We arrived in Bonaire bright and early on Wednesday morning. The skies were full of clouds. We did get spit on by the heavens a few times, and experienced a heavy shower as we worked our way back to the ship. I needn’t have worried about curling my hair, since the humidity and the rain did a good job of curling it naturally!

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We joined our tour group at 9:00 am and headed off. It was a driving tour of the Island of Bonaire and we both enjoyed it.

We stopped at several vantage points and took pictures of their small mountains. They look upon them reverently, but as a New Hampshirite I saw them as little more than hills. Anyway, it was lovely tour and the views of the Island were quite nice. They even had a small shop with post cards out in the middle of nowhere!

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On our way to Washington National Park we saw Flamingos and I quickly got two pictures. We had the world’s grumpiest bus driver and while I was standing to take a quick picture she gunned the engine and I went flying. Still, I got these two shots!

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Nov. 19a Bonaire 008

We went to a small museum and naturally this skeleton of a whale wanted to kiss my face. I had to go along! Further down the road we got this picture of our ship from the top of one of the hills.

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When we were dropped back at the ship, we decided to go out to a small fruit market near the dock. We got a red papaya and some limes for a treat later on in our cabin, and quickly made our way back to the ship. By then it was raining hard, and we were getting just a bit wet!

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After tossing our things back in our room we went up for lunch. It was Mexican Day and so we went to the Café Caribe for our meal. While we were sitting with another couple, Tom and Lisa (Lisa was from Australia!), the Cruise Director began to page three people who had not yet returned to the ship.

We were due to leave at 1:00 and at 12:45 these people still had not returned. After about 20 minutes the gentleman was found, but two women were still missing. At 1:30 the ship pushed away from the dock. I said I really wanted these two women to come running up to the ship and see it sailing away without them! They delayed the departure of over three thousand passengers and fifteen hundred crew members!

We had only moved 100 feet from the dock when we saw two women running toward the ship! (My prayer had been answered.) All the passengers in the dining room watched and speculated on what would happen next. Well, the small boat that picks up the local Pilot and returns him to shore picked up the two women and brought them out to the ship! Some luck, eh? And do you know what they did once they got close to the ship? They started waving at everyone like they were the Queen of England.

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Some gall, eh? They’ll get a round of applause the next time they show up in a dining room.

If it had been me causing the delay of departure of over 3000 people, I’m positive the local Princess employees would have told me to swim to the ship!


Our ship arrived in Aruba very early on Tuesday morning. Once we had tied up Hubby and I glanced out our balcony and say another ship docked right behind us. This was totally amazing because it almost looked like we were on top of each other! I assure you, no tourist was hurt during the dockings of these two ships!

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Nov. 18 Aruba 002

Once we’d had breakfast, we headed down to get off the boat. Today was our submarine day. I think I have mentioned that I am terribly claustrophobic. Well, instead of thinking of all that water being on top of me, I just kept looking down at the beautiful fish and coral as we had our tours.

The trip brought us down 130 feet before returning us to the surface. As we were waiting to leave and go in on the speed boat, we watched tour #2 load and then submerge. I told Hubby that it was a good thing I hadn’t seen it before we actually did it because I would be totally ill!

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I wish the pictures had come out better, sadly it just wasn’t light enough, but we got a few.

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On our way back to the Caribbean Princess we got this great shot of the ship! Isn’t it lovely? Hubby sure does excellent work!

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After lunch, we headed out to down town Oranjestadt, Aruba. We were here last year during our Panama Canal trip and I wanted to go back and get a couple of table linens for the house.

It was hot, however! Very, very hot! We walked up and down the streets and finally found the little linen shop called “Little Holland”. I got my table clothes and then we stopped in and picked up a couple of six packs of diet soda for our room.

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Nov. 18 Aruba 094

Hubby took these pictures as we headed back to the ship. You can see me with my sunhat and tan shorts and blue tank top on in the pictures. Despite covering up and using sunscreen, I did get quite a bit of sun today.

Tonight our plans include dinner in the Island Dining room and perhaps a show afterward. It’s a casual night so I can slip on a pair of casual pants and blouse to attend the meal. Last night we dressed for dinner complete with my new shoes! I looked marvelous! (LOL)

On The Open Seas

Sunday we arrived at the airport with plenty of time to check in and get to our gate. We went through the usual rigmarole, with Hubby’s artificial knees and my laptop computer, but soon enough we were sitting at the gate…waiting.

Just about the time that we expected to board our flight we learned that there was a mechanical problem with the plane, so they were moving it and bringing in another one. This took about one and a half hours, but once done we were quickly loaded onto the plane and off we went.

