April 20, 2024


Ep. 415 - Dream Weaver: Kevin and His Daughter Bert Share Their Familie's First Experience With Disney Cruise Line

Hosted by

Brian Sam
Ep. 415 - Dream Weaver: Kevin and His Daughter Bert Share Their Familie's First Experience With Disney Cruise Line
DCL Duo Podcast: A Disney Cruise Line Fan Podcast
Ep. 415 - Dream Weaver: Kevin and His Daughter Bert Share Their Familie's First Experience With Disney Cruise Line

Apr 20 2024 | 01:15:25


Show Notes

Kevin and his daughter Bert join us this week to share their first experience with Disney Cruise Line, a 4-night sailing on the Disney Dream that turned into an un-planned double-dip at Castaway Cay due to weather. What did Bert think about the kids club, the food, the activities onboard and Castaway? Would Kevin take his family back on Disney Cruise Line in the future? All that and so much more on this week's show.

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Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Speaker A: Papa was supposed to be there afterward, so I didn't know that. And I was looking for dad, and I could find. I went back to the spot we claimed for the beat, and Nana is there, and I'm just like, where is dad? She said Papa was waiting for you and me. [00:00:16] Speaker B: Okay, well, even before this story of child abandonment, what. What were you doing? [00:00:35] Speaker C: Welcome back, everybody, to this week's episode of the DC L duo podcast, brought to you by my path, unwinding travel. And Sam, another review. Another review for you here. [00:00:45] Speaker D: Yay. Yes. Another show. [00:00:47] Speaker C: That's lackluster excitement. That's lackluster excitement. [00:00:50] Speaker D: Get excited. Another Brian, another show day, another review. I'm always happy for these things. Okay. I'm actually even more excited for our guests today, but I won't skip ahead and I'll let you read the review. [00:01:01] Speaker C: All right, well, this one comes from. It's Sean in 98 who writes entertaining and informative. I have been planning for my next cruise in September, and this has been a great resource to hear tips, tricks, and stories. I love how relatable Brian and Sam are and how they managed to mix the information with plenty of fun. Thanks for filling my days with lots of great audio. Keep up the amazing show. Well, thank you. I hope your name is. Yeah, I was gonna say I hope your name is Sean, because it says. [00:01:24] Speaker D: It'S Sean, so that's Sean Connor, Brian, that's. [00:01:27] Speaker C: Thank you, Sean. And, well, you'll hear this after our live show on Monday, but we'll have Sean on a Monday, so that'll be fun. Yeah. Sam, you want to intro our guests? [00:01:36] Speaker D: Yes, I would love to. As I mentioned, I'm super excited for our guests today because we've got two guests and it's a father daughter pair joining us. So welcome to the show, Kevin and Birdie. [00:01:49] Speaker B: Hi. Thanks for having us. [00:01:50] Speaker D: So we were talking with Kevin and Birdie before the show a little bit. Birdie, you are eight years old and in third grade, is that right? [00:01:59] Speaker A: Yep. [00:02:00] Speaker D: And this was your first Disney cruise ever that we're going to be talking about? Is that also right? [00:02:05] Speaker A: Yes. [00:02:06] Speaker D: All right, well, Kevin, why don't you tell us your cruising slash Disney background? I know this was your first Disney cruise. You had one cruise many moons ago, as you mentioned on our pre show. [00:02:19] Speaker B: Yes, I did have a high school cruise, technically to the Bahamas as part of a high school band trip. I remember very little about the trip, but Disney wise, we are extremely experienced in the parks. My father was one of probably the first DVC members at beach club and boardwalk. So we spent most of our school vacations when I was growing up with my other two sisters, going to the parks, usually at least once a year, a lot of times more than once a year. And actually, Birdie has a good amount of experience, too. She's been to Disneyland and she's also been to Disney World three times now. Yes. Yes. She's nodding. So this is an audio platform. [00:03:06] Speaker D: You have to say yes, we can't see you, Birdie, so we gotta hear you. And when you talk stale, get a little closer to the microphone so we can make sure we hear you loud and clear. Okay, so let's dive into talking about this cruise. We have to start with. The big question is why? Well, what itinerary did you book, what ship? And why did you pick that particular cruise and why Disney cruise line in particular? [00:03:30] Speaker B: Yes. So, um, we probably. Our interest in the cruise started during COVID Bert had started kind of moving from just liking Disney to knowing a little bit about what was going on. So when I was doing trip planning and things like that, she was watching a lot of the videos with me and I think probably DFB guide. Is that. Is that your go to? You know, we watch a lot of those videos. She had a lot of cruise content coming out after COVID, so we got. We got sort of interested. Admittedly, I was kind of always a person who just thought because my parents weren't cruisers, I kind of just viewed it as, all right, anything you're going to do on this boat, you could just do on land. So, you know, it had never really occurred to me to even look into it. But we started getting interested around that time, especially because when the boats stopped running, it was crazy to me how up in arms people were about the fact that they couldn't cruise versus Disney World, where it just seemed to be kind of a holding pattern. Everyone in the cruise game was horrified that we could not cruise. So I said, you know, these people are very dedicated, obviously, so there's something here. Uh, and we're just crazy. [00:04:48] Speaker C: We're just. [00:04:48] Speaker B: Well, that's you. [00:04:50] Speaker D: It's both. Brian. Brian. [00:04:52] Speaker B: Um, and last year, we had a pretty, uh, wild year. We were renovating our house, like any home renovation. Instead of it taking the scheduled four months, it took about ten months. Um, so we had a lot of time on our hands living with my parents. Uh, birdie and I watched a lot of videos. We sort of needed, you know, kind of feeling like I had total control over any Disney world or Disneyland trip we would do. And sort of the. The rush of booking it and figuring everything out had kind of worn off. We. We needed a new kind of thing to get into and learn about. So sometime in there, we started looking at cruises, mostly around school vacation, and then, as honestly, as far as itinerary, we did not, we did not look. Add a whole host of options. I think the only real thing that outlined what we wanted to do was we knew we wanted to do a caribbean trip, and then we knew we did not want to go to the Bahamas, which is, um, ironic, because we ended up going to the Bahamas. [00:05:54] Speaker D: Now, which ship did you end up booking on? And I know, I know you went in February of 2024. [00:06:01] Speaker B: Yeah. So we were on the dream. It was a five night sailing, uh, February 18, and it was scheduled to go to Castoi Key and Grand Cayman. [00:06:09] Speaker D: Nice. Well, now I want to ask birdie some questions. What did you do to prepare for this cruise? I mean, did you make your own packing list? Did you watch a bunch of YouTube videos to figure out, you know, what we were going to do on board? Did you do a lot of planning ahead of time, or did you want to go into this cruise with kind of an open mind and. And see it as you go? [00:06:31] Speaker A: We definitely watch videos and planned ahead, and we did have a scheduled list for packing. [00:06:40] Speaker D: Wow. [00:06:41] Speaker B: We watched a lot of videos of the tour. Right. Specifically of the dream. We had a lot of anxiety over getting on the ship and not being able to find stuff. So we did a number of the walkthroughs, a bunch of time. Bert had those on loop, so she kind of knew where everything was when we got on the boat. [00:06:58] Speaker D: Well, and you guys are a family of how many? [00:07:02] Speaker B: Oh, yes, a family of six. So there was a lot going on here for me and Bert. Um, so it's my. My wife and I. Birdie is the oldest. She's eight. Uh, we also have Lulu, who is six, Dean, who is three, and then Elizabeth, who is. Who was eight months when we went on the cruise. [00:07:19] Speaker D: Oh, my goodness. So you have a quite a bit of packing on your hands for all of those kids, as well as yourselves. That is. That's a lot. And I know you had two rooms. What, um, what kind of stateroom did you all book? [00:07:34] Speaker B: Yeah. So we had two connecting family size verandas, and I think we're on the 9th floor in midship. [00:07:44] Speaker D: And how did you sort of decide on those rooms? Was it from watching videos? Was there. I must have a veranda, or was there, what was sort of in your equation for figuring out. [00:07:57] Speaker B: Yeah. So we did use a travel agent. I had never used a travel agent for Disney World, but specifically for this, especially having four kids, I didn't have the time to scour message boards, um, and really be in deep on the Facebook group to. To have every one of my questions answered. So I really used the travel agent as sort of a hack to get things answered quickly for me. She was extremely responsive. The first thing, uh, she helped us with was, you know, I said, I have no idea where we should be on the boat for my type of family, um, you know, a room. And she said, I think you're a little close to the top deck. It's going to be very noisy. I don't know if you're going to want to stay there. And then separately, we did look into concierge because