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The 2012 Caribbean Cruise, part 4 of 9

The 2012 14-Day Eastern & Western Caribbean Cruise, Holland America ms Nieuw Amsterdam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Four

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

February 3 (Friday, Day 7, Costa Maya Mexico) -

Pat woke Snookums up by saying, “Wake up. It is 8:17 AM and we are meeting Judy at 8:30.” However, Snookums could tell that the ship hadn’t docked yet and since it was scheduled to dock at 8 AM, she told Pat to re-check the time. Sure enough, Pat had looked at the wrong time on her watch that shows dual times. It didn’t matter since room service breakfast had been ordered for 7:30 AM which would have woken Snookums up anyway. And, it was pouring rain.

The plan was for Snookums, Pat and Judy to leave the ship at 8:30 AM to catch a taxi to Maya Palms Resort in order to do a snorkel/beach day for $65 each (plus $40 total for the round-trip taxi). Since it was raining we weren’t in too much of a hurry to get to the cabs so instead we hit the jade store for its free gift (a worry doll from Guatemala), the silver store for its nice free silver charm of the Mayan calendar and Diamonds International for its tacky free charm. We finally waded through the puddles and found the taxi stand. We had been given explicit instructions to take a yellow taxi for $40 total and to pay when we were dropped off back at the ship in the afternoon. We told that to the driver and he was fine with it. We got in the little cab which had almost zero visibility due to the condensation on the inside of the windows and were in for an interesting ride.

A view of the sea grapes and trash at the shoreline of Maya Palms
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The 2012 Caribbean Cruise, part 3 of 9

The 2012 14-Day Eastern & Western Caribbean Cruise, Holland America ms Nieuw Amsterdam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Three

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

February 2 (Thursday, Day 6, Mahogany Bay, Honduras) -

It was pouring rain when we woke up at 8 AM. The ship was scheduled to dock at 10 AM but was delayed 15 minutes due to a squall and heavy winds. Pat and Snookums ate breakfast inside by the pool and watched the docking process and then got ready for the private guided tour that Snookums arranged with Theris Dixon for $25 per person for the day.

Shipwreck at Mahogany Bay
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The 2012 Caribbean Cruise, part 2 of 9

The 2012 14-Day Eastern & Western Caribbean Cruise, Holland America ms Nieuw Amsterdam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Two

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

January 31 (Tuesday, Day 4, At sea) -

Pat and Snookums slept in and ordered room service breakfast. While cruising within 14 nautical miles of Guantanamo Bay, Pat ate her oatmeal and Snookums had her bowl of mixed berries and a sunshine parfait (berries, plain yogurt, granola). It was around 80º, slightly cloudy and kind of windy but pretty nice on the verandah.

Then it was time for the 11 AM Caribbean Shopping Ashore Presentation. Judy is bound and determined to collect all five free Diamond International charms and now that we know the password (“I love crown of light”), we should be able to make that happen. During the 45-minute sales pitch there were various raffles as well as audience participation giveaways. At one point Gary, the shopping guide, asked if people wanted to win a Del Sol t-shirt. Snookums yelled and jumped up and was the winner. It is the size that Pat’s husband wears so he will get a Del Sol souvenir Cayman Islands t-shirt that changes to a colorful picture on the front when it is exposed to sun. Otherwise, we didn’t win any of the other raffles.

Snookums getting her free t-shirt as shown on the cabin TV
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The 2012 Caribbean Cruise, part 1 of 9

The 2012 14-Day Eastern & Western Caribbean Cruise, Holland America ms Nieuw Amsterdam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part One

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

January 28 (Saturday, Day 1, Flying to Ft. Lauderdale) -

The Itinerary

Note – Filbert isn’t on this cruise. He is attending South Dakota State University basketball games in Brookings, South Dakota and also hosting good friends of ours at home. Snookums’s cruise roommate is her sister, Pat. Pat’s husband isn’t on this cruise and neither are their seven children. Pat is ready to party!

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The 2012 Caribbean Cruise

The 2012 14-Day Eastern & Western Caribbean Cruise, Holland America ms Nieuw Amsterdam

January 28 – February 12, 2012

Text and Pictures by Snookums, Webification by Filbert

The 2012 14-Day Eastern & Western Caribbean Cruise (from Holland America)

This is the table of contents for the online version of our trip journal. Here are the chapters:

Part One - Ft. Lauderdale and Half Moon Cay

Part Two - George Town, Cayman Islands

Part Three - Mahogany Bay, Honduras

Part Four - Costa Maya, Mexico and Ft. Lauderdale

Part Five - At sea

Part Six - Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos

Part Seven - San Juan, Puerto Rico

Part Eight - St. Maarten

Part Nine - At sea and Ft. Lauderdale

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The 2011 Amazon Explorer Cruise, part 7 of 7

