Not actually surfing though!!! Tried to rotate pic, wouldn't let me!
Friday, October 29, 2010
Had to get out of the big city and relax a little so I headed to Bondi Beach for three days, very beautiful beach. Luckily enough I had great weather to soak up the rays for a couple days. The Bondi Beach house YHA was great, very laid back and relaxed, met some other fellow backpackers and partied at a club called the circus, did halloween at kings cross with some cute girls from Canada. I gave surfing a go with no success, but I am blaming the small board I was given and no wetsuit like the hundreds of surfers around me were wearing and looking at me thinking “silly tourist”. Seriously, that water was very cold, I’m surprised I even got in!!!! It is definitely harder than it looks, but I will try again and I WILL SURF, or just try really hard and fail again!!!!or just take a lesson like everyone is telling me to do!
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Mom left this morning, surprisingly with minimal tears shed cause I think she had so many small bouts of crying over the last week she didn’t have any left, haha!!!
So I hopped on the train and went to Sydney Central YHA for my first hosteling experience, not sure exactly what to expect I opened the door to my room and there are two like 65 year old men in there, so that was a bit of a shocker!!! I met a few nice people there but had enough of the city for now!!! That's me in front of my first hostel.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
On Mom’s last day we went up the Sydney tower, but I couldn’t talk her into doing the skyline walk on the outside of the tower, after we went down we got to go on a Australian Adventure ride where the seats move to the screen and Mom was the only one screaming, go figure right!! Then we decided to go for a walk through the botanical gardens which led to Sydney opera house, so we got a close look at it. On our way back through the gardens we seen the hundreds,maybe thousands of massive bats hanging in the trees, they are like the size of a house cat, seriously!!!!
We ended up getting back to the hotel with very sore feet after trekking around all day, but it was worth it. Then off to the hotel near the airport hotel.
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
We bought day pass tickets for the monorail and cityrail systems, we went out to the end of the city on the cityrail and really saw nothing but the burbs at the end, we went back to the Sydney fish market and got burned $16 for 8 pieces of shrimp!!!!!!!, they were good but not mind blowing. Anyway, we went back to darling harbour where there are a lot of touristy things to do, and would you believe it, I finally met someone with the same name as me, except they were a restaurant. Jordons seafood restaurant. So we had a beer in my restaurant and continued on around the harbour. And there it was, the worlds biggest Imax theatre, playing Hubble 3D. Imax in 3D is amazing and everyone should see it. Afterwards we rode the monorail around the loop and walked through Chinatown back to the hotel.
Monday, October 25, 2010
Woke up early and had the breakfast buffet for $18 each!!!!, which was terrible to boot. Oh well, live and learn. Got on the bus, there were 14 of us and had a great tour guide, John, who was very friendly and informative. We stopped by the olympic stadium and then to a wildlife park where we were able to actually pet koala’s and pet and feed kangaroo’s and get chased by emu's (those big birds just scare me!!!) Then about an hour drive inland to the mountains where we rode 3 great rides at Scenic World, the skyway, the railway, the cableway and went walking through the forest on the walkway!!! The railway is
Sunday, October 24, 2010
We said our goodbye’s to Vincent and Monica and got to our Travelodge hotel, which was incomparable to our last night’s stay. The weather was not so good so we just walked around and checked out the city a bit, and found St Mary's Cathedral , the most amazing church I have ever seen!!! Then we found the world of underground malls which just goes on forever it seems. At the end of the day we ran into two great ladies off the ship, Dorci and Amber,staying at our hotel. We all decided to do the Blue Mountain Tour the next day.
Off to the Shaigra-la hotel where Lindsey and Carissa were staying, they said we could stay with them but that wasn’t our style. We all chilled in there room, had a bottle of champaign and watched the ship sail away back for North America. Off to king’s cross for a bite to eat, we settled for a little mexican joint because every nice restaurant was crazy expensive (as with everything in Sydney as we were going to find out). So off to the club, and the sign reads “Live”and wait for it.................
”Clubbing With Balls”. We had heard a few rumors that Oxford St was the gay part of town and everything we heard was very true. We get to the door and the guy instantly say’s to us ”you don’t belong here” and were like “I know” but we explained that the DJ was expecting us and had a table reserved for us and actually got us a deal on the cover charge. So here we go my first gay bar, and as far as I am concerned, my last. I won’t go to great detail about it, but as the night went on, more clothes came off!!! So we stayed until DJ JT played a few songs, said our goodbye’s and got out of there. Outside we said goodbye to Edmond and Sarah, then went back to have a very comfy sleep (yeah right!!!)back at our hostel, I mean hotel!!!
