Last day in Rome/start of cruise
Trip Start Oct 03, 2005
13Trip End Oct 18, 2005
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
We met up outside and returned to the hotel in a taxi. We arrived right at noon, which was when the shuttle driver was supposed to be picking us up. So we flew up to our rooms to fling everything in the suitcases, check out and return to the entrance for our driver. Thankfully he wasn't there so we waited. And waited. The arrangement was that the driver would pick us up first, then proceed to another hotel to pick up 5 more people with their luggage to take us to the port. We waited some more. The head bellhop outside was very helpful in placing phone calls to the shuttle service trying to determine if we indeed had a ride or needed to make other plans immediately. After an hour and several more phone calls, not to mention some nail-biting, we learned that the driver found it more convenient to pick up the other group first, then come for us on the way to the port. If we had known that, we could have saved at least 6 headaches.
We were finally on our way, and the ride to the port lasted almost an hour. Rain in Rome means the streets get even more clogged with traffic, if there can be such a thing. I think we were all relieved once we were able to get to open highway. Embarkation was smooth, easy and quick. Before we knew it, we were on the ship, greeted with a flute of champagne, and led to our cabin
After the muster drill, we met up with our Cruise Critic online buddies at the Martini Bar. We'd been chatting with these folks for a few months and now we could finally meet face-to-face. Tomorrow we'll see exactly how many people's faces and names we can put together since everyone will have changed clothes.
We somehow were not assigned a table for dinner, but managed to find another couple, Nick & Cheryl (St. Louis MO), who were in the same predicament. With a reserved table and dining companions, we thoroughly enjoyed our first evening meal on board. I had shrimp cocktail for an appetizer, a spinach salad, sumptuous parmesan chicken breast with sautéed carrots, pea pods and potato. It was hard to pick a dessert from the tray the waiter presented, but I decided on an apple something that was like a miniature pie with vanilla sauce and a few blueberries.
After dinner we wandered through the shop area and had to find out why one particular shop was overflowing with shoppers madly dashing about. It was a clearance sale of all mediterranean-themed merchandise since this is the last cruise of the season. John picked up a Celebrity Cruises windbreaker and I got a pullover sweatshirt that says Mediterranean, and a t-shirt that lists our ports of call.
We finally called it a night and set the alarm clocks for early morning.