Friday, July 20, 2018

wrapping it up

the rest of our vacation went by in a huge blur.  after a nice nap to sleep off my bloody mary afternoon, i got myself up and ready for our dinner reservation at the ship's steakhouse.  i'd originally made this dress to wear on the 4th of july because of the red, white and blue fabric but decided to save it for this evening instead.

i've never actually played shuffleboard.  missed my chance again.  oh well.

dinner was delicious and a steal at $60 for both of us even with appetizers, drinks, their best cuts of meat and dessert.

 the next morning, we woke up back in miami.

it didn't take us much time to pack up and get ourselves out of there, especially since we were carrying our own luggage off the ship.

we'd skipped out on breakfast (like the rest of our days on the cruise, haha) and instead caught an uber that took us here:

we kicked it off with delicious cafe con leche and a couple of cuban pastries, and the rest of the breakfast was pretty ordinary (but still delicious).

our next uber driver got to take us on a multi-stop trip, with the first stop at a small cigar factory.

the next stop was at a cigar distributor that the hub had visited before.

 outside, i couldn't pass up the chance to pose with a giant cigar-smoking chicken.

and our last stop in miami was the airport.

the johnnie walker store was super fancy.  too bad they wouldn't let us buy anything since we weren't headed off to an international destination.

look what we found right next to our gate!  the hub picked up a sandwich that we shared before we got on the plane.

vacation almost over.  much sadness.

 i spent the next four and a half hours watching movies, and then we were landing at LAX.

welcome home indeed.

i always enjoy gazing at these vintage mosaic walls whenever we're in the older terminals at LAX.

of course, there was super heavy traffic on our way home.  we pulled into our driveway about an hour or so after we'd landed, and the house was full and happy again.  it was so nice to see the girls, along with the special friend, MIL and mollydog, and although we'd really enjoyed our time together we'd missed them a lot.

wonder where our next vacation will take us...

Thursday, July 19, 2018

when life gives you lightning, you drink bloody marys

when we woke up on thursday morning, this was our first glimpse of norwegian cruise line's private bahamas island, great stirrup cay.

the hub had booked us a waverunner excursion, which i was extra excited for because i've never actually ridden waverunners before.  so we got ourselves dressed for a beach day, grabbed a couple of towels and other necessities and made our way down to the gangway to board the ferry boat that would take us to the island.

it was a pretty barfworthy ride, thanks to the choppy waves and the super slow pace we were taking across them.  it seemed to take forever.

i was pretty grateful to finally get off that boat.

as we passed the security guard and his canine sidekick, i wondered what they were doing there.  i guess people could be smuggling illegal shit, but i just thought it was a little weird.

it was a little early still to check in for our excursion, so we decided to wander around the island and see what there was to see.  the hub had also reserved us a clamshell to hang out in, so we wanted to see what they looked like and where they were.  it ended up being a really cloudy day and it didn't even look like we needed the damn thing at all.

i managed to get my toes in the water for just a few minutes before the lifeguards started blowing their whistles to evacuate the beach.  we'd spotted lightning off in the distance, so apparently it was getting a little too close and they decided to get everyone out of the water just to be safe.

we walked around this tower, which we later found out was going to be a ziplining base.  when it finally opens, it'll be a really popular activity.

as usual, there were a handful of folks who either didn't hear the call to get out of the water or ignored it.  but have no fear - the lifeguards had jet skis to get out there and pull them to shore.

i'd seen in the newsletter that there was a cabana for massages on the island, and we passed it as we walked around.  it was all out in the open and looked like the least relaxing way to get a massage, but to each her own, yeah?

there were a handful of vendors there too, selling little trinkets and cheesy souvenirs and beach coverups and whatnot.  it had started to rain, so some of them covered up their wares for protection.

and with the beach closed due to the lightning and thunder, this is the closest i got to riding a waverunner.  boo.

what else do you do when there's nothing else to do?  eat, of course.  we hit the buffet, along with the rest of the island.

the buffet was mostly bbq fare, with burgers and hot dogs, chicken and ribs and all the sides.  as we followed the pathway to the covered dining tables, we eyed the hordes of birds who were waiting for the perfect opportunity to snag some lunch.

and they got it, too.  as the hub made his way past them, one of the birds apparently sprouted a pair and flew right over and grabbed an entire piece of chicken right off of his plate and flew off with his prize.  i couldn't stop laughing at the look of abject horror on his face, but these made it a little better for him.

meanwhile, i was grubbing down on my plate of food - and it was actually a lot tastier than i'd expected from mass-produced cruise fare.

first drink of the day - a margarita.

i didn't see any sea turtles, but they were probably hiding (and i didn't blame them one bit).

it was still raining, with glimpses of lightning off in the distance.

so we decided to walk to the other end of the island and check out the cabanas that were for rent.  at $300 per day, we'd passed on the opportunity, and even if we'd wanted to change our minds they were completely sold out.  they looked really nice from what we could see.

while there wasn't any food nearby, there was a nice little bar that was available for us to sit at.  so we did.

bloody marys were my friend that day.

i powered through about four of them, and while i'd ordered a fifth the hub decided it was time to cut me off.  i was one happy camper, especially when we had the all clear to go in the water.  we didn't do any actual swimming or anything, but it was nice to get a little wet and cool off a bit.

four bloody marys, people.  for someone who doesn't even really drink that much.

 i get extra chatty and silly when i'm buzzed.  like, MORE chatty than normal.  my poor husband.

with not much else to do and the seas looking a little less choppy and barfy, we decided to head back to the ship.  bye, great stirrup cay!

when we got back to the cabin, we found this:

so sad.  nothing goes by faster than vacation, dang it.
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