Wednesday, December 31, 2008

And Now, A Toast !!!

To endings.

In the words of T.S. Eliot: “For last year’s words belong to last year’s language. And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.”

To Beginnings.

Happy News Years, To all my Family & Friends. . .

May this be a peaceful 2009..!

Sunday, December 28, 2008


Maybe this is where I caught my cold..? ( Minus 5 Ice Lounge - Home Auckland, New Zealand) Do you think I caught it from my frozen glass filled with Vodka? Or the Frozen Chair I sat on? Maybe it was kissing Ice Ice Santa..?

I'm happy I caught my cold after the holidays, Now how do I get rid of it before tomorrow,,, More Vodka?


Ahhhh Chewwww, Time for some chicken soup...


Two hours & 15 minutes is what it was supposed to take to fly from DFW to CAE this evening, 9 hours later..Here we are!
I'm not complaining, Seriously I'm not.. I"M NOT!,,,,
I have nothing to complain about..We just flew 18, 535 miles or 28, 829 kms, With - 0 - glitches. Well until today....Starting in CAE ~ ATL ~ BNA ~ LAX ~ BNE ~ SYD ~ Cruise ~ AKL ~ LAX ~ SAN ~ DFW ____ to wait a minute.. Here is where the story begins..
After boarding for our 2:15 minute flight, on the very last leg of our holiday extravaganza..We zipped away from our gate, got in line, 30 mile per hour cross winds had closed 3 of the 5 runways here at DFW, number 33 for departure, not so bad, Hey, we're not 34, this only delayed us a smidge... I'm glad I packed a teeny tiny bag of popcorn as a snack for our short flight....

30 minutes prior to landing in CAE: Click goes the PA.."Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh Folks, This is your Captain, speaking...." This is never a good sign, ... The sweetest words you can ever hear from a Captain other than, "I'll pick up the tab" are "Flight Attendants, Prepare for landing"
Captain: "Columbia Airport has been closed due to fog....We will be landing in Charleston, SC" "No, Jacksonville, FL" "No, Savannah, GA".. Okay, Savannah it is!!
I pulled out that cell phone lickity split, called all the rental car agencies, NO CARS in the entire city.. Whaaa?? I called Holiday Inn, ..Okay we have a room on hold...
Pilots clicks on "Ahhhhhhhh, Folks...yadda yadda...Our flight is cancelled, or at least the crew is:, We are going to bus you to CAE" What, No Buses???

The taxi dropped us off at 2313 after driving us the last 3 hours ... Not bad for a 2 hour & 15 minute flight....

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Merry Chirstmas . . .May your homes be filled with Peace & Joy during this holiday season & all of 2009!! We made it!!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Planes, Trains, Automobiles &. . . . . . ???

I got to thinking,,,, Just how many modes of transportation does one actually take on a normal vacation,,, So I started adding them up,,,, Here are just a few: After the Taxi dropped us off at the airport, we went on a plethora of planes...
Started with the "Planes".. RJ, 737, 747 & 757...
The Rent-A-Car didn't work out: Always get the insurance.
Okay, We skipped the Greyhound Bus,,,,
World War II ,, Amphibious Duck
A Cable Car in Wellington, New Zealand
Doesn't everyone go on a Haagland on holiday?
A 100 year old Steamship TSS Ensclaw
Oh yeah, The Ship!!
Modern Rickshaw..."yeah buddy"
A Monorail
Steam Train
Okay, so it's not a Greyhound, but we rode on it...
A Gondola..
The Luge
I didn't add the Ski Lift or the LPC (Leather Personal Carriers) aka: Shoes....
We're not even home yet,,,, I want to add, Hot Air Balloon, Kayak, & The Zorb!!!!!
Our cruise will officially be over in 5 hours, Then off to find another taxi & the double decker city tour bus to show us the sights of Auckland, NZ,,,,,

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

What time is it, anyway???

For the past 12 days if someone had asked me “What day it is?”
I would not have been able to answer them… Yet, we’ve never missed a shore excursion, or a port.. We don’t have a clock in our room & yet we have never missed a meal.
Somehow you always know where to be & when it is feeding time…

For those of you who don’t cruise because you say to yourself, What is there to do on a ship anyway? I’ll be bored… This is a snip it of what we did today….

