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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

CMDTA on Vacation – The Everglades

I’d never been so happy to get off a cruise ship as I was to disembark the Jewel. It took everything I had not to wave an obscene gesture back at the boat once I was off. Of course NCL had a couple of surprises left for me.

They made two lines to get off the boat. At first I thought “wow NCL is actually organizing something,” at least I thought that until I realized they just merged the lines before you got off the boat. What’s the point of creating two lines? How does that make sense?

We made it through customs in record time. I think mainly because they realized that they were dealing with NCL and a lot of the people were going to be rude or cranky.

We found our bags fairly fast and headed out to find our bus for our everglades tour. Here is where organization completely broke down. NCL didn’t even try. Their employees tried to put us on a City Tour bus twice. No one had any idea where the Everglades bus was. Finally one employee from the tour company came through and found us. She took us over to where the bus should have been. I say it like that because ours was the only bus that had not arrived yet.

Finally the bus arrived and everyone piled on. Turns out they only had one bus for everyone doing the Everglades tour so we’d have to go to the Miami Airport, then back to the port, then to Ft. Lauderdale. OH JOY!

How could this vacation get better!?! Monty got on the bus.

When you go on a cruise there are people you see everywhere you go. It’s crazy. It just happens. Out of 2500 people there will be two that will be there every time you turn around. A few of those people were Monty and his parents. Monty was a young child who hadn’t learned to control his volume level and suffered from a major lack of discipline. To say he was loud is an understatement.

After the loud ride to the Everglades we arrived at the fan boat place. We made sure we got on a different boat than Monty and his family. The fan boats were fun. You had to wear ear plugs because the boats were so loud. The best part about the boats is when you turn fast. The boats actually glide sideways for a while.

We didn’t see too much on the boat trip. It was too cold and the water level was too high. It didn’t matter though because there was an alligator show after. That was entertaining. You got to hold an alligator after if you wanted. I got a picture of my wife holding an alligator. She hates snakes and spiders but something that could bite your fingers off is just fine.

After the show we went to the restaurant and ate some alligator. It wasn’t bad but it tougher than your average meat.

We got back on the bus. Thankfully Monty got off at the Miami airport so we had some peace and quite. Only five of us were going to Ft. Lauderdale. We got to enjoy the sites of US Interstate 95 between Miami and Ft. Lauderdale. If you’ve never done that ride you are missing something. I can’t help but think of Obi Wan Kanobie’s description of Mos Eisley Spaceport when I see this strip of road. Doesn’t matter what side of the road you look at you’ll see a varied selection of Porno Stores, Strip Clubs, and Bail Bond Dealers.

We got to the airport and we were literally the last ones off the bus. We still had plenty of time before our flight. That turned out to be a curse. Our flight was delayed. How else could our vacation end?

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