Wednesday, June 8, 2011

#11 Go on a cruise 6/3/11

 My family & I in Nassau, Bahamas with our Segway tour directors (who were hilarious) Andre & Stephano.
From left: Mom (Angie), Stepfather (Robert), brother (Christian), Andre, sister (McHale), sister (Jordan), me (Charley), & Stephano

Wow. This strange (understatement) guy was at the Hollywood, Florida airport. I seriously hope he was not serious. Scary! 

 Jord, Me, Kale, chrish, & Mom at the Palace Restaurant

 Our wonderful cruise ship & home for the three days of our vacation: The Norwegian Sky. I highly recommend it!

 The gorgeous crystal clear turquoise ocean. I am in love with the ocean. It’s even better in person.

 Me, waiting for my Jack Dawson, before departure on the upper deck of the ship in Miami.

 Dreaming on the ship of dreams.

 Bahama beach.

 Christian Jayhawk & Charley Brooke

 Lovely palm trees

 My first & last time gambling. Haha it was funny because I’m 21 & my sister McHale kneeling by me is 18 but Jordan, our youngest sister with her arms crossed, is only 16 and no one noticed so they let her in the casino. Also every time we asked strangers on the boat (and even every day in town) who they thought was the oldest sister, the most common response is Jordan is the oldest (or sometimes McHale), I’m the middle, and McHale is youngest. Too funny. I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or bad thing that I, the oldest, am never thought of to be the oldest appearance wise

 Towel animals are the coolest. Those crew have talent. What a cute seal

 Unknown towel animal: I’m guessing bunny or frog

 If riding a Segway was a sport, I’d be an Olympic athlete

I’m serious Segways are a blast

Family picture on our Segway adventure of Nassau

We did some shopping on Miami Beach and stopped by DASH the Kardashian’s store! It was awesome & they have the cutest clothes

