Monday, August 18, 2014

Somewhere Beyond the Sea... Sea Day #2


Summer Cruise 2014 
Fun in the Sun
Friday, August 8, 2014 


Rise and shine... it's play time! Today was our 2nd full day at sea and we are headed back home to face the reality that is life. But today... We play! 

Morning 
We started our morning with our usual balcony sunrise. Afterwards Chris decided to explore the Chapel on Deck 15 while I showered and got ready to face the day. Despite being unimpressed with the Main Dining Room for breakfast, it was still the best option for this meal. The daily special was particularly good and full of rich protein so it kept us full while we actively completed our day. 

We knew that the Rock Wall would get busy later in the day and we had the proof from the blisters on our hands that after the grips have had time to bake in the sun it really gets difficult to climb all the way to the top. Chris was able to climb all the way to the top of the easy and medium levels before attempting the hard level. The grips were not too hot yet but his upper body strength was tired at this point and he was not able to make it to the very top of the hard level despite being 7-8' away from it. The Sports Deck staff told him to come back after lunch or the following morning and go straight to the hard level. In the mean time I was shopping for itinerary T-shirts and bags one the pool deck.

It was hot, hot, hot!

Immediately following our climbing and shopping excursions we went to shower and then meet the Director of Food and Beverage, Mr. Werner Zurcher and Executive Chef Martin Scott for our private tour of the galley. This was one of the most fascinating experiences of our cruise and so many of our questions were answered. We have a separate blog entry for this experience HERE.

Chris and I with Executive Chef Martin Scott at the end of the galley tour. 

Right after the galley tour we decided to give the Main Dining Room another spin for lunch and we are certainly glad we did. This was the best lunch and perhaps meal in my opinion of the entire cruise. With entrees like Barramundi fillet, tomato risotto and fish enchiladas it was a meal not to be missed, especially since we literally just saw the chefs prepare these meals. 


Afternoon
After lunch we headed to the casino for the Casino Royale Blackjack tournament. This was a tournament with just a $20 buy-in and you got $500 in chips. This sounded awesome but then we found out that you had only 7 hands to play and the 7 highest scores would advance to the finals. I knew a lot about Blackjack but not a lot about this type of tournament strategy so I was out of the running with $450 in chips real quick. There were 6 rounds and Chris held strong at #5 with $950 until the next to last round when he was surpassed. He decided to buy back in and was able to get into the final table of the tournament with a score of  $1700 in chips. During the finals of the tournament Chris held tight to the 3rd/ 4th and sometimes even the 2nd place but in the end the dealer "busted" which helped the table and Chris came in 5th. It was an awesome experience none the less! When else would we be able to bet $300-$500 a hand. Shoot, even if we won the lottery this would never happen in real life!  I was still feeling the burn so I went to the Roulette table and lost $35 real dollars within minutes of sitting down. We did NOT have much luck at the casino this cruise... Not like last year when we came home with $350.

The final Blackjack Tournament table.

Chris (Known as David D to Royal Caribbean) made it to the final table.

Since our pockets we burning we wanted to go and check out the FlowRider to see how the line was. Each side of the Boogie Board lines were 30-40 people deep so we decided to go and finish a game of Mini-Golf that we started on the first day. Chris won 4 holes and I had won 3 (We tied 2) so he officially won the match. He was proud! We also purchased our shirts for the "Walk for Wishes" tomorrow.

Chris the winner!

We're ready for the "Walk for Wishes".

We wanted to be sure that despite the many activities on the ship that we still took time to relax. Chris had to return to work on the following Wednesday (August 13th) and I had return the following Friday (August 15th) so we needed the rest and relaxation. We spent the rest of the afternoon looking at the gorgeous Caribbean waters and atmosphere from our balcony. Chris ordered some afternoon snacks and drinks from room service and we had a great afternoon just resting. 

Evening
This was the 2nd and last formal night of the cruise and was officially our "anniversary" night according to Royal Caribbean. The last part of our "Classic Romance Package" arrived at our room around 5:00 PM which included delicate capers and delicious chocolate covered strawberries and other shortbread delicacies.

These were incredible and very fresh.

The capers from our "Classic Romance Package".

The presentation was so detail for such a small menu item.
It was highly impressive... and yummy!


We then headed towards the Main Dining Room for the most anticipated meal of the cruise... Lobster and Prime Rib! This meal was the best of the cruise and easily the best Lobster I have had in my lifetime. The assistant waiter even came over and did "surgery" as he called it and took the lobster meat out of it's shell. This was very fancy and sophisticated. Chris ordered 3 lobsters and I order 2 and if I weighed what I did last year and had the stomach capacity I would have ordered more. 

I thoroughly enjoy formal nights on cruises because it gives me an opportunity to really get dressed up and it makes me feel good. I also know that Chris would NEVER wear this sort of attire unless it was a wedding or unfortunately a funeral so I try to live it up on these nights. We decided to walk around the upper decks and watch the completion of the sunset. We also walked around the Royal Promenade and got some great pictures.

A sunset view from our balcony.

And a full moon shot from the other side of our balcony.

Sunset on the Pool Deck. 

The pool deck all lit up. 

I never got to go to the Royal Spa this trip but their chairs sure were comfy.

Another shot of the Royal Promenade.

I love getting dressed up and being with my hubby! I love you Chris Davis!

We loved this mini city of the Royal Promenade. 

Our favorite bar on the ship... Vintages Wine Bar.

Chris was quickly over his "black tie optional" attire so we went back to the room and changed into more comfortable clothes for the evening's show. This was a comedy and musical act that turned out to be hilariously funny. We then went to the much anticipated "The Quest" adult game show. While we cruised on Carnival last year this show as just down right vulgar and made us feel awkward. However, we had read and heard from personal experience from people in our Sunday School class that this was humorous and not at all too inappropriate so we decided to check it out. It was hilarious and while we didn't participate it was funny to see people do crazy stuff just for a Royal Caribbean key chain! 

The night ended much later than the previous evenings at 12:20 AM. Unfortunately the bed was so hard and room was so stuffy that I was not able to fall asleep until well after 2:30 AM so I was really tired the following day. Good thing Cafe Promenade had a 24 hour coffee bar! 

God is good...ALL the time! 

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