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NCL Sun Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, Cozumel George Town - Canceled Due to Bad Weather

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2003 Date: 3/17/2003

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Email: greg@cruisingreview.com

TEL: 608-238-6001

Grand Cayman Canceled Due to Weather

Newsletter Front

We arrived at Grand Cayman at 8:00am as scheduled, but the seas were running 17-20 feet, and wind was blowing from the south at 30 knots. Since the ship anchors out of the port, tenders must be used to get to the island, and when the seas are running high, it makes this a unsafe activity, so the ship pointed west, southwest for Roatan at about half speed. It's a blustery day outside, hazy, but the Sun is still peeking through. I'm amazed at how much the ship is not rolling, so the stabilizers are working quite well. Generally in heavy seas, a slower speed also helps to steady the ride. Ships position: 19 deg. N, 81 deg W. The distance covered to Grand Cayman was about 665 nautical miles. Ship speed 8 knots. 77 deg. F. Sea temperature is 75 deg. Sunrise 6:33. Sunset 6:50

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Afternoon

Newsletter Back

As the afternoon progressed the winds actually increased and ranged from a steady 30-35 knots, which is a pretty good blow. The sea's were running up to 20 feet at times, but the ships stabilizers did a good job. I would say about 25-40% of the people I talked to could really feel the ship move, and most of those were taking some of the free anti-sea sickness pills or patches.

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Latitudes Cocktail Party

At 3:30pm went to the Latitudes Cocktail Party in the Observation Lounge we we all got to meet the staff. Oddly enough, there's a sign now that indicates to the passengers that it is not customary to shake hands (to prevent any spread of germs after the Norwalk Virus outbreaks on Carnival ships). There is a noticeable effort to inform people to wash hands regularly, and moist towelettes are provided at meals in the Great Outdoor Cafe. By late afternoon the winds and seas were calming a bit, and the restless ocean seemed to be subsiding. I love the rocking motion of the ship, as gradual as it is. It's very rhythmic and relaxing. I was surprised that more people weren't commenting on our missed port. Granted, it was a weather problem, but nobody seemed upset. The staff had to work extra hard, since normally this would be an afternoon off, and at the last minute, they had to prepare new onboard activities for the passengers. The social staff did a good job, but most were content on finding their own little niches on the ship, like sun tanning, or just watching the wind blow the waves into sets as the ship glided by.

Evening Cocktail Party

The Captain hosted a VIP cocktail party at 6:30pm with strawberry gilded champagne and a huge blue-backlit ice sculpture. I personally love these ice sculptures, but they seem to be going out of vogue on most ships. Granted, they take an enormous amount of staff time to produce, but they have a lovely glow about them, and the shape slowly convolutes as time passes, like a metamorphosing like a living sand hourglass.

Dinner at Seven Seas

At the back of the ship on Deck 5 is the Seven Seas Restaurant we had a good dinner. The conch fritters were my favorite part of dinner. The food in the non-reservation (i.e. nonpaying) restaurants is as good or a step up from most cruise lines. However, the difference between the reservation restaurants is like night and day. I'm still holding judgment on the "Freestyle" type cruising, but I can tell you now that I don't like to pay for a dinner once I'm on a ship. Drinks are one thing, but the food should be included.

Caribbean Night

Piano Bar

It was Caribbean Night (and St. Patricks Day) on the boat, and at the Pool Deck (Deck 11) there was a outdoor party with a live band and activities. The event started at a late 10:45pm, but I was so tired from not doing anything all day (and the cocktail parties earlier) that I decided to retire for the evening, and work on my review. The nice thing about having a balcony was that I could enjoy the beautiful Moon as it graced the windswept Caribbean. Since it was a full Moon, the reflection off the water was spectacular. The air outside was very humid, and while there were no clouds, there was a distinct haze all around. The sea in this region has a definite tropical aroma to it, that is just wonderful. It's not something you find in more temperate waters. The ships log for 11:30pm was calling for slight seas at 1.5-4 feet, wind speed 23 knots (Force Six) and 906 miles sailed so far, distance today 243 nautical miles, and 124 miles to go. 17 deg. north and 84 deg. west longitude. Outside air temperature was 80 degrees F. Ship speed 15 knots. In case your wondering where I get all this information, the room cable TV has one channel devoted to ship information, which is produced from an automated software program called This evening we cross a time zone change, to one hour back. What turned out to be a weekly tradition was going down to the Windjammer Bar after dinner for some martini's while listening to the very talented Roger Hernandez. Roger played every night on both the guitar and piano.

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Roger Hernandez

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