December 29, 2008
Cruising with the Rents is proving to be quite the experience. Day 12 of being in closed quarters with family.. and I must say, overall, we are really doing wonderful. But of course, as usual, today I learned lots of things about my family . 1) We are especially non-functional in the morning. Group activities before 10 am should be scheduled with precaution. 2) Don’t pick meeting times or places the night before. 3) The universal language is spoken with smiles, music, and food –Mom. (I’ve heard her say it before but it bears repeating). 4) Life is the greatest teacher. Last night I was thinking I don’t want to do a cruise gig ever again, and today I was really moved and decided I have to keep traveling (however, I don’t know if it will be via cruise ship.) We started our day off with an excursion, which was a cruise to see the Acapulco cliff divers. They are one of the cities claims to fame, along with being the home of many American celebrities. We took a triple decker boat to the home of the divers. We saw about 5 jumpers, each at different levels. The last jumped off the highest point and did 2 flips. Three of the divers swam to the boat at the end and came on board for pictures and a ride back to the main town. The youngest in the particular group was 15, however they said the youngest diver ever was 11. They all belong to and are paid by a union of divers. At the end of the trip we were served chips, pico de gallo, guac, and other Mexican snacks, at 9 am (!). We took the boat back to a shopping area, and ended up going to the flea market. There was a lot of hassling and the same odd items repeatedly lined along the streets. It was overwhelmingly intimidating. I didn’t enjoy it. We returned back to the ship. Shortly after coming back, Michelle was going out to the beach, so I decided to give Mexico another go in her Spanish speaking company. We didn’t need to walk too far to find a breezy, open restaurant serving cold beers and pico de gallo. We sat on the backside of the restaurant which was right in the sandy beach. While chatting and catching up, merchants would walk up to us every other second. Finally, one was much different from the others – a very small and skinny 6 year old boy. He was selling magnets. Michelle asked him to sit down, and talked to him in Spanish. We got him apple juice and he ate the rest of our chips, which he smothered in mounds of salt. He was so afraid to eat or drink because he didn’t believe that we would pay for it. He was missing some education, and was obviously very poor, but had a bright smile and a fun heart. He said his mother was coming over (I was scared she would be upset he was hanging out with us) who selling hanging glass mobiles, and ended up being very friendly and lovely. She had a baby hanging from tied blankets around her waste. She had one other son at home. She was genuinely interested in us, and the two of them looked at Michelle’s pictures from her camera in awe. The woman looked young and was very warm… I will never forget her smile. Weather she was or not, she seemed content with herself and her life. She was open and so friendly to us. I can’t explain the ways I was moved by this interaction, but it showed me that joy and is everywhere, and life can teach you anytime, anywhere, if you are willing to learn.
at 10:58 AM
Cruising with the Rents is proving to be quite the experience. Day 12 of being in closed quarters with family.. and I must say, overall, we are really doing wonderful. But of course, as usual, today I learned lots of things about my family . 1) We are especially non-functional in the morning. Group activities before 10 am should be scheduled with precaution. 2) Don’t pick meeting times or places the night before... 4) The universal language is spoken with smiles, music, and food –Mom. (I’ve heard it before but it is important to repeat). 5) Life is the greatest teacher. Last night I was thinking I don’t want to do a cruise gig ever again, and today I was really moved and decided I have to keep traveling (however, I don’t know if it will be via cruise ship.) We started our day off with an excursion, which was a cruise to see the Acapulco cliff divers. They are one of the cities claims to fame, along with being the home of many American celebrities. We took a triple decker boat to the home of the divers. We saw about 5 jumpers, each at different levels. The last jumped off the highest point and did 2 flips. Three of the divers swam to the boat at the end and came on board for pictures and a ride back to the main town. The youngest in the particular group was 15, however they said the youngest diver ever was 11. They all belong to and are paid by a union of divers. At the end of the trip we were served chips, pico de gallo, guac, and other Mexican snacks, at 9 am (!). We took the boat back to a shopping area, and ended up going to the flea market. There was a lot of hassling and the same odd items repeatedly lined along the streets. It was overwhelmingly intimidating. I didn’t enjoy it. We returned back to the ship. Shortly after coming back, Michelle