Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Cool Bahamas

Our last full day of the cruise we stopped at Holland America's "private island" in the Bahamas, Half Moon Cay.  It was quite windy actually so not a great day for being on the beach or in the water unfortunately.

Grandpa and Grandma and I took the boys to the other side of the island for a little Sting Ray Adventure... The water was so cold it was hard for them to be in, but it was cool to have the rays all swimming around us.  Some were medium size, but there was one that was HUGE, easily 5 feet across!  They knew they were going to get fed so they were brushing up against us underwater.  They are so smooth on the bottom they feel slimy.  It's kinda freaky to me!

I don't have pictures 'cuz these are on the disposable cameras as well... but we got in a big circle and the guide gave us all a piece of squid (including eyes) and showed us how to hold it loosely in our hand.  Then he went around and let one of the rays suck it out of everyone's hand and eat.  Cory refused to even try, but Noah wanted to feed the ray... so the guide had him go first.  The ray's mouth was a bit out of the water so it was making quite loud sucking noises and when it did finally get the squid out of Noah's hand I think he felt the rough skin around it's mouth.  There was a moment of pause and then a load wail.  "It Ate Me!"  He was quite scared and I had to hold him and calm him down by having him hold up his hands and see that they were still there, but at the same time we were all just cracking up!

After that we went back across the island to their BBQ lunch and then out to the beach for a bit.  Grandpa and Cory made a sand castle with a moat.

Noah still wasn't feeling real well, but enjoyed playing in the waves as they washed over him.

There was a bar on the beach built to look like a shipwreck, but it had a second level for some amazing views!  Yes, the water really was that color, unbelievable!

It was funny because there were 2 ships there and both were leaving by 4pm so when I went to take the pictures even though it was the middle of the afternoon the bar was basically closing down.

It was finally starting to warm up just enough that you could maybe go swimming, but we needed to head back to the ship so we just stood in the waves for a few minutes.  That's definitely one of the downsides to cruising, being on their time schedule.

It was also too cold for babies to get in on the beach/water action so they didn't even use the swimsuits I brought along.  Oh well!

The boys had fun and then some!  Cory even went out part way to the buoy rope and was riding the waves.  He really has become very good in the water even if he still only dog paddles.

This was the only place where we had to take a small boat (in the foreground) out to get on the island and back.  It's hard to believe just how big those cruise ships are even when you're on them.  And ours was one of the smaller ones!

A shot of the water from the tender looking back towards the beach we were just on... and that crazy water color!

See the tenders next to the ship?  And they would each hold 100 people easy!

One other thing I noticed, every time we were stopped somewhere there was always someone painting, washing, doing something to the outside of the ship.  But then I realized that it's the only time they have to work on the boat because those things never stop.  We got off Sunday morning at 10am and by 5pm they were leaving again!

So since they paint all the time anyway I guess it wasn't that hard to add some seasonal greetings to the gangway entrance!

And so the next morning we got off... and I still don't quite have my land legs back, especially if I'm looking down!

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