had realized that being first timers, we were going to have potentially problems booking things. So that seemed like a good option. The issue we had was we still needed more than one room and we could not get a connecting concierge room. She also told me very wisely, she had said, you know, if you do this one concierge, you're going to have to do them all concierge. So maybe it's, maybe it's. Maybe it's better that you just, you know, deal with it the first time and go through some hazing and then think about it for the next time. [00:09:17] Speaker D: So, yeah, I think. I honestly think that's great. [00:09:21] Speaker C: Hold on. For the record, you can sail concierge and then sail regular. I don't. I know we joke about it like, but we're on the treasure maiden voyage and a fantasy cruise right after and we are not in concierge or neither of those sailings primarily because. Cause Disney has lost their minds when it comes to pricing concierge rooms. But yeah, you can do it. We did it on the wish maiden, actually. [00:09:41] Speaker D: We did. No, I'm not saying you can't do it. I'm just saying that it is harder. Cause there are things you're gonna be envious of when you're on board. You're gonna be like, oh, I remember when we got to board. First rule. Remember when we got to do Xyz right on the wish maiden? [00:09:57] Speaker C: I was standing in a long line and I did say, gosh, I wish we were concierge. But yeah, we made it through just fine and had a great time. [00:10:05] Speaker D: So, yeah, yeah. The other thing I would say though, is I think it's good advice for first cruise in particular about sort of the. The booking window not being so important because, you know, on a five night cruise in particular, you've got a lot to explore on the ship. And so you might, you know, even without booking, you know, like, say, let's say Apollo brunch or Remy dinner or, you know, what have you. There's. There's so much to do on the ship, and you're still cramming it into kind of a short amount of time. And so you don't need to do some of the extras. There are some excursions that might be an exception that, you know, are difficult to get. I think there's, like, a fishing excursion somewhere that everybody always complains because it always sells out to concierge because there's, like, five people can go on it or something. So. [00:10:51] Speaker B: And that actually was, that actually was, um, one of the benefits of using the travel agent she was extremely helpful with. I knew I didn't get my hopes up for certain things because she had a very good handle on. Okay, when it's your time to do this, here's what I think will be gone. Here's what I think will be available. So we had very low expectations. We kind of just wanted to, you know, whatever we could experience, we would do, and whatever we couldn't, we would just punt to the next trip. [00:11:20] Speaker D: Yeah. And I think that's a great way to go into it. As I mentioned, there's so much to do on board. You know, if you try to cram everything in your. Your first cruise anyway, you're going to be disappointed because it's just not possible. You got to prioritize. So what did you look for in terms of pre booking, and were you able to get what you sort of had planned, you know, working with your travel agent? [00:11:41] Speaker B: Yeah. So, for example, we were going to do royal tea for the girls, but Amanda, our travel agent, knew. She had told me. I highly doubt that will be available when it's your time to go. So we kind of put that to the side. And then our day at Grand Cayman, there were multiple things. Seven Mile beach. The other thing we're dealing with here is we have the baby. So then you've got to coordinate who's going to stay and who's going to go. We like to do everything together, my wife and I. So we really didn't want to separate if we could help it. So then, oddly, we had a lot of Amex points. And even though most of the resorts in Grand Cayman don't do day passes anymore, I had worked something out with the Westin on Grand Cayman for us to go there when we got off the boat so that we could use the pool and use seven mile beach. Because if I, if I remember correctly, I think the seven Mile beach excursion was even full. A lot of them were full. Really the only thing that was available for us. And keep in mind, it's school vacation week, so I'm sure the boat was absolutely as filled as it could be. [00:12:55] Speaker D: Right? [00:12:55] Speaker B: Definitely what it. Definitely what it felt like once we got on. But, you know, it was things like the Stingray experience, you know, Dean's three. He's not getting in the water with stingrays, I'm going to guess. [00:13:06] Speaker D: So listen, I don't want to get in the water with stingrays myself. [00:13:10] Speaker B: And even the girls, the girls wanted to do it. And in my mind, I just had the sense that I think this is going to be terrifying when we get there. So, you know, maybe we should wait till they're older. So that's what we did. We just, we scheduled the day at the Westin, which ironically did not occur cause we never made it to Grand Cayman. And then other than that, we did. It was a Marvel day at sea. So Dean, who's three, he in your into the Marvel movies too, but he didn't care as much about the characters. But we did schedule the encounters. I don't remember which one we did, but I know it was Spider man and iron man, but other than that. Oh, and Bertie, sorry, Birdie, you booked the boutique also. You and Lucy did the boutique. So it was the boutique. And then one of the marvel encounters. And other than that, we, we just decided to wing it. As far as the kids for the adults, we did get in a lot of different things. And I should mention, our sailing party wasn't just our immediate family. We did have papa and Nana on board as well. They were in a separate room. So me and papa, my wife's father, did a bourbon tasting. We were able to book that. My wife booked a massage with her stepmother and then all of that stuff kind of got rejiggered when the schedule got messed around. Once we were kind of sailing into storms, but we had a lot booked going in. And that was another thing. When I laid it out for the travel agent, she said, this is a lot. This is a lot. So just play it by ear and if you can't do one of these, don't sweat it and just you're going to have something to do all the time on the boat. So we weren't too concerned about. [00:14:52] Speaker D: Now, I know you went to Disney World ahead of time, so I imagine you stayed on property or nearby property. And then did you take the bus down to the port? [00:15:03] Speaker B: Yes, we, we usually, we're looking into DVC now. We usually rent points. And my sister and my father are DVC members, so they stay a boardwalk. It's just the most convenient location with little kids. My sister has little kids, my other sister, so both of my sisters were there. Both have three kids. I have four kids, all of those families. And my parents were at the boardwalk for three nights. And then what we ended up doing was I had looked into transfers and car services to get down to Fort Lauderdale, which is the port we sailed out of. The cheapest option ended up being to just rent a car, drive it one way and then drop it off when we got to the port the same day. So we did that. We actually flew out of Orlando as well, but that's actually what we did. We drove straight from Orlando down to the port, stayed one night before the cruise at a, I think a Hilton near the port. And as far as, you know, logistics and stuff, it worked out pretty seamlessly. The drive actually went really well. I don't even think we stopped. It was about 2 hours, two and a half hours. So it ended up, it seemed like a lot of moving around with a bunch of little kids, but it was not bad. [00:16:14] Speaker D: Now you got, so you sailed out of Fort Lauderdale. I will confess to you, Kevin, Brian and I have never been to the Disney's new terminal at Fort Lauderdale. What did you think of the terminal? I mean, I know you don't have much to compare it to, but what did you think of the terminal and what did you think of sort of the check in process in person before you get boarded? [00:16:34] Speaker B: Yeah. So, and maybe this is a question for you guys, because as much content as I consumed before the trip, I don't think either me or Hubert were aware that Fort Lauderdale is a relatively new port for them. I think we started watching videos right before the trip of people having all sorts of issues out of the poor. So then, you know, that made me sweat a little bit. But all of this just, you know, when we were going into it, I just thought, okay, well now I'm prepared for this. It could be pretty rough. So, um, we'll just, you know, the good thing was, is again, we stayed in a hotel the night before, so we were pretty fresh. It wasn't like the kids had been trapped in the car or anything. So I think our boarding time was 1245, I would say, oddly, and maybe this is a good bit of time to get on the boat. From the time we got our bags unloaded to the time we actually got on the boat was over an hour, but I would say there's probably different types of waiting for 1 hour. And this actually wasn't that bad because we kind of moved. We were always moving the whole time. And then our check in process took a little bit. Uh, we did have a little bit of an issue with the baby. The, uh, headshot we had to do with the baby apparently wasn't picking up, uh, the way it needed to for their system to recognize it. Um, and honestly, this is actually was my first taste of the customer service on the cruise line, because without going off on a tangent about the parks, we, you know, I've done it so many times and seen the customer