was going out to the beach, so I decided to give Mexico another go in Spanish speaking company. We didn’t need to walk too far to find a breezy, open restaurant serving cold beers and pico de gallo. We sat on the backside of the restaurant which was right in the sandy beach. While chatting and catching up, merchants would walk up to us every other second. Finally, one was much different from the others – a very small and skinny 6 year old boy. He was selling magnets. Michelle asked him to sit down, and talked to him in Spanish. We got him apple juice and he ate the rest of our chips, which he smothered in mounds of salt. He was so afraid to eat or drink because he didn’t believe that we would pay for it. He was missing some education, and was obviously very poor, but had a bright smile and a fun heart. He said his mother was coming over (I was scared she would be upset he was hanging out with us) who selling hanging glass mobiles, and ended up being very friendly and lovely. She had a baby hanging from tied blankets around her waste. She had one other son at home. She was genuinely interested in us, and the two of them looked at Michelle’s pictures from her camera in awe. The woman looked young and was very warm… I will never forget her smile. Weather she was or not, she seemed content with herself and her life. She was open and so friendly to us. I can’t explain the ways I was moved by this interaction, but it showed me that joy and is everywhere, and life can teach you anytime, anywhere, if you are willing to learn.
at 8:59 AM
December 24, 2008
Happy Holidays. I am so grateful to have my grandma, mom, dad, and brother Theo on board the Azamara Journey with me. We are having so much fun! Tonight we are all having dinner at the fancy restaurant with Takis, then it's time for our Christmas show! I'm looking forward to spending Christmas day in Costa Rica with my family... then putting on the production of Twisted TV! Cheers to my wonderful family here and all over the place, new friends, and of course, all of my lovely friends back home.
at 2:30 PM
Hi, Kathy (Molly’s mom) here. Molly pulled some strings, (actually a lot of ropes) and we are here with her on the cruise. We have been enjoying ourselves immensely. We have been at sea every day except one. The food is so tasty and healthy. Miso soup, fruit and sushi are always available, as are freshly made sorbets and every kind of seafood. There is a deck with chairs, wind and abundant sunshine. Today we saw a pod of tiny dolphins of the side of the front deck. There are also small seagull shaped birds with brown tops and white undersides that skim the water alongside the ship as we move through the water. People are friendly and Theo has even met a few teens. It is refreshing to hear many languages and interact with people from all parts of the world, both crew and guests. A few days ago, we went to Aruba and rented a taxi that took us to a beach. The waves were imposter waves, but the water was salty, clear and warm. We walked about Oranjstad, a small funky town, as well. Yesterday, we cruised through the Panama Canal. We went though a series of locks into an elevated lake and then through another set of locks to cut through Panama. The canal is a true engineering marvel. Someone must have had incredible vision and imagination to conceive of and plan the canal. There is dense vegetation lining the canal and people claim that alligators live in the water. We entered the canal around 7 am and left about 3:30 pm. Today Santa was onboard our cruise. Molly and the other performers escorted him about. He gave presents to the kids. Of the three babies on board, two cried and refused to go anywhere near him. I think they were upset because he was dressed in a heavy white and red furry outfit and it is about ninety degrees out. Molly’s grandmother and the rabbi posed for a picture with Mr. S as well. There will be caroling later, and then Molly and the other performers will do a Christmas show. Tomorrow, we will arrive in Costa Rica. I hope you are having a good time wherever you may be!
at 2:26 PM
December 14, 2008
I'm getting better at relaxing. We have our first Christmas show tonight. The entire entertainment department is in it. I'll be singing "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas." I'm still a sucker for slow songs...I'm supposed to grow out of that someday. We sing "Hero" at the end and there's a power point presentation of pictures of soldiers and war. It's causing a quite stir among everyone in the show... I feel a little weird because we just elected an anti war president, and it feels like we're dragging it out. On the other hand, weather we like it or not, millions of people are torn from their families and will be in very undesirable circumstances and living conditions come the holidays, for one reason or another, and it's important to acknowledge them. I wonder how it will go over. I've taken a little break from playing guitar and writing the last couple days, and life has consisted of eating yoghurt, working out, laying out, and having a martini. Cheers.
