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About Buckimion

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    Cool Cruiser

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    model railroading
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  1. I get what you are saying, but I also know I was just on that cruise and it was wheelchair central. That #$%@ chair was on loan for the entire trip because those people were steps from my own handicapped cabin. See my Valor trip report in my sig.
  2. If you have any thoughts on whether you'll need one or not, you'll need one. Make sure you get a rental before you board.
  3. A bit more on this...I bought two wi-fi packages, one for myself and a second for my wife. We could both access the internet (most of the time) with our individual folio numbers and birthdates.
  4. Thanks for that tip. 🤑 I managed to grab a couple at 10000 points as well.
  5. They were outside of the door after the rooms were released. I was worried a bit that my wife would want her first soda before we had the cards and didn't know if one of the bars would accept the receipt showing we'd paid for the Bubbles package. As far as the check in and cards themselves, check in was significantly faster than in the past and the envelope containing the cards was well sealed against fraud so I had no worries there.
  6. Dead horse diaries Now that I've had a chance to stop and relax, the old brain has been reminding me of things I had forgotten to mention... Muster drill We heard over the PA that muster drill was about to start, but due to a backup at the elevators my wife decided to go ahead and take the stairs down while I headed to guest services to confirm where it was going to be. I was directed by a ship's officer to the theater and since I didn't see my wife anywhere in sight, I messaged her on my phone. I was the second to arrive and there were four or five other groups that came in after me. Before we knew it, Kevin was doing the presentation over the PA for everybody and there wasn't any crew in the auditorium checking in on us! We kind of looked at each other in disbelief confusion, but after the spiel, he gave the go-ahead for handicapped passengers to leave first. Since most of us had been through this before, we pretty much shrugged our shoulders and split, with one set of first-time cruisers heading to guest services to try to get a personalized run through. My wife says is she headed down the stairs they pretty much pushed her out the door into our area. She told them that I was attending the handicap presentation and they let it go at that, but kept her at their station. Internet The onboard internet on Valor is the worst I have ever seen. In short, it was unusable in any part of the ship forward of the main lobby. I did have acceptable service from the lobby back to Lido deck. Handicapped cabin position are handicap cabin was located in an odd corner of the ship, right by the 'secret deck'. Being at a right angle to the hall was a pretty awkward turn on the scooter to aim for the door which at least did have a power assist on it. In addition, we also heard the door to the deck slam day and night. Smoking areas Although smoking is a habit I never acquired, thanks to my mom being a lifelong smoker, I don't get bothered by cigarette smoke as much as others. Still, the casino area and indeed all of the Promenade deck had a heavy cigarette smell, more noticeable than on past cruises. On Triumph, there was an additional smoking area outside of the main lobby on the port side. For Valor, when I tried to get to the barbecue stand I found I had to pass through an outdoor smoking area on 10.
  7. Zipped right though. A quick, light pat down not nearly as intrusive as the airport.
  8. Last sea day cont' & debarkation Not the best shot in the world, but I had previously mentioned that the space on Valor between Guys and Blue Iguana and the main buffet was significantly wider than Triumph in comparison. There's easily a couple of extra feet here in comparison to the picture in my Triumph trip report. Getting closer to Louisiana as we start to pass oil rigs. For dinner, we decided to have Seafood Shack, something that we enjoy it on the Triumph. As is my habit, I had the mixed seafood platter while my wife had a bread bowl of chowder and crab cakes. After an early bed time, we awoke and gathered our things for one last buffet breakfast. Not being in a huge hurry since we weren't due to be picked up for our airport shuttle until 1:30 at the Hilton Riverside, I selected middle-of-the-pack Zone 12 which seemed to work out reasonably well for us. it did seem to take a long time for them to get through the self-service luggage people. Eventually, we moved on from the buffet to the theater to wait out our turn which didn't take too long. when they did call our Zone along with several others it was a little bit more crowded than the last time on Triumph, but not the zoo that Elation was. I had purchased a rolling trolley for my soft sided duffel bags and had to unpack it to strap my bags on top of it. For some reason, I could never get the