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Old 07-20-2005, 05:19 AM
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For a formal night on a Carnival ship, what do you think I should aim to have my teenage sons wear? Are ties a must? What about a tie, khakis, and a sport coat?

Let me know. I don't want to fit a square peg (two square pegs) in a round hole here- they can eat at Tiffany's and just skip the whole thing. My younger sons have suits they can wear.

That reminds me- this is a stupid question- formal nights don't exist in the 2nd tier buffet restaurants, do they?

Thanks very much.

Carla
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Old 07-20-2005, 05:46 AM
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We were on a 3 day with our 12 yr old and 15 yr old. We didn't have a "FORMAL-tux" night. Most nights khakis and polos were fine but on the formal night we had you had to have a suit coat and tie but not a tux. My younger son wore a polo and dockers and the older one could have gotten away with that but he wanted to wear a tie. He didn't wear a suit coat though.

Actually on carnival the first night was so hectic and we had trouble finding the dining room my husband went to dinner in what he wore on the ship which was khaki shorts and a short sleeve collarless shirt. They let him in but at the end of dinner said they had let shorts slide since it was the first night but the second night they would turn people away. (whoops)
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Old 07-20-2005, 05:46 AM
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You will find that on the Carnival cruise ships that people dress from Tuxedos and formal gowns to a little more casual on formal night. Your teen sons should be fine. And NO you dont have to dress up for the buffets on formal night. So you can send the kids to the buffet and you and hubby go to formal dinner if you want.
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Old 07-20-2005, 06:09 PM
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Thanks, Carol. Now, would you mind telling me where on Carnival ships the hubbies can be obtained?

Let me know!

Carla
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Old 07-20-2005, 07:00 PM
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Carla, with the way you write and the way you are honest about your opinions, I suspect that a hubbie is right around the corner for you. You are GREAT!

(No, I am no hitting on you, I just thought you should know it.)

Tom
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Old 07-20-2005, 07:50 PM
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Hahahaha Tom, you just made me LOL while on hold with LaQuinta Inn.

Can you conceive of a dark hole in space where money is just sucked out into oblivion? Call that hole "All Inclusive" as an inside joke. The best part of the last week, other than my mother coming along and now my great aunt (to make it brief I will just say that G.A. is from my father's side of the family- my parents divorced when I was 3- and my mother has just had her memoirs published- about coming here from Cuba when she was 20- and there are one or two chapters that cover my father's alleged emotional abuse and the alcoholic dysfunctional follies in his side of the family- CAN YOU THINK OF A BETTER POOLSIDE TOPIC OF CONVERSATION?? A walk down memory lane, 45 years later when the memories are really fresh, and G.A. can offer her own recollections to dovetail nicely with mom's, NOT!).

Anyway: the best part of the last week has been that both Mom and G.A. have seen fit to call several loans due. I guess they will want the next installment the week before Christmas.

So suddenly I am paying for travel insurance times 7, the hotel room is now a suite- but of course Mom won't sleep in the same room as G.A- and the rest of the pax? my four sons. Now: how would you suggest I divvy up the beds? It's like a travel Rubix Cube. Hmmm... How about 80 year old G.A. in a queen with my 15 year old son? Will that work?

What else am I suddenly paying for.. oh, of course, 70 times 7 for the gratuities, that was a no brainer... shore excursions I have dodged by saying there will probably be a hurricane, so why do it now... I'll deal with that later.

Plus we get to HOU TWO days before. Don't ask. But the ladies get in on Saturday. This is actually a good thing because I don't have to throw another few hundred in the black hole going to NASA. I can spend all day Sat driving back and forth to HOU again.

Oh well! At least my kids are really cool. They are totally laid back and very good company. They have my sense of the absurd and they also find humor in anything.

Tom, I should tell you that I spent the first part of my career as an Admiralty attorney. So it colors my shipboard experience to say the least. The NCL cruise I was just on had a little issue with the tenders that made me wish I had brought a stack of business cards that I could leaflet the side of the ship with. They could just cascade lightly down on everyone's heads as they were hauled out of the shore tenders and onto the ship. What a nightmare that was.

I don't know why I mentioned that, except that I was directed to a horrible little place http://www.cruisejunkie.com/events.html and now to tell you the truth my mind is working overtime. I know what happens.

I can't go to any of the manic cruise sites any more. The CCL battles alone are messing with my peace of mind. CCL seems to polarize everyone!

Anyway, thanks for making me laugh even though now I just freaked myself out again.