at 11:30 AM
December 12, 2008
A voice with nothing better to do keeps saying “lost at sea” inside my head… here I am on a 7 day transatlantic crossing, scheduled to arrive in Miami on December 18th, umm, apparently going a little crazy. It’s the second full day at sea, and I’m already quite sick of it (luckily not as literally as I’ve been before). We’ve been banned from eating at the usual buffet café area, and are encouraged not to be around guest areas… even the gym is quite full during the day – so you can imagine how restless I am already becoming. Gary told me I need to learn to do nothing. Luckily, I have a show today, a Christmas show the 14th, and our last show the 16th, so I will feel a little more useful. Additionally, I’ve now played 3 sets in the lounge areas of the ships since last cruise, and I’m having a great time – but maybe getting myself a little too worked up about it. Yesterday John, the ‘real’ singer/guitarist on board, gave me a popular song book of 1200 songs, which I dove into, and then tried to force a song out of my system… and everything just SUCKED. I want to learn so many covers and write a lot of new material, and of course whenever I really want a song to come to me, I get intense writer’s block. I’m just creating it for myself though, I know because I am very frustrated and feel trapped… which essentially I am. I’m always finding myself wanting what I don’t have at the time – when I have no obligations or nothing to do, I’m creating stress and extra work for myself, and when I’m ultra busy and stressed I want nothing but a free day to lounge around. Maybe I’m really just finding myself at sea… and getting a little too cheesy. To be continued…
at 11:29 AM
November 29, 2008
A happy Thanksgiving from the (rocky) Mediterranean seas! I am very thankful for so much in my life; above all my mom and dad for supporting and encouraging me to follow a challenging and adventurous career. I’m also thankful that I currently have a job, the best cast mates I could ever ask for, and health. I spent the holiday with the cast, at the semi-american thanksgiving dinner on board… there were sweet potatoes and apple pie, and that’s all I need. Every cruise is always different from the last, weather it’s because of the ports, the new passengers (they become good friends by the end), events, etc. This cruise has been different in other ways, in that I performed in the Welcome Aboard show, singing and playing guitar. It was a different element to the show then they’d had before, so I was a bit nervous and anxious, but I felt happy with my 4 song performance. Afterwards, the entertainment team asked if I wanted to play in the lounge area of the ship a few nights a cruise, and I agreed. Since then, I have played a 2 hour set in the "Cova Cafe." I was aloud to play whatever I want (within reason) because technically it's not my contracted job, so I played mostly original music, with a bunch of covers mixed in. In the long run, I want to be able to support myself as my own artist, so I'm glad I can further develop myself in a low key setting as just a solo act for now. I had requests to come back again during the cruise, which I am scheduled to do, and next time in the Martini Bar. Even though it’s much more low key, I feel like this is more of a challenge then the production shows, because I am stripped down to just guitar and my voice, to keep a room entertained. So if you wonder what I’ve been doing, it’s practicing… and visiting… ROME! I finally got the chance to go to Rome one last time on this contract. I went with my friend Takis, who has been on ships for years but has never gotten the chance to go into Rome. He requested special permission to have the day off so we were able to leave in the wee hours of the morning and have an entire day. Arriving early, the city was quite cool, and the crowds significantly smaller being the off season. We were able to walk right into the Vatican (last time there was a 1 ½ hour wait)! The architecture, art, and size of the building are breathtaking. The ceiling itself is really a miracle, with the gold detail and paintings. There are enormous statues of popes and angels, marble floors, stained glass, candles, and so much the eye can’t physically take it all in at once. We also went into the tomb of the popes below the Vatican, which had caskets and information on all the popes. The detail and time that was put into creating this place is overwhelming. I can’t imagine something that is anywhere near that caliber being built today – people were so creative and motivated, and must have been geniuses of a sort to be able to physically put a structure like the Vatican together. We continued our journey across town, of course reveling in all of the countless monuments and buildings along the way. Rome has just too much to see and do, you can get distracted easily. Eventually we made it to the coliseum. From the outside, it’s how I saw it in middle school history class, but the inside asks you to use some imagination to be able to see how it used to look as a stadium. Most of it is gone and ruined, but is still quite large and allows one to walk around different levels. I can’t imagine however, watching the fights and craziness that went on in there. I think I prefer to just see the remnants of the building. Next, we went to the Trevi Fountain and made a wish. After quite a walking excursion, a bite to eat was in order, and we stopped at a quaint restaurant in an alley near the fountain. We had a fresh cheese plate, vegetarian pizza, and pasta. Even the food is good in an alley! I’m beginning to think it doesn’t take much to please me in Europe. Anyways, I’m so glad I got to visit Rome again, and this time be lucky enough to catch among of the most important places to visit in the city, without huge crowds. If you can stand a bit of cooler weather (about 50º F) then it’s well worth it to visit in the off season.
