In the couple hours after my boss asked me to go on the Global Peering Forum cruise, I got catsitting organized (thanks Melanie!), my flight to Ft Lauderdale booked, a rollaway bed in my co-worker's room organized for Friday night, and all the details printed out to take with me. I didn't leave work until about 6:15 since there was so much to settle before I left, and as I left one more thing came in that I needed to get together before Monday morning - ack! I promised I'd work on it at home, since I also needed to get home to pack.
As I drove up my street, realizing it was garbage night, I remembered that this is my week for the citywide clean up for all the stuff you're not allowed to set out in your normal trash, which meant I was not supposed to set my stuff on the curb until Saturday morning, but they'd be done before I got back from the cruise, so I set out the 4 old non-working Mac Classics (waah!), two big scratching posts, the papier-mache Enterprise-E (waah again), and the iridescent fairy wings that were never worn. Talk about the end of an era! ;)
Aside from the general housekeeping like the litter box, doing the dishes & other things, which took long enough, I was nowhere near ready for summer! Spring yes, but summer no! I don't really have shorts that fit very well, and my bathing suits are also old, so even though my pirate costume was settled, I had to try on various outfits before deciding to bring them. Needless to say, that took awhile, and since I had to leave for the airport at 6:45am, I ended up getting a 1-hour nap before my flight - ugh!
The flight from San Jose to Phoenix was fine, and I took my contacts out & dozed the whole way, but as I've learned before, my travel dozing isn't good enough sleep to feel rested. I only had an hour layover in Phoenix, which was only enough time to stand in line at Burger King, then eat my Whopper Jr at the gate, saying to myself, "This is why I reserve my burger calories for In'N'Out!" ;) Since I still had that extra work stuff to do, hoping I could email it from the hotel that night, I forced myself to work on the fight to Ft Lauderdale, but when it got really bumpy, I discovered that air turbulence & Excel don't cooperate with my stomach...blech! I wish the planes carried diet ginger ale!
Since I still hadn't had time to find an ATM & I only had $30 cash with me, I was sweating it a bit on the way that I'd have enough for the cab to the hotel, but I just made it. Donna was still in our room getting ready for the cocktail party, laughing that the room was SO small! There was a queen bed for her, but they had to scoot things around & put the rollaway bed in front of the closet! We left for the party about 8pm, with directions from the hotel staff to walk a couple blocks that way...which we did, finding nothing except a giant street party for St Paddy's Day! We found a bicycle rickshaw guy who said he knew where the Los Olas Riverhouse was, took us there, but when we got inside, the hostess said "no, you're not the first people who've ended up here, but your party is over by the Cheesecake Factory" which was of course VERY close to the hotel! Donna didn't want to walk all the way back so we took a cab. The party was okay, but not much food, and both she & I hadn't eaten anything since lunch & had very long days, so we left about 10pm & went to the Cheesecake Factory for some real food, then back to the hotel for some much-needed rest. The rollaway was not the most comfortable bed since it had been folded so much, but c'est la vie. If I hadn't already been fighting a cold and a horrible headache, most likely from the lack of sleep, it probably wouldn't have been an issue.
Since Saturday was our only morning to sleep in, we tried to, but Housekeeping knocked at 8:15. I woke up with a very thick & raw throat plus congestion, even though I had started my Zicam on Friday. I hoped maybe some sun might dry me up. ;) We got checked out & in a cab to the ship by around noon, then I stood up all day long helping with registration...I seem to be official t-shirt girl between NANOG and this trip...heh! At 4pm I took my luggage to my room since it went to Donna's room since we didn't know my room number when we had to check in, unpacked my pirate coat & my velvet dress, then it was time for the muster lifejacket drill, which meant no time for a quick nap - darn! After the mustering we were supposed to meet at 5pm for the bon voyage drinks up on the top deck, which I did, still standing, wishing I could sit down for just a little bit! ;) Then it was free drinks with good appetizers in our own cocktail party in yet another room from 7-8pm, then dinner at 8:30. The Pirates & Wenches evening was supposed to start at 10pm back up on the top deck bar, but none of us were done with dinner until about 10:15, so after changing in to costumes, it was more like 11pm before most people arrived. Lots of great costumes! Mine was a hit, and everyone was amazed I had made so much of it. There was even a Pirates team jersey, and a software pirate with burned CD-Rs on a string like a magazine of ammo draped over his shoulder. Too bad there was no contest. ;) I danced a bunch, drank only one pina colada, then I left about 1:15, which is early for me to leave a party, but the smoke was absolutely killing my already-sore throat, so I decided to cut my losses & try for some real rest so I can last the rest of the week.
After my shower & because I wasn't really that sleepy yet, I ended up with about 4 good hours of sleep since I was struggling to wake up...with no windows at all, I had no reassurance whether it was day or night! My throat was still very sore, so I kept doing Zicam, but I did make it to the sessions right on time at 9am, glad for the hot water & munchies for breakfast. We broke a little early for lunch & went to the buffet, which gave me about 45 minutes until the sessions started again, so I tried for a quick nap in the sun. By the time I found a deck chair - this ship is PACKED with people! - I only had 20 minutes left, which was probably enough at high sun for some safe color, but not enough for a restful nap. I really had to get my work stuff sent today, so when Donna left the conference room to head to the business center for wireless access, I decided I could leave too. Unfortunately, when I went to the pursers desk since I couldn't find anything obvious as a business center or Internet cafe on any of the ship maps, he said the satellite connection was down, and they wouldn't be able to try again until after 5pm. Argh! I'm afraid I'll never get this work thing sent out! :(
The ship's satellite connection was finally back up later, so after some late afternoon sun with a LOT of wind, I'm hopefully getting my work thing sent over REALLY slow wireless! Since I had written this up offline, the $0.50/minute was an easy blog update. Sorry no photos, but that would be too expensive to upload now, plus the only interesting photos so far are of Pirates & Wenches last night. ;)
Tonight is Formal Night, so I will get a photo of me in the red velvet dress if it kills me! I hope it'll look okay...Tomorrow is Ocho Rios, Jamaica, including climbing the Dunns River Falls, which I have done before, Tuesday is Grand Cayman, where I can finally swim with the stingrays, which I missed 11 years ago due to Hurrican Roxanne, then Wednesday is at sea again with meetings all day, flying back Thursday..whew!
Until next time!