Woke up to room service, morning brainteaser, have some coffee, Opal & Fresh water pearl sale, Time for a cookie, Line dancing class, time for the buffet, Poolside we order a nice beverage, Hmm, time to make a decision? Movie? Poker? Gym? Art Auction? Ice Carving Demo? Eat?
I decide to go to Name that tune…. TBH is listening to a lecture, Sometimes you just have to split
up…to take in all the goodies…
Tour of the navigational bridge, Can I drive the ship? I thought the steering wheel would of been bigger....
At 2:30 we have to meet up for “Battle of the sexes” the Final Round ( I don’t want to talk about the score) Bingo? Acupuncture seminar? Time to rush to our room so we don’t miss John our Butler and our Hor’dorves & Sweets. . back out for the steam room/spa.. Wanna do a movie? NO, we don’t have time, we have to get ready for dinner,,

Where did our time go????

Come on honey, It’s time for dinner….Don’t forget the chocolate extravaganza tonight…
Posted by PicasaBaked Alaska ,, Yummmy!!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Let it snow, Let it snow, Let it snow

That is the song that was playing this morning during breakfast....Yes, it is December 14th, & I have to keep reminding myself it is another day closer to Christmas & Milford Sound, New Zealand.. Most passengers, will have another day at sea. We are taking a shore excursion that will drop us off at Milford Sound, and drive us thru Queenstown, Arrowtown, Clyde, Alexandra, Dunedin & we will end up at Port Chalmers to meet up with the ship a day later.

We had a blast in Melbourne, Australia & Hobart, Tasmania...
I have attached a few pictures of our time there....
It was fantastic to get this close to these wonderful animals,,,
My favorite was the Koala bear..
TBH's favorite was the Tasmanian Devil..
We both loved the Kangaroo's...
Even though they were on the menu for dinner that night....
We even got to hit a few Winery's... Way to many things to do here..

The view you see is what we have been looking at for the past 2 days,,,No Sun to speak of & it is down right chilly,, I hope New Zealand is warmer...

I'm going to enjoy some goodies I picked up in Tassie...
At 4pm our Butler John, will bring us more goodies during High Tea...
This is TBH's "Happy Hour"
Until Later ...Mates!!!!
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Friday, December 12, 2008

Celebrity Millennium

This is our ship, Isn't she pretty...
This was the night we left, Sydney Opera house to our left,,,,,

Sydney Harbour Bridge to our right

This is our room, for the next 14 days....
This is our living room....

Our walk in closet...
Our bathtub (That is a 1st)
Our view from our BathTub
This is Our backyard... We wanted to take a few moments to share with you, our surroundings. There is not a day that goes by, we do not see something, that we want to share with family & friends, I will post more tomorrow, when I find a better location on the ship to get a better signal...Until then, I'm sure it is time to eat somewhere....
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Saturday, December 6, 2008

G'Day Mates!

Good Morning, I giggle, when I say this ...because in my time it is Happy Hour yesterday somewhere, It's 5pm... We are just waking up & enjoying our coffee in the Executive Lounge here at the Marriott @ Circuliar Quay, We are on the 30th floor,,, It is a spectaculiar view... within our eye shot we have the Sydney Opera House, The Rocks, Celebrity Millenium cruise ship (we board today) & The historic Sydney Harbour Bridge.... This is the reason for todays blog,,,,

The bridge in the picture shown above is the one we climbed yesterday.. ALL 1,437 steps to the top of that bridge yesterday,,,


Was it scary??? Okay I'll tell ya the truth... We've bonded right?

Not one little bit... Now, I thought I'd be a bit freaked out,,, I mean, you are climbing ON TOP of that bridge, where paid professionals risked their lifes building it,,,and 16 of them died during the construction.

The bridge was started in 1923 & completed in March of 1932 ..My daddy was one month old,,,

An interesting fact about this bridge,
The Pylons on this bridge are strictly for decoration only, They do nothing to hold up this massave amount of steel. The reason they could justify the cost of putting up the pylons in the days of the depression was "Safety"...

Did it make it safer NO, they said it would make people feel safer on it.....

Yet, another stupid fact about the bridge: Paul Hogan of Crocodile Dundee was once a painter on this bridge!

Note to: It was Lita's day off,, The staff did send her an email with a Hello from you!

Note to: Traytable, we have not tried a VB beer yet,,but we will now just for you!

