What the flock?
It’s no secret that my mom hates my world-traveling lawn flamingo Rodrigo and often suggests I lose him on my travels - like when I took him to Michigan she wanted me to drown him in a lake. I would obviously never do that but I do love Rod and I read somewhere on a sugar packet or in a Christina Agruilera song that if you love something you should let it go. The Bahamas is known for it’s large population of flamingos and so, together with my friend Karina from Brazil, we headed off to the Ardastra Gardens, Zoo and Conservation centre in Nassau recently to introduce him to some of his own kind.
We saw Jaguars, Servals, Lemurs, Loeries (or “Lorys”) and other animals. I have to admit that all the wild animals made me miss my Beast. - She was far less tame than anything we saw in a cage. We got up close to the Flamingos (the main attraction at Ardastra) and got a chance to find out if Rod would be better off with his far less superficial non-Chinese-factory produced distant relatives: You can see how it went here.
In other news:
I had my hair trimmed by someone who doesn’t speak a word of English
I made that my facebook status along with the hashtags “#livingdangerously" and “#scarred”, but actually it wasn’t entirely true. When I asked my hairdresser for the internet password so that I could make that my facebook status (and entertain myself while she worked), she said “Hair, one, two, three, four, sinco” - So there, I lied. She speaks four words of English. I feel so much better now that I have come clean. It’s funny how the Bahamas, with their driving mini-bus taxis on the left side of the road, their 3rd worldness and their speaking English, is a lot less of a culture shock than Miami with it’s chubby beggars and people’s offence to your inability to speak Spanish. CSI Miami is not an accurate representation. My hairdresser was nice though and my hair looks a lot better now too.
Rodrigo and I took an open air Miami bus tour
While we’re on the subject of Miami and Rodrigo, the two of us recently toured the city. You know how when you watch TV shows set in Miami there’s always a whole lot of really beefy half-naked guys running around South Beach without their shirts on and you assume that they’re just paid extras who were strategically placed on set to hold the attention of all the ladies and gay guys whose dates dragged them to the movie who have all but completely lost interest in the storyline? Well, it turns out that Miami beach is really full of beefy half naked guys. True story!! I also saw a couple of clichéd skateboarders and rollerbladers too. Even apart from the eye-candy, Miami is really cool. Downtown is all postmodern high-rise well-maintained skyscrapers and South beach is all palm trees blue water and really cool art-deco hotels and restaurants. It’s really pretty and it’s got character.
I’m a vacation hero!
I got an award for Top Comment Card Winner. I got a lot of guest comment cards. I’m a sucker for affirmation so it means a lot. When you’re used to trying so hard all the time and always feeling like a failure, it’s quite amazing to succeed at something that you’ve always wanted to do - and be acknowledged for it. I got a certificate on the bridge by the Captain. Yay me!
I hosted my first country hoe down
Here on this ship the Cruise Staff are responsible for all of the dance classes (on other cruise lines the dancers teach them but here they complain about any extra activities they are given - they also complain about being bored). We sail out of Miami so most people who attend the various Latin classes are born more skilled than me. Up until now, with my Asian genes (which I assume I have based on the appearance of my mom, my love for all things Harajuku and my obsession with Hello Kitty), I have been entrusted with many a modern line dance (Gangnam Style) class, but this cruise I taught my first country hoe down (Yeeehah!) which is unlike the other dance classes we teach in that we do it with a live band. - It’s a bit daunting because you can’t stop the song and start again without bothering the six musicians who make up our Colombian Filipino band. - I call them that because all of the ships I’ve even been on (all three of them) have always had a Filipino band. While Japan may have invented Karaoke the Filipinos seem to be the Karaoke champions of the world and most of their cover bands are crazy good especially when it comes to the diversity of the music they can pull off. Our Filipino band signed off a week or two back and were replaced with Colombians. So yeah, come on down to our county hoe down where an Asian-looking South African will teach you and a bunch of Latino's how to dance to a Columbian rendition of a Tennessee-based Billy Ray Cyrus song. - Just don't tell my heart.
My online purchases arrived
Though my colour-changing rainbow flashing LED light-up shoelaces have not arrived, two far more awesome things I ordered after them have. My adult-sized unicorn onesie is quite obviously one of them. And then my life was made complete when my Twinkle Toes arrived. I’ve always wanted a pair of shoes with flashing lights on them and now I can die happy. I love Amazon.
I have discovered a new and awesome quirk that I didn’t know I had
I don’t know if I’m the only one, but I often worry about what I do in my sleep. People who snore usually don’t know they snore unless someone else has told them or tried to suffocate them with a pillow. Whenever I share a room with someone, I always ask them if I snore and they always say ‘no’ but then I secretly wonder if do and they’re just too polite to tell me. The other day however, my awesome roomie Christina filled me in on the one sleep habit that I didn’t know I had when she asked me if I intended to, not snore, not talk, but sing during nap time. I obviously had no recollection of my unconscious rendition of the title line of Simple Minds’ “Don’t you forget about me” but was quite amused to hear that I had been sleep-singing. Either I was replaying Pitch Perfect in my brain or my subconscious mind was trying to send a message to all of you back home who I am missing so much (not you random strangers who may have stumbled upon this blog, but again, welcome). Either way, this confirms my theory that I all my dreams are musicals.
32 cruises down, roughly 20 to go
Number of super cheesy ugly island shirts (you know the collared kind with hibiscuses and surf boards or islands and palm trees printed on them in really loud colours) counted during one hour of gangway duty: 17