San Juan to Carnival Cruise Ship

Today I intended to wake up around 8 am but forgot about the hour time difference and got up at 8:30.  There was no hot water in the shower.  That was very disappointing.  Then we decided to go out for breakfast.  We found a diner like place down the street from our hotel.  I had 2 fried eggs with ham and toast.  Don had 2 fried eggs with bacon and toast.  It was okay breakfast.  I can’t remember the name of the place. 
After breakfast it was around 1030 and we decided to try to figure out what to do with our luggage while we explored more of San Juan. We had to check out the hotel at 11.  We talked to the hotel manager and she said we could keep our luggage in their luggage room until 4 pm, so that was perfect.  We got our luggage all situated and then checked out to explore San Juan for the few more hours we would be there. 

It was so hot outside! We couldn’t decide what to do.  We knew we wanted to get on the boat around 2 or 3 to check in.  So our options were check out a couple of forts or the Bacardi Factory Tour.  We could see one of the forts from where we were standing and it just looked like the sun was beating down on it.  I knew the Bacardi Tour was free and I had seen a sign for it earlier so I convinced Don we should do it.  He was a little unsure of it because we had a feeling we had to take a ferry to get to it and he was worried about time.
We went to the port to check it out.  The guy said the boats run back and forth every half hour and the tour was only 45 minutes.  So we decided to go for it.  The ferry ride was 50 cents each way.  The next ferry was taking off at 1130 so we had about 15 minutes.  

In the ferry terminal a young woman came up to us and asked if we were going on the Bacardi Tour.  She said she heard you had to take a taxi once you got there to get to the actual factory.  We didn’t know this; we just thought the ferry would take us right to it.  She asked if we wanted to share a cab and we decided yes. Her name was Anda and she was from Romania. We started talking while we were waiting and a man came up to us and introduced himself as Larry from LA. He had a friend with him named Anne.  We all started talking and decided we would try to fit in a taxi together.

On the ferry over to Catano we made friends with an older couple of women. They were also leaving on the Carnival cruise with us later.  I can’t remember their names right now.  I wonder if we will see them on the boat sometime.  They gave us some tips since this was like their sixth cruise. 

Once we got to Catano we were hurried to a taxi, which was really like a shuttle bus so we could all fit in it.  It was $3 per person. Once we got to the Bacardi Factory we signed up for a tour.  We had to wait for the English speaking tour so we had a 45 minute wait.  They gave us each 2 tickets to get free drinks at the bar. We all quickly went to the bar and got a drink. Don and I both got Bacardi Coconut with pineapple juice.  It was delicious, much better than Malibu I think. Don, Anda, Larry, Anne and I all sat at the same table and talked and enjoyed our drinks. The grounds of the factory were beautiful so we took a lot of pictures.

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My second drink was some kind of raspberry mixed drink. It was good, but not as good as the coconut.

Finally our tour was called and we went on the tour. We got on a bus to go over the factory, which was a very short ride but for some reason they said you were not allowed to walk. The tour was pretty good. I learned a few things about rum. The highlight of the trip though was the free drinks and meeting the people. Once we got back from the tour we checked out the gift shop. Then somehow we all got another free drink. I got the coconut and pineapple again because it was so good. We hung out for a little bit because it started raining. Once the rain seemed to have quit some we all ran to the shuttle bus. Once we got off the shuttle bus it was pouring. The ferry was leaving in 5 minutes so we all quickly paid and ran to the ferry in the rain. Then we got back to San Juan and said our goodbyes. We exchanged emails and names for facebook.

Then Don and I went back to the hotel to get our bags to take to the ship. It was raining. We got our bags and walked in the rain to the ship. It was about a 10 minute walk. Luckily the rain started slowing down. We went through the whole check in process and that took probably an hour. We saw our room. It is on the 1st floor and has no window. It is pretty small but we expected that. Then we decided we would go to starbucks back up on shore so Don could do something for work online. We had been to starbucks earlier and there was a free wifi connection. The wifi on the boat is very expensive. So we got off the boat and went to starbucks. Of course the wifi was not working. And we both ordered ice coffees and they were horrible. So then we went to CVS down the street because we found out you can bring bottled water and soda on the boat. I got an 8 pack of Dr Pepper and we got a 12 pack of water. It’s just easier to have your own water for excursions and stuff.

Then we got back on the ship and Don had to suck it up and purchase some internet. We figured the best thing for us would be just to use the 75 cent per minute package. We won’t use that much. Around 630 pm Michael called our room and we decided to meet for dinner at 730.

We had dinner at the buffet. It was pretty good. We were so hungry since we hadn’t eaten since the morning. Then we just walked around with Mike and Teresa and explored the boat some. At 915 pm we had to do the mandatory safety thing where everyone has to go watch how to put on a life jacket and see where they go if there is an emergency.

After that we went back to the top of the boat to watch the boat sail away from San Juan. Don and I got some beer and we all went to the very top. We found a pretty secluded spot and we gave each other our own space. Then we looked over and Mike was down on one knee proposing to Teresa. We knew it was going to happen we just were not sure when. She was so surprised. So now Mike and Teresa are engaged!
After all that we went back to our rooms and slept because we were freaken tired.

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