Thursday, November 19, 2015

Bahamas Cruise:Day 1

NYC Manhattan Port-Somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean
November 8th 2015

We awoke that Sunday morning and headed towards Albany, NY sometime around 3am. Our 3 hour drive to meet up with Yankee Trails shuttle to NYC and our awaiting ship The Breakaway through Norwegian.
Passports in hand and a smile on our face,,,we drove on through the dark.

 We had waited nearly a year for our very first Cruise and I was thrilled. Getting up at 3am didn't seem to hurt so much when your headed to something so wonderful.

Most of the morning was traveling. We got a little lost and had a quickie breakfast at McDonalds before we arrived in just outside of Albany.

The sun was just coming up when we got to the Yankee Trail bus depot. and saw many people lined up to board a bus. I went and asked if it was for NYC and the first people stated they were headed to Turning Stone Casino...I had to laugh as we had just come from that direction. I also thought how ironic as Turing Stone was the reason we were on this Cruise. Mark had won two tickets for the Cruise, Thanks to Turning Stone we were spending much less on our Cruise then most. (Just taxes and port fee's).
I was relieved however that there was also a line forming for a shuttle to the Norwegian Cruise out of NYC! We gathered up our things and waited for the bus to arrive.On the bus we watched some movies had a few stops, Mark napped and I read a not so good book. (You CANNOT judge a book by it's cover.).

Before long we were seeing signs of the ocean...the city skyline and there she was The Breakaway!
I was a panic when I realized our bags were not tagged correctly.....The problem was rectified and we were shuffled off the bus and into Port Authority, (NO PICTURES!!!- I tried and was screamed at!!!...well how was I suppose to know?)
The port experience was...NOT so pleasant. No we were not checked or body searched, but there was an awful lot of confusion. People were everywhere. (I am NOT good with CROWDS. little did I know there were going to be many throughout the week.)
The Breakaway is Norwegian's 2nd largest ship (1st being the Escape which is only just a few weeks old-we got to see her too.) Big Ships means BIG numbers of PEOPLE!!!! Something like 4 THOUSAND were aboard this vessel we were sailing on this trip, not including staff!!!!
There was also a lot of WAITING. (Also something I learned to deal with while on this vacation...not enough to make me NOT want to return however!)
Finally we our boarding number was called and we were stepping on just like in the Love Boat..

No Issac or Gopher to meet us...but hey, my only reference to Cruising was from that tv show I watched every weekend as a kid.
Once on the ship we headed straight to our state room to settle in and get our bearings. I was so excited!
 The room was not too small. I was certainly comfy. It had everything we could need. members of the gambling community (Not me,,,,Mark) we had a nice surprise. FREE drinks while gambling in the casino. (This little perk saved us Hundreds of dollars in beverages, but maybe we lost it back in the game playing.)
 Our key card (basically your everything while on board, you need it to board the ship/leave the ship, get meals, get into your room, have light in your room and pay for anything you may purchase on the ship.) and lucky Casino cards!!!

While in the room we also received our very first Daily news letter. Each day we were provided with the events and dining hours along with any information. 

All of our non specialty dining options were included in the Cruise. There were additional restaurants that offered meals with a price tag. We were more then satisfied with the Complementary meal options. Drinks (Soda and alcohol) were not included in the complementary prices. Drinks were NOT cheep either. I spent $10- on my only purchased alcohol beverage for the whole trip. I bought this on Day 1; my send off cocktail.
By now it was nearing 1pm and there was so much to see. We did a quick walk through of the ship before having our first meal in the Garden Buffet.
100% STARCH and FAT!!!!
A walk through the ship and a few sights to share.
The upper deck and view of  NYC skyline.

Rock climbing wall. No I did not even try...

Signature Norwegian Cruise Line logo

View of the Naval ship docked next to us. 

This was pretty cool to see too. look at the air planes on deck. This ship is clearly LARGE, and we towered it in the Breakaway.

The children's pool featuring Sponge Bob!

I got this one of Sponge Bob later in the evening,

The Grand chandler in the center of the ship. 

A playful monkey near the Cirque Du show, 

Life Boats....Very IMPORTANT!!!
 Music and entertainment was almost always going on, this band offered fun dance music as people continued to get themselves orientated to the ship.
At last there was the call of the captain speaking,...Welcoming us to the cruise and about to set sail. Drink in hand we headed to the top deck for the best views of the city behind us.

 Goodbye NY

 Up ahead of us was lovely Lady Liberty a welcome home for many and a warm send off to us as we passed.

 Moving fast now we were soon out to sea with only water, the sun and the waves in our views.
So we were off... Mark and I did a floor by floor exploration in an attempt of finding all the places we could go. Where to eat, where the entertainment was, where the CASINO is (of course) and we had player cards which entitled us to FREE drinks while in the casino,....

 Its a WINNER!!!!
Before long it was dinner time and we returned to the buffet.
 MORE Carbs.....a beer and look I had some greens covered in Dressing (I understand it is all CALORIE FREE this week.)
 Mark's meal looks a little bit more healthy.
After dinner we made our way to the Atrium and played some TRIVIA. (It was surprisingly difficult) We teamed up with another couple and all four of our brains couldn't get the correct answers....Do you know how many pigs the average American consumes in a lifetime???? Yeah I still don't know but in was somewhere in the number of 37!!!! WOW
 Off the balcony was only blackness with a few twinkling stars,
 That strip of lights may or may not be Atlantic City....
 As an evening treat we attended a performance of Fire and Ice. (Fire or maybe Ice was missing for this performance, but we did get several opportunities to watch both perform over the week. She did an amazing job singing. Mostly 70's and 80's songs and of course Tina Turner...
 We were on the upper deck for this performance.
WOW what a day. We did a few more turns at the Casino and checked out the duty and tax free stores before we headed to out state room to call it a night. Day 1 complete.