service trend up and down over the years. We had a really rough stay at the parks. Just a lot of rides breaking, service being very unhelpful. Um, we just had a lot of issues, so I was kind of exhausted on that end. And the first taste I got of what it would be like on the cruise was when this happened. I called the port, uh, whoever, you know, whoever the personnel are who take the information at the port the night before, it was about 09:00, and I said, I just realized her photo was never accepted. I never got an email, and they sorted it out so quickly. She, they gave me an email address, take the picture again, send it to us, upload it here. Um, and she. I thought they were going to call me back. She didn't even hang up the phone. Five minutes later, she said, they're looking at it right now. Um, and then she told me, we're good. You're, you're all set, so you should be good once you get down there. And it was pretty seamless, so it was a while, but the kids were very excited to get on the boat. We had a lot to talk about in plan, so I was just glad the porters took our bags and I wasn't lugging, you know, nine full size suitcases through the line. Um, so we, we didn't, we didn't mind, but it was, it was time consuming. [00:19:13] Speaker D: Yeah, I would say, you know, an hour, um, is probably about average, but, you know, some of it is sort of waiting and then moving and then checking in and then waiting again. So I don't think that that's too bad of a time period. Sounds like yours was probably a little longer than you know, sort of the average, but yeah. Fort Lauderdale is brand new for Disney Cruise line because they ended their contract in Miami. And so now, basically, anything that used to sail out of Miami was moved to Fort Lauderdale. So that's why it's. It's. It's the second most active, I would say, port for Disney, like, across the course of the year, obviously, because they sail out of Vancouver on the. On the west coast, you know, but only part of the year, so. All right, well, let's talk about the. About boarding. You all board into the atrium of the beautiful Disney dream, and your family name is announced. I want to hear from Bertie. Bert, what are you feeling when you walk into the beautiful, beautiful atrium of the Disney dream? [00:20:17] Speaker A: I love the room, and I love. I liked when they announced our names, but we wanted to film it, but I think something went wrong and we couldn't. [00:20:31] Speaker B: No, no, no. Something didn't go wrong. This is the plight of the dad who wants to film everything. I'm holding a bunch of passports and a bunch of bags and maybe even a baby at this point. And I'm trying to say to birdie and Lucy, wait. Cause I wanna film when you walk on, and they just, you know, just beeline it straight onto the boat. And so, you know, the guy there is like, it's the Ainsworth family, and I'm fumbling with the camera and stuff, and they're. Birdie and Lou are pretty much already in the room by the time I get the camera working. So, yeah, it was great. They were ecstatic. They were very excited. [00:21:05] Speaker D: Awesome. Well, let's talk about some of the activities and things you got up to on board. Actually, you know what? Let's talk about the weather situation first, and sort of your itinerary got changed. So you originally were supposed to do castaway and grand Cayman. What ended up happening with the weather and what did you end up doing as far as port stops and CDs? [00:21:28] Speaker B: Yes. So it was very stormy when we got on the boat. I. At that point, I feel like the Facebook group is 50% very informative and 50% just a. An anxiety cycle of people freaking out. Um, so there was a lot of radar screenshots and people claiming their uncle was a weatherman on the Facebook group, talking about what was going on in Grand Cayman, but it was pouring in Fort Lauderdale, so then we kind of knew. Okay. I I actually knew from listening to you guys. All right, we shouldn't get married to the schedule because I knew that Grand Cayman was a tender port. Um, and I just said, I don't, you know, I don't know if we're actually going to be able to get there based on what they're saying. And then pretty much as soon as we pulled out of Fort Lauderdale, the sea was very rocky the first day we were going out and overnight into the next day. So, you know, I. I had a pretty good feeling something was going to come up. Um, so they made an announcement pretty quickly. On the first full day we were on board, which was a sea day. Um, the captain came on and just said, look, there's some bad weather in Grand Cayman, but we don't. The weather in the Bahamas area is going to be bad. In fact, it looks like it's going to be very nice. So our original schedule was we were supposed to have a sea day, then Grand Cayman, then a sea day, and then castaway. And what they switched it to was, we had that first sea day, then we went to castaway, and then the following day, we went to Nassau, and then the following day, we still went to castaway again before coming back to port the following day. [00:23:11] Speaker D: I mean, we got a better itinerary. [00:23:15] Speaker B: Yes. And it was funny, because my wife and I, pretty much the whole time, her and I are giving feedback on what we think about things and if we would do it in the future. And I had been saying they actually have some itineraries where they do this twice, or when they open up the lighthouse, that we could hit both of them. And then, oddly, they switched the schedule to that. So we were not upset at all. I mean, we had a little bit of a headache with the hotel we had booked in Grand Cayman, but it wasn't that big a deal. And we were. If anything, we were, you know, I think the itinerary got. Might have been better than the one we originally had. [00:23:52] Speaker C: So if your first stop is castaway, then, and that was unplanned, what did you get up to on the first trip to castaway? [00:23:59] Speaker B: Yeah. So they did have even. That was kind of tenuous because even though it looked nice outside, it was very choppy. He. I'm saying, he, the captain, it seemed like he was struggling to get it in. And, um, shout out to papa, who is, uh, was a harbor pilot, um, in New York. Uh, he was a sandy hook pilot for 30 plus years. So, you know, his job was literally to park these boats. So he's telling us real time. Like, I think they're struggling. I don't think they're going to get it in here. So we thought we weren't even going to get on the island that first day. We were supposed to dock at 830, and they eventually got it. Docked about 1130, so. But then they did. That's a big difference. Yeah, they did extend, and he actually, they were giving us updates. He had said, look, we've tried three times. We're really trying to do it. We're going to try one more time. And then Burt and I actually were in the line for the aqueduct, and the lifeguard was sort of watching where we were in relation to the doc, and he was telling us, like, if we're this close, we're going to do it. So we docked about 1130, but then they extended the time you could be on the island to six or 630, I think. So we had no plan other than I had known from research that we shouldn't have too big of a panic to get chairs or anything like that. We got a pretty good spot. And then everyone got up to what they wanted to get up to, which was mainly the kids in the water, either me or my wife. I think it was mostly my wife the first day, toting the baby around. Bert, you did. Why don't you talk about what you did on the island? Even before we did the snorkeling, you went over to the pelican, that slide. [00:25:49] Speaker A: I did do that. [00:25:50] Speaker B: The line was pretty long for that, right? [00:25:52] Speaker A: Yeah. So it took. What happened. Papa was supposed to be there afterwards, so I didn't know that. And I was looking, um, for dad, and I can find them. I went back to the spot we played for the beat, and Nana's there, and I'm just like, where's dad? She said Papa was waiting for you. [00:26:11] Speaker B: Okay, well, even before this story of child abandonment, what we're. What? What were you doing? Remember you went on. You swam out to that complex. That's out there. Yes. Pelican plunge. How was that? Was it as good as the aqueduct? [00:26:27] Speaker A: I like the aqueduct a lot. [00:26:29] Speaker B: Yeah. It seems like there was a really long line, and this was like a. [00:26:32] Speaker A: Again, it wasn't really. [00:26:34] Speaker B: It wasn't worth the wait. I mean, we knew this was coming, but because it was school vacation week in the northeast, we knew it was going to be this way. But, I mean, that was kind of a recurring theme throughout the cruise, like, the line for everything was crazy, so. But, yeah, and then what else did we do after that together? Your father was actually present for this. [00:26:53] Speaker D: Or he didn't abandon you. [00:26:55] Speaker A: So we did do. So we did do the snorkeling. Lucy was supposed to be a party event. We thought she was too little, so we told her we could do it next castaway. And so just me and dad went out. I really like the statue and all the fish under the water. [00:27:13] Speaker B: It was birds first time snorkeling. And we had gone on, if anyone else has younger kids that want to snorkel, we actually brought our own masks for the kids. Oh, yeah, the full face mask sacrifice. Yes, yes. We had to sacrifice some clothing in the luggage to get them in there. But they, I mean, those are invaluable because I was shocked at how well they worked. I thought there was no way the kids were going to be able to work them and they had absolutely no problem. There's no way we would have been able to do it without them. [00:27:44] Speaker