Author Topic: Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017  (Read 74 times)

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Carolyn Jane

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Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017
« on: December 13, 2017, 09:59:10 AM »
Elation 2017
Carnival Elation Dec. 11-16 2017

12 Dec. 2017.  At Sea.  I was too tired last night to start this, but I have a few minutes before I get dressed up for Elegant Night. 
We were on the road yesterday by 9:40 and it took two hours to drive the 117.4 miles to Jacksonville port.  Traffic was not bad.  The slowest part was once we got turned into the port, the wait to get past security (show boarding pass and ID) and then to get into the parking lot.  The off-site lot across the street seemed to be doing a good business.   We parked pretty close in, right at the end of a handicapped aisle.  Big space, but no HC sign, so we parked.  Pulled our carryons along into the terminal.  Porters kept wanting to check our bags, but no.  Temp was about 55 degrees F. when we arrived.  Sunny day.

We went in the priority entrance and  had out passes checked, then to security.  Not reall happy about the brusque lady there, first port in a long time I have had to take out the laptop.  We got into the checkin line, and the priority lounge was backed up so they took several of us to the head of the regular line.  Checkin was fast, headed to board, got picture taken.  Then onto the ship.  No sloping gangway here.  There is a gangway that is not used because it was made for the Holiday class, and apparently isn't adjustable.  Not sure how they did it when Miracle was here.

Came aboard and found our cabin.  We are on Main deck (5, but second passenger deck) pretty far forward, a porthole cabin classed as inside.  I haven't been in one like it before, they are odd shaped in this area.  It's roomy, but not sure what they rearranged when they had drydock.  We are not able to put the beds into an L configuration, as there is only one nightstand.   There is a corner by the bath that usually has a chair, but there is not one.  There are two large closets and between the closets and the door is a set of shelves, with the safe on one.  Two shallow drawers on the bottom.  These cabins used to have four drawers at the desk, but now there is one drawer and a small fridge.  And the one drawer has a hairdryer in it.  There are two US electrical sockets at the desk, and one EU plug.  Two USB ports for each bed.  One set by the portholes, and the other set at the desk.  WE brought some Christmas lights that attach to glass by suction cups and are usb powered.  One is stuck to the bathroom mirror and serves as our nightlight.  It is using a powerpack.  We have another attached to the vanity mirror.  We also have two little Christmas trees and I think we will take one to supper tonight.

We unpacked and then went topside seeking sustenance.  We settled for salad.  I hate a havey midday meal.  Then it was back to the cabin to try for a nap but although we tried mightily, there were too many announcements.  Muster drill went well - they actually scanned us in.  They read a list of names who were missing and if they didn't get scanned in later, they would be contacted...  Much more organized than the last few Carnival cruises.  We watched the sailaway in our cabin on the TV bow cam.  We have a lovely large TV, too bad we don't watch anything but the bow cam. 

I noted that they have rearranged some things in the buffet.  I understand from others that there is more bling about than there was, but it has been 10 years since I spent 10 days on Elation, so I don't remember...There are a lot of childrenn onboard, although many are pre-school age.  Some areas have not been refurbed - the chairs in the poano bar, for one.  Some of the chairs in the library also. 

We have early seating and are seated at a four top, right next to a six top.  There was noone at the 6 top, but we have two tablemates, brothers in our age group.  Pete is 72 and has been widowed 5 months.  His brother Stuart is younger and married but this is baking season for his wife, so she stayed home.  We had quite lively conversation.  They said they will not be there tonight as they don't dress up.  Heck, they could have come tonight is what they were wearing. 