at 2:14 AM
November 15, 2008
Time is flying by! Sorry I have been so bad about posting my blogs lately! Here's a whole bunch of them. Pace yourself! Recently I’ve been visiting some of the same ports I’ve been to before; I’ve been taking it easy and doing lots of walking and window shopping. I’ve gotten into a bit of a routine on the ship, but to be honest, I am missing the feeling of a genuine, familiar home. Everyone on the ship is incredibly friendly and loving (our crew got the record score in the whole fleet for friendliness last cruise!), but people come and go all the time, and it’s hard to always connect with everyone on a certain level. There are over 50 nationalities represented on board, and while I am taking in and learning so much, sometimes there’s a bit of a language and even cultural barrier I am hitting from time to time. Our shows are going very well. We get great response from the audience and are always recognized and praised around the ship on our down time. I am so thankful to have free time to be able to go out into most of the ports, but I am starting to feel a little restless. I really miss being in a band, and playing everyday, and feeling challenged musically. I have been writing and practicing my guitar, but do miss the outlet to perform in that light. This morning I stepped off into Bonifacio, Corsica, and climbed to the top of the town for a island’s great view of the sea. It was raining on and off though, so just a bit of walking through the very quiet town was enough to get a quick fix of my feet on land. I did shore excursions yesterday and the day before though, so there’s some new updates to read about! Take note of my new European shoe collection. The photo doesn’t do them justice, but I utterly adore them and they keep me happy. That’s not superficial, right?
at 6:44 AM
I did a tour again today –which has been my favorite yet. This tour had a 45 minute drive to an olive farm, with scenes of Tuscano’s bright green rolling hills from the recent rain. We stopped in town to get a view of the countryside, and I met Lindsay, who was on the other tour bus, where we were treated to espressos by the tour guide. When we made it to the farm house, the surrounding area was really just breathtaking. The air was SO clean and fresh, it was the first thing I really noticed stepping off. There were olive trees surrounding the area and you could literally just pick an olive off of the tree. We sampled different olive oils; I had the extra virgin, roasted red pepper, and garlic. They were very robust and flavorful. They also had artichokes, beans, cheese with honey, and unsalted bread, which is best for olive oil and bruschetta. It felt like such a fall day, and reminded me of the feeling I get at the orchard (Milburn’s) in Maryland during fall. Except instead of apple cider donuts and pumpkins there are vines crawling about and olives scattering the ground. Very rustic, fresh, and peaceful.