D: Yeah, those are really great. [00:27:46] Speaker B: And then actually, my daughter Lucy, whos only six, I mean, youre not in hundreds of feet of water, but its, its pretty deep. Her and birdie are pretty good swimmers for their age. So then when Burt and I got in and we were both just effusive of how amazing it was, I was shocked at how much we saw snorkeling. I thought it was going to be seagrass and some hermit crabs. But when we came in and we were so excited, then my other daughter, Lucy wanted to go, so I actually took her out and it was nice and calm. It worked out really well. She went pretty much all the way. You know, we, we did the whole lap of the lagoon twice, so, and that was pretty much the bulk of the day on the island. They did, they did go to cookies for a snack. [00:28:28] Speaker A: And when me and Lucy and mom went, we actually didn't do the course, me and you did. So we did it. It took like a while for us to actually see, like one or two statues because we were just like, where are they? [00:28:42] Speaker B: That was the second, the second time we went to castaway, they did it again. My wife took them because I had done it the first time. [00:28:49] Speaker C: Well, so you have the benefit of going to castaway twice. How did the second visit go? Did you do different things on your second visit or. Yeah. What did you get up to the second time around, having learned what you did about the first time around? [00:29:03] Speaker A: Well, we didn't really do anything new. [00:29:07] Speaker B: Yeah, the kids did the same. Yeah. Especially because they loved the snorkeling so much. They knew immediately they wanted to do it again. And we did get off the boat on time the second day. I will say, as the, uh, one of the adults in this scenario, the one aspect of the strategy that did change is the food situation at cookies. Uh, was, was tough sledding, I think, um, for the adults as far as eating the hamburgers. So, um, and again, I was a little prepared for this. I knew they had to kind of rush off the boat, get everything ready. I wasn't expecting, you know, a Michelin star meal when we're on the island. But the first time we went to cookies and got burgers, I said to my wife, I don't know if I can, I don't know if I could get through this. So we ate. We, we made alternative eating options for the adults before we went on to the island, because I knew we were probably going to be fasting while the kids were doing the burgers and hot dogs. [00:30:04] Speaker D: Well, yeah, I imagine if you guys didn't get docked until 1130 that first time, they would have had, like, no time. I bet they had the food, like, sitting on board and, like, just warmed it up on the island or something like that. I can't imagine that the food would have been fresh given how much time they were, you know, trying to get you guys in the island. [00:30:22] Speaker C: So let me, let me ask this of both of you. Castaway key is like, you know, we, we hinted up front with, when we learned that you'd gotten a double dip. It's like the premier destination on Disney cruise line, right? If you're going to take a Disney cruise, you should try to take one that goes to castaway Key as kind of common wisdom. Did it live up to expectations? Did it exceed expectations? Did it let you down in any way? Let me ask you first, Kevin. [00:30:45] Speaker B: Yeah, I would say it drastically exceeded expectations. I would say I was very fair and balanced of my assessment of everything the entire trip. And there were a lot of highs and lows. But I would say for sure, going back to my original comment, before we had ever gone on a cruise, what is going to be on this cruise? And I'm not going to get on land. The island, that was one of the best days when we've had a lot of family vacations, because, you know, all the way back to when Burt was a baby, we always just took them everywhere we wanted to go. That that was one of the better days we've ever had on vacation. You know, we wouldn't have been able without that cove. We wouldn't have been in a scenario where we could have gone snorkeling with them, the beach, not having a mad dash, even as busy as it was, having no stress about the chairs, and that sort of thing. We got absolutely perfect weather. It sounds like it wasn't nice because they had a trouble docking and there were some storms that rerouted us, but the, the weather was perfect. I mean, I definitely think it, it definitely exceeded my expectations for sure. It's also so, it was so easy just getting off and I wasn't sure with all of our stuff, just, you know, having four kids, what kind of trudge are we in for here when we get off the boat? That was not bad at all. We didn't even use the tram because my wife and I are so used to running around like crazy. We actually were saying it'd be nice to go for a walk with the stuff to get over to where we were sitting. So, yeah, I mean, it's just unbelievably convenient where we were sitting specifically on the beach. We were right between the two family beaches. So where a pelican, uh, point there. The bar. We were, like, kind of right at the mouth of that. Um, so, you know, having the bathroom close by, having the bar close by, and then the waiters coming down on the beach and stuff, it made it very easy for us. I mean, we, I think we thought it would be good, but it exceeded our expectations, and then that made us more excited to go back the, the second day because we kind of knew what we were getting into and knew it was going to be good. [00:32:52] Speaker C: All right, so, birdie, I want to hear whether castaway key met your expectations, exceeded your expectations, or maybe was a bit of a letdown. What did you think of castaway key? [00:33:02] Speaker A: I think it definitely exceeded my expectations. I definitely loved just, like, playing around on the beach, but mostly I like the snorkeling. [00:33:13] Speaker B: What did you think about the food that I'm complaining about? [00:33:16] Speaker A: Well, I didn't taste it yet on the first. [00:33:19] Speaker B: You had one of those burgers? [00:33:21] Speaker A: Yeah, I did the second time. Yeah. I like. [00:33:24] Speaker B: You liked it? [00:33:24] Speaker A: Yeah. [00:33:25] Speaker B: Birdie, also, that's a very good kid recommendation, because Birdie, I don't think she'll be offended by me saying this is probably our pickiest eater. [00:33:35] Speaker A: So, hey, I am offended. [00:33:40] Speaker D: Well, I will tell you, I actually think the burgers on castaway are just fine. Are they the best burgers in the world? No, but they're fine. I don't mind them. But I imagine that, as I said earlier, I imagine on that first day that you guys were there, those burgers were probably made on board and were probably sitting around for a long time before they got served on cast away. So, um, let's. Let's talk about. Well, you guys went to Nassau, or you stopped at Nassau, I should say. Did you all get off in Nassau? That wasn't supposed to be a port that you went to, though, right? [00:34:12] Speaker B: Yes. So, um, we. We've been to the Bahamas before. I don't think we really had an intention of getting off the boat. But then, oddly, a couple things happen. Several different people who I'm fairly close with and either were friends with growing up or went to college with were all in the Bahamas at the same time, because, again, in the northeast, we're having school vacation. So basically, everyone who would take their kids there is there now. So we. We knew people who were staying in the Bahamas at various hotels. Um, and then specifically, one of my good friends was staying at Baja Mar. Um, and that was one of the two hotel excursions that they were running in Nassau. It was either that or Atlantis. So, um, we had, you know, we had phone access on the boat. We had an at and t plan. Um, so I was texting with him, hey, we're getting rerouted. Um, are you guys going to be there at the same time? Um, then he and I both found out that someone else we went to school with was also there. So there was sort of a big, fresh meet up. We all have small kids, so we decided to do that. Otherwise, I think we probably would not have gotten off the boat because we've been to the Bahamas a couple times before. [00:35:34] Speaker C: Hey, DCL duo fans, we get the question all the time. Should I use a travel agent to book my next Disney cruise, or should I just book with Disney directly? And I'm going to tell you, if you have that question in the back of your mind right now, you should stop what you're doing and head over to mypathunwinding.com dclduo. The folks over at Mypath Unwinding provide an amazing service. They are so knowledgeable and so friendly. We rely on them ourselves to book our family vacations, and they provide an amazing service. And the best part is, you don't pay anything extra for it. Disney, other tour providers, and other cruise lines have built the cost of their commission into their pricing. So if you're booking directly, you are just paying that money back to the provider when you could be spending it on the kind of service you would get from my path. Unwinding travel. You've heard from their agents on our show. They are so knowledgeable, so giving of their time. They know so much about Disney Cruise line, sailing, concierge, other cruise lines, other all inclusive vacations and adventures by Disney that if you have a vacation in mind, they are the ones to book it for you. So again, head over to mypath unwinding.com dclduo so they know we sent you their way. Thanks. My path unwinding for sponsoring the show. And with that, back to our episode. [00:36:43] Speaker D: I've got to ask about Baha Mar because that's actually one of the excursions somebody recently