San Juan and Celebrity Summit – Day 1

Beth at airport

Preparing to Take off on a Jet Plane

11/4/15 – It’s finally here.  The day Pam & I leave for our big vacation.  We have been planning this for over a year, put our deposits down in January and finally, we are heading to SeaTac airport tonight for our 10:15 PM flight.

My neighbor, Mark, is going to care for my cat Mango,  

and drive me to the airport.  He comes downstairs for some Mango instructions and asks me up for a pre-trip glass of wine.  I do some last minute packing, then head upstairs.  His wife, Lisa, is suffering from knee pain and won’t be taking the ride with us so I want to say goodbye and thank her for helping with my cat.

We got out of the house about 5 minutes later than planned, and I’m just buckling my seatbelt when my phone buzzes with a text from Pam “I’m here at the airport at the Sports Page bar by gate D4.  What??  It’s only 7:50.  I tell her I’m just leaving but being TSA pre-checked I should be joining her about 8:30.

It’s an uneventful drive, and Mark get’s me there right about 8:15 as planned.  Check my bag, through security and sitting with my first Bloody Mary in front of me just after 8:30. 
Our flight starts boarding right on time, and by 10:15 we are taxiing down the runway – on our way to sunny San Juan, Puerto Rico for 2 days before boarding Celebrity’s Summit.

(I promise better pictures in my next post.  Most of mine are being held hostage in my digital camera, I can’t find the cord)

Cruising on the Ruby Princess – Getting There

My friend, Pam, decided last year that she would like to take a cruise for her 40th birthday.  She chose the Ruby Princess because it sailed the day before her birthday and had a nice itinerary.  We hoped for a big group, but ended up with 6 of us which turned out to be a great number for doing excursions together and dining together.

Disclaimer: as soon as I left my house I went into extreme vacation mode.  I took very few pictures during this vacation which is odd for me.  Usually I have pictures of the hotel rooms from every angle, airport shots and lots of scenery.  I am hoping to get my travel mates to post some on my Perfect Paradise Vacations Facebook page so you might check there occasionally to see if they do.

I was traveling with 3 others and since our flight was at 7:30 Saturday morning we decided to stay near the airport.  We stayed at the Doubletree at Seatac and we had a really nice room (and yes, we got warm chocolate chip cookies on check in).  We had a suite – the main room had 2 queen beds, a little seating area, flat screen TV, good size closet and bathroom.  The 2nd room had a king bed, seating area, flat screen TV, and a sink – but no bathroom.  Very comfy beds, but we weren’t there for very long – just a short nights sleep.

We flew on Delta and since Dennis travels a lot for business we got to do VIP check in and boarding – I love that.  Our flights went well.  We did have a long layover inDetroit, but it gave us time to stretch our legs and get something to eat.  This is a large airport – we arrived at gate A2 and our connecting flight was at A65 or something like that.  As we were walking through the terminal my 12 year old nephew noticed that gate A55 looked like it said ass – we all got a chuckle out of that. 

We got intoFort Lauderdaleat about 10:30 Saturday night so we just had another nights sleep at our hotel.  We stayed at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina.  We are pretty sure our room was downgraded because the Oakland Raiders were staying there before their game withMiamithe following day.  Our room was tiny.  Barely room for the 2 double beds, and once we got a rollaway for my nephew we were wall to wall beds.  I did take a picture of the closet which didn’t even have room for us to put one of our suitcases in. 

The great thing about this hotel is that it is very close to the Port Everglades pier.  We dropped our checked bags and then went and did some shopping for bottled water, wine and a few things we had forgotten.  Got onboard around 1:30 I think.  Check in was very smooth, we walked right on and our rooms were ready so we dumped our carry ons and headed to the poolside bar.  We did a little wandering around the ship to sort of orient ourselves, and later in the afternoon we bumped into Pam and Rosanna and had another cocktail or two.  Enjoyed dinner in the main dining room and then some of us went out and listened to some karaoke after dinner.  It was a pretty early evening for me after all the traveling.

I booked an obstructed view room so that I could see what it was like – not bad on this ship.  What do you think?