Disney Cruisin’ – Day 8 – At Sea

It was an At Sea day yesterday — which was supposed to be our day to
relax, but we ended up filling it very well – though some of our
activities were very relaxing!

The weather was just about as perfect as you can get – sunny and about
80. Really beautiful.

Sorry, no photos today — no time to prepare them.

It was spa day for me — I had a hot stone massage in the morning and
a facial in the afternoon. The hot stone massage was sooooo nice…I
was like jelly after that. Mmmm. And the lady who did it was really
good – after she finished the massage she showed me about 6 different
exercises to loosen up the areas where she found the tightest muscles
— my neck and upper back and hamstrings.

The facial was also very relaxing – I think I dozed off a couple of
times. She spent a lot of time massaging my neck and shoulders, in
addition to whatever she was doing glopping stuff onto my face.
I was all dewy and glowing afterward, though — just in time for
Semi-Formal night!

I assume it is response to guest complaints, but I didn’t have any of
the ladies who worked with me do anything to push the Elemis products
at all. They all said I could ask questions, but that was the extent
of it. I was very happy with that.

While I was off getting pampered, Lee was doing educational things.
He went to the Innovations in Theme Parks presentation, where he
learned all about movie makers designing theme parks. Trevor, who
was one of our lifeboat drill crew members (Station K rocks!), was
the presenter – we have seen him in lots of places and capacities all
over the ship.

He also did the Art of the Theme Ship Tour, which he found really
interesting. They wandered all over the ship talking about the
interior and exterior design elements (carpet, colors, art work,
etc.) and how it sets the theme for each area of the ship.
And they learned about the new ships, too – they will hold about 4000
passengers and 1200 crew (as opposed to 2400 and 1000), but they are
supposed to keep the same “not another floating milk carton” design
as the current ships.

We both took the Galley Tour in the afternoon. The Chef de Cuisine
for Lumiere’s, Aneel (sp?) took us back into the kitchen and talked
about how they make all the food and how many people there are
cooking it, etc. It was really fascinating. The kitchen is
absolutely spotless – he said that there is a special crew who comes
in three times a day to clean it. One thing he didn’t mention, which
TJ told us later, is that every time the servers enter the kitchen
they use a single door, and then immediately wash their hands before
going any further. They exit out a different door after picking
up the food.

Lumiere’s galley connects directly with the pastry chef’s kitchen,
and that area is shared by Parrot Cay and Lumiere’s. There they gave
us fresh chocolate chip cookies — Meg was actually handing those out
to everyone – we have seen her in a lot of different places over the
week! They bake about 4000 cookies a day!

From there we went into the Parrot Cay kitchen, which looked pretty
much the same.

We also learned that there are 5 galleys on board ship – Lumiere’s
and Parrot Cay, Animator’s Palate, Palo, and the crew mess below
decks. Topsider’s is a satellite galley – the food is prepared
elsewhere, and only reheated there. All of the food is stored on
deck A, and brought up via elevators only accessible in the galleys.

All of the cooking is either steam or electric – no gas stoves or
ovens at all because of safety reasons. The ovens will steam or
roast or both – they can cook 500 baked potatoes at a time in one of
the ovens.

We were also impressed that the kitchens were quite cool – and he
said they are that temperature all the time, even when all of the
cooking is going on.

They are incredibly health and safety conscious. One woman on the
tour asked about allergies and special diets, and he said he has one
chef in the kitchen who works in a “clean” area, and whose job it
is to take care of those needs, and make sure that there is no

Last night was semi-formal night – the dinner menu was the Captain’s
Gala. We were in Animator’s Palate, and all of the servers were in
tuxes – they looked very nice. Our other tablemates were dining at
Palo, so we were at the table by ourselves. So we were able to spend
a lot of time visiting with TJ and Meg, and that was very nice. Joe
and Kathy came to join us after they finished dining at Palo and we
were the last guests in the restaurant. In fact, some of the servers
didn’t realize we were still there, and suddenly turned on some loud
rock music, but Meg and some of the others who still realized we were
there were quick to tell them to turn it off since there were still
guests in the restaurant.

Today was Castaway Cay, and unfortunately our final night. We just
finished packing and putting our bags outside to be picked up and
then delivered to theh airport tomorrow. But I’ll have to write
about all of that later – maybe on the plane home tomorrow.

It’s been a sensational week, and we have really, really enjoyed our
cruise – just in case you couldn’t tell. After the way Disney has
pampered and taken care of us for the last week, it’s going to be
quite a rude awakening when we have to deal with the airport and the
airline tomorrow.

Sigh…do we *have* to go home?

Laura Gilbreath is a native of San Diego, CA. She has been making the trek up Interstate 5 to Disneyland since she was a small child and terrified of talking tikis and hitchhiking ghosts. She and her husband Lee enjoy trips to Disneyland and Walt Disney World, as well as sailings on the Disney Cruise Line.

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