Norwegian Star, 2/11, First Day at Sea

I hit a Royal Flush on a poker machine. $1000. Yep. One thousand. Dollars. U.S. Just had to get that out of the way.

Okay, I finished yesterday by saying we had to turn around in the middle of the night and drop someone in Ensenada for medical attention. Consequently, no Cabo today. Someone needs to drill ship officers on basic P.R. techniques. In a fashion typical of most, in my experience, the Captain made his announcement over the public address system, in the public areas of the ship, but not in the cabins. I am not sure what time it was, but it was pretty early, and I only heard it because I was out on deck typing this up. And I can tell you that the area was desserted. A pretty huge number of passengers were still in their cabins, and did not hear the announcement. Of course, rumours flew around all day until the Cruise Director, in the afternoon, repeated the announcement to the entire ship, including in the cabins. In my experience , it's best to just get the bad news out there, to everyone, fast. Most people are going to understand a medical emergency, and those who don't, won't. Leaving it up to the cruise director to step up, hours later to explain the situation is just weak.

But, hey, I wasn't getting off in Cabo anyway, so...

Had breakfast at Cagneys. Good Eggs Benedict. Then back for the morning routine, and finally to Bingo at 11. Not so good. The only thing I won was in a raffle. I got a lotto entry. In order to claim that, I had to go to the Casino Hostess. But first, lunch at Versailles, the larger of the two main dining rooms. A little note here about wheelchairs and accessible cruising. I have yet to see the designated Access Manager. NCL has a person on each ship who is supposed to be the "go to guy" on accessibility. I expressed an interest in meeting with this person, and was assured at the corporate level that she, among other duties, meets wth all guests with disabilities. So far, nothing. And this repeats a pattern I have seen at NCL, where there is a severe disconnect between the Corporate Office and the Shipboard personnel. I did get a note and a key to operate the elevator to Versailles. Fortunately, I was aware of the keyed elevator to get to the accessible entrance, as it's the same setup as on the Pride of Hawaii/Jade, which I only discovered THEN because the Maitre'd explained it the first time we tried to get in there on our Hawaii cruise. Anyway...back to the story. Lunch was good, we had a table towards the back. looking out the huge windows,at the wake of the ship. Too far north for any whale or dolphin sightings. I had the fish and chips. Better than the fish and chips at the Blue Lagood, if memory serves. After lunch we sat by the pool and listened to Xcite for a while. We actually found a table in the sun, so it was nice, and not quite as chilly as the day before, though I expect it will be even nicer today, as we have gotten a little farther south.

After a bit, we checked the casino to see if the hostess was there to give me my lotto ticket. She was not. So I wheeled Steve up to a poker machine, sat down next to him, put $20 in each machine. Just to kill some time til the hostess came back from her break, right. About five hands in, BADDA BING, BADDA BOOM!!! The Royal Flush. Awesome! Nothing like winning early in the week. Certainly upgrades my dining and shopping plans. So, we played out the $20, cashed in the $1000 and went back to the pool deck for a while, then to the room to rest up for dinner. Back in the room was another plate of chocolate strawberries. No more wine.

Dinner was at La Cucina, the premium Italian eatery. Most excellent. The service was awesome (we were there early, and the waitstaff outnumbered the customers). The bread was to die for. The antipasto was interesting, and the Pasta e Fagioli well done. I also had the Carpaccio to start, and the Saltimbocca was a huge portion, tender and tasty, if just a tad over-saged. Mom and Steve both had the vegetable lasagna, and it was, likewise, huge and filled with all manner of healthy vegetables. Finished with the ricotta cheesecake, and I might have to go back for some more. It was the best!

After dinner we went the the Captain's Cocktail Party, nibbled and drank and met the officers, as well as a few of our fellow guests. It was then time to drop mom and Steve off (they really are party poopers) at the cabin for the night.

Afterwards, I went across the hall to get a book at the Library. The Star really does have a nice library. Decided I had gone long enough without Blue Lagoon hot wings, so I headed down, rectified that situation whilst reading, and then at 10:30 to the Spinnaker for the 70's party. The Village People (actually a bunch of drunk guys from the Pub Crawl, aided and abetted by the Cruise Staff) showed up for the YMCA. That was cool. I hung out, discoing with Maria until 11:30 when they do the lotto drawing at the casino. I didn't win. Hard to feel too bad about it, though. I did hang out and play a little roullete, but that didn't go so well, either, so I decided to call it a night.

One note about this Family Suite on Deck 12. It is directly below the jogging track on 13. Most of the early morning joggers are actually light on their feet, and not at all disturbing. But from the sound of it, some extremely large person has decided to take up jogging in clogs today.

So, that's all for now. Stay tuned tomorrow for further adventures of one more Day at Sea.

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