The last day of our cruise started with the ship cruising across dark sapphire blue waters, big puffy clouds with just hint of yellow in the sky from the sun popping above the horizon and a slight chill in the air.
Last night when we returned to our cabin, the Crown and Anchor Society had sent a lovely and colorful plate of sliced fresh fruit. It was inviting but much too much to eat after having two big meals. We put the fruit in the refrigerator to enjoy our last full day on the ship.
We ordered orange juice, fresh pastries and cold cereal from room service to add to the fresh fruit in the refrigerator. While we waited for our breakfast to be brought to the cabin, Randy ran up to the Diamond Club and brought back two piping hot cups of café latte. We got comfortable on the balcony and talked about our plans for the day.
On any given day there is a myriad of activities to participate in. There are always the last minute sales, the grand finale art auction, towel folding demonstrations, captain’s corner and more.
Our last day cruising back to home port, over time, has become routine. Right after breakfast we make our way up to the photo shop and purchase our souvenir pictures. Then our next stop is the casino. The ship gives us three coins to use in the casino. The end result of these free pulls is different on each ship.
One ship will give you a raffle ticket to be pulled late into the night on the last day. Some will give you a key chain or tee shirt. My favorite is the ships that give you another coin for another free pull. This trip I was presented with a raffle ticket. I have never won anything from the raffle because I never go to the casino the last night but I have several key chains and tee shirts. Too funny!
Today we added a new activity to our routine. We made a reservation to participate in a Champagne and Galley Tour sponsored by Chops Grill. We made our way over to The Grande dining room to await our tour guide. The scene became a little chaotic when the crew member started the check in process then announced that we needed to wear closed toe shoes. I had sandals on and ran back up to our cabin to change shoes.
Our galley tour guide was a very nice chef named, Anil Pal. There were twenty people in our group and periodically we had to change positions in the group in order to hear him well.
Everyone who takes these tours is always amazed at the organization that keeps the food coming to all the food venues around the ship each day. Anil stopped at several key areas around the galley on deck 4 and 5.
We started in the areas where shrimp cocktails, bread, lamb shanks, escargot bourguignonne and more were being prepared. All the cooks were very focused on their individual tasks stopping once in a while to share a smile with us.
At the end of the tour we were escorted back to the dining room where a table with drinks and hors d ‘oeuvres were waiting and then escorted to our tables. Our menu included several choices for appetizers and entrees. The appetizer choices included Shrimp Ceviche, Goats Cheese salad and Roasted Tomato Soup. Our entrée choices included “Surf & Turf”, Pan Seared Salmon and Wild Mushroom Tagliatelle. Everyone would receive a Chocolate Napoleon for dessert.
Randy and I both ordered the surf and turf. After asking Randy if he would like a second lobster tail and he declined, I asked our server if they would leave the lobster off my plate. The roasted tomato soup was hot and delicious. I was, however, a little disappointed in the petit filet mignon. I had asked for it to be medium (pink). When I cut into the filet it was so raw I knew I could not eat it.
I called our server over and asked if he could please ask the kitchen to cook it just a bit more for me. “My pleasure,” was his response. However, when he returned he did so with a brand new plate with a new filet and a lobster tail. The filet was cooked a little better but was tough and fatty. I was really surprised by this because it came from Chops. “Oh well”, I thought, “the rest of the meal was wonderful”.
We had one last stop before returning to our cabin to relax a little and finish packing. We made our way down to Central Park and Tiffany’s. Randy was a little disappointed when he walked into Tiffany’s. He was hoping that the Tiffany blue almonds that was available during their grand opening would still be available. We spent a few moments looking for a little something for a family member having a birthday and with the help of a very nice salesman we picked what we thought was the perfect gift.
After an afternoon of packing and preparing to disembark in the morning, we prepared for the evening. Cocktail time was very nice as we said our goodbyes and exchanged contact information with Skip and Suzanne.
Those of you who read my blogs on a regular basis know that I really am a creature of habit. The last night of any cruise I am on I order the Roasted Turkey dinner. The dinner is served with apple bread dressing, roasted red bliss, Brussels sprouts and cranberry sauce. I always ask my servers if I could please switch out the red bliss and Brussels sprouts for mashed potatoes and a green vegetable. They have always been very kind in granting this small request.
We enjoyed sharing our dinner time with Philip, Barbara, Tom and Grace and said to each that we hoped to see them around the community in the coming months.
We left the dining room and took a leisurely walk around the Royal Promenade before returning to our cabin for a little relaxation and turning in early.
This cruise was just wonderful! We had great weather, a fun time in every port and shared time with nice people.
Tomorrow will rise early to catch the bus back to our community.