Monday, July 1, 2024

June 10, 2024 – Grand Cayman Islands – Rain – Rough Seas – Warm – high 70s

It is an ugly day in the Grand Cayman Islands.  

It’s raining and the winds are at 30+ kts.  I had my usual breakfast up in the Marketplace Restaurant.  I am still looking for a seat that will work; I am not compliant this morning because I am at a window seat in the corner - the seat is awkward and no guest would want to sit here but still.  I will seek out something different tomorrow.

Being unsure which was better, I had one waffle and one pancake – covered with cottage cheese (no sour cream today) along with some scrambled eggs.  

The breakfast was good. Where I am sitting, there are two servers constantly filling up my coffee cup.  The coffee served on board - Daniel Meinl brand- is not as rich as i like it but it is always hot.  

Ellen ordered room service.

We are both scheduled to escort today and need to report to the Stardust Lounge at 9:30 AM.  We picked up our Escort Backpacks (containing toilet paper, first aid kit, and bug spray) in the Escort Office.  Marina Bregles, a very nice woman from Portugal, is the Shorex Manager.  I knew from the moment I got up this morning that this ship was not going to anchor off the Cayman Islands and that there would be no tender service today.  Sure enough, while we were waiting for passengers to show up for the excursion, the Captain came on and said the port was cancelled and they would manufacture another sea day.  Marina took our backpacks back to her office and we grabbed Kindles and computer to deal with the new schedule.  Fortunately, no one asked me about giving an extra lecture – with an excess of speakers on board, I was probably low on the call list.  I am more that OK with that - I have given my share of unscheduled lectures in the past.  

The Crystal Cove venue is an interesting one - it contains both Guest Relations and Shorex along with a bar (with entertainment -Leandro (piano), Martina (violin) and Marvin (vocals)) and a quiet place opposite the bar where you can sit and watch the ocean go by or read.  At the aft end, there is the entrance to the Waterside Dining Room.  Gracing the Cove is an interesting statue.  I am not sure what it is but I got some nice pictures of it from Deck 6, which houses the shops.

Lunch was in the Marketplace Restaurant/Trident Grill/Tastes Kitchen Complex – these three venues are connected in a linear fashion on Deck 12 Aft.  Once you leave the Marketplace, it gets colder even though the whole area has a covered roof.  The only thing I need to mention about lunch – and it will be the last time – is that the Andalusian Gazpacho at the Trident Grille is the best gazpacho ever (it is cold, the veggies are crisp, and you can taste all of the components). The gazpacho is accompanied by baked flour tortilla ships. Perfect.  

We asked for and got Table 89 in the Waterside Restaurant and our pre-ordered kosher ribeye steaks were indeed waiting for us.  We both had some kind of salad or soup as a starter.  The steaks were medium rare (medium next time) but they were delicious – even better than the last time we did this on this ship.  I had fries with mine and Ellen has steamed veggies.  For dessert, we both had a dairy free mousse of some kind along with tea and decaf with soy milk.  A perfect meal.

Tonight is the Headliner of the Cruise – Broadway Star, Rachel York.  

We last saw Rachel perform on the “Broadway Cruise”.  She was part of a larger bunch of entertainers and I did not find her show that special but tonight was a much different story.  Rachel put on the best vocal show we have yet seen on a ship.  Other singers might have better voices but no one has delivered the complete package like Rachel did tonight.  Not only did she do a perfect job vocally but her inter-song banter was crisp and interesting and her stage presence on point.  At one point, she went into the audience.

Her song list consisted of all of my favorites:  “Defying Gravity” from “Wicked” (yes, she did high the final high note);

 “I Dreamed a Dream”;

 “The Heart Will Go On” (sung perfectly), 

an ABBA Medley; 

and the showstopper finale “A Piece of Sky” from “Yentl”.  

Absolutely, fantastic.

The seas are a bit rough.

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