We sailed on the December 7th Ecstasy cruise, and had a GREAT time!! This was our second Ecstasy cruise...actually did the same cruise...same week...last year. We drove down from Missouri on Friday and spent three nights in Galveston, seeing the sights and eating in a lot of nice places. We toured the ww2 submarine and navy ship at seawolf park, and its very interesting to see what the brave submariners in that war had to endure. That sub was very cramped, and my hat goes off to them. The weather in Galveston was way too cool for this time of year, and we were a little worried it might be cold on the cruise, but soon found otherwise.
Monday , the much anticipated and very long awaited cruise date, finally arrived.We wanted to be at the terminal early ( anxious to get started with all the fun ), and arrived there shortly before 11 am expecting to the the old girl towering above the terminal building...but...well..you know what they say about the best laid plans..the Ecstasy was running late getting in. So, we got checked in and visited with a bunch of nice folks while we waited. After about 3 hours, we were finally dragging our carry-ons on board..and since Carnival gave us all $15 OBC for having to wait, the first drinks of the day were sort of 'On the House'. Soon we were in our cabin..Riveria deck 208..getting ready for our first night in the dinning room. The cabin was as remembered from last cruise...we found it very adequate and plenty large enough for the two of us. The cabin steward did a fine job on this cruise, with plenty of ice and the usual towl animals each night. Going to dinner the first night, we wondered what type of table mates we'd have and hoped they'd be nice. Well...nice would be a huge understatement. We were at a table seating ten, and we couldnt have asked for a better bunch!! We all got along so well, we would all hang out together on the boat a lot of times, and watch the shows and kareoke together. A really nice group of table mates...always a plus! Our waiter was John from Barbados and his assistant was Novie from Indonesea...both did a very fine job and were very friendly. The food was pretty good for the most part..some things ok and some very good. The first night, after I'd ordered my main course, I was considering getting the St louis style ribs also. Carl, one of my table mates from Texas, said he'd get the extra ribs if I would...and I let him twist my arm enough to do it. They were very good!! We left the table very stuffed and that first night set the tone for some very good meals with very nice people. As always, my dessert every night was warm chocalate melting cake with a glass of milk. We ate breakfast each morning at the Lido buffet..I enjoyed the made to order omelets each morning. We had our sea day lunches there too...their food was good, and the desserts very good. The shows each night were about what we'd come to expect..not great, but worth going to see.The cruise director, Steve, was as funny as we remembered, and he still plays a mean fiddle and does a very good juggling act. The comedy shows are always my favorite..and the late night R rated comedy was very funny. We really enjoyed the kareoke each night in the Starlight Lounge..and on the last night,after a few drinks, I let our bunch talk me into getting into the act...yes..that was me attempting Blue Christmas by Elvis..its amazing the affect alcohol has on some people!!
Our first sea day was..in a word...FABOULOUS..the weather was almost perfect..by far the best sea day weather we have ever seen on any of our four cruises. We hung out on the deck overlooking the pool and worked on our tans for a couple of hours. They had the lifeboat drill on the first sea day on account of our leaving so late the day before. It was held indoors, and for a change, we werent required to bring our life jackets..this was nice, and the drill seemed to go faster than the one last year and was much more comfortable. As we are trivia nuts, we tried the trivia contest as often as we could at the Metro Bar. Last year on this cruise, we won three trivia games...yes...three of the coveted Ships on a Stick trophys we won..but this year, we didnt win once. But, it was fun. We also enjoyed the mens hairy chest contest the first sea day by the pool.
Our first port was Progreso, and after we took the double decker bus tour of the town, we did a little shopping and sightseeing before heading to the beach. We ended up at Buddys on the beach, and saw a couple of our table mates getting a massage...and since they highley reccomended it, we both got a massage too. It was fabulous, and only cost $15 each for about 45 min. After that, we had a nice beach day and returned to the boat and actually napped for an hour before dinner.
The next day was Cozumel...where we shopped and shopped and shopped, breaking only to eat a very good lunch at La Mission..very good fajitas. After more shopping, we ended up at Margaritaville...now let me tell you...this is my kind of bar...only wish we'd had more time to spend there, but didnt dare be late getting back to the boat.The weather both days ashore was perfect...a little warm, but since we'd left 14 degree temps back in Missouri there were no complaints from us. WE enjoyed the sail away on deck with all our table mates, and the sunset was really nice. That night, we went dancing to 70s and 80s music...my wife loves to dance, and we had a good time.
Our last sea day weather was not as nice as before, but it was ok enough to hang out. The seas were a little rougher as we headed back, but we'd been on a cruise that was rougher..and it didnt bother us. We enjoyed the newlywed game...or whatever they call it...its always fun to see the way that game pans out. Our last night, we had big plans to stay up late and see the second of the r rated comedy shows, but we were both falling asleep just minutes into the show..I guess we were too wore out after a long, fun cruise. So, we said our goodbyes to our table mates and soon was in our cabin asleep. The beds and bedding we both found very comfortable, and we both had no trouble sleeping every night.
Debarkation the next morning was held up about one hour, but we did the self assist and was off and thru customs by around 10:45. It seemed the debarkation was smoother than last year. I know we pack waay too many clothes...maybe we'll be smarted next time we cruise..yeah..probably not!! All in all, it was a great cruise...well worth the money...and we look forward to the next one!!