RESCUE AT SEA, 21 MAY 2013
I was walking across the pool are of the Carnival Valor cruise ship when I started to hear a really strange announcement by the crew that they had sighted a boat that may be in distress. The kept announcing that they were ‘investigating’ the matter. Everyone around me started talking about ‘Pirates’.
The story which unfolded was a truly amazing and humble tale. We were in waters to the east of Dominica and headed for Barbados to the south. The bridge had noticed a small open fishing boat with 4 men on it trying to get their attention. They were form the island of Dominica and had set out in an old and leaky boat to do some fishing for the day. Their boat had 2 engines and a small water tank in the middle to throw their live catch into. Their boat, engines and safety equipment were either in a poor state or non-existent. They had lost power to both engines and been without food, water or shade for 4 days.
As the Valor came alongside the security people wanted to make sure that they were not in fact pirates. They were issues with water and a new life vest for one of the crew. As the crew began to try and explain the situation on the boat, it started talking on a lot of water as the massive cruise ship was creating large waves. The security people on-board the Valor were finally convinced as their boat actually sank. All that was left (last photo) were their empty water and fuel containers bobbing up and down in the sea.
The journey didn’t end for these poor guys yet. They were given food, drink and medical attention. Unfortunately for them they were held in a security area. The next day they were handed over to the authorities in Barbados, now double the distance from home than when they were rescued.
The great thing is that their worried families would see their loved ones again.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) guiding International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea states: "A master of a ship at sea, which is in a position to be able to provide assistance on receiving a signal from any source that persons are in distress at sea, is bound to proceed with all speed to their assistance."
Essentially it is both ancient customer and Maritime/Admiralty Law that you must give assistance if you can to stricken ships and their crews. Sadly Princess Cruises (Star Princess) seems to have ignored this just the year before. 2 sailors died and the 3rd was not rescued for 28 days.Related to:
- Luxury Travel
- Family Travel
- Adventure Travel
BLIND DRIVERS - AND PROUD OF IT
St. George's , Grenada
Yes, the words “We drive by faith, not by sight” really are painted on the back of this large van on a very steep hill with a very narrow road. Some people say that drivers on Grenada can be a bit dangerous. This might explain it! I don’t actually know if it will reassure anyone that this is actually a Church Bus.Related to:
- Road Trip
car rental, snorkeling in St Barths
Favorite thing: it is a hilly island, but very nice and very chic. walking in city center is easy, to go elsewhere a scooter will help.
I am sure a cab hire will do this for the right price,never done it. I use the scooter or rent a mini
here more info
it gives you infor on all your questions, Ihave been there long in 2002 and before but wonderful part of my France
Fondest memory: snorkeling and driving the mini all over the islandRelated to:
- Water Sports
- Diving and Snorkeling
SUMMIT TIP - Impressive Artwork
Favorite thing: The Summit has an impressive art collection. The first thing we spotted were the beaded ladies. A series of female busts made entirely of beads can be found along one of the staircases. All of the staircases had art but these ladies are the ones you most noticed. General concensus was that you either loved or hated them. I loved them. There is also an ode to Velazquez, some other fun sculptures, a photography gallery and an actual Botero in the spa pool section.
I was impressed.Related to:
- Arts and Culture
- Luxury Travel
Vaccinations in CA
Favorite thing: I have been to Belize, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama in the past several years. Have never had any vaccinations nor any diseases that they are designed to protect you from. As always use precautions and do your own investigation. I refrain from vaccinations in general and enjoy very good health, but that is me and my choice.
Favorite thing: Hi friend,
I have actually no idea but my friend told me about that topic yesterday.I will give you the resource to find out which one is best.
The best caribbean holidays packages - http://caribbeanconnection.com/index.vm
" We're always searching for something better when everything we have is all that we need."
free mailing service for your postcards
Favorite thing: they had free mailing of your postcards and had stamps from all the islands forsale at their face value no extra charges at the customer relations desk on deck 5. This was a nice welcomed surprise to us since everything had a price on it on the ship. the only postage stamp they didn't have was one for the isle of margreata venasula but there was one of the vendors down on the dock that had a postal service box and stamps there!
Favorite thing: Everywhere we traveled the Caribbean's vivid colors caught our eye. This was especially so with the beautiful flowers growing everywhere!
Sometimes when we'd climb off the vans that carried us hither and yon, a sweet floral scent could be detected in the air.
Other times, a heady aroma would drift about us...was it hibiscus, bouganvillea or oleander--I didn't know, but the floral display was something to be appreciated.Related to:
- Family Travel
The Blue Iguana and other lizards
Favorite thing: Grand Cayman and Cozumel had friendly people, fantastic shopping and exquisite sights. They also had many lizards!
Most people traveling to the Caribbean have heard of the Blue Iguana which inhabits the island of Grand Cayman. It's thought that only 10-25 individuals still exist. These iguanas live inland in natural shrubland and along margins of canopy dry forests.
