After taking a hiatus this year, 2012 will be my third -- and final -- cruise. (I say final because the third cruise is likely to break five-digits spent on this one activity, and I have to draw the line somewhere.)
This year, I vow to do a few things differently, partly because I've learned my lesson on some things, and partly because lots has changed since I last cruised. Back then, I went to the gym 6 days a week, spent my weekends reading, and stayed up past 10 p.m. Nowadays, I spend most of my time covered in drool, spit up, poop, or all three.
In 2012, I vow to:
Not even pack high heels. Yes, they look nice for the 20 minutes I keep them on during formal night, but then I end up barefoot while the shoes get kicked around and slopped with pool water. Why waste the space in my suitcase?
Shop less. Between 2009 and 2010, I think I bought something like 7 swimsuits for the cruise. And that's just swimsuits! Nevermind the sundresses, theme outfits, jewelry, purses, shoes, and PJs. What was I thinking? This year, I'm doing a lot more shopping from my own closet. I'd be forced into this resolution anyway, since I can't afford the luxury of leisurely trips to the mall anymore.
Sleep more. I realize this is blasphemy on a New Kids cruise, but I can't pass up the rare chance to nap in the middle of the afternoon or sleep in past 7. In 2010, I slept around 10 hours total the entire trip. 2012 is going to be the year I learn to nap onboard.
Stand with anyone, including a pole if necessary, for the photo op. At this point, I have a photo with each New Kid. I'm more interested now in getting a chance to say hi while avoiding hour after hour in line. Photo ops this year are said to be much improved though.
Leave my phone on. Yup, I'm going to be the doof who comes home to an $800 phone bill. I just don't want to be unreachable. Unfortunately that won't help me on Half Moon Cay, where there are no cell towers, or most of the time at sea, where I never could get a signal.
Fly in the morning of. I'm breaking one of my own rules here, but this year I'm flying in to Miami the morning we depart. I don't recommend this. But with the added day, I just can't be away any longer. Again, don't do this. This is crazy.
Take Tuesday off. I'm finally learning my lesson with this one and taking an extra day off after the trip to recover. The day after the cruise, you'll be hoarse, exhausted, bloated, and seasick tipsy. Best to feel this way at home on the couch.
Repeat cruisers, what are you planning to do differently in 2012?