Monday, October 20, 2008

Cruise Chronicles, Part 4: Freeport, Bahamas

So on our last full day of cruising, we woke up, looked out the window and saw a very bleak looking Freeport (so bleak in fact I didn't take a photo). We got dressed, had a leisurely breakfast (which included a yummy cheese danish for me), gathered our things, and disembarked. We waited for the bus that would take us to where the glass-bottom boat was docked, and after boarding the bus we drove 30 minutes to Count Basie Square. During this time it rained, so when we arrived we ran for shelter until it stopped, and then the crew of the boat dried it up.

While we waited we saw a conch stand selling conch salad. Now I had been told conch salad is the food to try, and here was another opportunity to try it (remember the restaurant had been out the day before)...and I thought about trying it....until I watched the man cut it out of the shell...still moving... and start slicing and dicing it up for salad. I could have hurled.

Until I looked away, down at the water right behind the stand, and saw this amazingly clear water, where we could see tropical fish darting THAT'S why I wanted to go to the Caribbean!

We boarded the boat, settled in, and set off for fish viewing. At first we didn't see too much (while we were moving), but when we slowed down, we saw hundreds of beautiful made me want to dive in with them! The ride was really rough though, with the boat dramatically pitching back and forth. And while Little Man was saying, "Whee," over and over there were some ladies who were laid out sick (they actually clapped when the captain said we were heading back). We stopped at two different locations, one where the water was only a few feet deeper than the boat, and one at a wreck. At the first stop we had an opportunity to feed fish slices of bread, and it was amazing to see these schools of fish jumping out of the water to get some. They ate it as quickly as we could throw it. When we moved to the wreck we saw a boat with divers, and then we saw through the bottom of the boat at least 10 sharks swimming around where the divers were going to be headed. Freaky! We threw bread out here and were in awe when a shark breached the water taking a slice of bread with him (or her). The last 2 minutes of the boat trip also proved exciting as Little Man suddenly realized he had to pee, and couldn't hold it to get to the boat's bathroom, and peed on himself right there on the bench. Luckily some fellow passengers had a towel they let us use, but Little Man was really sad when I didn't have anything to change him into and he had to walk around wet.

After we got back we had a few minutes to shop for souvenirs (I found a hand-woven bag), and then we tried to get on our return bus. But there wasn't enough room, so the bus driver hired a van for us and a few other people. We were worried we weren't going to get back to the ship in time, and so we got in and were immediately bombarded by a horrendous smell. A combination of rotten food and stinky back-side! Little Man, me and another woman (all of us lucky to get window seats) stuck our heads to the windows while one woman brought her shirt over her head. One man got in last minute, made a funny face at the smell and said something to the driver before we set off. We drove a couple of minutes back the way we had come when the lady driver veered sharply into a gas station. She told us she had to fix her tire. One of the guys closer up front said,"I thought y'all was kidding," and I looked out and we were riding on the rim of our front right tire. She pumped it full of air and tore off again to get us to the ship on time (right at the last minute). As we got out of the van, Little Man shook his head and said, "Something stinky's in there," and I tell you, truer words may never have been spoken.

That night after a low-key dinner, Little Man went to Camp Carnival one last time and Hubby and I packed and left our luggage outside of our room before going dancing. Then we went to a comedy show before picking Little Man up later in the night from Camp Carnival (which made me feel really bad since we never do that). We turned in, aided by the exaggerated movements of the now-fast-moving ship, and, I'll admit, for me by the adult beverages I had while out on the ship. The next morning we got up, Little Man and Hubby went to breakfast while I S-L-O-W-L-Y got up and dressed and finished packing. Then we waited for our turn to disembark and begin the process of reentering the U.S.

But before we said good-bye to our stateroom, I took a picture of Little Man and his favorite place to watch the water.


Sinéad said...

ugh, live conch salad. No way I could have eaten that either! I love your pic of Little Man watching the water. It's really lovely.

Connie said...

What was that smell? Love the last photo!

Anonymous said...

Oh, the pictures and the stories...what wonderful memories y'all will have. The water is the most wonderful thing to really does exist! The glass bottom boat trip must have been the absolute best! I will miss logging on to check out "cruise chronicles" Love to all.
Grandma North