When I boarded the Disney cruise ship bound for the Caribbean with the Hubs and the Young One back in July, I knew I was heading out on a memory-making journey and that on the return trip home, I would have a suitcase full of memories and a binder full of blog material.
Before we even left the dock, I was mentally drafting the first installment of my travelogue which I was sure would include vivid re-enactments of dune buggy races, stingray encounters and waterfall adventures. Sprinkled between these would be my first-hand accounts of Disney magic–nightly Broadway-caliber musical productions, five-star meals and creative origami towel creations left with the evening turn-down service.
Of course, Disney did not disappoint. Pixie Dust was in abundance. The Young One was greeted with, “Princess,” at every turn, and our days were crammed with so many activities, sleeping was optional.
Unfortunately, Disney Cruise Lines has very strict rules about not taking the Pixie Dust with you when you leave the ship. “The magic”, the teeny, tiny, extra-small print in the cruise contract explains, “must stay on board.” The burden of memory-making is solely on each guest once they set foot on soil at each port of call.
I had confidence in my own magic-making potential when I booked our excursions and happy memories were crafted in Cozumel where the Hubs safely chauffeured us in our very own Dune buggy and where we successfully found Dory on the Young One’s first snorkeling adventure. On Grand Caymen, we swam with stingrays and added our names to the exposed beams of a sandy bar on the beach.
In Jamaica, however, I missed a step, and came home with a not-so-cherished souvenir. All three of us has a different version of what happened that day, but each ends in the same result…me with my foot strapped to a splint and shiny aluminum crutches shoved under my shoulders.
The Hubs tells the tale of our “American Football Excursion” in which he blocks for me while I run for the game-winning touchdown. At the five-yard line, the Jamaican linebacker comes out of nowhere, grabs my ankle and brings me down with a twist and a crunch. In true Disney fashion though, I get back in the game, score on the next play, and my team carries me off the field on their shoulders.
I prefer a little less melodramatic story of how I had a “little too much fun” on vacation. It starts with some delightful rum creme splashed into a cup of equally delightful Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee earlier in the morning before boarding the bus to our waterfall excursion at Dunns River Falls in Falmouth. I don’t go into much more detail, but the moral of the story is “rum and stilettos don’t work well together when climbing wet rocky surfaces.”
The Young One starts her telling of my accident with, “Momma had to go to the bathroom…AGAIN.” Then she tells anyone who will listen that I was in a hurry…again…and not looking where I was going…again…and completely missed the step at the doorway of the public restroom in the parking lot of Dunns River Falls. “She landed on the top of her foot instead of the bottom,” she says with a roll of her eyes.
She ends her less-than-glamorous version by telling how I cringed when I wedged my swelling foot into the water shoes required for walking up the falls…and how the tour guide had to keep having the rest of the group wait for me…and how I stood on the slippery rocks like a flamingo. “My mom,” she announces, “walked up a waterfall with a broken foot!”
That’s a memory all right.
Because I am generous and like a good story, I will let you pick your preferred version, or better yet, make up one of your own and leave it in the comments. Be aware, though, I may use it the next time a complete stranger asks me what happened to my foot.
I will, however, leave you with a few very prolific thoughts regarding my misadventures on the high-seas…
First, Disney cruises are amazing and magical and all the things they tell you about in their marketing material. The medical facilities onboard are top-notch, and if you have a mishap either on or off the ship, you will find an extra-special origami creature on your bed along with yummy Mickey Mouse shaped cereal treats. We had a great time, and broken foot or not, we will do another one sometime in the future.
Second, I have a lot of blog material after our vacation, including some surrounding the acquisition of brand new footwear that will feature prominently in a series of upcoming posts.
Finally, don’t be afraid of visiting Jamaica on your next Caribbean vacation. The chances of you following in my (hopping, limping, dragging) footsteps are slim, but I do have one word of caution…when you go to the beautiful island of Jamaica, please be careful of your fluid intake…the bathrooms are dangerous.