Day 3 – Monday, January 28th
Gene woke up a bit out of sorts, so I decided to give him some space today. On the first day, at the first evening show in the Orpheus theater, the Cruise Director (John) played Simon Says with the audience, and Dad was sitting in an aisle seat, and is also awesome at Simon Says, so he ended up winning a little blue plush seal- who is the mascot for Bingo- and can be used as a coupon to get extra bingo cards when you buy them. Dad doesn’t play bingo, so at the show, he gave the seal to me! I’ve never played bingo for money, but there’s a first time for everything. Mom wanted company this morning, so I invited her along (she’d never played either) and we wandered down to the end of the ship (same lounge that had hosted the Catholic service the day before. Good thing I’m starting to get my sea legs!) and bought some bingo cards to play with. There were four games, each with a different pattern to win, and the final game is the jackpot game. To win, you have to fill in your entire card, but if there’s no winner, the jackpot just grows. That morning it was up to $1,700. I was four numbers away from winning! Exciting : )
In any case, I stopped into the room to check on Gene, then took my mom shopping at the duty free shops on the ship. They sell jewelry, and clothes, alcohol and purses and hats and memorabilia. We didn’t buy anything, but it was fun wandering around, and afterward, we went to Starbucks, got some coffee and sat down to natter. Dad met up with us, and we all ended up laughing and talking for a little while, until I started to worry about Gene again, and wandered back to the room. Gene was napping, so I got on my dancing shoes, and went to another ballroom dance class by myself. I talked to the instructors beforehand, and let them know my husband was napping, but if they needed a second person for a couple, I was happy to jump in. I actually ended up dancing with the male half of the instructor couple for most of the class, which was Super fun. He’s really Really short, but his skills are solid, and I felt like I was floating around the dance floor most of the time. The male dance instructor is from South Carolina, and his wife is from Texas. He always wears khakis and a red tshirt with a collar, and she always wears red plastic jewelry and has big blonde hair. Mom and dad were taking the class as well, and every once and a while, mom would jump out and I’d dance with dad, which was a little awkward, but still fun. Dad’s a pretty solid ballroom dancer. They’ve been taking lessons for a number of years. It’s just that I’ve always considered dancing to be consummate with flirting, and one does not flirt with one’s father. I guess some people do, but I don’t. One of the last things we learned was a particularly hard waltz step, and everybody was having trouble with it (except me, of course. Evidently I’m a natural.) So my mom, the people person, just asked the female instructor for help, but unfortunately the instructor had a brain fart, and started teaching mom a totally different step, which confused dad too, and then they were both screwing up even More. So I came over and showed mom how to do it (I’m a quite good teacher) and that helped dad figure it out again, and there we were.
That evening, we got dressed for dinner and the 7:00 show, and made a plan to take our bathing suits to dinner so I couldn’t possibly get within hearing distance of my bed’s siren song before we got in the hot tub under the stars after dinner and watched the Second showing of Bat Man on the big screen on the pool deck.
The live show was outstanding! A performer called Jeff Tracta did an hour long show where he sang and spoke every character himself- from every character on Family Guy to all the Black Eyed Peas. The Orpheum Theater is really lovely, with gilt pillars and emerald green velvet seats, black-clad waiters moving among the couches, tables, and seats, with trays of drinks. They make a big deal about not making video or audio recordings of the show, which only made me want to do it. So I took an hour long video of the inside of my purse, and got a perfect audio recording of this most Excellent show.
Dinner was fun tonight. Everyone wore whatever they wanted, which in my case, was a little black dress and black heels. When you order in the main dining room, you’re given a menu of tonight’s starters, main courses, and desserts, and most people order one of each. Tonight, I was feeling froggy, so not only did I order fresh fruit AND shrimp salad to start, but I ordered strip steak for dinner, with a side of the horseradish mashed potatoes from one of the other main courses. Mom thought that was a great idea, so she ordered extra mashed potatoes too. Well, this started a chain reaction, because both of our steak courses came with a baked potato with sour cream on it. So I ate my baked potato, two scoops of horseradish mashed potatoes (not to mention my steak!) and then mom couldn’t eat her scoop of regular mashed potatoes, because she hadn’t realized she’d be getting a baked potato, so I ate hers too, and THEN we’re pretty sure the waiters started taking bets in the kitchen to see how many scoops of mashed potatoes I could eat, so they brought me out an (unasked for) second dish with two MORE scoops of mashed potatoes. I ate all but one. So about the equivalent of five potatoes all told. And a steak. And my mixed vegetables. And my fruit and shrimp salad. I was on a mashed potato high for the rest of the night, and my waiters were highly amused. Thank goodness I’m stretchy!
After dinner, I went to the ladies’ room and put on my orange bikini, with a filmy white cover up (and left on my black heels, because I’d forgotten to bring sandals.) Gene hopped back to our room to change, and still got to the pool deck just as I got there. He said the black-light on deck made my suit fluoresce along with the swirls of decorative white thread in my sheer white cover up. So it looked lovely, which was fun. Sadly, the crew had thrown protective nets over two of the four hot tubs, and the other two were overflowing with kids whos parents were at the eleven o’clock adult-only comedy show, and had left them to the tender mercies of Batman on the pool deck. So we grabbed a couple of deck chairs and laid out in our suits under the stars and watched perhaps fifteen or twenty minutes of the show. But eventually, the cold got to me, and we toddled off to hot showers and bed. Our plan thwarted for the third night running.