Skip to comments.FReeps Ahoy 4 - Caribbean Cruise - Thread II
Posted on 03/05/2006 8:33:11 AM PST by DoughtyOne
The picture-postcard beaches of white sand and aquamarine sea, the harbor bay studded with colorful catamarans, the jumble of cascading bougainvillas.......the senses are heightened.
Caneel Bay boasts several jewel-like beaches, among them Honeymoon, Caneel, Little Caneel, Paradise, Turtle Bay and Hawksnest.
The panoramic sweep of Turtle Bay is truly breathtaking. Any residual tension you may have carried with you from home is swept away as you take in the view, idly sipping a tropical beverage while contemplating the endless horizon of the tranquil Caribbean Sea.
St. John is the most picturesque of the U. S. Virgin Islands. It's one of my most favorite "beach and swim" places on earth. I like to sit on Cinammon Beach and just look! My feeble words can't do justice to the vista and the resulting feeling of calm which overtakes the viewer.
There are several sightseeing and beach/swim/snorkel tours of St. John which will start at the dock area. The info is in your packet.
If you sign on for one of these tours, you'll have the opportunity to see all this beauty right before your very eyes.
Why just look at the photos and wish you were sitting on one of these beaches with our gemutlichkeit freeper band of brethern and sistern?
All things bright and beautiful can and will be yours personally on this cruise. Freepmail your ol' Bahama Mama at "MinuteGal" and find out how you can still sign on for a terrific sea-going freep.
Don't be always stuck on droop-ed. Climb aboard with us!
...for the more adventurous, spend a few minutes traveling with the locals. You will see lots of trucks, with wooden structures for passengers, heading to and fro. It costs a dollar to ride one way from one end of the island to the other, ergo, it's a two buck ride out and back.
We walked up near the hospital, and stood with an island woman talking. She described the good placeds to visit. Since we got off and on a couple of different trucks, it was a few dollars more, but worth the trouble.
We got scared, at first, on the way back. A couple of Rasta-looking guys got in beside us. But, one pulled out his Bible, and started talking to me about Jesus. I told him I already knew Him.
"Mike" invited us to stop and spend a while for lunch, at t his mom's home. Due to ship scheduling, we had to decline, but I wish I had met him earlier!
Cruzan Rum is $2 a bottle on the Island! I bought some for S&G. I also bought a couple of litres of Scotch and Cognac (They didn't make it back to the states). One guy on our ship bought 27 cases, and had them carted back to the ship. I don't know for sure, but he said they only charge TEN PERCENT excise on the extras. He lives near Tampa (where we returned) and gives cases to people for Christmas presents!
Here's a photo I took of Blackbeards Castle... It's a time share, now!
*Duty-Free Shops The term duty-free shops confuse many travelers. Travelers often think that what they buy in duty-free shops will not be dutiable when they return home and clear customs. But this is not true. Articles sold in a duty-free shop are free of duty and taxes only for the country in which that shop is located. So if your purchases exceed your personal exemption, items you bought in a duty-free shop, whether in the United States or abroad, will almost certainly be subject to duty.
Articles sold in foreign duty free shops are subject to U.S. duty and other restrictions, for example, only one liter of liquor is duty free, but you may include these items in your personal exemption. Articles sold in duty free shops are meant to be taken out of the country. They are not meant to be used, worn, eaten, drunk, etc., in the country where you purchased them. Articles purchased in American duty-free shops are also subject to U.S. duty if you bring them into the United States. Therefore, if you buy liquor in a duty-free shop in New York before entering Canada and then bring it back into the United States, it may be subject to duty and Internal Revenue Service tax.
Not Blackbeard, BLUEBEARD! I am related to Mr. Teach!
Imported articles that cannot be claimed under the exemptions discussed above are subject to duty and tax.
After deducting your exemptions and the value of any duty-free articles, a flat rate of duty of 10 percent will be applied to the next $1,000 (fair retail value in the country of acquisition) worth of merchandise. Any dollar amounts or articles above $1,000 will be dutiable at whatever duty rate(s) apply to the merchandise.
Articles to which the flat rate of duty is applied must accompany you and must be for your personal use or for use as gifts. You can receive this flat-rate provision only once every 30 days, excluding the day of your last arrival.
Graybeard's Castle and it's for sale - cheap.
Many of my ancesters are buried in Beaufort, NC (pronounced Bofort for those from Rio Linda). My great-uncle, Rev. A.C.D. Noe*, did a lot of genealogical work, when researching the oldest Epis. Church in NC, of which he was Rector, and responsible for its rebuilding.
