08 October 2007

Won't you let me take you on a sea cruise?

I'm back from my cruise to Grand Cayman and Ocho Rios, Jamaica and it was great. Once I let myself relax and forget about all our problems at home, I had a blast. It was actually easier to let go than I thought. I was surprised at how quickly I put all my worries behind me and shifted my focus to just what we were doing each day.

I was taken aback by how much I missed the kids. Those of you who have been reading my blog for a long time know that I don't have much of a maternal instinct. I love my kids but I don't miss them a lot when we are separated. In the past when I have taken trips, I was simply happy to be free of my parental responsibilities for a few days. This time, the minute I stepped on the ship I started thinking about how the kids would get a kick out of everything that we saw. Perhaps the kids were on my mind so much because they have finally reached the age where I think of them as people instead of high-maintenance little rugrats :-).

My view of cruises has changed since the first one we took 15 years' ago. To me, a cruise was the kind of vacation that the average person took only once in her lifetime, like going to Paris. Now I realize that the cruise ship is the transportation and the accommodations combined, like a floating hotel. With lines like Carnival bringing prices down within the reach of your average Joe and Jane, it makes sense to cruise more than once.

The woman who organized our cruise had taken the same trip on the same ship 5 years' ago, yet she said this trip was completely different. We were more adventurous than her previous traveling companions and didn't let her sit on the sidelines. Not that we were wild and crazy, but we didn't go to Jamaica looking forward to buying cheap jewelry. In Grand Cayman, we saw the stingrays

and in Ocho Rios we visited Dunn's River Falls.

We stayed up late every night to see the shows on board.

This was more than we did on our first cruise. So cruising doesn't have to be the same experience every time.

Later I'll be doing a more detailed post of what is involved in taking a cruise, including unexpected costs.
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