Off to Great Stirrup Cay where the sun shines, the water is blue and absolutely everything else goes on your sea pass. Actually, itís pretty nice and the exact same deal as Cocoa Cay. In fact, RCIsí island is next door, so we had Monarch of the Seas keeping us company all day.
NCLs tender system is theoretically more organized and smoother than RCIs. Of course, the Constitution theoretically keeps the government nitwits out of out hair. They both work about as well.
On NCL you line up your bleary, bloodshot eyes at 7:00 AM to get a tender ticket which assigns you a boat number. You are then told that first tender is at 11:00 AM. The first tender is then called at 10:00 AM when nobody is ready, so the result is that the 11:00 crowd is somewhat larger (by 300%) than anticipated. More mosquitos buzzing.
An hour or so on Stirrup Cay let me observe various amounts of pre-cancerous coloring and a ton of bikinis that just should not be. Having had all the fun I could stand there, I left my crew in the ocean and tendered back to wile away the afternoon at the Spa and my at sea office until our 6:00 PM reservations at Teppanyaki.
While Teppanyaki doesnít match the shoreside chop shops in NY, it was pretty good. Still, our chef kept dropping things which definitely doesnít cause warm, fuzzy feelings with a guy flashing a set of terminal Ginsu knives. We also noticed that we were in and out in about 1:15 with plenty of staff attention. Is it possible that NCL makes the MDRs so uncomfortable on purpose to drive people to the specialties? Is it possible Oswald didnít act alone? HMMMM?
After dinner is yet another show in the Stardust Theater where the seats were apparently designed by the same MacDonaldís VP who did the dining rooms. RCIís theater setup, with tables and lounge booths, is far superior to NCL PLUS there are waiters circulating and itís possible to get a drink at all times. AHHHH - more mosquitos.
The comedian did 45 minutes of stale cruise jokes but in fairness to him, the presence of some idiot parents and their 3 year olds in the front row may have cramped his style.
Post show was the normal round of casino, aimless wandering, more great midrats and, of course, my at sea office before a full day of sun, sand and lobster quality sunburn wiped out the crew by 1:00 AM.