The 24-Day Amazon Explorer Cruise 2011, November 26–December 21, 2011, Holland America Prinsendam
Text by Snookums, Pictures by Filbert

Part Seven

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

December 11 (Sunday, Day 16, Alter do Chão, Brazil) -

A dip in the Amazon


We woke up and didn't bother to shower. We enjoyed our Sunday brunch in Lido rather than in Neptune. Snookums made an egg McMuffin and Filbert enjoyed eggs benedict. We took the tender to Alter do Chão which is 12 miles from Santarém and has a population of around 1,400. Alter do Chão is actually considered the “Caribbean of the Amazon” since it has nice white beaches and the people of Santarém flock to it on weekends. We didn't see any packed beaches and decided that the locals come in the afternoon.
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The 2011 Amazon Explorer Cruise, part 6 of 7

The 24-Day Amazon Explorer Cruise 2011, November 26–December 21, 2011, Holland America Prinsendam
Text by Snookums, Pictures by Filbert

Part Six

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

December 9 (Friday, Day 14, Manaus, Brazil) -

Manaus Opera House


We woke up, showered to get ready for a hot and humid day, had a quick breakfast and then headed out for a quick walk around Manaus. We walked to the Catedral da Matriz and continued along Avda Eduardo Ribeiro to the Palace of Justice and the Opera House. It was inaugurated in 1896 and took 15 years to build. The rubber barons were very, very wealthy and almost all of the materials were imported from Europe. The wood used for the chairs and floor were local but even it was shipped to Europe where it was carefully molded before being sent back to the jungle for installation. We had to make this a quick walk since our big event of the day was to go to the Regent Seven Seas Navigator cruise ship after it docked to meet our friend, Bill. We returned to our ship to get our laptops and then left again at 9:45 AM to go to Regent.
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The 2011 Amazon Explorer Cruise, part 5 of 7

The 24-Day Amazon Explorer Cruise 2011, November 26–December 21, 2011, Holland America Prinsendam
Text by Snookums, Pictures by Filbert

Part Five

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

December 8 (Thursday, Day 13, Manaus, Brazil) -

"A Three-Hour Tour . . ."


We woke up around 7 AM and saw that the water was the color of iced coffee, almost a dark black-gold compared to the cafe au lait “muddy” color that it sometimes is. This is because Manaus is on the Rio Negro and the muddy Amazon meets the Rio Negro to the southeast of Manaus. We passed the “Meeting of the Waters” about an hour before docking in Manaus but since we also saw it at Santarém (involving the muddy Amazon and the Rio Tapajós), we didn't wake up special for it.
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The 2011 Amazon Explorer Cruise, part 4 of 7

The 24-Day Amazon Explorer Cruise 2011, November 26–December 21, 2011, Holland America Prinsendam
Text by Snookums, Pictures by Filbert

Part Four

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

December 6 (Tuesday, Day 11, Santarém, Brazil)-

Meeting of the Waters, Santarém


We woke up and went to the gym for a 45-minute workout. Then we had a light breakfast at Neptune Lounge. We had been told that we would be able to see the “meeting of the waters” starting about one hour before we docked at Santarém so we went to the Crow's Nest to see it. It is quite impressive to see the muddy water of the Rio Amazonas (Amazon River) flow side by side with the reddish-black water of the Rio Tapajós. The two rivers flow side by side for a few miles before their waters mingle and this phenomenon can be easily seen from Santarém, a city of 200,000. After a quick lunch it was time to meet for our piranha fishing excursion.
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The 2011 Amazon Explorer Cruise, part 3 of 7

The 24-Day Amazon Explorer Cruise 2011, November 26–December 21, 2011, Holland America Prinsendam
Text by Snookums, Pictures by Filbert

Part Three

(Remember to click "read more" if you're looking at this from the main medary.com page to get the whole article!)

December 3 (Saturday, Day 8, Devil's Island, French Guiana; €1 = $1.32; $1 = €0.76) -

Snookums woke up at 9:55 and decided to run to Neptune Lounge for a sunshine parfait (minced, and NOT diced, cantaloupe topped with yogurt and granola) mixed with fresh berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries). She thought the breakfast items were taken away at 10 AM in Neptune, but she found out it's served until 10:30. She ate her yogurt mixture on the verandah and read her book. Filbert woke up and visited Neptune Lounge, too, but didn't know Snookums was on the verandah and he ate his oatmeal inside and then returned to the cabin.

Filbert saw a hammerhead shark from the cabin and another fish that he managed to photograph.

Fish