I packed for an army and brought an empty suitcase for just souvenirs, which I'm glad I did. Stayed at the Holiday Inn Resort (a mistake) so we could park our car there for free and their shuttle took us to the pier around 12 so as to let the line die a little which I'm very glad we did. Got that suggestion from a fellow cruiser. Very fast check in. Went through the picture taking and headed to the buffet til our room was to be ready around 1:30. Buffets are all pretty much alike. Burgers,chicken fingers and hot dogs. Nothing to write home about so I won't. I didn't buy a soda card so we packed 4-6 pk bottles and brought onboard, a godsend and took these with us to lunch. All they offer for free drinks are terrible tea,unsweetened lemonade and water. We drank ALOT of water on this cruise btw.
Got to our room around 1:30 and it had the couch made out into a bed and a pullman made out (bed that drops from the ceiling)that my 2 8 yr olds slept in and they loved it. Our bed was 2 twins pulled together into a King. HATED our bed. My husband and I were miserable on this bed to the point of taking aspirin every morning. It was like an RV mattress just not as good. The room was wonderful and for the usage of space. We absolutely LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the balcony. Don't take a cruise without one. We watched the tiny flying fish and dolphins from time to time and the water turning different colors depending on what port we're in. Pali was the best steward calling us by name every day to make it more personable. He did charge us for a drink from the stocked frig though we had our own and that aggravated me for the tune of $6.71. His assistant and him kept the room spotless and stocked with towels,beach towels and ice. I never had to ask for anything. The cruise director made a comment that he got up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom and when he got back his bed was made up. It's almost just like that. Kuddo's to the room stewards! Dining was ok, again ,nothing to write about. I bought an anniversary cake the second day and they served it,told us we could have it again since it was barely ate and then the next night when we requested it, somehow it "had an accident". Didn't even offer to replace it. The food wasn't barely salted or had any taste. Bland mostly. Not even the desserts got me going even after I heard about the 'chocolate melting cake'. It was also just 'ok'. I need more taste I guess. I think I actually lost weight on this cruise. Go figure.
Disembarking was a nightmare as Galveston experienced some really bad weather and we didn't dock til around 10;15 when most people are standing in line to get ON the ship. We physically didn't get to get off til 12:20. Now the nightmare really begins as after we went through customs, effortless really, we called Holiday Inn Resort for our shuttle back and this was at 12:45 after we waited a bit. They said that traffic was heavy and it would be there and to look for a Hilton or San Louis Shuttle, ONE HOUR LATER in the sun with 2 small children and several other passengers around us LOOKING for the same shuttle we asked a kind La Quinta man if he'd consider taking us to our hotel as ours never showed up. He called and had just enough room for us and the couple we had talked to for a while. 2 other families had to wait, we don't know for how long or what happened to them. We still didn't get home till after 9pm that night, a 5 hr drive.