I must say that Jet Blue was terrific. Comfortable seats, friendly flight attendants and “free snacks”. The flight was so pleasant it reminded me of days gone by when air travel was a pleasure.

When we arrived in San Juan, Puerto Rico, we picked up our bags and as we headed to the taxi stand we noticed another couple with “Princess” tags on their bags. We started talking and ended up splitting a cab to the ship!

Our room is beautiful! It’s large with a balcony, queen size bed and sofa. Hubby and I each have our own TV’s although it seems rather odd to have two of them in the room.

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Lunch for us was very late and I was able to stay nice and strong and not go off the deep end and eat countless pieces of cheesecake! After lunch we walked all over the ship checking out nearly every nook and cranny! The neatest thing is a jumbo screen TV in the pool and hot tub area! I plan to go tomorrow and watch “The Bucket List” while we swim.

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We had, of course, the safety check where everyone meets at their “Muster Station” to go over all the safety tips on the ship. Immediately after that we headed up to the top of the ship for a seafood special buffet. Wonderful shrimp, crab, and lobster! Yes, I was a very happy girl. Dessert was sweet melons.

We’re due to depart in about an hour. We’re unpacked, and all settled into our room. It feels wonderful!

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We departed San Juan just after 11 PM. I went outside on the balcony and watched us depart and just as Hubby began to come out it started to rain. So we came in and watched the departure on TV.

November 17th

We slept until 7:30 and woke to a bright, sunny day with almost no wave action. Good thing I have my patches. This is just the sort of slight rolling seas that will make me feel sick! However, my stomach feels great!

We went up to the sprawling Breakfast buffet, where we each ordered different foods. I ordered a Spanish Omelet, and selected many slices of fruit, while Hubby enjoyed a more traditional breakfast of sausage, eggs, and pancakes!

After breakfast we went to the promenade deck and walked around it for a while. The seas began to get a little more chop to them. So far, so good, no seasickness!

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After checking out the ship we came back to our room for a little water and coca cola. All that walking sure made us feel dry.

We have a really great cabin steward named Dennis. He has the sweetest personality and seems to always be there when we need him, and then disappears again when we want to be alone.

We went to the sit down luncheon today and sat with a nice couple from Scotland. We shared stories of our trips to Scotland with them and they told us all about their travels in the states.

After lunch we got into our swim suits and went to the Jumbo TV where we watched “The Bucket List” and swam in the pool. It rained a little, mostly just light mist, so no one left the area. The movie was really a good one.

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Nov. 17 at sea 023

Tonight we will dress up and go to The Captains welcome party. It a gather amid ships of all the other passengers and the senior crew to welcome everyone on board. After that we head to the dining room for our first formal dinner.

I think we will walk again once we finish our dinner and then go to the Jumbo screen TV and watch “Mama Mia” under the stars!

And We’re Off!!!

This morning we will fly out of New England


for Puerto Rico, where we will catch our cruise ship, The Caribbean Princess,


for a one week tour of the Southern Caribbean.

We depart early out of Boston, and will be getting to San Juan by lunchtime. We’ll check in, have some lunch and then do a little sight seeing before returning to the ship for dinner.

The ship sails at 11 o’clock, PM and I will be sailing toward Aruba and my 50th birthday!

Naps, Shoes & An Overhaul

Today was a down day. By that I mean that since it was dark and rainy here I got the chance to actually take a 2 hour nap. I’ve been needing that, as I have had a small cold that had been wearing me down.

I woke feeling better and after a cup of tea decided that I am now on the upswing.

I went in my closet today to get a pair of shoes to bring on the trip. I hunted and hunted, and then recalled that I’d donated them because they’d gotten too big for me. It now means I must go to the local shoe store and pick up a pair of taupe dress shoes.

I also went through the pile of clothes I planned to bring and cut it down by a third! I am so proud of myself! Now I just have to get Hubby to pull out the clothes he wants to bring so I can work at folding those up.

The week ahead finds me seeing my retinal surgeon on Wednesday and getting a complete overhaul on Thursday with my hair stylist!

Before we know it, it will be time to drive to Boston and hop our plane. Just a week from today we board the ship and head off on our trip, where I will sail into being 50.

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This picture was taken by Hubby during our cruise last year. I played with it in photoshop and this is what I came up with!

Upstate New York

On our way home from the Zuchtschau, Barbie and I took Anneliese to visit her Grandmother. Asta is owned by Jurgen and Lore and they invited Barbie and I to spend the night with them on Sunday.

