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A ‘Whirlwind’ Experience at Sea – Nolan Mascarenhas

Statutory Warning! The next 1282 words, describe a ‘Whirlwind experience’ aboard a floating world in the middle of the
ocean. Granted its not an apt choice of words and I got home all accounted for, it did feel like just that- the minute I boarded
the Mariner of the Seas by Royal Caribbean – a colossal 138,000 tons cruise ship, with 15 decks of activity poised in serenity
at the Singapore Harbor.
From afar, one would be misguided to underestimate the ‘fun’ hidden within. After all, it does look like any other cruise ship
meant for the honeymooners of mush. Looks can be deceiving, and I happened to witness it first hand the minute I boarded.
“There is something for everyone”- a line that has been used beyond reckoning and is rather staid these days, not to mention
over promised, would be the apt title for this ‘cruise’ and it sure lives up to its name. Let me give you a few activities that left
me spell bound and thoroughly engrossed enough to realize that 96 hours passed me by. Did someone mention the relativity
of time in a Interstellar manner of speaking?

THE Dreamworks Parade

Its an all star round up when life size characters of King Julian and Princess Fiona and Kung Fu Panda parade up and down the
gangway to welcome one and all aboard this journey of Fun and Frolic. They even are amazing enough to click photographs
with. Check out Julia from Madagascar, she is a whole lot of hug and is quite supportive for ones weight ego issues, in a diminutive matter of speaking.

For the Dare Devil in you

One realizes that moment of self proclaimed fallacies in regards to ‘physical fitness’ when the sign up for the adventure zone. You have a Rock climbing wall for the enthusiast such as ‘moi‘ to climb atop and suspend oneself 25 feet above deck with unparalleled horizons of the deep blue sea and all that lurks within and shout out with arms wide stretched ‘I am the king of the world’ and play spectacle to all below who guffaw at your idiosyncrasies. Or if that doesn’t cut it for you, try color coordinating footwear to match golf balls on the mini golf course during putting practice. Mind the wind and draft, it plays havoc on ones putting stance, or maybe it was the alcohol talking from one of the many bars around. For all the ‘insomniac hoopsters’ in the house, there is nothing like a great game of Basketball at 2am in the morning.

A Jacuzzi and Movie

Not all Fun and Games require physical exercise. After the bitter sweet realization sets in and parts of ones body, unheard of
before- scream for attentive rejuvenation the best way to swallow ones bruised pride, no pun intended, is to catch a movie on
a larger than life screen close to 70mm theatre sized format, in the middle of a bubbly Jacuzzi at 9 pm till midnight. I had a
wonderful time watching a country western- The Magnificent Seven, with a beer in one hand and a shower of rain from above
during the movie. A surreal experience indeed. Do remember to keep the towel handy, as the wind gets rather gusty in the
wee hours of the morning. A definitive experience- with like-minded company, to redefine the term ‘Netflix and chill’. Goes
without saying I wasn’t so lucky given three hairy men sharing my tub. Three more and I would be living my country western
flick in real bubbly life, as a matter of speaking.

John Travolta meets Evgeni Plushenko

Contrary to popular belief, the ship while cruising is as stable as a Professor delivering a lecture on quantum astro physics on a
cold winters day in Harvard. However, if some wish to get ‘Jiggy’ with it, allow me to suggest two multiple varieties on two
different surfaces. For starters you could head to the neon lit discotheque at the far end of the ship, and boogie away to
Saturday night fever Travolta style, and bust a move while you at it or be a vision on ice like the 4 time Olympian Evgeni
Plushenko. Yes don’t look so baffled, I assure you I am not doing a Hemingway through this article and this piece is written and
edited sober. There is an ice skating rink in the middle of the ship!!!! And you can learn the art of making a complete fool of
yourself and redefining the term ‘Bottoms Up’ every few feet on twin blades. Whats more allow for the show to begin post
‘your’ practice rounds and see these graceful figurines make you feel inadequate and left footed every step of the way. Please
wear full pants, I speak from experience having to break away follicles of hair like icicles due to the severity of the cold.

A Yankee and a show

Given all the vigorous and not so vigorous activity leaves one famished. What better experience than to dine at Johnny
Rockets, one of the specialty restaurants transporting you back to the days of jukeboxes, hamburgers, hotdogs, sundaes and
corn chilly fries. The Strawberry milkshake is best left to be sampled as words currently transport me to the chunky bits of fresh strawberry amidst goodness of brain freeze slush. Set in a 60’s setting of the American diner this is a fun filled
experience for adults and kids alike with a set menu that includes some scrumptious mouthwatering fare that would appease
the palates of adults and kids alike. Consume the meal with gusto and don’t miss to catch the Musical at the indoor theatre
Gallery of Dreams. Its a world class production and keeps ones feet stomping through the spectacle.

Jackpot ‘Kaching!!!’

Right about now, the only infamous words coming to my mind is the sputtering of Clint Eastwood to the tune of ‘Feeling lucky
punk’. No, I am not held at gunpoint nor am I in a Mexican standoff at the Roulette tables in the casino below deck. A full-
fledged casino to satiate the appetite and wallet of the gambler in you, this gambler paradise has something for everyone.
From slot machines to Blackjack to 21 one never gets bored. I even managed to win a little as a first time gambler. What can i
say, beginners luck perhaps? After all, the house always wins right? Maybe not applicable in this case given it’s technically not
a house? One would never know!! To question or not to question, that is the answer. Strictly for adults only As I sign off, I would like to harp upon the activities NOT covered in the gambit of Fun and Frolic aboard. Time did not permit
me in a 19 hour day of whirlwind madness to indulge myself in the VitalitySM Spa with 100+ treatments with medi-spa
treatments and acupuncture or the 4 pools including the Solarium that is an adults only retreat. Nor was I privy to the stateof-the-art Fitness center with classes that included Tai chi and yoga or indulge my shopping delights in the duty-free shopping
on the Royal Promenade including a Coach¯ store, jewelry, perfumes, apparel and shopping etc. Time also did not permit me to
enjoy my stateroom with ocean facing balcony that had a flat-screen television with touchscreen way finders and digital
signage to get the digital geek in me fed and be happily content. However having witnessed it all, I am eager and ready to get
on my next cruise for a longer duration of time to plan my schedule more meticulously to experience all that it has to offer.
Boredom is never an option aboard the vastness of the ocean thanks to Royal Caribbean and Tirun.

For more information, visit Tirun website and Singapore itineraries.

Author
Nolan Mascarenhas
Here’s how Nolan describe himself: Part time writer, most of the time foodie, part time consultant, full time wanderluster, part
time biker, any time comic, big time animal lover, all the time story teller.
Website: https://nolansatwit.com/

 

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