at 6:01 AM
November 13, 2008
It was a rainy morning, which turned into an overcast day, which was actually quite lovely. The “Glimpse of Florence” tour consisted of 2 ½ hours of a guided walking tour, followed by 3 ½ hours of free time to explore the city on our own. The guide took us through some of the main squares to see the big, beautiful, churches covered with statues and detailed designs. Orcagna’s Loggia is pictured, which was an open building with many roman statues. Florence is known for it’s shopping, but even the modern and popular stores reside in gorgeous stone buildings. There are countless leather and jewelry (gold is most popular) stores. I spent my free time walking through the city, getting a feel for it and taking in the sights. There’s definitely a much different atmosphere in these European towns then U.S. cities. Since there is so much more history then our cities, there seems to be an underlying character of wisdom that the U.S. hasn’t acquired yet.. It’s much more relaxed and easy to take your time to wander and appreciate the scenery. I walked along the water, the Fiume Arno, with had a bridge made of colorful buildings, “Ponte Vecchio.” There were bright jewelry stores that lined the walkway of the fairytale looking bridge. Not one building in Florence looks like it was just thrown together in a few days – they all have their own personalities and charm.
at 5:56 AM
November 11, 2008
We’ve been to Monte Carlo a handful of times now, and the prices prohibit me from doing too much, so Gary, Lindsay and I decided to venture to Cannes. It was about an hour train ride which took us along the water for some great views of Nice and the surrounding towns. We thought the red carpet for the film festival would be layed out as it is in summer supposedly for tourists, but it wasn't out along the water today. We ended up walking through the city where I got some very inexpensive and trendy boots. I swear… I’m done shopping now. I have some really cool stuff and it’s all very rockstar that I’ll put to good use when I’m done here, I promise!!!! We had lunch of pita, hummus and falafel, at a pita house… which I haven’t had in a long time (usually I live off of hummus) so I was happy. It was fun to get out of the usual port and do something more adventurous.
at 5:52 AM
November 7, 2008
Some people on board have said this is the most beautiful port they’ve been to. I can certainly see why. It’s not catering to tourists, just a quaint town by the sea where sailors, fisherman, and travelors by boat pull right up to a waterside cafe. The mountains are sprinkled with sidewalks leading up to what seem like secret hide-a-ways of houses. The buildings lining the water were marigold yellow, brick red, and cantaloupe orange with green shutters. I went with my friend Takis today, and we walked through the town and up a steep, thin sidewalk/road leading to a lookout spot, where we could see a residential area, the boat, and down to some houses by the water (the picture with me in it was taken at this spot.) The sidewalk had smashed olives all along it, because there were olive trees growing all around, and I actually thought they were blueberries at first… nope, not in Italy. After walking for a while we stopped at a small restaurant on the water and had pastas – mine was a thin shelled vegetable ravioli with a walnut sauce. Um, melt in my mouth best pasta I’ve ever had. Wow. And it was a nice reasonable portion that was just right and satisfying. This place was a little magical!
at 6:37 AM
November 3, 2008
A pic from the fashion show a couple weeks ago; and the ladies night out for Marsha's birthday last cruise. We got to go to one of the fancy restaurants on board and had plenty of girl talk and laughs to go around! Then had a party for her at the night club afterwards. She had a great time!
at 9:03 AM
November 2, 2008
Today I was in Valetta, Malta. It is a town that had Italian flair, and reminded me a bit of Venice, the way the buildings and alleys were, but there were many long thin steps surrounding the island to take you to the central square, where most of the activities take place. Since it was a Sunday, most things were closed, but the local cafes were packed, and a few little stores were open. I walked in with Gary, and he got the local specialty, a meat pastry, which was quite large, for only half a euro. At noon it was very very humid – the most humidity I’ve felt since summer on the east coast. It was time to escape the heat…Gary and I are both a little scarily obsessed with High School Musical, and to our pleasant surprise, the brand new 3rd English Version was playing at the Valetta Cinema. So we ended up making that our afternoon activity. It was gloriously cheesy and amazing… being surrounded by little girls who already knew all the words to the