In our family tree are numerous Episcopal Priests, and one Edward Teach, otherwise known as "BlackBeard", the infamous pirate. He was "married" to a distant cousin (they had a child, so I'm sure they had the church's blessing :>). I guess there is a balance in there somewhere! (I'm still not sure which side I followed, but I keep my sword sharp, and cannons loaded!)
*On a visit from Uncle Alec (age 92+/- at the time), in 197?, we were woken in the middle of the night, by a loud thump from his bedroom, then some grumbling. The next morning, when he came to breakfast, he said "I've slept in beds all my life, but that's the first one that threw me". He was 97, when he passed, and his wife, Aunt Betsy, made it to 104!
Cruisers.....next week I'm putting in the order for our great keepsake name tags for FReeps Ahoy 4. They are created by freeper Gene McDonald (Seeking the Truth) and are sharp-looking as well as useful.....wait and see.
The name tags have a lovely Caribbean background with your first name, your freep name, your state, Free Republic.com, and the year 2006 printed on them. Non-freepers will have their first names only. The tags are not the pin type.....thank heavens.
Freepers staying at the Comfort Inn the night before embarkation will get their name tags then. The rest of you will receive yours on the Lido as we scarf down the Welcome Aboard buffet lunch.
I may be contacting some of you by freepmail to verify the spelling or whatever for the tags.
"What to Bring to Wear" tips will be coming here soon. I hope you all have your "to-do" lists started and will jot down notes on posted info and any hints that may be helpful to you specifically.
That's my lovely daughter-in-law in the back ground laughing at the dummies.
This includes snapping the usual shot of all of us together on the grand staircase right after dessert on one of the formal nights when we're all spiffied up.
You are hereby appointed one of our official cameramen, GB. The usual restrictions apply on photo-posting, LOL.
Does anyone have one of our group staircase photos from a previous cruise? If so, would you post it? Molly, do you still have my favorite action photo of yourself and freepers riding horses through the surf on one of the islands? Bob J, you got one or two oldie-goodie pics from past cruises?
I see only one flaw in your plan. If I am taking the picture we won't all be in the picture. Unless you want me to learn the mind boggling complexities of setting the timer. There I go with my fancy under lining again.
I'll gladly take pictures and share them with all who will provide me with an email address once we are under way. My camera has a memory chip that will hold about 150 pictures and I have a spare chip that will hold more. In addition my wife will have her camera along. As long as I can keep the batteries charged I can take pictures.
Leni, I will have my camera with two 1 gig cards. Should make over 1000 pics. I can have DD ( darling daughter) post some of them for me.
On a trip to Italy last fall we made over 2000 pics. On one 1 gig card I had five hundred fifty two pics. I do love my digital camera.
Bring a couple of sets of rechargeable batteries.
Thank you Graybeard, I always have enough new batteries with me. (after getting stuck in a place where I could not purchase more)
Remember, Jackie Kennedy got her start on the road to fame and fortune as an inquiring photographer on the streets of D.C.
Who knows what fame and fortune lurks for you after our cruise is over.
Thanks for volunteering......hugs ((((( )))))
(Take notes for your "to-do" list on what here may be helpful to you)
There are two things to note: One, don't overpack. Two, we will be in the very, very warm tropics.
LADIES, you'll live in shorts and tops every day, all day, till you dress for dinner. So bring some neutral shorts (I bring two or three white shorts only) plus a good variety of cool weight colorful tops. I bring one pair of dress white slacks and one pair of white ducks. A dressy top or two to wear with the dress slacks for the non-formal nights ("smart casual").
You may want to pack a lightweight summer pants suit or two for the non-formal nights. Formal nights, check post # 100, Thread One.
GUYS, you'll live in shorts and tops every day, all day, till you dress for dinner. Same deal as for the gals, couple neutral shorts, white ducks, nice jeans, golf shirts, discreet tank tops, tees. Even that bright Hawaiian shirt your brother-in-law gave you years ago will not be out of place.
A pair or two of summer slacks with nice open-neck sport shirts for the non-formal nights. For the two formal nights, a summer sport coat with short sleeve lightweight shirt and Rush Limbaugh tie. For the second formal night, same jacket and slacks, just change the shirt and tie. Or wear a business suit for formal night, or a tux you bring with you or one you'll rent on board.
Plot each evening out clothes-wise NOW......and bring the minimum. Same goes for our freeperettes.