The adults are primarily terrestrial, occupying rock holes and low tree cavities, while younger species tend to be more arboreal. They can survive for decades, the last one captive in the U.S. died at 67 years of age*.
Sad to say, we didn't see the Blue Iguana. We DID see plenty of other reptiles, especially at Tulum...I've included some of those pictures here. Please see the additional photos....
*info. on the blue iguana came from www.caymanbiodiversity.comRelated to:
- Family Travel
Favorite thing: This is the port of Montego Bay. On the morning we arrived, the Liberty of the Seas drifted gently to the dock, thereby saving us a ride to its shoreline via tender.
Cruise ships arrive at either Ocho Rios, on the northern part of the island, or to Montego Bay. We were told that these two ports contain almost identical shops and attractions, so it's best to visit one or the other. However, it seems that Montego Bay has more of both.
The plantation economy dictated Jamaica's growth and now it's the most populous of the Caribbean countries. We were warned about 'hawkers' and did experience some of this, but for the most part our visit was a pleasant one.Related to:
- Family Travel
Celebrity Cruising Offers the Best of All Worlds
Favorite thing: Carefree cruising with lots of choices is what makes Celebrity a Class Act.
The cruise staff speaks of "relaxed elegance" as their bywords for dress on board the ship. Your own taste, interests, destinations will determine what you pack, but keep in mind you will need three types of clothing:
a. Casual shipboard attire of "day wear"
b. Conservative apparel for sightseeing
c. Evening Wear
For day wear, stylish resort wear is fine for both men and women. Examples would be swimsuit and cover-up, walking shorts and polo shirt, lightweight slacks or skirts, a light sweater for cooler days.
When you go ashore, remember to observe local customs. In some ports, short-shorts, halter tops, and provocative clothing are unacceptable.
You'll need evening wear for the Captain's Welcome Cocktail Party and Dinner, the Captain's Farewell Dinner, and a third formal night. You receive a daily paper that lets you know what is happening each day.
Casual nights: pants-suit or sporty outfit for women.
Sport shirt and slacks for men.
On Informal nights: dress or pants outfit for women; jacket, shirt and tie for men.
On formal night you need:
Cocktail dresses or long gown for women.
Dinner jackets and dark suits or if you want a tuxedo for men.
Fondest memory: One of my favorite memories is the night that was "formal" and included a dance.
We had pictures taken with a choice background, and I chose the "Titanic" That is the picture I had taken in a black cocktail dress..Related to:
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman Island
Favorite thing: Even though we did not swim or sunbath, we did walk the beach as well as sit on our towels to "people watch". The beach is a fascinating place to soak up the ambience.
There is every kind of activity available on the beach. Small sailboats and para-sailing are two of the most popular activities.
The sand is brilliant white and goes on forever.
Fondest memory: Many of the people on the cruise chose the Seven Mile Beach as their activity, and it included a boxed lunch, beach towel, sun-screen, and a ticket for a drink.
Some people overdid it (3-5 hours ) in the sun, and, of course, ended up sunburned and miserable.
My sister and I were there for only about half an hour, and we got plenty of sun.
But, for beach lovers, Seven Mile Beach is quite spectacular.Related to:
- Water Sports
Miami, Florida Port Excursions
Favorite thing: The last day of the cruise, we were back in Miami. My sister and I had several hours before our plan was to leave so we took advantage of the excursion choices that were offered.
1. Miami Highlights Tour
2. Everglades Safari Tour
3. South Beach & Island Queen Cruise
We had already seen the Everglades, and the South Beach & Island Queen Cruise was four hours long, and we did not have that much time. So, we took the Miami Highlights Tour.
This bus tour was through portions of downtown Miami, mainly South Beach and the Art Deco District
After a colorful tour of this trendy (and historic) area, we returned to Miami along Brickell Avenue, the financial heart of the city. We then went to the lush bohemian village of Coconut Grove.
Next, we took a drive through Coral Gables past the Biltmore Hotel, the Venetian Pool, and the Miracle Mile.
A short visit to Little Havana, and then our tour concluded at Miami International Airport. This was quite convenient for us.
Duration: 2 Hours
Fondest memory: I love architecture, so I found this tour "my cup of tea." I especially loved the Art Deco Section of South Beach, the Biltmore Hotel, and the Venetian Pool in Coral Gables.
The narration that accompanied the tour was interesting, informative, and enlightening.
What a great ending to a wonderful cruise adventure.Related to:
Tropical Flowers 2
Favorite thing: This little beauty is a Alpinia Purporata, virbant color and a beautiful flower at that. Make sure you have plenty of film or batteries and memory on hand when you go to the caribbean because you won't be able to stop taking pictures, I know I couldn't!Related to:
Favorite thing: The caribbean has some of the most beautiful flowers I have ever seen. This flower is called Lobster Claw do to it's shape I quess. There are several different type like this. I just loved taking photos of the foliage, water and the palm trees. We just love the tropics.Related to:
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