soundtrack and were just as excited as me to be there! I tried a little of the local soda, made with minerals, which tasted like non-alcoholic Jagermiester…. I’m not sure how I feel about it still. We made our way back to the ship to get ready for the crew Halloween party. I dressed as a pirate, and it seemed like the entire ship’s crew was there – it was so fun. The new DJ that just came on board is so good and kept everyone dancing. Somehow the paparazzi got there (aka all the international crew boys on board) and took sooooo many pictures with Lindsay and I. We were posing forever, it was hysterical. I hope they don’t put our faces on girls gone wild or something. The first place winner of the costume contest was dressed as a flesh eater, and had real raw meat hanging from his body and mouth! HE SMELLED SO BAD. The pool boy dressed as trash and had tons of cans hanging off of him, and he smelled pretty bad too. I laughed, danced, and had a few jell-o shots compliments of azamara. I will be sleeping in tomorrow for Twisted TV’s performance…
at 8:57 AM
October 30, 2008
Today I walked into Barcelona early in the morning with the intention of seeing Goudi’s architecture around the city, but took a detour and found myself at the museum of Picasso’s work instead. It was about a 30 minute walk from port to the beginning of the main city, and another 20-30 minutes to the museum. I was really inspired and moved by his art. The museum added on to his biography with a step into each new room. His home base was Barcelona, which is why the museum is there. He was educated in Art, but during his last years at University he dropped out because he felt he had hit a plateau. I was able to see his art in the first half of his life, which was detailed, emotional, full of color schemes and realism. He went through a phase of using blue, because blue and dark green were thought to represent the lonely sea, and through It wasn’t until his later years when he started using geometric shapes in place of realistic features, and random colors and designs. The paintings he is most well known for are very whimsical, vibrant, and even flirtatious – while still seemingly simple, it looks like a lot of thought was put into them. The picture of the stone building is of the museum. It was kind of hidden in an alley way but was quite a big building inside. I love today!
at 8:53 AM
October 29, 2008
Today I went on my first land excursion. I’m able to go on them as an escort, and I basically just make sure everyone is accounted for and follows the tour guide. I did a 4 ½ hour trip that started with a 45 minute bus ride from Sorrento to Pompeii. We drove along the coasts and through mountains flooded with lemon trees, that will produce the famous Italian liquor Limon cello. Olive trees had nets hanging beneath the branches to catch the fruit before it hits the ground. Once almost to Pompeii, I could look back and see my ship and town of Sorrento (pictured). The tour guide was very well studied and did an awesome job of explaining Pompeii to us. The city was ruined by a volcanic eruption, so what is left is remains of stone. We were able to see where the rooms were people lived in, and the sizes of the beds, which were outlined in stone and built into the walls. The beds were very small, about 4 1/2 feet long, because the average height of the people was much shorter then today. We saw two theatres, both of which were ‘in the round’ where the stage is at floor level and the people sit in a circle/semi-circle in an arena sort of manner. Outside of the theatres were little ‘fast food’ places that had round pots build into counters that were said to keep food hot. I walked through a small house which could be called a “whore house” with karma sutra paintings still on the wall and visible today(pictured!). In the main square and center of the city it was very open. There are still fountains and columns and the roads made of uneven stone are still in tact. One of the houses still had colors on the wall and a staircase, kitchen, and dining room could be made out. In one part of the city, there were casts of people in glass boxes that were a little disturbing. The guide helped us use our imagination and explained to us how archeologists have been able to figure out what the city looked like before it was destroyed. It was about a 2 mile walk through the city, and still didn’t see everything – it’s pretty big. I’m so glad I was able to go on the tour and learn about what I was looking at, it really pays to have a guide! After the tour I met Lindsay and Marsha for lunch in Sorrento. Had bread, minestrone soup and caprese salad = my favorite! Then ran into Gary, and him and I did some shopping – where I found the biker jacket I wanted last time in Sorrento at Diesel, on clearance for 49 euro. I love it!!