After dinner, we wandered the shops and sat in the library until the piano bar opened.  There were lots of people in and out of the library, picking out books and playing table/board games.  It's a nice space.  Carnival had even larger libraries on Holiday class, they shrunk a bit on Fantasy class, and is much smaller on Splendor.  The library on Pride was nice, not as large as this, though and not centrally located.  On Conquest class it is kind of hidden, too.    The Piano Bar was crowded when it opened as the CD was leading Name that Tune at 9pm.  We knew most of the songs.  Things started to thin out after that.  By the time the pianist took a break it was nearly empty.  The pianist is a young lady from South Africa, only 'in this country' ten days.  She is good but I don't think she has figured out the right genre yet. 
Time to dress for dinner. 
13 Dec. 2017.  Wednesday.  Half Moon Cay.  Weather looks nice, although it may be a bit cooler than I would like for swimming, but it is Mary's first successful viait to HMC.  We have constant noise fron the thrusters below us. 
Yesterday we relaxed and explored the ship.  Made it up to the 14th and 15th decks.  14 is where the new junior suites are, and 15 is just a flat area above it.  No idea what they will do with it in the future.  We went to Sea Day brunch.  I had an early nap and went to afternoon tea to meet Marshawk, one of the Cruise Critic members on board.  She travels with stupid bear, which had belonged to her father, who also liked to travel.  Essie and I had a date to meet him.  They exchanged hugs and air kisses. 
Carnival has no imagination with tea.  There were three choices: regular, decaf and green tea.  I chose green.  There were various cakes, but with dinner looming I only had cucumber sandwiches.  I came back to the cabin and found Mary out.  When she returned, she had found a snack - ice cream.  Her blood sugar required feeding, and she was too late for the lunch buffet and the lines for pizza and deli were too long.  As was Guy's burgers.  She had visited the Spa and made an appointment for 8:15 that evening for acupuncture.  She has been having hip problems, arthritis, probably needs a replacement but the Bone & Joint people gave her a shot last week and will see her again in Jan.  Don't think the shot is doing it for her. 
WE dressed and went to dinner.  We had tablemates at the six top beside us.  All first timers.  A couple and four young people, one middle school child.  I think the others were old enough to drink.  The dad had three entrees and finished them all.  The waiters danced to Celebration and dinner was over.  We visited the shops and then she went off to the spa and I went to the show.  It was Divas, a Playlist Production, and the third time I had seen it  Three different ships.  I still only recognized two of the songs.  If it is on the next ship, I doubt I'll go.  Tonight is Heart of Soul.  We saw that one before, and didn't think it was very 'soul'.  Problem is that the piano bar doesn't start until 10pm on show nights.  I sat and watched people coming out of the comedy show, and then went to the piano bar and found Mary, drinking her Coke and reading.  I had a frozed strawberry margarita.  She had made two more appts. for acupuncture and one massage.  I guess she is the one spending money on this cruise. 
They are calling tender ticket numbers so I guess our visit this time is a go.  We are in no hurry, although we do not need a ticket, just go to the piano bar to be escorted to the tender.  But by the time we go ashore they probably won't be calling ticket numbers any more. 

Carolyn Jane

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Re: Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2017, 11:54:02 PM »
We had an interesting day on HMC.  We didn't go ashore until noon.  I had to get Mary up from her first nap...  Don't think she was feeling 100%.  Weather nice and sunny 75 with a breeze.  We wandered past the shops (straw market type) and on to the BBQ pavilion where we had brunch.  Watched the free range chickens try to cadge tidbits.  Heard the alpha male crowing a few times.  Then we found our way down to the beach.  We located chairs just to the left of the pirate ship bar, and I went in to test the water.  I went in twice, just got wet to the waist.  The water wasn't particularly cold, warmish as you got used to it, but there was the breeze...  Mary only went in to her ankles.  She doesn't really like sea water because it leaves you feeling sticky.  If she had mentioned that earlier, I could have pointed her in the direction of the showers.  We then got busy with Essie and Lizzie, in their swimsuits and inner tube floaties.  The ship photographer was coming around, and we thought about pictures, but then saw she was with Kevin, the CD, and he had on a 'shirt' that looked like good muscles.  They spotted us, so we have pictures to find of use, him, and the girls.  Should be interesting. 
Mary came back to the ship before I did, not wanting to get sunburned.  I stayed longer to dry out a bit and warm up.  I was back to the ship before 3pm.  HMC has changed/grown since I was there last, probably in 2010 (Westerdam)?  They built the pirate ship bar, and colorful two storey villas.  I think they added the drink stations to the buffet.  The walkway has brick pavers I don't remember.  Don't remember the kids play area, either, and the basketball court is paved...  The entertainment leader was located on the pirate ship, and they had the hairy chest contest there, dancing on the beach, and then the limbo contest.  They had three winners....she said she didn't think she had ever had them go as low as they did.  I wasn't close enough to see how low.  I think one was a woman, and two were kids. 
Everyone deserted us tonight at dinner so it went pretty fast.  We declined dessert, went forward and browsed the shops until Mary headed off for her second treatment.  I wandered the shops again and priced a few items, then headed for the atrium where I could observe Music trivis of the 80s.  I'm not good at all, only recognized the inttro of one song.  The 80's and 90's are a lost period of popular music for me.  Tomorrow night is 90's. 
I finished the night in the Piano Bar, nursing my diet Coke with a twist of lime.  It wasn't particularly busy, the the crowd there was active.  She did Piano Man and all around the piano on the stools linked arms and swayed.  She said she had good news today that she had been approved for two more ships, Fascination and Splendor.  So now I have to find out if she will be on Splendor when we are. 
Nassau tomorrow.

