cold…so very cold.

I think it may be mandatory for me to spend at least 2 days in the ocean every year for the rest of my life.

The cruise was everything I hoped it would be and more, and my only regret is that I couldn’t split myself 5 ways so that I could have done everything I wanted and still managed to get in the requisite napping/lying in the sun time that is needed to survive any vacation of this intensity.

The boat itself, was like a floating Bellagio – complete with casino, elaborate shows, a couple dozen bars, and one discotheque. The food? Excellent. The drinks? Varied. The staff? Genuinely invested in making sure we had a good time (i.e. kept drinking).

Each of the ports that we stopped at also had their own distinct feel (it probably helps that they were in 4 different countries), and though you had to peel back the tourist trap veneer a little (I’m looking at you, Cozumel), the richness of the respective cultures did shine through.

I’ve got fairly detailed notes written up about the whole experience, but I’m not in any rush to write them up just yet.  You may see a more forensic trip report up here at some point, but if you’ve got any questions about the the cruise line or the excursions, feel free to ask.

One thing that I am very happy about, is that one of our favourite servers taught us the perfect Italian phrase to  address towards the current weather outside my window.  Minnesota snow? To you, I say: Vaffanculo!

fact:

4am is a time to be going to bed. Not a time to be waking up.

If you’re wondering where I am going to be for the next 8 days or so, here’s a handy list (stolen word-for-word from wendy, because dudes, it’s too fucking early):

  • Saturday: Boarding the ship in Ft Lauderdale
  • Sunday: Key West, Florida from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Monday: A Day at Sea
  • Tuesday: Grand Cayman from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. (where we’ll snorkel with stingrays)
  • Wednesday: Roatan, Honduras from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (this is beach day!)
  • Thursday: Cozumel, Mexico from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. (we’re riding ATVs through the jungle)
  • Friday: Another Day at Sea
  • Saturday: Back to Ft. Lauderdale and the real world

Anyways, mad props to Nerd 2 for taking the fact that he needs to be up at stupid o’clock to drive me to the airport to go on a vacation that he doesn’t get to participate in in stride.  I think I have a feeling that he knows how much I’m going to miss him.

The rest of y’all?  I probably won’t think about, especially once the boat leaves port tonight.  Have a great week, and enjoy the snow for me, ‘k?

maybe the nerds are finally wearing me down

But this picture is kind of hot. In a guns-that-look-cool-but-couldn’t-actually-hurt-anyone sort of way.

Another thing that’s caught my eye of late? The Compact. Basically, a bunch of hippies in San Francisco decided not to buy anything new for a year. They set a few exceptions for themselves (food/drink/meds/undies, etc), started a blog and a Yahoo group, and set out on their course for eventual world domination. They are getting some press of late, which is freaking people out (zOMG UR going to cawz teh receshuns!), but also getting people thinking.

Some friends in a community on another site that I frequent don’t think it would be possible. I say, why shouldn’t it be? After all, used is OK – which leaves half-priced books, cd warehouse and cheapo for any media needs that can’t be met by the library or interwebs, goodwill et. al for clothing and various sundries. eBay and craigslist for the big stuff. Food and booze are allowed, and no one’s asking you to wear hand-me-down panties. I’m not sure I can get behind the earthy, save the planet goals of the original cultgroup, but I can definitely support the idea that, in general, people do no need so much new stuff.

So, I think I’ll try it. Not for a full year of course (mainly because I have the attention span of a ritalin starved 12yo boy), but I think a month is beyond doable. Especially a short month (even if it is 3.571% longer this year than it typically is). So, this February, I pledge to do my best to not buy anything new (except for food, drink, necessary meds, cleaning products, show tickets, and anything else that it would be gross to use a “used” instance of*). I might want to put some more thought into the rules and massage them a tiny bit before the end of January (see lazy, cheating, weaselly footnote below for an example), but that’s the general spirit of it. Who’s with me?

*and also maybe DDR Hottest Party for the Wii, if I happen to run into a copy of it in the flesh.

my two favourite words in the queen’s english?

January Thaw.

My second two? Caribbean Cruise.

To tell you the truth, if the cold weather decides to set in again sometime around Friday, I wouldn’t mind that one bit, since I’ll be spending the vast majority of next week south of the Tropic of Cancer.

Last year, I didn’t really understand why my friends were geeking out so hard at silly gimmicks like live webcams (on both the bow and aft of the ship),  real-time virtual maps, wind speed and temperature data (dudes, it is 25C at 0930…in the morning!).  As I get closer and closer to my triumphant return to the Caribbean, I’m starting to grok the excitement.

So, if I see you IRL, I apologize in advance if I talk about The Cruise during every conversation for the next week. But since I haven’t really traveled anywhere new in a few years now (any trip that involves my family isn’t really traveling, it’s more of a purgatory state), and now I not only get to see a bunch of new places but I also get to go someplace warm, with some of the hoopiest froods I know, it is kind of hard to think of anything else right now.