was asking about, I think, in one of our sailing groups that I'm not sure it's been offered much in the past. I think it's kind of a new offering for Disney. But what did you think of the resort and was it like beach access or just pool access? [00:37:02] Speaker B: Just curious about that was when I said there were some highs and lows of the trip. A lot of them happened on the Nassau day. There was a long process to get us to the resort. We got off the boat at about. I think we met Royal palace, maybe wherever we met, we met there about 845. Yeah. Enchant. Bert's right. Enchanting Garden. This way. I have her. And we met at 845. We got off the boat at nine. We did not get to the resort until about 11:15. Again, keep in mind I have four kids who are very well behaved, but nonetheless, when you get off the boat, you don't think you're about to go through a two, two hour, 15 minutes process to get there. So, you know, I'm not thinking like, they need to go to the bathroom, things like that. It seemed like they were really struggling to get all of the information and waivers we needed done, completed. So we were just standing in line outside the boat for a good half hour. Then they loaded us onto the buses and then there was a lot of confusion with the bus driver of he thought there was another cruise tour coming with us and there weren't. And it didn't really make sense to me because our bus was full. So it, you know, logic would tell you, why don't we just go? Our, our bus can't hold any more people anyway. But, yes, it was a very long process. It was very warm that day. It wasn't great with the baby, but we got there about 11:15. And then also, this is not as far as excursions go, this is not an inexpensive excursion. I don't remember what the exact price is, but it was hefty. It's only slightly less than what the Atlantis excursion costs. And then they give you. There's a bracelet system, so it gives you access to the water park, mainly, and that's kind of where they let you off. And then you have some bracelets to basically get a meal and a drink. Although it didn't seem like. I don't know if it was because it was school vacation week or they're running a lot of these cruise excursions, but if the parks were crowded, and maybe our cruise was pretty crowded, Baja Mar was on another level. I mean, it made the cruise ship pool look, you know, like it wasn't crowded because some of these water park pools were absolutely chocked to the gills with kids. Um, and it didn't seem like there were any rules once you were in there, in terms of these bracelets that you had to, you know, get your drinks and your meal on. It was kind of like you were just a resort guest at that point. So we had a lot of fun. We were with people we knew. Um, one of them actually got a cabana for us, so it worked out really well. But, yeah, the process getting there, it did not seem organized. And then I. I don't know if it was just the amount of people who were there at that time or what, but, um, it was pretty rough as far as actually being there. Bert, why don't you talk about what you did? Because you. I mean, you got up to a lot of stuff while we were there. [00:40:08] Speaker A: So I did one of the pools that was just. It went like. It had big waves, like every. I don't know, like ten minutes. [00:40:17] Speaker B: Yeah, the wave pool. [00:40:18] Speaker A: Yeah. [00:40:19] Speaker B: This wave pool, by the way, was about 58 degrees. So Bert's in there having the time of her life and tells me to come in, and, you know, my heart almost stopped when I got in. I'm like, what is going on here? It's 80 degrees outside. These other pools are like bath water. I don't know where these waves are coming in from, but it was like the cold plunge. But bert did it for a long time. It was right in front of our cabana, too, so it was easy to watch her. And then you went in those. Yeah, for little kids, baja mar. I mean, they have this in the water park, specifically, they have some pools set up for even kids as young as my son. It was no problem for him to go up and down these slides because it's very open and you can see everything. And the pool they're coming into is probably only about two and a half feet of water. So. So that aspect of it was great. I mean, it's definitely made for kids of all ages. It was just the amount of people was. Was wild. And then because of all the delays getting there, we were only there for about 4 hours. And then another thing that we really thought about was on the way back, I said, I just can't sit in this bus for 2 hours again. And it really felt like it was going to happen that way. So we were thinking about getting a cab, but we ended up. We ended up taking the bus. The bus system being total chaos. They were asking who, you know, who's on royal, who's on this cruise? And I said to my wife, there is. We are all going to the same place. The first person who says they're loading a bus, that's what crews were on, and that's exactly what we did. Some guy just said, hey, do you want to get on this bus? We just got on. We were back in ten minutes, so at least the return was good. But yeah, it was kind of a chaotic day. It definitely was not a restful day at Bahamar, I would say. [00:42:00] Speaker C: So. I'm curious. Would you get off again if you went to NASA? [00:42:03] Speaker B: Probably not, unless we, like, were in the situation we were in where we knew someone. I definitely think at some point as a family because I have been, but my kids haven't been, and my wife has been to Atlantis, but we haven't ever brought the kids, so maybe we would do that. Although I suspect that it would be very similar to the situation we were in. So I don't know. I. I could go either way. It was. It was rough, but I don't know. I chalk it up to just how many people were there at the time we were there. I probably wouldn't get off. But, you know, if we saw something appealing to us, I wouldn't just totally rule out we ever get off the boat again in Nassau, but we would probably stay on board. [00:42:40] Speaker D: So let's talk about some of the onboard stuff that you all got up to. I've got to. I've got to hear from Bert and about the kids club because I know that's something. You probably watched some videos ahead of time, so you kind of knew what the space would look like. Did you like the kids club? What did your sister think of the kids club? And did your little brother go to the kids club, or was he a little too little for that? [00:43:05] Speaker A: My brother did go to the kids club. He did participate in, like, what they were doing, like, in between the two clubs that were connected most of the time, me and Lucy were just, like, using the kind of, like a light, bright table. But we were mostly drawing, like, the whole time. Dean, we, like, barely saw kid, the cub. So he was just ditched. [00:43:33] Speaker D: Little brother? [00:43:34] Speaker B: Yeah. Yeah. [00:43:35] Speaker A: I was trying to find him, and I'm just like, is Dean, like, still at the kids club? And she just, like, tells me to go to Pixie hall to get one of the, um, members to see if he was still in the kids club, and he wasn't. [00:43:51] Speaker B: So, uh, this is, this is pretty funny, but, um. So the only time they went to the kids club was on the c day, which was the first full day we had. And they had been asking us, we want to go to the kids club. We want to go to the kids club. So after we got on breakfast, I don't know, it was maybe ten, we brought them all down there. So they all go in there. My wife and I kept the baby and went off and did our own thing. And then about one, we still had not heard from them. And I'm thinking, Dean is going to be exhausted. He's going to need to take a nap or something. So I went down to get him at one, and I told my wife, if Burt and Lulu want to stay, I'll just leave them. And then the cast members that were there, I go down to get dean, and they tell me, dean, we think dean just sat in liquid. It doesn't look like he had an accident, but we weren't sure. So they said we changed him. They put on, like, stock shorts, gray shorts that they have there. So dean comes out, you know, and, you know, he's not wearing the same clothes he went in with, and he's got, like, marker all over his face. I'm like, good lord, dean, you got the most of the 3 hours you were in there. And I'm asking him, did you see your sisters? He's like, I didn't see them the whole time. It was chaos in there. So he enjoyed it, but he got it in a small dose and then went back to our room and crashed. But then the girls stayed almost until dinnertime. It was like 430, I think, when I got you guys out. So they only went once, but they got, they got a full, they got a full day out of it. [00:45:22] Speaker D: Awesome. Well, what kinds of family activities did you guys get up to? Did you spend a lot of time, you know, on the pool deck? Did you do any of the family game shows? I'm curious, what, what were your favorite activities on board? [00:45:34] Speaker A: We did. We did do the, um, pool. And dad did mention that we did the aqueduct before cast away. I loved that, how it just went around the boat and you could just see cascaway, like, right outside the boat. And we also saw wish on the third. [00:45:53] Speaker B: Oh, yeah, that's right. [00:45:54] Speaker A: Yeah. [00:45:55] Speaker B: And then you went to the movies with Papa. [00:45:56] Speaker A: Yeah, I went to the movies with Papa, and I saw. I don't know, but it was some Marvel movie. [00:46:03] Speaker B: It was guardians of the Galaxy, I think. [00:46:05] Speaker A: No, it wasn't guardians. It was just a bunch. It was like, a bunch of Marvel movies. [00:46:10] Speaker D: Like, oh, the marvels, probably. [00:46:12] Speaker