Newport, Rhode Island

I woke up a bit early today and decided to watch a little TV until the sun came up.  Shrek Happily Ever After had just started and I got hooked.  Before I knew it, it was after 7 am and the sun was shining!  There was a bit of fog, but not bad and we could see the harbor.  Already it was promising to be a good day!  We got ready and went to the International Café for some coffee.  Yes, I did have a coffee beverage!  They also had breakfast sandwiches (can you say Egg McMuffin?) and pastries so we had a bite too rather than trying the buffet again.  It was then time to head out for Newport.  We were tendering in so we had to allow a bit more time for this.  There was no problem getting on the tender and in no time, we were off to shore.  It was still fairly early and Mindy wasn’t joining us until around 10 so we just wanted down Thames Street.  For those not familiar with Newport, picture any port town or touristy town with the main tourist street and that was Thames.  There were tons of touristy shops on either side of the cobblestone road.  We walked down a ways from the harbor and then back again to meet up with Mindy.  We located the Harborfest tents for later.

Mindy took us to a CVS to get a replacement battery for our alarm clock.  It’s horrible when you can’t figure out what time it is in the room!  Then we drove over to the Cliff Walk by Salve Regina University.  We walked for a bit and saw the incredible mansions overlooking the ocean.  As we were there, it was clear the tide was coming in as the waves were crashing a little more close each time.  We could see a band of storms stretching in the distance which we determined probably were from Tropical Storm Ophelia.  It looked like we may get wet so we headed back to the car.  We went back to the harbor area to check out Harborfest.

Since we only had a few hours, we had second thoughts about Harborfest.  You had to pay an entrance fee and then pay again for sample sizes of tasty treats so we decided to pass.  We instead went over to Moorings and had a nice leisurely lunch on the water.  No raw bar for us but we did have our share of lobster, scallop, shrimp and salmon delicacies!  We finished off with a lemoncello soaked sponge cake with marscapone cream and a white chocolate lavender crème brulee with graham crackers crumbs on top.  We needed to be rolled back to the ship!

Once back to the tenders, there was a very long line, though it gave us time to say goodbye to Mindy.  We were very surprised how quickly and how many people filled the tenders.  We were back onboard just in time to attend the wine tasting.  In a way I was surprised how many people attended, but on the other hand, I wasn’t.  Elite, Platinum and Suite guests get this wine seminar for free.  This was a fun tasting and we got to keep a souvenir Princess Cruises shot glass for attending.

After the tasting we decided to pick up our Asti Spumante and head to our balcony to watch sailaway.  We got to the room about 20 minutes to five and there was a message and a note for us.  The message from passenger services said that our Ultimate Balcony Dining was straightened out, however we needed to schedule it 24 hours in advance so it couldn’t be done tonight.  The note indicated that we needed to show up at 5:00 pm for a meeting for the Chef’s Table.  What? Apparently we cleared the waitlist!  The note wasn’t clear about dinner so we quickly dressed up and ran down to the meeting.  Turns out it was just a meeting and the Chef’s Table experience would be tomorrow night after we get back from Boston.

We sat on the balcony as we continued to sail away from Newport.  There was a beautiful sunset which we enjoyed from the balcony until it started to get a bit too chilly.  It was formal night and we had originally planned to have dinner in the room so now we were faced with what to do.  We didn’t want to get all dressed up so we decided to try out the fast food/poolside options.  But first, it was the Captain’s Welcome Reception and they had something I’ve wanted to see in person for a long time – a Champagne waterfall.  We went to Piazza to watch and it was neat.

We stopped in the casino on the way to dinner to donate $10.  I was surprised it lasted as long as it did, but it wasn’t long enough for us to miss dinner!  Then it was up to the pool deck for a cheeseburger and pizza.  I think the cheeseburger would have been great had we been there much earlier in the day.  It was lukewarm so not the greatest.  The pizza on the other hand was just out of the oven and I would have to say this is the best pizza I have ever had on a cruise ship!

After dinner we did a bit of shopping and found that the prices for much of the items were very reasonable.  We picked up a couple nicer short sleeved items for dinner at the Chef’s Table since the maître d’ said we should be comfortable rather than dressy.

After returning to our room, we checked out the scores from some of the Sunday games and then called it another early night.  Next stop is Boston in the morning!


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