Saturday, October 23, 2010
We all managed to get off the ship pretty well, but Mom and I still had no place to stay because everything was booked or 600 dollars a night!!!! Vincent and Monica said we could stay with them in there hotel, or hostel!!!! There were actually 8 of us who put there luggage in there room which was a big a most people’s bathroom’s!!! On the 3rd floor with no elevator’s, to funny, what a mission appropriate to continuing our crazy adventure we were calling a vacation. So we managed to get the luggage in the room and off to the zoo the 4 of us went cause we wanted to see koala’s and kangaroo’s the other 4 went to try to find a hostel to stay in. When we got to the kangaroo’s, one of them was passed out against the fence with it’s legs in the air!!! Oh man, we laughed hard. When we got to the koala’s we were lucky cause they were actually jumping around and stuff which you don’t see often cause they sleep like 22 hours a day! Back to the hotel(hostel) to get ready to go out, Mom stayed in the room cause she was tuckered out, and it’s probably a good thing she did!!!
Friday, October 22, 2010
CHEERS TO A GREAT CRUISE!!!!!!!!I actually won another ticket to eat at the steakhouse during the James Bond night at the casino with a raffle ticket during the trip. So we ate here for our last dinner and I ordered the 22oz porterhouse, the biggest steak I ever ate, and I almost ate the whole dang thing!!! We had a great last night saying our goodbye’s and reminiscing of great times had on the trip. Some of us were going to spend the next day together and go out on the town in Sydney to a club that the DJ on the ship was going to DJ at the next night “LIVE” on oxford street. Little did we know??????
Thursday, October 21, 2010
We had our last formal night and I’m sure it was Edmond who had the great idea to go to the main lobby(atrium) where they take the formal pictures in our shoes, socks, underwear and ties!!!!!!! The ladies wore there bikinis!!!! The only ones brave enough were the five of us, Edmond, Sarah, Monica and Vincent. Oh my goodness, we will definitely be remembered on the ship for that stunt, and the professional pictures turned out really well though. We DID get dressed properly afterwards and go to dinner.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
The two of us went on a double decker coach bus tour of the city, got to see the world’s steepest residential street and went on a tour of the Speight’s brewery and had some more fish and chips that make the top 3 list for sure!!! I don’t have pictures from this day either, don’t know why, thought I downloaded all of the from her camera. So I put a picture of the balloons in the theatre before the crew talent show!!
Monday, October 18, 2010
Vincent, Monica, Mom and I went horseback riding in the Mountains of Christchurch, which was the nicest place I have ever been riding. The owner let me take his horse “Big Red” and said I should feel privileged because only like 5 other people have gotten to ride him, and he almost tossed me off a number of times when I would get him to run. I managed to stay on and we all had a great day, with great weather!!!
Sunday, October 17, 2010
The weather wasn’t on our side this day but we just when to the famouswhich was very cool but I didn’t download the pic’s from that day for some reason?
That night we went to Sabetini’s restaurant with the prize from survivor( usually $20 a head) and we had lobster and shrimp and wow were we full when we left. Best meal on the ship by far.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
What can I say but, WOW!!! Five of us (Edmond, Sarah, Lindsey and Woody) just had plans to just bungee jump. Instead we did the “Extreme 3 Adventure” where we jumped off the 192 meter Sky tower at 85 k/m hour, bungie jumped off the Auckland bridge, and went for a ride in a America Cup Sailboat. Afterwards we stopped at a local pub and had some beer and some of the best buffalo wings we had ever tasted, we ended up running to the ship cause we were already running late and the guy playing guitar decided to play “free falling” by Tom Petty so we had to stay and sing and dance to it, right? So tummy’s full of beer and chicken wings we sprinted to the ship, not a good idea but we all made it safe and sound and drunk. Another great and very memorable day.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
After our last day off the ship, we thought we would just take it easy and go to the beach in Fiji with four others(Lindsey,Carissa,Marie and Terry), it took about an hour to get there, we sat on the beach for about a half hour then it rained for the entire rest of the day, oh well. We ordered some food and drank some local fijian beer.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
I had a silver medal, and was the soul survivor, but didn’t get a gold medal yet so luckily enough I got my chance with one last round of pool games. Ping pong bucket toss, another scavenger hunt and it was all tied up and one last pool relay where we had to paddle a life saver back and forth and it was close at the end but our team pulled it out and won the gold, Oh yeah!!!
This night we crossed the international dateline, we were going from 10-09-10 to 10-11-10and we could not say we missed the day 10-10-10, so we dedicated 30 minutes to 10-10-10 and DJ JT played 30 songs, so we did 30 shots in 30 minutes. Beer and wine, not hard liquor, it was a 30 minute day we’ll never forget.
