Some background information: My wife and I are veteran cruisers with almost all of them RCI and the majority aboard Voyager class vessels. This was our second time aboard Freedom having done the Western Caribbean last February. No hotel or transport information as my brother lives 15 minutes from Port Canaveral and provides all transport. Check-in was almost painless although we waited for customs about 45 extra minutes the morning of. Nice Windjammer buffet and then our crew of four all headed for our favorite hot tubs which are the pair hanging over the edge of the ship on either side. After this we just walked around until sailing time. As the ship was leaving Port Canveral I was in the back taking pictures when I noticed the FlowRider was already operational but only two kids were in line. I immediately grabbed a pool towel and proceeded to get a couple of awesome boogie board rides. The party had begun!
We proceeded to the 7 PM kickoff introductory show and met the cruise director and staff. Our group had signed up for Any Time dining for the first time ever and we had an 8:00 PM reservation. These were done on deck five (Gallileo's) and we found later we had the same table and waiter staff every night. Other people were occasionally there but most of the diners were regular late diners like us. IMHO Any Time dining is much superior to waiting in a crowd for doors to open at a specific time. The pumpkin seed rolls were new to us but incredibly tasty. Prime Rib the first night and lobster the last formal night were to die for. Again just my opinion but people who complain about RCI food either have different tastebuds of completely different standards. They bend over backwards to serve.
Dinner was awesome each and every night and even if we felt full the desert menus were incredible. They learned our habits quickly and brought lemons for the water and coffee at request.
All the shows were entertaining although one group called "Poperazzi" was a combination of opera and pop. Some people walked out of that show (rude!) but they worked hard and all three had great voices. On Friday evening by popular request they rebroadcast the 3D movie Gravity in the Arcadia Theater (capacity 1300) and with surround sound it was extra impressive! Movie got done right about midnight and audience was stunned by the visual effects. Hard to explain if you have not seen it.
Only tragedy I heard about was the female trapeze artist fell onto the stage during the farewell show and had to be transported to Port Canaveral hospital the next day. The announced that she was doing "better" the next morning and I pray she will be okay. Did about 90 minutes of fitness every morning and then breakfast. Gym was never overcrowded. Did one Vita-stretch class for free. Overall I've missed probably a lot of stuff but pretty much went 18-19 hours per day and had the best time ever on board RCI.