Saturday morning, we had to check out by 10am. That hurt a little! The perfect cure for a hangover, it turns out, is La Bombonera. We expected to have to wait in line at the most popular breakfast spot in San Juan, but we got a table right away!
After breakfast, we headed out to tour San Juan. We climbed up to San Sebastian and walked across the northern side of Old San Juan (essentially recreating the path I’d taken with Wendy and Stephanie on my first trip there).
We bought tickets to see El Morro; they’re only $3!
This is the view from the ladies’ room at El Morro. You could do worse. (That’s the leper colony in the background!)
It was insanely windy, and I’d already realized that I’d forgotten clips to put my hair up. Cue an entire week of me wearing my sunglasses on top of my head!
Above is the view through the troop barracks; below is the staircase they used to haul cannons up and down! Notice the spots to stop and rest every eight steps or so. If you’re hungover and it’s humid as hell, you don’t even need a cannon to make you want to rest on each platform.
From El Morro, we walked back into Old San Juan and decided to find a spot to sit, have a beer, and finish our Christmas cards. We were supposed to have worked on them on the plane, but I completely forgot. Really, what’s more cruel that mailing Xmas cards to people in Minnesota from the tropics? Sorry, guys.
This guy (called ‘chango’ in Spanish) sat and yelled at us loudly. He’s awesome.
After dropping off our cards at the post office, we walked over to Lupi’s for lunch. I’d heard in more than one place that it was closed, so I was thrilled that that was not the case. It was the same old bar… a dimly-lit Mexican restaurant with the naked lady machine on the bar. We had margaritas and plantain nachos, just like last time, and watched sports on TV.
Then it was time to go see about gettin’ on a boat! We picked up our bags at the hotel and hopped a cab to the cruise port.
We were pretty early for check-in (having learned the value of getting on the ship early), and it was an extremely quick process. We were on board the Celebrity Summit being handed glasses of champagne and ushered to cabin 6097 in no time.
Our cabin was very similar to the ones we’d had on Costa. Enough room for two people, with a nice balcony. And there was more champagne waiting for us, of course. We unpacked our bags, checked out the view from the balcony, and then set out to tour the ship, from the top down.
The ship had really nice pools… in that respect, it was nicer than Costa. No bocce, though! From the deck, we could see the yacht we’d passed on the way there: it’s called the Al Mirqab, owned by the prime minister of Qatar. Big pimpin’.
The lifeboat drills weren’t til the next day, so we were free to wander. We became acquainted with a hot Irish bartender at the pool bar, and then met the awesome Russian bartender at the coffee bar near the game room. We’d be seeing plenty of them over the next week.
Round about leaving time, we brought our champagne up to the deck for the celebration. There was a band playing by the pool, and a parade of boats covered in Christmas lights sailed past our ship in the port. We stood and watched as the ship passed Old San Juan and headed out to sea, then went back to the pool bar for some cocktails. Matt taught the Jamaican bartender how to make Johnny Jump-ups, and we had a long talk with a loud guy from Texas.
After a while, we decided it was time to check out the casino. We found spots at the blackjack table (which had a $6 minimum, not bad). For the first time in quite a while, I ended up winning – not much, I think I had $80 on my original $60, so I decided to leave ahead. I went to get a Rob Roy, and when I came back, Matt was still winning. We both did surprisingly well that night!