Day Five--Grand Cayman and Stinko Bingo

Grand Cayman Travel Blog

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Yes, were tourists. How could you tell? Margo, Jolene, & Jessi

The first tender to Grand Cayman (we couldn’t dock as their port is too shallow. We had to take a smaller boat, called a tender) was going to be at 7:30 AM. As we had nothing officially planned, we laughed at the idea of being on it, before bed last night. Our normal routine was having us take in breakfast at Topsiders each morning. That was working OK, but the food was the same and was not really great. It was good, but little things like the bacon being flat and the scrambled eggs being runny, were sometimes annoying. But, as there were a number of choices and they had pastries as well, it wasn’t hard to walk out full or even overfull.


We ended up tendering around 10:30.

Me & Margo at Jimmy's place. My 18 year old daughter had her first "legal" beer here.
Whenever you leave the ship they scan you little Key to World Card, a combination ID Card/Credit Card/Room Key. It’s the ultimate “Don’t leave home without it” card. Anyway, they keep real careful track of who is on and who is off the boat. The tendering went smooth. After being scanned, we walked onto a boat, with benches, instead of seats. It was a beautiful day, like they have all been so far, so we just soaked up the sun for the last few minutes until everyone boarded.


Once we got on Grand Cayman, which is of course foreign soil, we went through another very quick screening. It was little more than waking through a designated area. We had a map of Georgetown, the capital of Grand Cayman, so we headed to North Church Street, where a lot of the shops, plus a slice of home, Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville and the Hard Rock Café (Yeah, I know it’s British, but we have more of them then they do) were. Margo is always interested in jewelry. She is always happy to get a ring for a gift. If we were celebrating Ground Hog Day she would be hoping for a furry diamond ring. But, my girls have long since discovered that looking at jewelry is no where near as fun as getting jewelry. And as the chance of me buying them any was slim, they opted to wander the town on their own. We made plans to link up in an hour.


We wandered from store to store, but Margo was put off by the attendants. They were friendly enough, but they followed up and down the display case, like a vulture ready to pounce on you when you dropped dead from shopping exhaustion. To say Margo hated that was an understatement. For her to refuse to go into another jewelry store, was akin to Britney Spears saying “NoNo. I don’t want anymore drugs and alcohol today.” So we focused on souvenir shops instead. We linked up with the girls and took a picture or two. They wanted to head to the dock area, just to see the water. Margo and I continued walking up and down Church Street.


At this point I was feeling a bit guilty that I wasn’t learning anything about Grand Cayman. In my defense I did look into a tour, but of the two available, one was sold out, and the other was $51 per person. It didn’t seem worth $200 to learn about Georgetown. So to soften my shame, we headed to Margartiaville for some booze. You appease your guilt your way and I’ll do it mine. But we got sidetracked in the gift shop. After dropping $100 in there, all guilt was gone, so the beers I had with lunch weren’t necessary, but they tasted good anyway. As we were being served, we saw the girls wander down the street. We were seated outside, and had not taken it for granted that it was December and we were enjoying lunch in 80 degree weather. We got their attention and they came up. I bought both of my girls a drink. I was under no illusion that my baby had not had a beer or two prior to today, but I thought it worthwhile to buy her, her first legal drink. Drinking age on Grand Cayman is 18. We all sat back enjoyed the weather and the drinks.


The last tender back to the ship was at 4:30 PM. We were back before it left. It is hard to complain about a gorgeous day, but overall Grand Cayman was just OK. (Amazing how spoiled we were by the nice weather in less than three days!) I’m a bit jingoistic, (Yes. Yes. I'm a terrible person. I love my country.) so another country is going to have to go above and beyond to capture my attention. Grand Cayman offered less than Key West did, 48 hours earlier. But, to be fair we probably didn’t let the island take it's best shot. Next time.


We, or rather my daughters, did a little taking on the island.. Both daughters had made it onto the sand by the water and had gathered some shells. Kids! I told them that they shouldn’t and probably wouldn’t be allowed to take them with us. We were going to be inspected, at least casually, when leaving. But, the girls owned up to the inspector about having some shells. But, he was much more bored than concerned, so they kept them.


