OMG…We’ve left the farm!!!

Our Very First Cruise Ever!


Crystal Serenity, Cruise the Caribbean, Miami to Miami



After much discussion with our Travel Agency (more about that later!), we did change our flights from the red eye time flight out of Edmonton (yuck) to a more civilized morning flight; Edmonton to Houston at 6:30am connecting to Miami, arriving at 5:20 pm.

Houston airport is the strangest airport we’ve ever encountered.  In all of the 3 separate terminals, we only saw United Airlines planes.  Oh…I did see a couple of US Airways planes but that was it, all United.  I guess it’s United or nothing else out of Houston?  And what’s with the noise????  That is, by far, the nosiest airport…lots of music and sales pitches from the stores and food courts.  Iit didn’t seem to have the muffling architecture found in other modern airports.  Very different, very interesting.

Arrival in Miami was so lovely; warm, humid (my hair instantly did the frizz thing).  We stayed at the InterContinental Hotel right on the harbour.  Our dinner at the hotel was very good.  Tapas, Mexican, interesting.  Our room overlooked the channel that all the cruise ships sailed into and docked.  We watched our ship, the Crystal Serenity sail in and dock right below our room.  As I sat in the bay window in our room and sipped tea, the sun came up over the horizon.  It’s a good thing we are early risers, as the am time change, Edmonton/Miami fit into our schedule perfectly.  Sun, ocean and tea makes me a happy, happy girl.


Our cruise ship the Crystal Serenity docked in Miami, out our hotel window early am.


As the morning started, I did a Pilates workout in the room and Ivars went for a run.  We then had breakfast, re packed and checked out.  Off to the “embarkation” centre for our cruise.  (I’m working on the lingo for this cruise dealio…)  The embarkation process was painless and we were on the ship in the afternoon.

To look at the big picture…Ivars and I don’t get much time together very often so we really try to maximise each the best experience we can get out of each excursion.  We have narrowed our travel criteria down to…

1. Adventure.  2. Really good food.  3. 1000 thread count sheets at night


So as we headed onto this ship, I was feeling “Oh dear, this 2 week cruise may not tick the adventure box”.  We were by far some of the youngest travellers waiting to board the ship.  So ok, we’re committed to this trip.  The food promises to be great and the sheets definitely were advertised to be comfy.  On board we go…

The ship is fancy…blah, blah, blah (google it, it is a fancy way to get around…check boxes 2 and 3)  Our lunch in the main dining room aboard ship was delicious!  And great champagne!!!  Everything is included on this cruise and they have an extensive wine cellar.  (very much a part of box 1 Adventure for Ivars!!)

Sounds like the evening meal time around here might be problematic for us as there are 1000 people on board and we are seated at the 8:30 meal seating in the main dining room.  As I mentioned, we are very early risers, so late dinner times are a bother.  There are not many other restaurant options available on ship, so room service on our balcony might be a regular occurrence!  As I write this, that option is sounding quite nice!  As we are on the starboard side of the ship (more lingo…the right side), we get a wonderful view of the sunset each evening on the first leg of the trip as we travel south.

We stopped by the fitness centre and were informed by the fitness director the advertised Pilates Reformer is no longer on board.  Darn!  This was to be my main defense to combat the increased pushing of button number 2….Good Food!!!  Off to buy more minutes online so I can access Pilates Anytime and a mat on the floor in our cabin….should work!!!

We sailed away from Miami at 9:00 pm.


Departing Miami, sailing south.

This morning, Saturday Jan 05, I am sitting here out on our stateroom deck.  The warm sea breezes are softly blowing all around me as I am listening to the sound of the waves breaking beneath me against the side of the ship.  We sail south for today and tomorrow and land in Tortola, BVI Monday, our first port on this trip.

Ivars has already ventured out for coffee and tea this morning.  (They have my favourite green tea aboard…Hoji-cha!!!!, pan fried green tea).

Well, my tea needs refilling and I think we need a run around the deck as the sun rises!!!

Off to the day’s adventures (and much good food…)!

V and I





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