Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Enchantment of the Seas

She was nine hundred plus feet and had a water displacement too large to comprehend. I'm not sure how many tons she was (the stat sheet isn't in front of me) but I imagine most of it was in the form of various foods and tropical drinks and, perhaps, porters, waiters and servants. Once a week she makes the rounds: depart from Ft. Lauderdale on Monday and arrive to Key West on Tuesday. From there to Cozumel on Wednesday. Open sea day was Thursday. On Friday she sits off Cococay in the Bahamas, (which is under the dominion of Royal Caribbean). Pulling out of Cococay, the Enchantment goes in circles before returning back to Ft. Lauderdale on Saturday.

Royal Caribbean has hired a small army of retired Henny Youngmans to greet guests at the airport, joke with them and get them on the shuttles to the ship. To board the ship, you go through some security, get an ID/Charge Card which is used to pay for everything that isn't free onboard and to exit from or return to the ship. From there, you are free to roam the floating extravaganza at will. Though the Windjammer buffet should not be ignored. As everyone says about cruises, they are floating buffets. I ate my weight in smoked salmon.

After looking over the activities at all the ports, Toe was exited about the dolphin interaction swim where she would be introduced to her new wet friend for an entire afternoon. That was in Cozumel. By the time we got there, we opted for the horseback riding instead.

Key West was mostly spent shopping around and walking around the historic sites. The ship didn't stay long there.

In Cozumel, as mentioned above, Toe and I met our new equine friends for a tour of some Mayan ruins in the jungle. After a hot ride and cold drink, we ran the gauntlet of pushy Mexican merchants. We bought a few souvenirs, we returned to the ship.

Onboard the Enchantment we went to a wine tasting, took some dance and piano lessons, saw some shows, drank various brightly colored beverages, etc. etc. We were paired with two couples (both newlyweds) for supper. By coincidence, both guys were nurses and both ladies were dental hygienists and all four were from the same area of Florida. All of which led to some medically graphic dinner conversations.

At Cococay we pretty much messed around the beach. There was a bit of shopping there and a buffet out on the beach which wasn't particularly appetizing - but it was a lovely island. They were all lovely islands. And the boat was an adult oriented magic kingdom.

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