Back on the ship, we made a decision to skip our normal dining tonight. This would be our second shot at Lumieres. We had all agreed that this was our least favorite of the three, and we all wanted a break from the gourmet food. I suggested to Margo that we go play Bingo, before we ate. I’m not really a bingo fan, but Margo likes it. Her grandmother, who she was very close to, was a bit of a bingo nut. She passed away about nine years ago, and I thought Margo might want to play a bit in her honor. Because we both knew that if she was here on the cruise with us she wouldn’t have missed a game.


As it turned out, she might have been with us, a little. There were four games played. One of them was called Stinko Bingo. In this version the last person with not a single number called on his card wins. I was out early, but Margo’s card did not let her down, and she won $72. As we had paid $70 we were up big. In the short intermission between the third and final games they had a drawing for some photo packages, from Shutters, and four shower radios. The photo packages might have been nice. But we were not destined for those. Grandma must have helped a little, as Bailey, our Bingo leader, called either Margo’s or my raffle numbers (we had four total tickets) three times in a row. What are the odds? After the third one, we decline the prize. We only had two daughter to give these radios to. Bailey had not failed to notice our luck and asked, in a serious voice, “How many tickets do you have?” She obviously thought that somehow a mistake had been made, and we had gotten more than the two per person allotment. So we left thinking we should be in Vegas instead, and went back to our cabin.


After a little lounging around our cabin, the girls met up with us and we went up to Topsiders and had a buffet dinner. Margo and I decided we wanted to go see Twice Charmed, which was a twist on the Cinderella story. In this version, Step-Mom and the two ugly step sisters, ask their fairy Godfather (Yes, he is Italian. Why do you ask?) for help. He sends them back in time, so they can make sure Prince Charming and Cinderella don’t live happily ever after. This was a stage production, and being Disney, they did a great job. We had figured that since we were taking in the early showing, 6:15, that the kids would be eating. Nope. It was plenty crowded, but everyone was well behaved so we had a good time. The girls had gone off to socialize. We never seemed to be able to convince them to go to the same shows or stuff we wanted to. But how much trouble could they get into on a Disney ship? Plus we were all having a great time.


Next Margo and I went to the Rockin Bar D. A musician/comedian named John Charles was going on at 7:30. We just made it. John Charles plays a wide range of music, and put his own lyrics to most of them. He is very talented, and extremely funny. We were laughing most of the time. The climax of his show is when he dissected the lyrics to the song “Horse with No Name” by America. His premise was that no one knows what this song is about, and that drug use had been involved in it’s creation. I can’t possibly do his routine justice, but if you have the chance to see him, do yourself a favor.


We hadn’t been to Shutters to look at pictures yet today, so off we went. They had our formal pictures done, so we added them to our collection, and even traded in a couple of ones that we decided we didn’t like. Here at Shutters we ran into Marin, a Disney employee from Estonia. Actually this was about our third encounter with Marin (I told you we were at Shutters a lot). She was very friendly and had mentioned that she had been to St Petersburg, Russia. I was hoping to be able to talk to her a bit about that, as I wanted to visit there too. But, we weren’t the only one interested pictures, so we went back to our cabin.


Once there we met up with the girls. They had run into the guy who had bought them the drink. He was with a group of people, and they didn’t linger long. They thought it was a bit of a laugh that he had a wife/girlfriend and two kids, and was trying to pick up girls on a Disney cruise, with them there. I wonder how much luck he had. Margo and the girls decided to watch TV. I decided I could sit on my butt anytime, plus the TV is tiny, and the room was not designed for everyone to watch comfortably. So I wandered the ship some. I had discovered that Deck 4 had a promenade that ran all the way around the ship. So you could do laps if you wanted to. I wandered around that for one circuit, went to Shutters to see if I could have that conversation with Marin. She was gone. I went up to deck 9 to people watch and to watch the water. In all I was gone about an hour. By the time I got back I was thinking I could watch some TV before bed. So I did, and we finally all went to sleep. Tomorrow was going to be Cozumel and we were all excited for this port.

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