Okay Mates: It is time for us to pack and board our ship...Doubt I will be blogging as internet on the ship is like one gillion cents per minute & I'm rather cheap!! -Laters!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Land down Under

WE MADE IT!!! We are in Sydney Australia ..

All it took was “Nett” @ Mission Control, A fantastic & creative Gate Agent Jennifer @ American Eagle, and 48 hours.

Our trip started at a full sprint…I pulled Staff Duty (Army Thing) which means I am in charge of the Battalion while everyone sleeps I stay away for 24 hours and look for the boogie man.. There is more to it than that, I just don’t want to bore you… I was released from my duty at 0830, our 1st flight was at 11:20 ..Notice I said WAS, We missed that one…. We got there on time, There were just more of us than seats!

Not a good way to start your trip I understand, again as “Non-Revs” you must always have Plan B, C, D and sometimes E…(No Stress, Right?) This is where the Gate Agent
Steps in, She literally rolled up here sleeves and said “We can do this!!!” her fingers when to flying on that key board!~ CAE (Columbia) To ATL (Atlanta) To BNA (Nashville) To LAX (Los Angeles) to BNE (Brisbane, Australia) to SYD (Sydney)
Presto ,,, we are here.! Our luggage took an entirely different trip all together….
TBH Said “I don’t care we are going without it”… as tears welled up in my eyes…
We had already missed our direct flight to Sydney, So I suggested what would it hurt
To look in one more place, so we did & there they were waiting for us, Our luggage actually made it to LAX before we did!!!

Off to Qantas ticket counter we ran, Loss of sleep at this point didn’t matter I had to stay awake long enough to get on the flight. We not only got a seat (TOGETHER) we got an entire row to ourselves, 36ABC (insert happy dance here) Don’t get to happy yet, we had no window, and our seats didn’t recline… The worst seats usually on the plane are
Called the “Non-Rev” seats WE GOT EM! Didn’t care, we were on!!!

We made our nest, & off we went, they served dinner immediately as it was already midnight… I opened up the entertainment section to decide on my 1st movie… I mean on a 15 hour flight you can watch what about 7 movies? Wanna guess how many movies I watched???? ~ O N E ~ Stop laughing…. It took me 3 times to view it, I kept falling asleep! One movie 15 hours??? I fell asleep about 30 minutes into the movie ,,, TBH fell asleep about 3 minutes into the movie….I woke up and the flight computer said we had 5 hours to go! WOW Time was flying!!

We landed in BNE we felt rested, & ready to go…. It was 7am we needed to hustle because our connecting flight to SYD was in 2 hours… It took about 2 hours for our luggage to appear, and another hour to clear customs & immigration…. You know that card you have to fill out that asks, do you have any; Fruits, Nuts, Live Plants, Small children hidden in your luggage, WELL THEY MEAN IT! I packed snacks for our flight, we never ate them, So I totally forgot they were tucked away in my carry on…

Later in the little room, whilst trying to explain this, I was informed it was a 200.00 fine for my little snacks,,,, Whhhhhaaaaa….. Note to self: Forget snacks next trip!
They let me go with a warning, as I smiled my pretty little southern smile, wrote on the chalk board 100 times “ I will never bring Raisinets into Austrialia again”!!
Back to the Qantas counter, as we had missed yet another leg of our trip, Missing 2 flights out of a 5 leg trip our stats were not going so well! Gerry was so sweet with his “no worries, love I’ll just put you on the next flight to Sydney” …One more flight and we are here,,, It is only 2pm when we get to our hotel,, as I ask, “How much longer do we have to stay awake before we can go to bed?” We drop our luggage in our suite, lace up our tenny shoes and off we go… The weather is fantastic, warm, cool breeze…. And I am cranky, I want sleep!!! We are located right now, in a precious little neighborhood called “Darling Harbour”, We are near the water front …we find a happy hour, grab a glass of Aussie wine or two, ordered a pizza and just people watched… burning time till bed time, (Note to Nett: 50% off all wine during happy hour here) LOVE IT!!!
Back to the room it’s 7pm,, It’s almost bed time, Me so happy!!!!

12 hours later I’m awake and off to hunt for Internet!!! As I post this for family and friends, it is yesterday there, and today here…. So I must go enjoy the future . . . .

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Fort Worth, Texas, United States