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Everything posted by pinotlover

  1. I wear a hat regularly. I wear a hat to play golf, mow or work in the yard, keep the sun out of my eyes and not burn my head. I remove them indoors and always at meals. If you don’t like the hat, or never wear one fine, mine is ok and I like the price!
  2. Each to their own. For those that wear jackets or blazers, I have seen newly acquired pins proudly displayed on those blazers. Then not so much until the next award. I have seen Diamond and Double Diamond wear theirs regularly. When 80% of the ship are repeaters, perhaps the blue pin doesn’t mean as much. Afterwards, maybe more. Maybe obtaining Platinum status is a highlight of one’s entire career. They may feel more accomplished doing so than others and proudly display their pins.
  3. Only as long as you don’t forget to pack the backpack like I did for Japan, then it really came in handy. Very cool mornings so sweaters or windbreaker. Then off later into the bag. What to do with the water bottles and telephoto lenses? Into the bag. It was a saving backup!
  4. We do blind wine tastings regularly. The results can be both amusing and staggering. An easy way to discover who still has a palate and a sense of taste. A large number of the elderly learn ( if they didn’t already realize) theirs is long gone. I often do blind taste tests at the start of some of my beginner wine classes. You’d be amazed at the number of people that can’t identify blackberry juice from blueberry juice; or strawberry from cranberry. A lot of people are scared of actual blind tests because of what they quickly reveal.
  5. My often repeated advice for the newbies is to dramatically curb your expectations. Perfect example being my recent cruise where about half the ship were newbies. Continued stream of complaints and/or disappointment with the food. They had completely; hook, line, and sinker; bought into the marketing pizzazz of “ finest cuisine at sea” and had boarded with oversized expectations of what that cuisine would be. Disappointment could only result when expectations are so high. Be realistic, you’re on a ship, most often at sea, which is feeding a large number of people. The food can be very good at times, but this isn’t a Michelin star experience. Don’t come in expecting it.
  6. Finally the truth of the situation ! All the mega ships seemed to depart relatively early. We have been there on both the Marina and Vista, that didn’t depart until 8-9 Pm. In both cases, we waited until after 6 pm to take the gondola down. No crowd, easy peasy, back on board by 7. Both days we had wonderful tours, great wine tastings, and memorable days. Driving during rush hour can be a personal decision. Standing in line for a gondola at three, when the ship doesn’t leave until 8 is a personal decision. Great food in Santorini, cry me no tears if i go you choose to stand in line so to make a 6:30 dinner reservation. Like any other line that was a personal decision. We had drinks and enjoyed the moment.
  7. I believe it’s a policy issue.The table is far too small and the issue of keeping the patio door closed instead of opened up.
  8. First, let me say I agree, but then reality sits in. Has putting the three walker symbol beside shore tours even slowed down the number of people that can’t walk 50 yards from signing up and then expecting to be facilitated? Do any of the warnings about cobblestone streets and uneven pathways, and warnings about not being for those with mobility issues have much of an effect? As some believe they should be facilitated on every tour, they likewise believe the same for every dish served. The current situation is a culmination of all the “ can you put the spices on the side, I want that dish without the spices?” Have you ever tasted the disgusting sweet salsa sauce served because of all the people not wanting any spicy period? It would be a great start if Oceania would put out two different salsas. One for the NoNos and another for the rest of us. We only get the NoNo version.
  9. Simply put “ I have a great Travel Agent and know how and when to use her. Problem solved!
  10. Separate question. Did your butler do the setup on the balcony; or as for we did he set up in the cabin and we took our food out as we ssw fit?
  11. Not sure for a PH if the butler will do a balcony setup. He set ours up on the indoor table and we carried outside as we desired. Talk to your butler.
  12. You underestimate the number of NoNos aboard that demand bland. No salt, no pepper, no garlic, no onions, no peppers , no oregano, no basil, no herbs or green things at all, no spices, NoNo! Just go ashore any where in Japan and have the miso soup. Then have it aboard ship. Miso has flavor, why not on the ship? NoNos demand bland. What great steak house have you been to that prepares your main course with zero seasoning, just a cooked piece of meat?
  13. We did a private tour. Our guide knew exactly where we’d be. No issues, wonderful day, great tour, great lunch of fresh oysters 5 ways which is a local specialty.
  14. On the Riviera, in Waves, they offer pizza from the oven by the slice at lunch. These are made with a couple of selections. At dinner, one can order whole pizza from a different menu or place a specialty order. All of this different from the horrid things served in the Terrace.
  15. A great pizza is built by : 1. The crust; 2. Quality of the sauce; 3. Quality of the ingredients. While O does fine with the crust normally, they fall miserably with the sauce. Made to satisfy the NoNos , it’s bland and uninspiring. Totally omitting many of the herbs and spices normally found with quality pizzas leaves that grocery store effect mentioned above. Clo, as the name of a tv series implies “ Curb your enthusiasm “. The pizzas are OK, but nothing to get excited about.
  16. Our Tea infused sea bass in Red Ginger was likewise great. I also ordered the other sea bass dish as it claimed to be tempura. What an insult to the term ‘tempura “. It was thick greasy dough , much like American Captain D’s or Long John Silvers, and had zero seasoning with a very bland dipping sauce. A bland fish and chips masquerading as tempura. Making it equally insulting was we were in Japan where tempura is done so wonderfully. So for us the Red Ginger was 50/50. Great meal and a very poor one.
  17. Hank; Food being Bland and boring was an issue on our cruise also. Expect for the cheerleaders to assault you claiming every meal is excellent and every bite succulent, because as you know tastes are subjective! 🙄
  18. Marketing by someone wanting to sell blue jeans! Reminds me of the recent marketing gimmick of trying to sell dress joga pants, or if the dress sweat suits of old! Marketing by someone with something to sell.
  19. Consider looking at the very first thread on this Forum entitled “ Oceania Free Shuttles”.
  20. Did it ever, during the duration of the entire cruise, come to the OP’s mind to query their room attendant? 🙄
  21. We booked Singapore-Sidney, then Sidney-Papette on Riviera. Mostly new ports for us with just a few repeats, but hey, I can always revisit Bora Bora with out being bored! Been to Singapore once and needed much more time than a day tour allowed. We’ll fly into Singapore several days early pre cruise and finally do Singapore right!
  22. Public transport, such as subways and buses, are readily available, inexpensive, and easy to use. Some of our private tours were a combo of those methods along with cabs. Most do NOT take credit cards, including some of the cabs. Money conversions are mandatory. No the ticket machines won’t take US dollars.
  23. Guess this horse has been beaten to near death. As a former Army officer, “being at the appointed place of duty at the appointed time “ is firmly ingrained so we show up on time. However, it all suffers from “ Hurry Up and Wait”. People getting there at 6:40 to have a very short line versus those at 6:30 standing in a longer line aren’t really late. If everyone shows up at 6:30 or before, seating will not happen any quicker. It would just create a larger mob at 6:30. However, just like Boardamania, some enjoy lines as social time.
  24. One will often find a goodly portion of those reading in the library with their eyes closed and mouth open. 😇
  25. I can understand your position fully. Do likewise find the people with 1:00 and later boarding times that show up at 11:00 , or before, as being equally rude?
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