Monday, February 26, 2024

February 26 - Monday - At Sea

 It was a rocky night last night, with gale-force winds.  I watched as we sailed away from my last port.  Then read and got to sleep around midnight.  Then woke up at 4 a.m. to rougher seas and tossed and turned, thinking about packing and the trip home.  I tend to overthink prior to traveling.  Sigh.  Later, after breakfast, I packed about 3/4 of my stuff.  It took about 20 minutes, lol.

I joined the metal detecting couple for lunch by the Lido pool.  The rest of the day was spent watching the ocean and relaxing.


We're heading north and the winds continue while temperatures drop

My "diet be damned" trend continues.  Banana bread French Toast with cherries and bacon

Not a bad way to spend the morning, watching this view

Marina and Carl, the metal detectors found these gold nuggets near Yuma Arizona and had a ring made

Sunday, February 25, 2024

February 25 - Sunday - Naha, Japan

 It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, to steal a great phrase.  I had an excellent day in Naha.  I bought my first souvenirs of the entire trip and I'm glad I waited, given my limited budget and luggage space.  Then I walked through the main shopping area in town, which was great fun even though it was windy, drizzly and about 60 degrees.  Then, I enjoyed a two hour massage.  What could be better?

However, after the taxi dropped me at the port and I went through security, the worst thing happen.  Rony, my cabin steward scared the crap out of me.  On shore.  As I was getting ready to board.  If you've been following along you know that Rony started trying to scare me the first week of the cruise, two months ago.  Recently, I got him twice.  Bad enough that he screamed, both times.  It was fabulous.

But really, scaring me on shore?  I agreed he got double points for that.  The only good part was that I think it was the highlight of his day.  He went out with other crew last night and was tired.  He said he walked too far today and was exhausted.  But perked right up after scaring the snot out of me.  Hmmm.  I think I'll have to don my red dress and lurk in his supply closet again soon.  

More details later, but for now...


The poor Japanese security guards.  Stood there all night, guarding the ship.  Freezing.  On the bright side, they carried light sabers

Diet be damned - Swedish pancakes, aka, crepes with a creamy filling.  And bacon.  On the bright side, I didn't have lunch

View of the ship from the taxi as I headed into town

Home parking spots are very small

I gave the address for a glass gallery.  The driver took me here.  We eventually found the shop I was looking for

In the doorway of the shop

It was small but had wonderful stuff.  And, unlike many of the tourist shops, didn't try to pass off glass made in Vietnam as local Ryukyu glass

It's probably a good thing I didn't have room in my luggage for too much

$245 for this pendant.  In my dream home will be pendants like this, hanging over a giant island covered in white granite

Aren't these dishes beautiful?

The cat made himself to home on the cash register.  The shop owner explained that it is not his cat.  It is a street cat

The shop owner was very nice and spoke passable English and was eager to learn

The shop name is Miyabi.  It is a bit away from the main shopping area but worth the walk

You don't hand over change.  You place it in the tray

I love Japanese fashion

A shiso in front of a steak house/restaurant

Times parking lots, and drink machines are everywhere

This guy was playing with fire.  A street performer on Naka Kokusai Daki is the main street for shopping.  It closes for most traffic on Sundays

It was chilly, windy and a bit rainy

This bus was cruising down the pedestrian street

The Mishiki market

This strawberry snack place was doing a booming business

Here's what the glazed strawberries looked like

I thought it was cotton candy.  Nope.  Face soap

Stuffed dogs were cute

I didn't even look at the price.  Beautiful but a bit much for lounging around the house

There were lots of places selling snacks.  This is where Google Lens came in handy

Asian countries love tile.  It gets slippery when wet.  They have a textured path on the sidewalk.  I appreciated it

A giant heart in front of a fancy looking hotel.  I looked on line and it was highly rated and about $250 a night for a single room.  It is one of the more expensive hotels in the area and has a pool

Hotel Collective

I went in this place.  The tiles are for room scents, used with oils

I think these are to be used like cologne

This security guard, with earrings, took his job very seriously.  He directed cars and pedestrians on this side street

This store sold seaweed.  These are sea grapes.  I used to get them in Samoa.  Tasty and pop in your mouth like boba

Sea grapes.  They were pricey 

The reception area at the spa.  Today, it was just me and the guy who gave me a massage

Every taxi driver I had was male and older than me

Sunday evening traffic

I really wanted one of these Shisa tiles but they were too heavy

I bought some glassware.  The owner wrapped it carefully and because it was raining, gave it a rain coat

In addition to some glasses, I bought this glass necklace

Coffee from the parking lot machine

We left the dock just before 11 p.m.  Notice how blue the water was

The tug boat picking up the pilot

I had French Onion soup as a starter and this was cod

With carrot cake for dessert

Entertainment on the main stage the other night was a balloon artist.  He made this