B: Yes. [00:46:13] Speaker D: Was it the marvels? [00:46:14] Speaker B: Yeah. And we. We definitely. I think one of the benefits of being on the cruise was we like to take them to the movies, but it's really tricky, especially because Dean is at the age where you're not sure if he's gonna sit through the whole thing. So if we're at home and then one person is not gonna go to the movies because they're gonna stay with the baby, and then the person who brings the other three has got to think about, all right, if Dean just decides he doesn't want to see this movie, how do I watch the other two when Dean does something else? So that was a great part about the crew is because you just go to the movies, and if something happens, it wasn't a big deal. So they hit that a couple times. We all saw wish as a family because you had saved. Birdie decided she was going to save it for the cruise. So we didn't see it beforehand. And then. Yeah, you saw the Marvel's movie with Papa and Nana. We didn't do the one hole in our game here. As far as experiences, though, we didn't get. We didn't do any trivia or anything like that. You didn't do anything like that with papa Nana? It was because we had three days at different ports. It was just, I mean, it was wire to wire activity. So it was pretty much after dinner. Everyone was just spent. I mean, there wasn't a ton of activity on board other than that first sea day. [00:47:28] Speaker D: Now, did you all do. I imagine you did early dinner seating? Would I be right with that? [00:47:34] Speaker B: Yes. [00:47:34] Speaker D: Okay. And I also take it that you didn't stay up for the shows after dinner, because that's. I mean, that's a long day, and especially with many. [00:47:44] Speaker B: That's entirely true, because we knew from the. [00:47:47] Speaker A: Oh, we did do Beauty and the Beast one night after dinner. Yes, I think it was. I think it was animators before that. [00:47:56] Speaker B: That was the only night we did the after dinner show. [00:47:58] Speaker A: Yeah, we only saw. [00:48:00] Speaker B: What did you think of Beauty and the Beast. [00:48:01] Speaker A: I really love that it did. I liked how they just had the box in the middle where the characters just went up and down from scene to scene. And I did like that. [00:48:13] Speaker B: I saw probably the first eight minutes of beauty and the beast because Dean was with us and Dean gave me the look like, I hope you know this night is about to end because it is for you. Decided. He just decided. We're done watching beauty and the BSM. So I took him back to the room and papa and Nana stayed with birdie and Lucy and watched the show. Yeah, they loved it. They were going crazy when they got back. But we knew from the DCL duo, like, we have to do beauty and the beast. We cannot miss all shows. Yes. There was no way we were missing that. [00:48:47] Speaker D: Oh, I'm so glad to hear that because that is such a good show. And hopefully, Kevin, you'll get to see it someday. [00:48:53] Speaker B: Yes. The first six minutes were unbelievable. [00:48:58] Speaker D: Now I'm curious, did the baby go to the nursery at all? [00:49:02] Speaker B: No, we had scheduled her to go to the nursery the night we were going to Palo. And then I think one of the, what was supposed to be our second sea day. So the second sea day was canceled. So we just canceled that one because we took her to Nassau with us. And then the Palo night, Paba and Nana, I just booked it just in case, like they decided, you know, we got our hands full of three kids. [00:49:31] Speaker A: Yeah. [00:49:31] Speaker B: Yeah. So. Which I didn't think was gonna happen, but just in case. And then they, they told us, like, yeah, no way. Just leave the baby with us. So we didn't use the nursery and I had to go down there and, you know, cancel our reservations. But that wasn't a big deal. But I would say for people who have young kids when you're planning the trip, this was another thing that I used a travel agent for. She knew the nursery Times book up quickly, not in the sense that you couldn't get a time but the times that you would assume you would want to use the nursery. Go quickly. I had to. The night I stayed up to midnight to book all of our stuff, she had told me, do the nursery first because that's going to dictate when you do your other things. Like if you're going to try and do it when you go to Palo, you're going to want to book the nursery time first so that you know what night you can go. So that, that was helpful to know that because the times, again, school vacation, you know, the times were kind of like all over the map. Not at great times, but we did end up getting two good times. We just, we just didn't use them. [00:50:35] Speaker D: Yeah, yeah, that makes sense. [00:50:36] Speaker C: Well, I'm curious about dining. I want to pause on the adult dining for 1 second and talk about the main rotational dining. And actually what I want to do is ask birdie first. Birdie, what did you think of the food in main dining? Did you have a favorite meal, and what did you think of the shows and the dining rooms in general? Did you like them? [00:50:58] Speaker A: Well, dad did mention I was picky. I actually ate Mac and cheese the whole time. [00:51:06] Speaker B: Where was the best Mac and cheese, do you think? [00:51:11] Speaker A: Is this right? [00:51:12] Speaker D: You, dad? [00:51:14] Speaker A: Well, in general, I liked animators better because of the. We did have crush talk one night I thought we were gonna do. So I thought we were doing the drawing thing, but then when mom said that it's a seven night cruise. Well. [00:51:31] Speaker B: Oh, to do the. And we had pirate night and animators also. [00:51:36] Speaker D: Yeah. So they only do both shows in animators. If everyone's going to be able to be at animators twice, and it's not going to be pirate night. So that's why it's got to be a seven night or longer for them to do both animators and crush. So they usually are both animation magic and crush. So the default is they do crush. But crush is such a fun show, and I love it, too. I love that you loved the Mac and cheese, because I don't know if you realize this from our show, but that's Nathan's favorite, favorite Mac and cheese in the world. [00:52:12] Speaker A: Love the Mickey bars just like I do. Do the Mickey. I did the Mickey bars. [00:52:19] Speaker D: Ice cream bars. Yeah, those are delicious. Those are. Did you eat those for dessert every night? [00:52:24] Speaker A: Yes. [00:52:25] Speaker B: That's how we got into beauty and the beast. Just running on fumes. And Mickey bars. Yeah. [00:52:31] Speaker D: Okay, so let's talk about Kevin. What did you think of Maine dining? Both the atmosphere, the food, the shows. Yeah, what did you think? [00:52:40] Speaker B: Yeah, so we were a little nervous only because when we got on the first day, we did go to cabanas immediately. I understand that's not rotational dining, but cabanas. Just because the cruise was full, it was just chaos. Madness and. Yeah, I mean, it was not a good. [00:52:58] Speaker D: Especially with four kids. Yeah, that's right. Because you've got to carry trays for everyone. [00:53:03] Speaker B: That's right. And you have to think about the strategy. Like, I've heard people say, I have little kids, so I can't sit down because it might take too long. And it's like, well, yeah, but if you do the buffet, one person's got to go out and hunt and gather the food while the other person manages the four of them. So, yeah, it's just not. Yeah, it was not great then. My wife and I were both nervous, like, is this going to be what it's like the whole time? But I would say the food at the rotational dining drastically exceeded my expectations. I thought it was excellent. For sure. There are some things that we tried and just said, you know, this isn't, you know, this isn't for us or whatever, but, you know, just being in the scenario where, you know, the service is so good and they're asking you real time, like, do you want something else? I'll bring you something different, you know, anything you want to modify. So, yeah, I would say we got a very good meal every night that we were in rotational dining, and then we got. We got really lucky on the tables. [00:54:02] Speaker C: We. [00:54:02] Speaker B: We had a good table every night in terms of, we were not in a high traffic area. We were usually towards the outside, and the result of that was it wasn't that loud where we were, and it didn't feel as chaotic, so it didn't. Yeah, I mean, how many people were there didn't really affect us. I thought, you know, animators was probably the most fun we had at one just because the show was going on. I mean, the other, the other two are very nice inside, but, I mean, there's not. There's not much that's memorable, memorable about those two as compared to animators. So that was probably our best one. But we got. We got good meals at all of them. We did try the truffle process. No. No hot takes on those. My wife and I both thought they were very good, so. [00:54:48] Speaker D: All right, see? Josh Wilson. See? [00:54:51] Speaker C: Oh, my God. You're never going to let Josh wear it. It is okay not to like something on Disney Cruise. [00:54:57] Speaker D: You guys. [00:54:59] Speaker B: When are you guys going to do merch? You need, like, the truffle percent t. [00:55:03] Speaker D: Shirt take on truffle percents. I love it. That's a great idea. All right, thank you, marketing guru. We're going to. We're going to hire you as a consulting Kevin. [00:55:14] Speaker C: We'll do the happy dumpling logo. [00:55:16] Speaker D: Yeah, I love it. I love it. Well, I'm curious. I know you said cabanas was chaos the first day, which does not