Mexico Cruise August/2008 Rob, Deb and Peggy

We traveled on the Carnival Ship "Pride" doing the "7 Day Mexican Riviera Cruise".

This may be fairly short. We mainly ate, drank, went to shows, gambled, visited the towns and slept.

We drove to Long Beach, south of LA and stayed in a hotel the night before the cruise. I was a bit concerned that we might have problems if we waited until the debarkation day to drive down so we went a day early. luckily Deb has a bunch of hotel points from staying in hotels with the CTA so rooms for Peg and us were free.

We got to the boarding area where we and Peg were met by a wheelchair, as she has a bad knee. Things took a while but went smoothly. This is the intro picture when we boarded ship.

We had to wait a bit until our rooms were ready. The last bunch of passengers had just gotten off. At some point we picked up a little electric vehicle for Peg to drive around. This was a Godsend for her. We also had a brief tour of the ship while traveling to the open eating area. We had lunch and a drink while waiting.

Finally we went to our rooms. Peg had an inside room with no window. It was perfectly adequate, nicely decorated and nicely located. It was near one of the party lounges so we figured it would work out great. Our room was on level 7 and had a small balcony. Deb had some roses delivered. Being higher up meant we felt the ships movement more then Peg. I found the gentle rocking to be conducive to good sleep. We did use the balcony and found it to be a nice luxury.

So off we went. We had a lifeboat muster for practice. I don't think we were in the right place but it worked out.

We walked around looking at the ship. The center atrium is beautiful with glass elevators soaring up several stories. The ships decor was influenced by renaissance Florence. The top of the atrium has a full size statue of The David situated in a restaurant named David's. We never ate there because we liked our waiters and our meals were outrageously good on many levels. We did have a martini nearly everyday at the atrium bar. Our Russian bartender, Ivana, soon knew our names.

Here are a few ship scenes. We met this young couple while waiting to go to dinner. They were just married and cute as bugs. She asked what we were drinking, when we told her gin martini's she ordered one and never blinked an eye while drinking it. Martini's are usually an acquired taste.

We had the option of having breakfast and lunch in the dining room rather then the general serve yourself eating area. I liked both, Deb preferred the service in the dining room. I liked the views from the general area. We did both - not on the same day...

We had the late seating dinner. There was some mix up so we ended up in sort a corner but it worked out great. Our waiters were the same each evening. We really liked these guys. The Indian guy, Danny, from Goa was fun.

After dinner we usually went to the live show in the theater. Every night was different and very professional. I don't think we missed a show.

At bed time we usually found a folded towel animal in our room. The beds were turned down, the room tidied up and a chocolate on the pillow. Very nice.

Cheap Rob. Each person was allowed to bring a bottle of wine so I bought three bottles for us. I saved a few bucks, though the wine on the menu was pretty reasonable. I think my wine was better considering the prices. It looked like we could have taken any booze on board even though the literature says you can't.

We sailed for three days before making it to Puerto Vallarta. Peg stayed on board as traveling is a bit difficult. I don't remember how we got to town. I think it was a taxi. Puerto Vallarta has a seaside walkway with many sculptures. Very nice. It was a bit hot. We walked around and mostly looked at some art gallery's. We had lunch at Bubba Gump's. I believe Deb spent some time in the "Diamonds International" store. The store is promoted by the ship and the little gift from them has the initials DI - same as Deb Imerson so that worked out quite nicely. Deb nearly bought a ring. Mexico is still Mexico - a bit run down, a bit scary and very third world.

Here are a few more ship pictures as we sailed on to Mazatlan. Deb with a martini.

At some point the ship took an evasive maneuver, apparently to avoid hitting a whale. When we got back to our room we found the roses on table were now on the floor.

We rode into Mazatlan in a sort of open taxi. It's quite a long trip to town. While Deb was in "Diamonds International" I stood round on the street taking a few pictures. We also looked at some art here. The ship was tied up right on an industrial port area. We took a shuttle over to the tourist exit area. We met some friendly folks from San Jose and had a drink before getting back on board.

On to Cabo San Lucas. We had to take a "tender" to get to shore. Pretty scary jumping into the little tossing boat. On shore we were taken to town by a guy pedaling a cart like thing. Boy was he working hard. Deb found "Diamonds International" and finally bought something. I spent time walking around talking a bit with the locals. Strangely enough we go the same guy to take us back to the ship. Apparently he changed his shirt. Leaving port was quite picturesque.

This was formal night at dinner so we dressed up. People danced and danced with the waiters. Here's a nice picture of Peg and Deb. Later that night they had a midnight buffet. We looked at it but didn't eat anything. Well, I sneaked a cream puff. The line was about a mile long.

The next day I took a tour of the kitchen. Wow! I'd like to see it in action during dinner. They turn out thousands of meals at once. One nice thing was if you were looking at the menu and couldn't decide what to have the waiter would usually bring both items. More then once I had two desserts.
   We really liked the "melting cake". It was a sort of soft chocolate cake with a pudding like crust and ice cream on the side. You put the ice cream into the ramekin it then melts and creates a fabulous combination of flavors. mmmmm!

Deb kept getting our pictures taken. I'm not sure how many she purchased but they were reasonably priced.

The trip was really fun. I gained about four pounds. We lost about $200 between craps and the stupid quarter machine. We got hooked on that damn machine. You put your quarter in and it flys up and lands in a pile of quarters. Little arms are constantly pushing the quarters so if you land just right several quarters can fall. But more likely none will fall. Very frustrating, fascinating and stupid. We and Peg lost a few bucks on the slot machines.

We had a great time and in ten years I could see going back. It's a pretty indulgent thing to do. By summer of 2009 the ship will be replaced with one of the largest cruise ships in the world.

All pictures