I'M BACK lovelies! It's bittersweet to be back from the lovely cruise ship the Norwegian Sky. I accomplished #11 Go on a cruise 6/3/11 and hope to do it many many many more times. It was three days from Miami to the Bahamas. It was my first time leaving America. The ship was beyond description when it comes to it's beauty and amazingness (I know it's not a word but it fits this situation). I highly recommend EVERYONE takes a cruise in their lifetime. It's the experience of a lifetime and is exhilarating. It took my breath away. Sadly, standing on the front, either side, and back decks at night and gazing at the ocean under a starlit sky didn't result in finding my Jack Dawson... I kept dreaming and hoping I would. I have to remember life isn't a movie. My heart and dreams tend to forget this and go overboard. I keep wishing though in vain hopes that maybe, just maybe movie magic can happen in reality. That the impossible dreams may come true. The reason I called it the ship of dreams is in reference to what the Titanic was called and also because I did a lot of dreaming, but unfortunately it was just that: a dream-a cherished ambition, aspiration, and ideal. Maybe I will find Jack on my next cruise or this summer and take him on a cruise :) Like I said, a girl can dream... and I DREAM BIG.
No one really dressed up in formal clothing or fancy... which is understandable given the fact it was in the nineties temperature wise... but still! I think dressing up is fun. I did. I also wore my wrap around, adorable, vintage looking headbands you can see in the pictures. Haha my friends call me flapper girl because I wear them. I love them. Some people told me my dresses and headbands reminded them or Rose from Titanic and that if the ship sank it was my fault. That made me smile.
I'm adding more things to my list of 100 things to do before I die, so I guess it will be called my list of 100+plus things to do before I die.
#101 Kiss a stranger
#102 Create a real life bedroom like "Hey Arnold!s"
#103 Dress up like Helga Pataki for Halloween
#104 Go back to the Titanic exhibition
#105 Go on a cruise with dresses & clothes like Rose's from Titanic and dress like her (including the red hair & hairstyles)
We went to two different islands on the Bahamas-Grand Bahama (Which is owned by Norwegian Cruise Line I think) where we snorkeled, swan in the ocean, and tanned (more like burned to the second degree...ouch!). The water was beautiful and the sand was white. And then Nassau-where some of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies were filmed. We shopped, did so much walking in the blistering sun that my feet felt like they would fall off and my skin was on fire, and visited Atlantis. We went on a Segway tour of the island with these hilarious locals: Andre and Stephano. They asked the funniest questions about America/Americans like how long do we go to school? Do we like iCarly? How late are clubs/bars open? What's the weather like? Why is the speed limit so low? To name just a few! We rode Segways through the island on the beach which was such fun! I rock at it, not gonna lie! It sounds dorky but they are a blast. 
There was one other couple on our tour. They were AWESOME people. This guy and his wife were down to earth and super friendly. They are backup dancers for USher and live in LA. They said he's nice and fun to work with. We stopped for drinks (pina coladas-virgin of course) and a snack at a local restaurant because Andre and Stephano wanted us to try local cuisine. I ordered macaroni because I love it. Well this mac' n cheese was awful. I didn't think it was possible to ruin it. I was proved wrong. It wasn't even real macaroni. It was like lasagna with coffee beans on the bottom!!! If that's what they consider mac n' cheese they are missing out!
Everyone in the Bahamas and on the ship who we met thought immediately of potatoes and farmland in the middle of nowhere when they learned we were from Idaho  haha. It made me laugh. There were around 2,000 people on board and 1,000 crew members. We ate at this fancy restaurant called The Palace with ocean views for each meal. It reminded me of Titanic (but way toned down and casual). The staff came to know us. I loved pina coladas. They are so good! 
We didn't get to meet enough people as I'd have preferred. Norwegian is all about freestyle crusing which basically means you decide what you want to do and make your own plans-it's nice but you don't meet many people because everyone is doing their own thing. The memorable people we met include the following people I will talk about.
There was drunk guy who was hilarious. We ran into him everywhere...he was crazy. He thought my mom and stepfather were letting my little siblings drink alcohol and loved it (it was really just virgin pina coladas). He had these diamond tennis shoes he made a big deal and was constantly bragging about. He wore them EVERYWHERE. They looked silly to me. Then there was Who-Let-The-Dogs-Out-Guy who was always singing that song. He was a large fellow who won a dance contest on the ship and also always drunk but friendly and smiling every time I saw him. His wife was the same. And there was a cute boy from Jupiter haha. We kept staring at each other, making eye contact on a boat ride back to our ship from Grand Bahamas. We started talking. Our conversation:
Me: "So where are you from?"
Boy: "Jupiter."
Me: *Laughing & confused* "No, seriously, where are you from?"
Boy: "Jupiter." *Smiling*
Me: *Feeling like a dork, smiling, still confused* "Jupiter? Where is that?"
Boy: *Laughs* "Florida."
We continued talking for a short while. I told him I was from Idaho. We talked about snow and then got split up in the crowd. I didn't see him again so I guess it wasn't meant to be anything more than a silly totally-Charley-cute story.
We also met there two 23 year old college boys from Florida. One of them told me he was 16 and said he told everyone that and they all believed him. I did too. I saw them around quite a bit. They were playing ping pong on the deck and as my sisters and I walked by, they asked if we wanted to play beer pong. We told them we only played Mt. Dew pong. They asked how old we were. When we said our ages, they automatically guessed correctly we were Mormon when I told them I didn't drink haha. We ran into them and exchanged hellos quite often.
Then there was Candi our cruise director. Everyone knew her given she always was making announcements and saying hi to everyone. She was nice and from South Africa. I think being a cruise director would be fun! Lucky her to have that job. It'd be neat to have a job where you are always on vacation basically! 
See? We didn't meet nearly enough people... it was partly because my family always wanted to go to sleep early. I am a night owl. I was afraid to go out alone because there were creepers and drunk creepy guys. Next time-I am going on a cruise with friends. I'm grateful for the cruise and time with my family, but still... it would be a better time with friends.
There were shows in the Stardust theater every night. The NCL production team had dancers and singers that put on shows like Mamma Mia. It was kinda entertaining. They were good. Then there was a HILARIOUS comedian & magician named Rich who made us all laugh uncontrollably. He was fun. He was looking for the perfect couple and had all the men in the audience stand up and would ask questions and those who answered no would sit down so he could narrow it down. He chose my stepdad and mom and they helped with a magic trick. That was entertaining! The crowd cracked up when Rich asked how long they'd been married and discovered it was only two weeks!
It's nice to be back home. It was a wonderful vacation. I hope the rest of my summer can compare or surpass this trip. This summer is looking great... I will make it great. I hope I (and the rest of you lovelies) have the best and most memorable summer!!! Maybe next time I go on a cruise (which is hopefully soon) I'll find my Jack Dawson who will rescue me and meet me at the clock :)
Well lovelies I hope you are enjoying your summer. It's been raining like crazy here but I adore it. I love rain. I love summer. I love life. I am happy to be back here at the Inspiration Nation and being able to share my life and inspiration with you. As I've said over and over, I'd love to hear your summer stories and quotes and anything you have to share! Feel free to comment or add me as a friend on Facebook. There's a Facebook banner on the side. I am not saying this for popularity or just to sound like I care. I TRULY, DEEPLY, HONESTLY CARE ABOUT YOU, yes YOU reading this right now. ALL OF YOU. From the bottom of my heart. YOU ARE IMPORTANT AND BEAUTIFUL AND AMAZING AND AN INSPIRATION TO ME! If you need help or have questions you'd like to ask or anything I'm always here. I want to know each and everyone of you if you'd let me! Always remember that! Love you lovelies! 
With love+,
Charley Brooke aka Miss Inspiration (that's the name I'll use from here on out since one of my readers called me it!)

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