at 8:34 AM
October 19, 2008
The past 3 days have been spent in Venice. We had 2 overnights, one of which was taken full advantage of. The first day I went with a group: Lindsay, Alex, the Mikes, Marsha, and Jerome. We walked through the beautiful stone streets, churches, and stores. I didn’t want to blink because everything was so beautiful! Thin rivers run through the streets like alleys, laced with gondolas and boats for transportation. One of the boats had an accordion player and an Italian singer with a very robust deep voice. Walking through the town is as beautiful as you can imagine it– to the point it’s unreal and you have to literally pinch yourself. We found a restaurant in small square for lunch, toasting to the farewell of our bass player Jerome. Every cruise I find myself saying goodbye to someone and hello to another, with all of the contracts overlapping. Already, some goodbyes are much harder then others. We all had traditional Italian fare and wine, I myself had a grilled veggie calzone the size of my head. Afterwards, we all split off, the girls and Alex, who bought us single roses like the gentleman he is, roamed around through St. Mark’s Square and the main waterside shops. We even spotted the pirate ship which gave me inspiration for [one of my] Halloween costumes (typical yeah, but I’m on a ship!). The next day Lindsay and I ventured into town on our own agenda and freedom. We walked in from the ship which took about an hour, and stopped at a stand up café for a cappuccino and a pastry. We shopped all day, trying on lots of designer clothing that was way out of my price range…someday… We sat outside for a quick lunch, followed by a small wine tasting and a visit to the dollar store for Marsha’s birthday decorations. It was quite an exhausting day, but we had planned to go out for a night on the town, so we knew it was far from over. The girls and Gary had a night of bar hopping. Again, walking into town, we stopped at a small little café/bar Gary had been to before – and then next door at a place with dogs and peanut shells on the floor. When we finally got to the center of town (which had transformed from tourists to local hipsters in day to night fashion) we hit our main attraction which was a ‘jazz’ bar. The ceilings had rows of bras hanging from them in a rainbow of colors and designs… very classy! And the walls were hung with pictures drawn by regulars and photos of jazz greats. We met with Kelsey (activites manager) and the Mikes and hung out there for the rest of the night chatting and hanging out. The last day in Venice, we only had a few short hours, and with waking up so late from the night before, I just wandered around and took in the beautiful sights one last time. It’s a city you can really get lost in just walking around for hours, because even the apartments and stores are made of gorgeous stone. This has been one of my favorite cities so far… I think I say that about every city. Tree Tattoo ideas for Barcelona?
at 10:22 AM
October 12, 2008
The street taken from the water to the town. Taking a breather! One of the many gelato shops! This one had amazing smelling waffle cones. I had some yesterday, so I just looked and drooled today. Kitties by the sea. Wish i could adopt one. The weather has been immaculate lately, I don’t know what I did to deserve such wonderful times the past few days. I’m so thankful and happy for sunshine, friends, and amazing sites! The ship was tendered today, meaning you have to take a small boat from the ship to the shore. There are usually a couple of ports each cruise that are tendered, because there’s not a big enough space for the ship to dock at some of the ports. The town of Sorrento looks over the water, and is on a mountain, so there are quite a bit of steps and streets that take one there. The streets are made of stone and are hard on the feet to walk on! They are also very narrow in the town and it’s quite a site to see some of them pass as 2 way streets. I went today with Lindsay and Gary (we make the Taurus trio) and we started out window shopping at amazing European shops. Thank God I haven’t gotten paid and everything was too expensive, because it was all beautiful clothing. I found a bunch of biker chick jackets that I became infatuated with and decided if I still want one I’ll get it when I come back on the next cruise. Next we grabbed a quick cappuccino in a small café, squished between two small tables of chic little boys with designer sunglasses and 3 little girls giggling while smelling a bag of cheese puffs. We continued to walk down the entirety of a long street dressed with designer clothing, souvenir shops, cafes, gelato stands, and hidden alleys smothered with more boutiques and stores. The town was booming with energy and livelihood that we all soaked in. My favorite smell of the day was the fresh waffle cones from a particularly busy gelato stand. Kind of like how McDonalds somehow makes the block around them smell like French fries…but 3,000 times more amazing. After building up quite an appetite we made our way to the center square, and sat outside at a busy restaurant. I had wine, a piece of brushetta, and a ½ and ½ plate of pizza margherita and raviolo with spinach and ricotta. There were few ingredients used but it was obvious they were of high quality because the dish was flavorful and fresh. We spent a couple of hours sitting, eating, and talking, all on a very happy food/life high. We finished the day with more walking, talking, and looking at buildings and the view of the sea. It was a relaxing day in good company, and I got a hearty taste of the town and culture.
at 1:49 PM