Becoming More Social – Sea Day

I woke up way too early today just before 6am and decided to go back to sleep. When I finally did rise, it was just past 9am. I enjoyed a leisurely breakfast of what is slowly becoming my usual. I layer oatmeal, ship museli (a concoction of soaked oats, milk, yogurt, raisins, almonds and random chopped fruits), cottage cheese, and sliced apples sprinkled with cinnamon. Its really tasty and seems to give me boundless energy which lasts all the way until lunch.

Next I had a superb cardio session then sweated it out during my upper body work. There was a health lecture on detoxification going on in the aerobics room while I was doing my crunches. It was pretty much word for word what I had learned from Shaun on the Royal Caribbean cruise I went on in May. I guess they are all trained by the same company. Something about the verbatim spiel turned me off. Even though some of the content made sense, I watched as the generally overweight audience sucked it up. Desperate to look like the trainer who was selling the “miracle pills”, I bet they would have bought maneure if he said it’d work.

I had no real rapport with the head fitness instructor at all. When I asked him a question to suss him out, his negativity and lack of sincerity really turned me off. Personally, I have to question anyone who discourages exercise and a healthy diet in favor of magical capsules filled with seaweed.

I felt great with an extra spring in my step knowing I had just gifted my body with a genuine effort in the gym. I ran into Doug and Darren (hereby referred to as DnD), in the stairwell who informed me with glum faces that they had lost the poker tournament. I was surprised to hear it as Doug is a professional who is a well known regular in Vegas. I wondered who had whooped him and I heard it was a woman. Go Ladies!

I had just finished my shower and was about ready to head out for lunch when Marshan came back to the room. We set out together for the International dining room on the 6th floor. It’s a bit of a maze to find this elusive area as the only way to get there is by going to 7 first. Lucky for Marshan, I had gotten lost enough for both of us in the first week so by now, I knew the lay of the land.

Although there was only two of us, we were seated at a table for eight. I guess we were so close to the end of lunch that they were not seating any more people after us so we had the entire table to ourselves. That’s one neat thing about cruiseships. You can be as social or private as you please and they will honor your request matching you with tablemates or respecting your solitude by seating you alone.

I love that I am getting to replay the same menus again because this time, I know what is good. I had the steamed veggies, veggie burger and pan-fried sole with mushroom au gratin. It was tasty and although I finished it all, I didn’t feel overstuffed. I even had room for honeydew frozen yogurt and fresh fruit.

Speaking of fruit, that our stateroom seems to be morphing into a produce market of sorts. Last week, I was delighted by the fact the we could order a bowl of apples, oranges, bananas, pears and kiwis. I checked the boxes and being cheeky, I wrote mango and nectarines as well. I didn’t think they would comply with the more exotic ones but lo and behold, the next day, there they were. I guess they were pleased with my reaction because now there are four bowls heaped full of fruit waiting to be eaten. I have begun filling up the fridge now so it doesn’t spoil. Note to self: tell Chris (our room steward) to lay off the fruit for a while.

Now I also want to find out if Chris is his real name. This is the first cruise I have been on that has had so many anglosaxon names matched to staff who were clearly from Asian descent. Perhaps now they are making up aliases that typical English folk can not only pronounce but remember.

I just asked my tea server if his name “Mark” was common in the Philippines where he was supposedly from. He admitted after some gentle prodding that infact, it was a variation of his real name. After asking my name, he went on to tell me “Carmella” was a common name in his country. I have heard that one before in Italy, Isreal, South Africa, Spain…

After lunch, Marshan went off to study for her CPA exam while I moseyed down the promenade deck. I happened upon some fellow passengers singing karaoke in the Explorer lounge. I ordered a coffee and settled in to take a listen. There were a lot of older Asian men with decent impersonations of American accents. They performed renditions of Memory, Unchained Melody, and one Italian gent belted out a spectacular “That’s Amore”.

I was nervous but sucked it up and signed up to sing Over the Rainbow. I had support from one of the older Asian gentlemen but we both slaughtered it. I thought a duet would be easier but I think, in actuality, it made it more difficult. Oh well. It couldn’t have gotten any worse so next time I attempt to sing, they will be impressed with whatever I croak out. And I will be sure to go solo.

Next I played a round of Princess Pyramids which is a modified version of charades. It was loads of fun but we got stuck on a couple of phrases like Pacific Ocean, Girl Friend, and Celine Dion. Honestly, how does one act out the famous Canadian songstress without belting out a tune?

Now I have made myself at home in the coffee bar down near the atrium. Soothing classical music being played by the Magical Strings of the Seven Seas is wafting over while I sip my tea. I am absolutely thrilled to have discovered this ritual which I plan to practice every day. To be honest, I have been a little concerned about my coffee consumption of late. I have begun drinking it black in hopes that I would drink less if it didn’t taste as good.

Today I decided to try some tea and was presented with a selection of charming little boxes to choose from. Revolution T-Box is single service box with one gourmet infuser bag tucked inside. They boast that each is a unique tea gift and it truly is just like opening a little present. With flavors such as Lavender Earl Grey and Sweet Ginger Peach, I resolved to find my favorite by the end of the cruise. I may accomplish my goal by the end of the day as I am already on pot number three. Fortunately my coffee card also works for unlimited specialty tea.

Outside the large window beside me, the 15 foot waves tumble over in a white frothy spray. The ship stablizers are doing a great job as I am sure that with this kind of swell we should be rocking and rolling more than we are. Our captain Dino has adjusted our course due to the typhoon near Japan. We will still hit some rocky seas but hopefully we should be able to avoid the worst of it.

Grateful for tea time.

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