That’s right, we’re home. We made it back late Saturday night. The trip went much better than either of us could have ever anticipated and for that we are so very thankful. We walked the streets of islands we had never visited before, held hands as we watched the sun set beyond the oceans horizon from the comfort of our balcony, ate food we would normally never see, and slept whenever we darn well felt like it. There was only one port, St Thomas, that neither of felt like going through the debarkment process for and, thankfully, I was able to arrange and see to almost all of the itinerary. It took every ounce of concentration I had but I did it with only a few minor hiccups.
The weather, for the most part, was perfect. Generally, it stayed in the upper 70’s or lower 80’s and the humidity was comfortable. There were only a couple of episodic showers. Even being around the equator, there was the occasional need for long sleeves and pants, I can’t seem to get away from the cold no matter where I go. But if that’s the worst of it I really can’t complain. This almost idyllic weather really helped in reducing my fog and increasing my mood. Even my chronic migraines were lessened. If only permanent residency aboard a Caribbean bound ocean liner were a real possibility.
Unfortunately, upon our ret, the weather at home turned foul. The high has been in the mid 50’s with almost constant rain. Needless to say, this has not made my homecoming any easier. The mental fog has increased dramatically, the migraines have ramped up and I’ve become much more isolated.
There was something funny, at least to me, that happened a few days after we returned home. Jeff, I think you will appreciate this. We encountered a few patches of rough seas so we became accustomed to rebalancing to counteract the rolling of the ship. So, a couple of days after we get home I’m putting on my pants, something that can be an adventure in the best of times due to my screwed up balance caused by the LBD, when I rebalanced to avoid the rolling. Thing is, I was home, therefore, no rolling. Luckily I fell on the bed. No harm, no foul. But it took me awhile to stop laughing at the absurdity of the situation so that I could get up.
I did find a new “symptom” that I’m lying at the feet of my new traveling companion (LBD). I’ve always been very introverted, I have never easily interacted with strangers, especially in in intimate settings such as elevators or group dining situations with people I’ve never met. Well that all changed on this trip. I became a Chatty Cathy with nearly everyone I met. Someone came on the elevator and had an interesting accent, I had no qualms about asking where they were from, someone had an interesting looking dessert, I had to ask what it was (at least I didn’t ask for a taste), and so forth and so on. That type of thing is my wife’s ballywick, not mine. At least not til now. And I loved it. I knew that LBD could and would lower your inhibitions but I was not aware that it had mine. At this early stage, this is one symptom I’m actually happy about. I’m not such a stick in the mud any more.
The worst event of the entire trip came on the morning of debarkation. Ideally, everyone was to be called to the gangway in small groups so as to keep the hallways relatively clear and keep the process moving along. Sounds good right? And it would have been had everyone paid attention to the debarkment briefing the day before. But you know that didn’t happen. We where among the 1st scheduled to get off the boat and when the elevator doors opened to the gangway vestibule, we could barely squeeze out into the hallway. We were shoulder to shoulder and not moving at all with more people trying to crowd in behind us. After 5-10 minutes of this I was screaming inside. I was frantically looking around for any way to even crawl out of there. Thankfully the gangway crew realized what was happening, called for additional crew and soon had those who weren’t supposed to be there yet moved back to the proper waiting areas. We moved through debarkation and customs without a hitch after that.
All in all we’re extremely pleased that we overcame our reservations and took this anniversary trip. It proved to us that, at least for the time being, we are still able to do some travel. We don’t have to just sit at home a wait for the inevitable. At least not yet....