bags completely straight and they kept rolling off to one side or the other. we eventually strolled the back alley to Riverwalk were we had a bite and my wife did some last minute shopping. Wife is not happy that vacation is almost over. Getting close to 1pm, I told her it was time to move through the hotel to our pick up position, but with my bags constantly rolling one side or the other it took us longer than I expected. the shuttle pulled up about 30 seconds after we stepped out the door. The rest of the flight home was mostly issue free, although because we had a quick turnaround in Atlanta we didn't have time to stop for a bite and my wife started getting hangry. Added to that headache was a slightly delayed shuttle home, and I was lucky that my wife didn't start gnawing on my arm before I had a chance to order us a pizza. What's next? Back in February, we had a little windfall with our tax refund not long after Carnival Miracle's itineraries were released. Perusing the trips to Hawaii, I found I was not too late to grab a 4K fully handicapped room for Feb 2021 out of San Diego so I locked it in. At the time, it was one of the best non-suite accessible rooms available and they have all since been sold out
  9. Headed home - Sea Day 2 (Day 😎 Having pretty much exhausted ourselves on this trip, we mostly relaxed and enjoy the ride home. We started our day with a buffet breakfast as usual, and then had the sea day brunch for lunch. While my wife relaxed in our room, I roam the ship snapping more pictures. We were really bummed out when the arcade duck machine went down on the second day. it remained down even though it has been refilled mid-trip.
  10. My wife said it was completely worth it. She enjoyed looking out the window while I used to drive so this was more of the same. She has a bit of a short attention span so she didn't feel rushed at the site either.
  11. Day 8 - Progreso / Chichen Itza After yet another buffet breakfast, I joined my wife in the Lincoln dining room with the other Chichen Itza excursion participants. I believe most of the other shore excursions met another lounges are in the theater. Knowing that she wasn't going to pack a bathing suit on this trip, I went ahead and signed her up for the regular Chichen Itza Excursion instead of the deluxe one. her group was called and they went on their merry way, leaving me to my own devices. 😈 Taxi pickup area. Busses load just to the left. I started things off of a short hop off the ship, perusing the port shops. I don't know when it started because it was not in effect the last time we were here, but they do allow taxis on the plaza area with the shuttle buses in the town now. I toyed with the idea of going into town, but I had other plans on board. Port days are my favorite time to play trivia games because there's not 20 people teaming up and/or hiding their phones looking for answers. The first couple of games were for the heck of it, knowing that I wasn't going to finish any better than middle of the pack. The third game was Movie Music trivia, where I picked up 18 of 20 questions and walked away with the solid gold plastic piece of ship on a stick. As it was lunch time, I decided to go to where the barbecue place was on the upper Lido area on 10. I had the chicken , baked beans, mac & cheese and coleslaw which were pretty tasty. the beans get a bad rap because they use kidney beans in some of the mix although not all of it, but actually I thought it tasted all right. The chicken could have used a dollop of BBQ sauce though. After a cruise around the ship taking various pictures, but now it was closing in on 3 o’clock and superhero trivia. I have kind of a loose rule that I if I win a ‘ship on a stick’ and then I let others take over, but I really wanted to test my nerd card here. Yup, still got it. My original intention was to go ahead and give the trophy if I were to win to a child, but there were none hanging around. The games were hosted by Georgia (from Australia) and I asked her if they by chance had any of the ribbon awards that I have seen on other ships. Sure enough, she was more than happy to trade me for a ‘boat on a rope.’ Tammy eventually returned from her excursion, reporting that she had a lot of fun. They had a bathroom break there in a little gift shop, which she viewed more as an oasis than a tourist trap. They handed out a sack lunch of a ham sub as she described it, chips an apple, water and cookies. She had fun at the ruins, but she also had just about as much fun at the vendors around the place. She did complain about the heat somewhat, but did say that a vendor took pity on her and let her sit down for a few minutes. For dinner we decided to order room service, with Tammy picking up a Philly sandwich, while I had a couple of baskets of chicken wings. The buffalo wings were good enough, but I would take a hard pass before ordering the garlic parmesan wings again. they came back very dry and tasting more of Teriyaki than garlic, although it was clearly what it was supposed to be because they sprinkled parmesan cheese on top.
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