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Re: Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2017, 11:54:02 PM »

Carolyn Jane

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Re: Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2017, 08:23:53 AM »
14 Dec. 2017.  Thursday, Nassau.    We were on time to Nassau, started hearing the thrusters shortly after 7am.  Doesn't bother me, but next time I will get a forward cabin on the port side, as we had really loud constant rumbling from the tenders yesterday at HMC.  Weather was lovely, if a bit cool.  We didn't go ashore until nearly noon, just shopping, no hurry.  Got gangway picture taken on the way out.  Fortunately, we are docked in the closest slot.  Across the pier is MY Areti, 58 meters of white gloss. 
WE went through the welcome center building, closed for renovation but there doesn't seem to be any progress since the last two times we were here.  Lots of offers for rides and tours, but we knew where we were going.  Walked along the street by the harbor and ducked down an alley with lots of shops.  Dow Bay Street to EFFY, where we looked at a lot of stuff, but didn't buy.  Did collect a free bottle of water.  Back down the street to the other EFFY, where I did end up with a pendant of green amethyst to go with the ring I bought in October.  The girls were with us, welcomed, and Essie is weating the new necklace, as it doesn't go with the Christmas outfit.  She is still wearing it, dressed in one of her Christmas season outfits.
WE stopped at the Bearded Clam where we had cokes and chicken quesadilla.  The waitress there recognized us - or rather, the girls.  We stopped in a couple of other stores but mostly Mary just found a chair or stool to rest.  She is having a lot of pain with her right hip.  They laughed at me because I used to be able to out walk everyone, then I was the one lagging behind.  I seem to be leading the pack again.   Mary went ahead of me back to the ship, but I caught up with her resting on a bench.  On board, I went topside to take pictures and she crawled in for a nap.  We managed a bit until the thrusters started up to get us out from the dock. 
We were abandoned again at dinner.  I suppose they will all show up tomorrow night.  After dinner, we headed for the shops, but the jewelry store was packed for the nightly giveaway.  We went looking for a place to sit until Mary had to go to her spa appt.  I went back and browsed the not empty shops, and bought two t-shirts.  Then I headed aft looking for a place to sit and some music, and found Thurday Night Football in the Gatsby lounge outside the Cole Porter Lounge where they were showing a movie.   I stayed there until half time.  Returning to the cabin, I found it on the cabin TV and we are watching.

A gingerbread village has appeared outside Gatsby's.  They were busy today!  It will be lighted, maybe tomorrow.  A sea day, but lots going on. 

Carolyn Jane

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Re: Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2017, 11:35:18 PM »
15 Dec. 2017.  At Sea.  Friday.  I was up about 8:30.  You can't escape the CD making announcements.  Other than that, he wasn't a bad CD.  I did a little computing, then did most of my packing before going  for breakfast.  I wandered around taking pictures, then went to the debarkation briefing.  Only different thing about Elation is that they feel is is dangerous for people to be trying to cart their suitcases down the stairs, so they only allow you to use the elevators, and not the forward elevators (nearest to us).  Only the people on Grand Deck 14 can use those, because they are the only elevators that go to 14 (the new deck of cabins).  Then I took some more pictures, and returned to the cabin for a short nap.  Interrupted by announcements.
I went to the Christmas program, which was a couple of numbers by the Playlist performers, then they had the oldest Camp Ocean group on stage where they performed a dance the had rehearsed and sang.  Then they got the next younger group up, and they sang three songs.  The counselors went around to each child with the mic, and one little girl, perhaps four, really loved singing into the mic.  They led the youngest group up on stage and on the way they put ornaments on one of the trees.  The CD told them the 'story' of Frosty the Snowman and they had 'snow' on the stage.  One little boy rand out to where it was coming down the threw his arms out and danced around.  I wonder if he thought it would be real snow...They quickly retrieved him...The Grinch came out and returned Kevin's favorite ornament and the captain's hat...  Then crew members filed in, stood in the aisles with battery candles and sang Silent Night.   
I came back to the cabin and changed into what I would wear for the evening, and tomorrow.  I went to the Diamond/Platinum reception, where I had a glass of red wind and a small pork slider.  The other snacks were one with shrimp and a sushi offering.  I don't eat either, so this didn't spoin my appetite.  Then I went to the atrium where they were having the ugly Christmas sweater contest, sanf some seasonal songs, and it was going to snow in the atrium, but by then it was past time to head for the dining room.   I ran into Mary on the way to the dining room.  Our male dining companions were not there...only one night for them.  Two of the folk from the next table were there, one of the young men and the girl who is his fiancee.  We had some nice conversation.
After dinner we went to the show, Epic Rock.  We have seen it before, but not recently.  After that it was 90's music trivia in the atrium, and it went on and on, so the piano bar was late starting, as it is right on the atrium.  We stayed there until near 11pm.  Back to the cabin to finish up packing. 
I think there has been a more balanced mixture of ages on this cruise.  Not a whole lot of children - I did see one boy with a large textbook doing homework.  Lots of young adults, though.  Not so elderly heavy as many of our recent cruises have been.  And many of those in the age group between your adults and elderly looked to be parents of some of the yourg adults.  I guess many were cruising now because between our Thanksgiving and Christmas is one of the cheapest times.
They were having Hannukah services somewhere onboard.  Kevin was a stickler about lighting candles at sundown.  Yesterday it was at 1722, and today he was late to the diamond party because sunset today was 1713. 
Debarkation tomorrow.  The thrusters will wake us early.  No need for an alarm.   thumbdn

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Re: Carnival Elation to Bahamas Dec. 11-16, 2017
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2017, 11:35:18 PM »