A jewel of an adventure! Day 2

When I last left you, we just settled in for the night, hoping that we would get our bags and be able to board the ship in time. None of us had a good night’s sleep. We were all worried about our bags, the air con was deafeningly loud and the beds were VERY uncomfortable.

To remind you, we stayed at the Tampa Airport/Westshore Hyatt Place. I’ve stayed at Hyatt Places before and the beds in this one was one of the worst beds I’ve ever slept in, considering it’s a 3 star hotel.

We all woke up in time for the free continental breakfast, not fully enjoying the food or the beautiful weather because we were so anxious to find out about our bags. Around 9:45am we decided to take the shuttle to the airport to wait for the bags ourselves. Clearly, they didn’t come in on the 9am flight from Miami.

When we got to the airport, we finally received a call from United Baggage Claim from a confused guy that refused to hang up because he didn’t understand that we were just a few feet away from him, costing us DOLLARS in long distance fees! We finally caught up to him and he told us the bad news. Apparently, someone removed the luggage tags on our suitcases….so they have NO IDEA where are our bags because they lost track of them.

We were…..so mad at this point. But I still held some hope. I don’t like getting upset over stuff like this. So I kept my cool and we tried to figure out where our bags might be. The Claim guy suggested we wait and see if our bags come in from Chicago so we walk over to the carousel with our fingers crossed.

After a few minutes, the carousel starts and the first bags show up. My heart was practically in my throat. Then…….WE SEE THEM!!! HALLELUJAH!!! I throw my arms up in the air as celebration as we the 3 of us (A. sat down by herself) cheered in jubilation. Our bags!!!!!!!!!! Finally!!!! Oh my gosh, we declared that we will never book American Airlines ever again as the other passengers stared at us like we were freaks. We were so happy!!!!!!!!!!! And with plenty of time to get on the ship!!!!

It turned out to be a happy story after all. What a story to tell everyone when we get home. Our adventure started right at the beginning!

We hop in a cab and head straight for the cruise terminal. I pointed out the ship as soon as I saw the RCCL logo. It was HUGE!!! As extra pixie dust, we were placed in a shorter line for the check-in. We’re so ready for the ship!

The weather was gorgeous and the check-in was a breeze. These pictures of the ship before we got on don’t describe how massive the Jewel is.

The first thing we did was head straight to our cabins to check it out. It was around 1pm when we finally got there, so our room was ready.
It was beautiful!

It was much more spacious than I expected.

I also loved these sliding shower doors.

We loved our room. There was plenty of space to pack away our suitcases and everything inside them. I didn’t even use it all! Lots of little places around the room and inside the bathroom for you to use. I loved everything.

After chilling in our room, we headed to the Windjammer to grab some grub. I had read on the boards (Cruise Critic) that most people don’t wander out to the outside seating, so that’s where we settled down! I think I only ate inside….once out of the whole trip. I loved being outside in the sunlight and fresh air.

Gosh…I’m not used to a non-thorough and extremely detailed trip report. I keep having an urge to post more pictures! But no, I’m trying to write a more condensed one, like normal people do.

After food (which was amazing and had lots of variety), we took off to explore the ship while A. went back to her room to rest.

This is the gym we spent some time in.

This is the Solarium we spent more time in. It’s the adult-only area and was great for a late night swim.

Here are some shots of the main pool. Smaller than I expected, but most people don’t swim in it anyways.


Upper deck of the pool where much sun-tanning took place.

The rock-climbing wall that YC had a chance to try out.

A mini-golf course right at the back of the ship. We took advantage of this when no one was around.

Sailing away!

The sail-away party happened right before dinner so we freshened up in our rooms and got ready for our first night in the Tides Dining Room. Dinner was fabulous with an awesome fish tapenade appetizer and our main waiter was AWESOME. Cornelius is his name and he was one of the highlights of our trip. He made us want to return to this ship just to see him again!

After dinner, we separated to have some alone time. YC and I hit the gym and enjoyed the Solarium afterward. It was fabulously empty and peaceful. The sky was so dark that you couldn’t see the waters. We also spent some time in the equally empty outside outside hot tub. The feeling of that fresh sea air going by as we soaked in the tub was pure bliss.

I read a tip on the boards that the best stargazing spot on the ship was the helipad, so that’s where we went next. When we got there, it was pure black with no lights. When I looked up it was as if the heavens opened up. It was…..incredible. It’s hard to describe how beautiful it was. I’ve been camping before, but never have I seen so many stars in the sky. It was breathtaking.

I even saw my first shooting star while gazing at the sky! It was such a magical moment. I’m glad we did it on our first night too because apparently, the gates to the helipad were supposed to be closed by 6pm but someone forgot to close it. After about 15 mins, a crew member found us and told us we weren’t supposed to be there…I’m glad we got to do it! Sure enough, the gates were closed when we checked back on other days.

This was a great start to our vacation and I hope it was a sign that it would get better!

yuki

About yuki

I'm pretty awesome.
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