Carla
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Old 07-21-2005, 10:40 AM
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Interesting list of events. Who keeps track of those things? I can just sit back and imagine what the cruise is going to be like. Some people would probably find all the negative...I think you are going to have a hoot! You have me laughing already.

Tom
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Old 07-21-2005, 11:29 AM
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Carla,
What a great attitude!!! You have me ROTFL. You sound like just the kind of gal I enjoy cruising with - you manage to see the humor in all situations and have a "whatever happens, happens, but no matter what - you are there to have a good time" outlook on life.

You MUST make sure to keep yourself available for our group cruise - I can't imagine doing it without you.
Nancy
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Old 07-21-2005, 07:40 PM
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I just can't wait to get home and write my review. Last time I posted it without reading any other member reviews and at the most two professional reviews. Now I am worried that my impressions will be contaminated by all of the cruise reviews I have read since.

I am very understated in my tastes in general. I have sailed on QE2 four times, the first when I was 11. But I love over the top things also- Vegas for example. I have seen pictures of the Elation and I almost can't believe that any of the colors that I am looking at exist in nature- I'm sure they do not.

I also have never met a stranger in my life. So I do not fear being surrounded by people of different parts of the country, or different planets, for a week.

But if you had been reading the CCL threads on cruisecritic for the last month, as I have, you would be nervis rite now. Vry vry nervis about goinon elaton! The people on those CCL threads appear to have the IQ of... I can't go on here because I am afraid of finding my message deleted. Total number of my postings deleted on that site: 4. Not looking to alienate people here.

So eventually the threads break down to the lowest level- outright class warfare. There was one going for a while where every other post said something like "I don't care! I do lik walmart and beeer! DW and ive cruised ccl 18 times and each one was mgnificent!" and the next one would say "Never in my life have I experienced such bland, repetitive food, the people were obnoxious, I expected more, even though this is a mass market cruise line with (and why do they always say this???) FADED CARPETS, CCL can't hold a candle to HAL, Princess, my uncle Joe's Whaler, etc."

So now I am just praying that my children don't stone me to death with dry, stale rolls while the waiters do their "tiresome" dance and I don't kill myself on the worn carpets or die from killer mold in the cabin.

What was I thinking? Why did I pick CCL? The only reason is because I needed a quad.

But any vacation is what you make of it and I have never had a bad time yet- even camping with two Newfies and a bunch of kids in the rain.

Did you guys check this one out- it appeared right after mine: http://www.cruisereviews.com/Norwegi...anSpirit15.htm

So if that could happen right after my great review, then there you go. Luck of the draw.

What do you suggest I do? Should I just not read any more CCL threads? Do you know that one of the threads on that site is entitled "Can I bring a box fan on Elation?"

I am lucky in that all of my eggs are not in one basket, I have unlimited time off, and I can afford to get away when I want. And like I said- I have fun anywhere! But I am starting to wonder if CCL was the right choice.

I'm sure it will be fine- everyone hates NCL, too, which as you know I loved, and QE2??? Not getting good press at all, and I was just on here a few years ago- you could have fooled me!
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Old 07-22-2005, 06:41 AM
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Carla,
Your experiences speak for themselves. It is my firm belief that many of the reviews (and chat room postings) you read are negative - because it seems that when things go wrong or we are unhappy, we tend to want to vent. For many, the old saying "misery loves company" is so true of these discussion board posts. People are looking for validation of their righteous indignation (at least as they see it).

On the other hand, if all goes well, life is good and you had a good experience - the same urgent need "to get something off your chest" is not there. You just remain in a happy state of nirvana - reliving the experience in quiet reverie and already too busy planning your next cruise.

I often do not hear from clients who have returned from a fabulous cruise until I contact them. BUT, let something go wrong on a cruise or the client was unhappy and I hear from them immediately.

I believe reading the reviews and posts is helpful, if you take them with a grain of salt. When you read the REALLY NEGATIVE comments and reviews, try to keep them in perspective. Think about it. You will read reviews in which there was not one thing that went right - everything was awful. Now, let's be realistic, given a 7 day cruise - is it even possible, let alone probable that not one thing was good???? It is all in the mindset. If you set out to find fault or dislike something, then you are certain to find things that support that attitude. If you set out to have a good time (as it seems you do) - then you will!

I have been on Carnival cruises numerous times and each and every cruise was great! It does not compare to my Crystal or Silversea experience - but I didn't expect it to. Remember, as in life, A cruise is what YOU make it. I am sure yours is going to be fantastic! Besides, with all of the elements in play on this trip - if nothing else, you will have lots to share with us when you return.

Nancy
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