It’s Day 0…. Day-oh… Day-yay-yay-oh.
Hi everybody. It’s been a long time since I’ve done a “live from.” I’m coming out of cub-reporter retirement to report from Carnival’s newest darling, the Party Grass. Ok it’s the Mardi Gras, but who wants to remember the correct spelling.
For those who have never read my musings… and babblings before, I always start my cruises as “Day 0” because it’s a seven-day cruise and the day you board really isn’t a whole day. Besides I get to start the cruise getting everyone to sing the Banana Boat Song with me. So, everybody together now… Day-oh… Day-yay-yay-oh.
As I have always promised, I’ll be bringing you the good, the bad, and the ugly of this cruise. I should add that there is rarely any ugly… if there was, I wouldn’t have done so many cruises. Just the same, I’ll tell it like I see it so you can get a feel for this cruise in general and this ship in particular.
The Party Grass is Carnivals newest darling. I love cruising on the “darlings” because Carnival staffs the ship with the best of the best. I did the US inaugural on the Breeze and July 4 return to cruising on the Horizon. Everyone of the staff… in all areas of the ship… were stellar on both of those cruises. I hope this is the same way.
At the risk of stating the obvious, this ship is big. On the July 4 Horizon cruise out of Miami, the Party Grass had not yet had its maiden cruise. So, even though the Party Grass is based in Port Canaveral, Carnival fired her up and paraded her up and down the Miami cruise port channel… just to show her off. Standing on the Horizon, it was clear that the Party Grass was big. Then when on the 50 Year Celebration cruise, I was on the Glory and we parked next to the Party Grass. Yeah… it’s big.
Boarding was simple and efficient. Of course, now that I’m Diamond, boarding is always easy. I sure am glad I didn’t have to stand in line with the massive hoards of people. I did some checking, and this ship holds about 5200 passengers at double occupancy. That means around 2600 cabins… WOW! And, since there appears to be a lot of kids, I suspect there will be over 6000 passengers on the ship. I sure am glad I didn’t have to stand in line with the hoards.
I should mention that if you haven’t cruised in a while, they no longer give you your “sail & sign” card when you process in. Instead, your cards will be waiting for you at your cabin. Until you get to your cabin, you use the boarding paperwork to buy drinks… perhaps a frozen concoction to help you hang on.
Per usual practice, the big doors to all the cabins are shut with big signs saying, “Cabins will be ready at 1:30.” Throughout the morning the Cruise Director, Lee, also announced the cabins won’t be ready for a while, so everyone should go to their mustard station, and then to the Lido deck for some food and liquid refreshment. About every 30 minutes there was another announcement about going to mustard stations. So, the hoards slog their carry on all over the ship looking for booze, food, and of course mustard.
Psssssst! Don’t tell anybody I told you, but in reality, most of the cabins are ready way before 1:30. Chances are if you go to your cabin, you can get in and drop off all that carry on stuff. Just open those big doors yourself, find your cabin and get rid of all the stuff… and booze you’ve smuggled on board. As I mentioned, your sail & sign cards will be at your cabin, so you do chance it that they won’t be there if you go to your cabin early. In my six cruises since “return to cruising” there has only been one time the cards weren’t there… and I always board early.
That’s all for now. This is the Party Grass and it’s time to get this party started.
Kokomo Man – Cub Reporter.