've ate more meat and rich food in the past two days then I usually would in a month and then flushed it through with copious amounts of gin.  Last night necessitated the switch from gin and tonic to gin and soda, I just can't handle that amount of sugar anymore.

The ice show was fantastic, I took a few photos but mostly just wanted to enjoy the show.  I may try seeing it again later this week, after seeing it once I can safely say it'll be a different experience based on where you're sitting and I'd like to see it from the front instead of the side.  Can't reserve it twice in the app, but I might see if I can get a reservation for tomorrow anyways.  Can't imagine the 10:15pm showing will be overly crowded anyways.

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This is one where color may have been better, the color choices in the lights played a huge role in the show itself.

Today and tomorrow I'm just at the beach club all day (helium balloon tomorrow morning), other than one big rainstorm this morning and a few sprinkles later on it's been really pleasant so far.  Little too hot for me in the direct sun, and I'll start looking like a pickled beet if I stay in it for more than 30 seconds, but a great breeze and plenty of shade is keeping things really comfortable.

I can't overemphasize again just how great the service is across the board.  There's not even anyone that just qualifies as "nice", they're all going above and beyond to make sure that everything is taken care of for you.

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I'm hoping for a bit more direct sun tomorrow, while I'll get fried to a crisp, other than a few brief moments where the direct sun makes an appearance the light is just too scattered and flat for me to be thrilled about it.

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2 hours ago, JLMoran said:

Is that a "Strike that. Reverse it"? I don't recall tonic water having any sugar in it.

Naw, most tonic water has anywhere between 10 and 30 grams per serving, depending on brand.  There’s a few diet tonics out there without any or less, but not many. 
 

 

2 hours ago, Snotarni said:

The Beach Club was fantastic. I echo@joshgates  sentiment on how phenomenal the friendliness and how crazy good the service has been everywhere.  We are looking forward to heading back tomorrow morning.  

it was great meeting you guys too! Hopefully we run into each other again ?

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13 hours ago, twangster said:

I often order a tonic and lime when I don't want alcohol. That's my go to mocktail.

That's my BIL's go-to beverage as well whenever we get together for dinner. I seriously had no idea tonic water (bitter bitter bitter bitter!!!!) had sugar. I thought it was just the rude cousin of regular ol' seltzer water.

Please don't tell me club soda / seltzer also has sugar. That's my go-to (with a slice of lemon), and I've been happy believing it's just water, carbonation, and a bit of salt.

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Club soda/seltzer shouldn't have any sugar, even if flavored. I gave up soda during the pandemic and switch exclusively to soda water. Other than a smidge of sodium, it has nothing in it and is basically the same as water. I love it as I get my bubbles fix and don't have to worry about the bad stuff.

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5 hours ago, FlyingMartini said:

Joshgates - question for you who on the cruise:  Can you tell me what day (Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, etc) that they did your covid test on the ship for returning to the US.  And if there is any flexibility in scheduling the day you want the test?

Thank You

We got our info to register for the test on Monday and then you could schedule your test for almost anytime Wednesday through Friday.  When you register it shows all open slots and how many are left open.  I got mine at 3PM today and had the results in my email less than 45 min later.  Should get the printed copy later this evening.

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So, I'd say I'm sorry for not posting more, but I'm really not.  This is an absolutely enjoyable cruise and part of that is that I'm giving myself time to unplug and stay away from connected devices, something I haven't been able to do in a couple years.  I'm still taking some photos, but more than likely the bulk of the rest of the posts will be done after I get back.  Just having too good of a time with everything else.  Did do the Sushi and Sake thing today, I remember a few people asking about it a few months ago.  All I'll say is... WORTH IT.  Like seriously, worth it.  Although they did start laughing at me after I asked for the third bowel of wasabi.  Sorry, not sorry.

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57 minutes ago, joshgates said:

We got our info to register for the test on Monday and then you could schedule your test for almost anytime Wednesday through Friday.  When you register it shows all open slots and how many are left open.  I got mine at 3PM today and had the results in my email less than 45 min later.  Should get the printed copy later this evening.

Thank you so much Josh, that's really helpful for our return plan!

