Caribbean Cruise — Taking off!

Before leaving on the cruise, we had to leave family.  Leave Cocoa Beach, leave Florida, leave land.

After leaving the dock in Tampa on Jan. 5th at 4 p.m., OF COURSE it started clouding up. All of you who would eventually FREEZE last week just couldn’t stand it. You HAD to send that cold front down to play havoc with our cruise!! hehe! But we were “fine” up until Wednesday night.

Here are a few shots of getting out of the Tampa Bay Harbor, which took over 2 and a half HOURS to accomplish!! ARGH! Because the channel for large boats is SSOO narrow, we had all of that water, but had to pass other large ships much closer than I would have liked. Getting out of the harbor was the entertainment for that first evening, other than walking all over the ship to see what we could see the next day!


Here are some of the miscellaneous pictures from the cruise that we didn’t want to spend  the money to transmit aboard ship. Unfortunately, though they are more or less in time order, that makes them out of order on here and kind of hard to follow. Just read the descriptions with each and you’ll get the general flavor of visiting the Cayman Islands and Cozumel, Mexico.

Approaching Paradise. Literally! The name of the ship was the “Paradise”!

Leaving Tampa!


 They’ll never catch us now!


We made it UNDER the Skyway Bridge going out of the Tampa Bay Harbor.  Looked like we “just barely” made it!

  My favorite color!

RULE OF THUMB for computer time onboard a cruise ship. You can buy internet time, using your own laptop OR the computers in the “Fun Hub” or a similar computer center onboard ship. Averages about $.65/min, so you need to keep the transmission of photos to a minimum. Words transmit quickly (for emails), but accessing the internet for “surfing” purposes or Facebook perusal can be VERY costly! Even if you’re a speed reader, the speed of changing screens and downloading info or uploading pictures is at the speed of DSL or something slower, which will eat up your minutes RAPIDLY. Sending pictures really SHOULD wait until you’re onshore in the USA. UNLESS the picture you’re sending is to INTERPOL of some international jewel thief or terrorist. Then your money might be well spent!

Phones and texts are a different kettle of fish. AT&T will sell you an International package starting at $30 for a month’s worth of unlimited texting (to add to your regular calling plan, whatever that is). We could send all of the texts that we wanted to, from our phone (not iMessage), but any pictures would fall under the 120 MB of data transfer, so we didn’t send very many attached to texts.

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