40th birthdays only come once -- and this was the big 4 - 0 for daddy. Water-guy, boat-geek, lover-of-all-big-and-impressive-things .... means cruise vacay for the win. Ticked off that bucket list, honey! :)
Hong Kongers are lucky to have a cruise port right in the harbor. We hopped on this Royal Carribean boat right after work for a long weekend. For three days we cruised the South China Seas with ports-of-call at Sanya, China and Hue, Vietnam. Verdict? ... You decide:
:: Aboard the ship ::
It's like living on a floating village! A very shiny floating village.
There were theatres (plural!), restaurants (plural again!), pools, entertainment, and high-end shopping. Plus a coffee shop and an ice cream bar. What else does a family need? And once you pay to get on the thing, most everything else is inclusive. That means kids can walk up to the counter and ask for a sandwich or cookie - no payment necessary. I was a tad worried we'd feel restless or confined - but it wasn't that way at all. And the entire staff was peppy and super fun.
** this was our welcoming night surprise **
|the proper way to eat chocolate cake|
|ice skating show!!!!|
|music hall with a dance floor - girl channeling her great grandparents|
|mom-daughter-afternoon (mini golfer in training)|
|wait - who let the kid on the adult WALL? she's higher than any of the grown ups!|
|you show 'em, girl|
She made it to the top & rang the bell - then managed to play it cool while the crowd scooped their jaws up off the ground. :) 'atta kid!
|view from our room|
:: SANYA, CHINA ::
|Whoops - Nobody speaks English and we ditched the tour group - time to problem solve, kids! How do we get to the beach?|
Got there -- but......
|huh - a swimming area anyhow - ok, we're game!|
|it's all about the sensory when you're a preschooler|
|This required the stealth locating of an outdoor shower - more difficult to find than you'd think - which consisted of a hose and an enclosed concrete cell. Cost: $10 rmb|
:: Hue, Vietnam ::
After lots of wandering around and getting lost - we decided to lunch here in this market area before driving back to the ship. Super-local food. I had read about trying -Bun Bo Hue- the specialty here in Hue, and had my heart set on it. Bun Bo Hue we got. For pennies. From this woman:
Unfortunately, there was a bit of confusion. (Stupid American Moment.) Some of us sat at this stall, and some at the stall just to the right (the tables were less than a foot apart - we wrongly assumed it was one food stall, rather than two separate ones). The kids stood up and joined me at the table where I was sitting. This resulted in an extremely loud shouting match between the women stall owners - with all of the market vendors nearby stopping to watch the commotion. It was so unnerving - BunnyCakes even cried. Jasper had to pull a man-card and smack his hands on the table to get them to stop shouting at each other so we could eat our meal. Awkward.
Driver? Driver? Time to head back to the ship.
|sure - just have to scoot around this herd of cows first|
.... and back to Hong Kong Harbor.
|Home Sweet Home|