surprise me, but I'm curious if you ended up going to cabanas, you know, for any of the other meals. I feel like the one meal that is, like, maybe less chaotic and probably a good option just because it's faster is. Is breakfast at cabanas, with the exception of the fact that the scrambled eggs are disgusting. But, you know, did you guys do breakfast at cabanas? Like, I'm thinking in particular of the day. These were your port days. [00:55:51] Speaker B: The way we did it was the two combined staterooms was so spacious, and we enjoyed the room so much that obviously we're up early, someone is awake by, you know, 536 every single day. So what I would do is, in the morning, I would go, honestly, my wife and I, it wasn't the state of the food necessarily, or even the eggs. My wife and I usually don't eat breakfast anyway. So, you know, every morning I had a routine of, I would go up and just fill two plates with mickey waffles and pancakes and then fruit and hash browns. Um, and pretty much as much as you could put on two plates, bring those down for the kids. Um, and then they would wake up and eat it on the. In the room around the veranda. Um, and then I would go to the coffee shop for me and my wife, because we did not drink the broom coffee. We are definitely coffee snobs. We had to have something that I could visually see being, um, you know, trickled or brewed out of a machine. So, yes, that was kind of our morning routine. So we did technically eat at cabanas, but we never. We never sat down again after that first day because lunch, we were always either on the island or, I think the other day, well, when you were in the kids club, me and mom just walked around and drank, to be honest. But then we did do the quick service on the pool deck, whatever it's called. Luigi's or whatever. I thought that was pretty good. We had pizza and stuff. It was good. I didn't have a problem with that. So, yeah, so we. We attended cabanas and then brought the food back to our stateroom, but we didn't. We never sat down and ate there again after that. [00:57:31] Speaker D: But it sounds like the kids were just fine with the. The mickey waffles and the pancakes and all that stuff. Yeah, that stuff is good, I will tell you. Especially the Mickey churro waffles. Those are quite good. Um, but if you're not a breakfast person, I get it. And. And we like you. We can't drink the coffee that's in cabanas or in the main dining rooms. We have to go to Cove Cafe, or if we're staying. Concierge. The concierge lounge. For real espresso machines. Yeah. So real drinks. All right, well, we'd love to know what. What you guys thought of Paulo. You went there for dinner. It sounds like just you and your wife, Nana and papa watching the kids, which is a lovely way to travel. I recommend it. If you can. If you have a nana and papa that can join you on a cruise, I highly recommend it. [00:58:16] Speaker B: Yes. [00:58:16] Speaker D: But, yeah. What did. [00:58:17] Speaker B: What did you think we. First of all, the bars, before you guys even asked later about the bars, I thought Meridian was very nice. We got there early on purpose because we knew that we could sit there, and there probably would be seats at the bar, and there were. So we got a drink there that was very good. The meal itself was excellent. I mean, I definitely had in my mind the whole time, you've got to be realistic. We're on a cruise ship. You know, what level are we going to get to compared to the fine dining we do at home? We're very lucky. Rhode island, where we live, is actually kind of a hotbed for really good restaurants. And so our, you know, the bar was high, but we were both kind of thinking, like, all right, you know, this will be slightly a step above the rotational dining. But I think, for sure, it was on par with any of the, you know, great restaurants that we go to around here. The food was absolutely excellent. I don't think we had a single dish that we had a problem with, and we certainly got the most out of the menu. I think that day, we had walked, you know, it wasn't Disney Epcot level steps, but a lot, because we had been on castaway that day, and, like, one of us had been walking the baby in the stroller the entire time. So, you know, having not had lunch or breakfast and going Apollo that night, I think we ate basically everything on the menu, including dessert. So we got the full experience. I thought it was excellent. My wife had the same opinion. Absolutely no complaints. Both thought it was fantastic. [00:59:50] Speaker C: So, Kevin, Burt, anything that we missed that you wanted to be sure to share with the audience about your cruise? [00:59:56] Speaker A: I really liked the boutique. We actually just bought. We just bought dresses. We didn't actually look. Well, we didn't buy. It wasn't really like, the dresses that. [01:00:13] Speaker B: They sell in the boutique. [01:00:14] Speaker A: Yeah, we didn't. Did you bring your own dress? Yeah, we brought our own dresses. I really liked. I think I picked, like, it was something. I can't remember the name, but it had the hair extensions. [01:00:29] Speaker B: Yes. Her and Lulu went to the boutique just for clarity. [01:00:32] Speaker D: Yeah. Did Lulu like the boutique as well? [01:00:36] Speaker B: Yeah, my, and my wife did pack them dresses, all of these dresses. I don't. I should have, before we came on the podcast, got the name of the maker of the dresses, because they would. They were not. They were certainly beyond the level of what they would have got in the boutique. They looked like they were made by Chanel. So they were. They already went in. They already went in beautifully and they just got their hair done. Dean and I. Another hot tip for people with really small kids. Dean got a good 45 minutes to an hour out of that wheel that is outside of the boutique where you can steer Peter Pan's ship or hook's ship that, that's on that picture on that wall. But, yeah, my wife and Nana took them into the boutique and they really enjoyed that. [01:01:20] Speaker D: That's a, that's a great tip, Kevin. So that only exists, I believe, on the dream and the fantasy. But right outside Bibbidi Babbidi boutique, and you wouldn't know it was there because if you didn't go to Bibbidi Babbity boutique because it's kind of off the beaten path. Like, a friend actually took us there one of the first times we went on the cruise. And I actually just got pixie dusted. So there's a video of me out there getting pixie dusted actually, in Bibbidi Babbity boutique. But, yeah, you wouldn't know of it. And it's this cute little interactive picture that has a little, like, steering wheel where you are. Yeah. You're like, moving the Jolly Roger around. I believe. [01:01:58] Speaker A: So with the room service. Our room attendant was Elsie. What I liked about her was she always. So she made, like. So the first night we found out about this, she made, like the, she made like this, like monkey, like ape. She hung it on the hanger and she hung out, like, on the ceiling. And then we asked her, like, to teach us. So she taught us how to make a goat. [01:02:30] Speaker B: And I think a pig, too. [01:02:32] Speaker A: No, it was a bunny and then a lobster and then a cop. [01:02:36] Speaker B: Yes. The room, obviously, the service on the entire ship blew me away. The room attendant, specifically, Elsie, they had a specific fondness for Elsie was unbelievable, especially because we were annihilating this room on an hourly basis. So to have her come in twice a day and get everything in order was unbelievable. And take all the beds down, you know, and then she, she was like, going above and beyond. She was like a quasi babysitter some of the time. Because we would get back and my wife and I would be trying to get the stroller down and get the baby in the room, and Elsie would just know to come down, and then she'd be in the other room with the girls and Dean showing them stuff. So, I mean, if we. We could have taken Elsie home with us, we probably would have thought about doing it, but she. She had to be on the next cruise out. But, yeah, they were. Everyone was excellent, but she was. She was unbelievable. [01:03:28] Speaker D: Above and beyond. Yeah. Now, I. One other question, actually, I should ask you. Did the baby participate in baby racing? [01:03:35] Speaker B: She is so close to crawling, but not quite there. She can get up. But she forgot. [01:03:42] Speaker A: We missed. [01:03:43] Speaker B: No, but me and mom saw it when we were on our. When me and mom did the bar crawl and you were in the. You were in the kids club. We did see. We did see. [01:03:54] Speaker A: Diaper dash forgot all about the baby, Ray. [01:03:57] Speaker B: Yeah, but she wasn't. She wasn't quite ready. Did watch it. We. I was hoping if she watched it, it would spark something in her that she would want to, you know, get into it, but it didn't happen. She. She was. She was happy to stand, you know, sit there on. On all fours. So maybe. Maybe, you know, I think. I'm hoping she'll be walking and running by the next time we go on a cruise, but. Yeah, we just missed on that one. But we also did. The only thing that I wanted to mention separately is we did find. Burton mentioned this. We did find one of the controversial ducks on board. One of the. One of the hidden ducks. [01:04:34] Speaker A: Yeah. [01:04:35] Speaker B: There was a lot of discussion of those on the Facebook group, whether or not those were allowed, if people should do that. We didn't bring any on board, but we did find one in the elevator one time, so that was fun. [01:04:47] Speaker C: All right, well, I think we have reached that point in our show where I need to subject Birdie Lucy, who has joined us now to some arbitrary