Saturday, October 9, 2010
V’s (Vincent) sketchy tour
This day we got of the ship, ran into some friends and rented a taxi-van, 7 of us.(Vincent, Monica, Edmond, Sarah, Steph, Mom and myself.At the last minute V tells this 75 year old couple to come with us in an effort to reduce the price per person, they didn’t know what they were getting them selfs into I’m sure. We went to a famous arthur’s house which I forget the name of??? we went on a little nature trail hike in the bush behind the house to a little waterfall. Then we drove up the mountain for quite a while to a real waterfall, Papapapaitai Falls, which was just amazing. Then we were off again down the other side of the mountain, near the bottom the van started to smell and the breaks were smoking. So he pulled over at a nature trail that lead to nowhere and all we did was get hot and sticky and saw bush!!! So off again to try and find the mystical “Paradise Cove” that V just had to find so he asked the cabbie to go down this sketchy side road that no one wanted to go down, even the cabbie!! But he talked him into it and he went down, sure enough it goes to to the water and a gorgeous little beach. We walk down the beach and get to this beautiful cove surrounded by rocks, words can’t really describe how great it was, to us it was definitely “Paradise Cove”. So we are walking back to the van and I look behind and a guy with a machete is walking with V along the beach, he comes to the van and tells us he owns Paradise Cove and wants five dollars per person for going there!!! So we say no way cause there are no signs saying private beach and the cabbie and local machete guy start arguing and next thing you know he jumps in the front seat with V in the middle, we never heard him so quite!! The guy takes us to this house and the old man with us gets out to go to the bathroom and was gone for like fifteen minutes, so we were all getting a little worried but he made it back safe and we ended up paying twenty dollars for the beach, so that was alright. Next we drove along the coast where the tsunami hit not long ago and there was still a lot of destruction from it. Our last stop was a little restaurant right on the beach, we had the fish and chips which was local tuna and it was one of the best fish and chips we ever had!!! (but we hadn’t been to New Zealand yet!!) We ran into others off the ship and had a swim and just chilled out for a while. We should have left a little earlier because we were running a little late and our cabbie was driving like a madman on the way back to the ship, and we were all getting worried cause we were very far from the boat and then V starts yelling at the cabbie “David, how much longer, how much longer David ” and we are are like “shut up V and just let him drive”. We made it back with about 5 minutes to spare and we had never seen old people move as fast as those two did to get on that ship. We had so many great laughs that day and I’m laughing right now just writing about it!!!
Thanks for a great adventure V.
Friday, October 8, 2010
Not such good weather here for the most of the morning and afternoon, but it did clear up enough for us two go for a swim at GARBAGE BEACH(see the tire in the background), it was a nice beach, but garbage just kept on washing ashore. They actually had a guy there full time walking back and forth picking it up. You could sit on the beach, but if you went in the ocean, they tried to charge you 5 dollars. There was an crew member off the ship who went in the water, cut his foot, came hobbling out with a gash on his foot and blood all over with this lady trying to make him pay 5 dollars for using the water, HILARIOUS!!! He was alright and we had some good laughs with that one.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Monday, October 4, 2010
Tahitian dancers came aboard and performed for us and then the party group got together for a clubbing night in Partyete. Had a blast at the club, about 80% of the club were crew from the ship because they don’t get to stopover at night very often.
The next day we just walked around town and marveled at the 50 million dollar, largest sailboat in the world, it’s masts were just as tall as our ship, very impressive. So after we got back on the boat I had the survivor finally at the sail away party, and the challenge was who ever could get the knots out of a t-shirt which had been soaked in water and put in the freezer the previous night!!! and put the shirt on first. In front of a crowd of hundreds, I was named the SAPPHIRE PRINCESS SURVIVOR.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Rented a buggy and had a absolute blast bugging around the whole island in the sunshine, the weather turned against us in the afternoon, but that didn’t stop us from keeping on keeping on. Up to the mountain lookout where it was a little chili cause it was so high up the mountain, took a couple pics a down we went!!! Returned the buggy just in time to have a local beer and hop on the ship. We left for papette to arrive that night at 8pm.
Friday, October 1, 2010
All tied up, the Olympics resumed after being postponed 2 days due to bad planning of the cruise director, so it all came down to a pool relay,,,,,,,,,,
which the Killer Whales(which was our team name) LOST!!!!! against (little minnows or something), seeing how there was only two teams there was no bronze so we had to settle for silver. Oh well, better luck next time!!!
Our second formal night some sweet Aussie girls we met gave Mom a makeover and she looked great with straight hair all dolled up, she had guys hitting on her left and right all night.
Had a couple late nights with some friends we had met, and even Mom stayed out for a couple. And most of the friends I had made were all just calling her MOM too, it was great. We also met a nice lady, Angie, who adopted me as her nephew and mom her sister, and she even lives in Ontario.
Crossed the equator for the first time in my life(even got a certificate for it!!!) and had a big celebration on board where people had to kiss fish and get syrup and flour dumped on them( Oh dang I missed that one).
What else, Oh Yeah, the beginning of the Princess Survivor Challenge, started with about 25-30 and after a challenging mental quiz, it was down to 16 of the brightest onboard!!!!! (I was about 13th or 14th to get in, HAHA) maybe it was only 20-25 to begin with!!!! So another team relay race, a water canon shooting into bucket, a different spoon diving event(where I received the spoon of immunity) Oh yeah!!! and it was down to six and it came down to a strength challenge where we had to hold out our arms with buckets of water and see who could hold them up the longest. So then there was two!!!! Bob and myself!!! The two survivors were set to go head to head at the sail away party in a couple days.