Enjoy the Bar Hop tomorrow and if you see this, say hello to Tom & Colleen for me - we have done 11 Hops and will be doing another one we we do this cruise starting August 28!

Enjoy!

Ben

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Had some time before dinner, while enjoying an espresso martini, to count drink charges to my folio.  Excluding cafe promenade charges I’ve had 99 drinks so far.  Plus at least two iced coffees a day and countless bottled water.  I’ll consider this drink package a good investment for the week.

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3 hours ago, joshgates said:

Had some time before dinner, while enjoying an espresso martini, to count drink charges to my folio.  Excluding cafe promenade charges I’ve had 99 drinks so far.  Plus at least two iced coffees a day and countless bottled water.  I’ll consider this drink package a good investment for the week.

Do drinks show on your folio while on the DBP?  I’d love to track our drinks!

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13 hours ago, Pooch said:

Do drinks show on your folio while on the DBP?  I’d love to track our drinks!

In the app each drink shows up as a $0.00 charge with the venue name, the exception was cafe promenade when I left a tip, those just showed up as the tip amount.  Bottled water they just give you once they verify you have the package so those don’t show, and I never bothered to pick up the soda cup so not sure if those track at all.

when you get your final folio at the end they take off all the $0 charges, I’ll have to check if I can get a copy with them on  it, otherwise just keep an eye on it in the app ?

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Ok, a few last pictures, overall this was the most relaxing cruise I've done.  With limited activities on board and ports I didn't have a lot planned for I spent a lot of time reading, writing, and drinking so not a ton to report.

Seems like most excursion vendors are just trying to get back up and running so not a lot of options yet, even in Cozumel.  I'm guessing over the next several months that'll start improving as everything picks up again.

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Pretty much set on making this my primary travel camera.  Has it's drawbacks but I like being constrained to black and white only and having to use color filters on the lens to change contrast / etc.  Closest feeling I've had to shooting film and without the hassle of developing and scanning or printing.

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Had some time to reflect on the cruise on a 16 hour travel day yesterday and wanted to put together a quick good / bad list.

On the good side:

  • Service was incredible across the board.  I don't think I met anyone that was just "nice".  No waits for anything, everyone remembered your name and often had your drink ready before you got there.
  • Food was great, friend of mine ended booking too, so out of respect for her tastes did mostly Chops and Giovanni's for dinner but both places were better than I remembered.
  • Ice show was amazing
  • Lack of crowds was a unique experience.  Not sure I'll ever have a chance to be on a ship that empty again.  I was a little worried that being so empty it wouldn't really feel like a cruise, but most of the experience was still there...and in a lot of ways better.
  • DBP was the right choice.  By a good margin.  My new loves are espresso martini's and "She's a Geisha".
  • Sushi and Sake lunch.  I'd seen this as an option sometime last year and have been wanting to try it since then.  So worth it.  I was stuffed when I left but the food and the pairings were fantastic.  Well worth it if you like either.
  • Coco Beach Club - Love it there, beautiful area, great food, fantastic staff.  Wouldn't mind trying a cabana at some point either, those looked fun.
  • No chair hogs! Didn't matter when you went, you could get a seat pretty much anywhere anytime and enjoy.

Not as good

  • UDP - So. Much. Food.  I prefer to eat smaller meals through the day when I'm actively doing anything.  Here they just insisted on bringing so much, even sending back plates half eaten it was a struggle.  Not to mention with only a few restaurants on board I was struggling to find anything that sounded good by the end of the week.  First world problems.  I don't think I'll do the UDP again unless it's on a ship with more choices or if I'm going to be dining by myself so I can just grab a roll or two at Izumi when I want.
  • Not much in the way of activities.  Not really an issue since they're not a main focus for me, but it's nice to have the option.
  • Not being able to sit at the bar in most bars was strange, while I'm glad they allowed it at the blue moon, I'm hopeful it'll come back to the others as well.
  • Internet was a little iffy, I hope they upgrade it on the rest of the ships at some point too.

Overall, I wish I'd gone in June so I could have justified a back to back, it was just a great time and an incredible/unique experience that I'd glad I got to do.  It was the perfect first cruise back for me, now I'll just be looking forward to the Grandeur in December.

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