SHOES, MEN......comfortable walking shoes, sneakers, sandals, thongs. Casual but dressy shoes for formal nights.
SUMMER HATS, MEN........straw, panama (panamas don't crush in suitcases), Indiana Jones hats (swoon), etc. It's an absolute MUST that you have one wide brimmed hat to protect your face from the tropical sun while walking, shopping and on the beach
Bring a tight-fitting FR baseball-type hat, vital for wearing on deck when you walk or do laps.....the wind is almost always blowing hard on deck while at sea.
Guys and gals, order your FR hat from our own Seeking the Truth's freepstuff on this forum's home page. I already have my white FR hat with a little U.S. flag on it and "Free Republic".......and I'll wear it with relish (hold the chilis).
(to be continued.....)
Lightweight robe, pj's or nightie. One of each is sufficient. House slippers not necessary. You won't wear them.
SWIMWEAR: One suit is enough if you're not doing too much of the swim bit on this cruise. If you do plan on a goodly bit of swimming in the ship's pools or at the islands' beaches, bring two suits. Because of the tropical humidity, things dry slowly on the clothes line you stretch out in the bathroom.
COVERUPS for men and women are required when walking through public rooms and hallways to and from the pool. You'll also wear a coverup tendering from the ship to the Princess Cay Beach.
For those wondering, the little islet that our beach is on is not a deep-water port, so tenders are necessary to take passengers to and fro.
Here a word to the wise is necessary. If you plan to walk the beach at Princess Cay, (which is great exercise after being on the ship so much all week) bring BEACH SHOES or old sneakers. The beach is totally beautiful, stunningly so. But the white sand holds a lot of sharp coral pieces, plus perhaps some interesting shells to collect if you walk head down and look carefully (as I love to do !). There's also small rocks washed up from the sea. Swim in the shoes if coral and other sharpies get tough on your tootsies.
I bought my beach shoes at KMart years ago, but don't think they carry them any more. Try Target or WalMart....they are inexpensive. If you can't find them, use washable old white sneakers or boat shoes.....they'll work fine. Remember to wear your beach shoes on the tender.
You will thank Bahama Mama for this beach shoe advice, trust me.
Both ladies and gents, bring JEWELRY to taste. I bring mine in a couple of nice new baggies so I can see what's in them when I open the dressing table drawer. I bring mostly inexpensive summer costume jewelry, much of it big, bold, in bright island colors. I bring some colorful fun watches, too.
Hey, gals.......bring some of your good cocktail rings and other fine jewels if you want. Don't keep them hidden in dark places at home. Wear them on formal nights and every night! Why not? Where else do you get to show these beauties off? There's a safe in every cabin and your valuables are quite safe..
HANDBAGS.......leave those hard purses at home! On embarkation day, all my pursey stuff is in baggies right on top of my carry-on duffel bag. I also have a second carry-on I'm toting so I don't need a useless purse dangling from my bod.
Fold up a good-sized, deep, pretty canvas tote in your carry-on. Look for one with tropical fish or flowers or whatever.
When you walk into your cabin, transfer your pursey stuff into the tote. Believe me, you'll use this tote all day, every day....on the ship and on shore, while shopping and while on excursions. I love a canvas (or other material) tote as I can stick my hand right down in it to grab what I want without groping around into tight cracks and crevices.
The cruise ships used to give a tote bag to every passenger, but now most of them have discontinued this little perk, more's the pity. I still have a tote bag with "Holland America" on it, but it would probably be rather bad form to carry it around on this ship, LOL.
Bring a LARGE BEACH BAG. 'Nuff said. Don't bring towels. They're provided on the ship for everything you do pool and beach-wise.
Pack a small evening bag for the formal nights. If it's the right color, it'll do for both formal nights. If not, bring two smallies.
If you feel compelled to bring a purse purse, make it lightweight, neutral color, perhaps soft straw, and roomy.
GUYS......no purses please, but a lightweight backpack comes in handy when shopping with the little lady or when on shore excursions. Many men wear unobtrusive money belts under their shirts. Today's money belts are comfortable and have room for ciggies, your key card, tip money, sunglasses, etc.
Thus concludeth our "clothes" homily for this trip. I tried to take into account the amount of clothes and weight because most of our freepers are flying in.
There's a lot of typing here, but boiled down you'll find that with these guidelines your packing should be easy and quick.....and the amount of apparel you need to wear on this trip can be minimal if you plan carefully and do some color coordinating.