It was raining cats and dogs as we drove along the country roads of upstate New York. We could see almost nothing. The GPS did the navigation, and we pulled into their driveway just after 1 o’clock.

Jurgen and Lore’s home is truly a sanctuary for all the animals of the wild, including the most wonderful herd of deer. I found myself sitting in front of the picture windows snapping picture after picture of those precious beasts.

Anneliese got to meet her grandmother, Asta, and she also got to rest. Barbie, Anneliese and myself were all feeling a bit weary after the Zuchtschau and Lore and Jurgen’s home was so warm and welcoming to us.

That night I climbed into the large and comfortable queen sized bed and sank into the softness of the down comforter. I slept as though I hadn’t slept in years. A true respite from the world.

The leaves were just changing and the next day as we drove home from there we oohed and aaahed at the beauty around us.


Anneliese and I arrived home at 5:15 this afternoon. A little tired and a little road weary, but home, safe and sound.

Hubby, Fritz, Greta and Arnie met us in the driveway with a great deal happiness, and Anneliese and I were happy to see them too.

Sometimes it just feels good to be home.

Just A Quickie!

As I write we are in Pennsylvania, stopping for the night at a motel. We drove 835 miles today and by the time we stopped we were both very tired! We stopped at a diner for dinner and now we are just settling in to watch a little TV before falling asleep.

Tomorrow we will get home in the late afternoon. I will spend plenty of time hugging and kissing my pups. We sure have missed them!

I will tell you all about our trip back once I am settled comfortably in my chair with three dachshunds draped all around me, and one big white German Shepherd cuddled up at my feet!

Ah yes, it will sure be good to get home!

1500th Post!!!

This will mark my 1500th post on Dackel Princess. When I started writing, I wasn’t sure I had enough inside of me to write 10 pages, let alone 1500. But, here I am, still writing and still thinking constantly, “Will this make a good entry on the blog?”.

It gets that way, you know. You are out somewhere, innocently shopping or walking, or whatever, and you see something or think of something funny and you begin to write the blog entry in your head. One time I even got out of bed and turned on the lights and the computer and wrote down my idea.

You just never know where or when it will happen.

Like today. We woke to hurricane-like weather in St. Louis. The rain was coming down in sheets, and the wind was blowing so hard that the rain was blown sideways into buildings and windows while the trees whipped back and forth.

So what did Hubby and I do? Did we crawl back into our nice big bed and sleep another hour?

No! We got up, had a light breakfast, and off we went to the St. Louis History Museum to view their Grant and Lee Exhibition on its last day in St. Louis.

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This picture was taken yesterday when the sun was shining!

For my foreign readers I will tell you that General Ulysses S. Grant was the commander of the United States Army during the latter part of our Civil War, and his opponent was General Robert E. Lee, the commander of the Confederate Army. They squared off in many pivotal battles until Lee finally surrendered at Appomattox, Virginia, in 1865.

The American Civil War has always been one of the most interesting periods that I have studied, and Hubby shares my interest, so today we really wanted the chance to see what had been put together at the museum.

It was well done, with many photo’s, journals, and letters written by each man. The museum also provided a little color, by having a local militia come in full period dress for the closing of the exhibition. Well, you know me. Before I knew it I was talking to them all and having a great time.

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(Perhaps the worlds worst picture of me!)

Tonight is our last night in St. Louis and there will be a banquet for Hubby’s Army Aviator’s group. Tomorrow we will leave and head back to our little part of heaven, also known as New Hampshire.

First Day On The Road

We actually got on the road by 6:10 AM on Wednesday morning. Not bad. Since the car was all gassed up, we were able to make a clean break from New Hampshire, through Vermont and most of upstate New York before stopping at an Indian Reservation for gas. Then we crossed a short distance into Pennsylvania, and then on to Ohio.

We drove and drove and drove, enjoying mostly empty roads, bright blue skies and satellite radio. I had packed lunch for us and about noon I broke out the food and prepared turkey breast sandwiches for the two of us. The sandwiches were surprisingly good.

Hubby was munching on some salt and vinegar chips nd I had to beg him to stop. Between the smell of them, and listening to the crunch of them, I was going insane! So he very kindly finished up so I could put them away.

We’ve gone 750 miles and have 450 more to go tomorrow. We’ll make it, despite the fact that about 1 1/2 hours after departure the front right brake went on the car! Every time Hubby puts on the brakes it grinds in a gruesome way. Once we arrive in Missouri we will get the car to a brake shop and get it fixed.

Now we will setttle in at our motel and try to get a good night sleep. I know the morning will come all too soon and we will be…..

On the road gain!!!