questions, some arbitrary rules, and a dash of judgment, or the round we know as rapid fire. So, Sam, take it away. [01:05:02] Speaker D: Okay, Birdie and Lucy, I'm going to ask you some Disney favorites and then some Disney cruise line favorites. Are you ready? [01:05:10] Speaker A: Yes. Yes, we are. [01:05:12] Speaker D: Okay, perfect. Okay, birdie, I'm going to start with you. What is your favorite Disney character? Or who is your favorite Disney character? [01:05:22] Speaker A: I think I'd say Groot from the. From guardians of the galaxy. [01:05:27] Speaker D: Awesome. I love that answer. Lucy, who is your favorite Disney character? [01:05:32] Speaker A: I like Pluto and Daisy. [01:05:34] Speaker D: Oh, excellent. All right. All right, birdie, what is your favorite Disney movie? [01:05:40] Speaker A: I think I would say Rapunzel. [01:05:43] Speaker D: Oh, Rapunzel. What a great one. Yeah. All right, Lucy, what's your favorite Disney movie? [01:05:49] Speaker A: Wish. [01:05:49] Speaker D: Ooh, a new one. I love that. Okay, birdie, what is your favorite Disney song? [01:05:55] Speaker A: I think let it go from frozen. [01:05:58] Speaker D: Lucy, what about you? What's your favorite Disney song? [01:06:01] Speaker A: I like Moana. [01:06:03] Speaker D: Moana. Awesome. All right. Okay, now we're going to talk a little bit about Disney cruise line. I want to know your favorite from the cruise that you went on on the Disney dream. What was your favorite dining room to eat in? And we're going to start with Birdie. [01:06:19] Speaker A: I liked, I'm going to say animators palette. [01:06:25] Speaker D: Awesome. All right, Lucy, same question. What was your favorite dining room to eat in? [01:06:29] Speaker A: I also really like animators. [01:06:33] Speaker D: Awesome. Was it because you got to see crush and he talked to people? [01:06:37] Speaker A: Yeah. And we got to play the game where they would make something and we got to guess it. So they did our waiter, our waiter. Our waiter would make a lot of, like, origami, little characters out of the paper every night. [01:06:57] Speaker D: Oh, very fun. Oh, I love that. Okay, tell me, what was your favorite activity on castaway? Key. Birdie, we'll start with you again. [01:07:06] Speaker A: I think I like, I definitely like the snorkeling the best. [01:07:11] Speaker D: Snorkeling. Love it. All right, Lucy, what was your favorite activity on castaway? [01:07:15] Speaker A: I also really liked the snorkeling. [01:07:19] Speaker D: Oh, awesome. Okay, what about on the ship? What was your favorite activity to do on the ship, birdie? [01:07:26] Speaker A: I think I would do the aqueduct and the boutique. [01:07:31] Speaker D: Oh, nice. I love it. All right, Lucy, what about you? [01:07:34] Speaker A: I like the aqua duck because it goes, like, really fast with the water. And I also like the kids club because they have a lot of things to do. [01:07:43] Speaker D: Oh, awesome. I love that. Okay, I want to ask you your favorite food that you ate on the cruise. So, birdie, why don't you start? What was your favorite food? It could be anything. It could be a dessert. It could be, you know, a main dining food, it could be a breakfast food, whatever. What was your favorite food on board? [01:08:02] Speaker A: Mac and cheese. It was, like, the only thing I ate, like, the whole time. [01:08:08] Speaker D: Mickey's Mac and cheese is always a winner. All right, Lucy, what was your favorite food on the Disney cruise line? [01:08:15] Speaker A: I liked the ice cream because, like, you got to make it, like, all different kind of flavors. And I liked how they made the ketchup, like, a Mickey cheap. [01:08:27] Speaker D: Oh, I love the Mickey ketchup. That's such a great answer. Okay, would you go on another Disney cruise? That's a really mean, the most important question I could ask you. So, birdie, we'll start with you. Would you go on another Disney cruise? [01:08:41] Speaker A: I would, definitely. Based on how much of the stuff we did and how much we liked it. [01:08:49] Speaker D: Yeah, I love that. Lucy, what about you? Would you go on another Disney cruise? [01:08:53] Speaker A: I would go on another Disney cruise. I would. [01:08:56] Speaker D: Awesome. And what do you think? What would you look forward to the most if he went on another cruise, what would be the thing that you would look forward to the most? We'll start with you this time, Lucy. [01:09:05] Speaker A: I would look forward to. I would. Like, I would be looking forward to going to the movies and doing the aqueduct. [01:09:13] Speaker D: I love that. Okay, what about you, birdie? What would you be looking forward to most about another Disney cruise? [01:09:19] Speaker A: I think I would look forward to, like, the next cruise in general, because this cruise, like, we didn't really know, like, what was going to happen. So next, next time, we'll know, like, what's really going on, and we'll be able to do more stuff we would have wanted to. Wanted to do. [01:09:35] Speaker D: That's a great answer. Yeah, you can definitely. Once you have a little bit of experience, it's easier to maximize your time because you can better decide what things you want to go to and what things you want to miss. Well, thank you both for playing rapid fire. You have both won the entire game, so congratulations. You're both winners. Hooray. [01:09:56] Speaker A: Yay. [01:09:58] Speaker D: All right, Kevin, I got to ask you. Well, we know right now your favorite ship is the dream. Your favorite water slide is the aqueduct, because you haven't been on the other ships. But I got to know, what's your bucket list? Cruise. If you could cruise anywhere in the world on Disney cruise line, where would you want to cruise? [01:10:15] Speaker B: Well, actually, my wife and I were planning a trip to Norway right after we first got married, and we were all set to go. I think we even might have had the flights ready, and then that's when we found out birdie was either coming on the trip with us or we weren't going. [01:10:33] Speaker A: So, yeah, I got in the way of your time. Yay. [01:10:38] Speaker B: So we never made it to Norway, so we definitely are looking at the summer itineraries when they come out. Actually, we thought about doing it the first time, and then my wife sensibly talked me out of it. She was like, we should not do the first one in Europe. We should probably do one here and figure out how it works first. So that's definitely something that we're looking at in the future. [01:11:00] Speaker D: Awesome. Well, your wife was right. That is a sensible way to go. But you'll have an amazing time if you do choose to go on that Norway cruise. It was amazing. [01:11:09] Speaker C: Well, Kevin, I want to ask the question that Sam asked of the kids, but of you, which is, do you want to go back on Disney Cruise line? It sounds like the answer is probably yes. If the kids are saying yes, it would be hard not to. Not to get nagged into doing it. But would you go back on Disney Cruise line, or would you look to. Would you look at going on a different cruise line? [01:11:25] Speaker B: Yeah, actually, we and my wife and I were both saying there were so many things that, had we known, we would have done differently. I would say, overall, we definitely enjoyed it. I definitely think we will cruise again. I think if we. I think the next one, I think this will change as our kids get older and they're doing different things. But, um, I think if the next one will probably do something in Europe. The kids have actually been to Italy with us before, and it was, uh, it was rough, you know, moving bags all over the country on trains and various things. So it's definitely appealing to me to just get on and off and boat and see what we want to see and leave our bags in the room. But then, honestly, the. The episodes you guys have had recently, I've done a fair amount of research about the icon. So if we did do one out of Florida, I think we would probably try that only because it seems like we would be able to find activities for everyone at all hours, for everyone in the group. But for sure, I would do a Disney one out of Florida as well. I just think trying royal is something we might want to do. But if we did Europe, we would definitely stand. [01:12:36] Speaker C: Nice. Nice. Well, Kevin, Birdie, Lucy, who, by the way, we should say Lucy, is, uh, six years old. Is that right, Kevin? [01:12:44] Speaker B: Yes, six. [01:12:45] Speaker C: Yes. All right, so for everyone who is listening, I think that's the youngest guest we've had on Sam, as far as I think. [01:12:51] Speaker D: I think Lucy is the youngest that we've had on. Yeah. [01:12:54] Speaker C: There you go. There you go. That's amazing. So, Kevin, Birdie, Lucy, thank you so much for taking time out of all of your days to spend some time with us and our audience and to share your experience with Disney Cruise line with everyone. We really, really appreciate it. Well, a big thank you to all of you out there for listening this week. We really, really appreciate it. Please be sure to subscribe to the podcast so you can keep getting great content from the DCL duo each week. We'd also love it if you'd head over to Apple Podcast and leave us a five star review. If you hit those five stars, that's great. If you leave us a written review along with a five star review, we will be sure to read it on the air at the end of one of our main episodes episodes. If you're hovering over anything less than five stars, we really want you to reach out to us so we can take your feedback. Best way to do that? Head to dclduo.com to find all the ways to connect with us. It links to our podcast, our vlog. 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