Tag Archives: Travel

Galley Tour on Celebrity Summit

Galley tour on Celebrity Summit

Another highlight of our recent cruise and part of our chef tour was a tour of the galley.  We have done galley tours before on numerous cruises, but ordinarily they are held in the morning, and the most exciting thing you see is someone making gravy!  For this tour we were taken through the galley during dinner service, and it was quite an experience!

Chef Stephen on Celebrity Summit
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit

It’s been a long time since I worked in any kind of restaurant environment, and I’m not sure I actually qualify to say that I worked in any kind of restaurant!  But the things we found most impressive were how clean and organized things were, and how friendly everyone was, especially while they were busy.  I took a lot of photos on this tour, and these are just a few, to give you a “taste” of the experience!

Escalator from the dining room to the galley
Executive Chef Kuldeep Singh on Celebrity Summit
Dessert station!
Dessert station!
Dessert station!
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit
Galley tour on Celebrity Summit

Chef Tour in Nassau

Chef Stephen

In my earlier post about the Conch Guy I mentioned that we had taken a tour in Nassau with one of the chefs from our ship.  In addition to the fish market, we visited a roadside vegetable stand, a couple of guys cutting up coconuts for juice and meat, as well as a distillery.  Here are a few more photos from that trip.

Chef Stephen at a roadside fish market

Our guide was Chef Stephen from Jamaica, and he explained a lot about the different things we saw and how they were used in island cooking.  While we or the chef weren’t permitted to bring anything back to the ship due to health regulations and ship policy, Stephen used many of these same ingredients and themes when preparing the meal that we had back on the ship that evening.

Roadside produce stand
Roadside fish market
Roadside produce stand
Roadside produce stand
Roadside produce stand

In a separate post I’ll share photos from our galley tour.  But unfortunately I was too busy enjoying the food to take any photos at dinner!

Sampling fresh coconut and coconut water
Sampling fresh coconut and coconut water
Sampling fresh coconut and coconut water
John Watling’s Distillery
John Watling’s Distillery
John Watling’s Distillery
John Watling’s Distillery

The Conch Guy

The Conch Guy

One of the ports on our recent cruise was Nassau, in the Bahamas.  We did a shore excursion there that involved touring some of the island’s fish and produce markets with one of the chefs from the ship.  One of the stops on our tour was at a roadside fish market where fishermen brought in their fresh catch.  Coolers after coolers with fish of all types – including snapper, grouper, mahi and lobster.

Roadside fish market stand during our Chef’s Market Tour shore excursion in Nassau, Bahamas
Roadside fish market stand during our Chef’s Market Tour shore excursion in Nassau, Bahamas

Also at this stop was a tent where a man was shelling conch for conch salad.  If you aren’t familiar, a conch is a sea creature that grows in those beautiful pink shells that everyone likes to collect.  He used an ax to punch a hole in the shell in just the right spot, then dug the conch out of the shell with a knife.  The conch was then chopped up, marinated and mixed with veggies for a salad.  Delicious!

The Conch Guy
The Conch Guy
The Conch Guy
The Conch Guy

Watching the conch man work the shells was as interesting as eating the conch.  Kathy asked him if he ever cut himself.  He just smiled and said, “sometime, mon, but not in a long time!”

Conch salad!

Oh, There Were People in San Juan, Too!

Trio On A Bench

Cedric commented on my last post about how the lack of people contributed to the “Tranquilidad” of the scenes.  Of course not all of my photos were devoid of people, as the people are a large part of what makes San Juan special.  Here are a few photos “with” people as a counterpoint against those without.

Painting a Fine Line
Afternoon Walk
Three Dimensional
Wrong Way
Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit
Scenery near El Morro Fortress in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit
Lunch at Barrachina, allegedly the birthplace of the Pina Colada. In San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit

An Unexpected Visit to San Juan

This Way!

Kathy & I recently returned from a cruise to the Caribbean.  We’re getting pretty good at the cruise thing – this was our 23rd cruise – but we’re still practicing!

An Address I Could Live With!

This cruise was on Celebrity Summit.  Celebrity has become our favorite cruise line, mostly because they just know how to do good food and good service.  While all of the lines are good, we’ve come to really like Celebrity.

Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit
Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit

Summit is one of Celebrity’s older ships, but we chose it because it is one of their smallest, at just 2,000 passengers.  The ship we were on last year was over 4,000 passengers, while we saw a ship this time that was over 6,000!  While I would love to experience one of those ships, that’s just a shipload of too many people!

Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit
Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit

This cruise was supposed to stop at Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, but Punta Cana doesn’t have a  dock for the cruise ships so it is one where they need to take passengers ashore using tenders.  The seas were too rough there for tendering, so we ended up in San Juan, PR instead.  While we looked forward to Punta Cana, we love San Juan and were not at all disappointed to end up there.

Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit
Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit

Kathy & I spent our time in port walking around Old San Juan.  We had lunch (and Pina Coladas!) at a nice restaurant that claims to be the birthplace of the drink.  More to come on that, but for now, here are a few random photos from our time walking the streets of the old city.

Random street scenes in San Juan, Puerto Rico during our cruise on Celebrity Summit

Seventeen for Seventeen

Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Kyle of Lochalsh, Scotland

I haven’t typically jumped on the “Best of….” bandwagon, but as my buddy Paul says, “My blog, my rules!”  Or something to that effect. 😉

I picked these photos as much for the quality of the memory as for the quality of the photograph, but criterias is criterias, right? Many if not most have been posted previously, but again….  Your money back if not completely satisfied!

We’ve got a few tricks up our sleeves for 2018, so stay tuned! 🙂

Shoreline near the Tarbat Ness Lighthouse on the Dornock Firth near Wilkhaven, Scotland
The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle

View from the A87 on the Trotternish Peninsula, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Royal Cottage on the shore of Loch Katrine, Scotland
View across the Cromartie Firth on the A9 north of Inverness
View from the A87 on the Trotternish Peninsula, Isle of Skye, Scotland
Nature cruise around the harbor in St. Augustine Florida
Waynesville, North Carolina
The Hotel 1829 in St Thomas, USVI
Morning on Pantego Creek, Belhaven North Carolina
Not a bad view to wake up to. View from our villa at Half Moon Resort, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Sunset at the Sunset Gazebo. Half Moon Resort, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Ogon’ki Ensemble from Russia performing at the Mountain Street Dance in downtown Waynesville NC
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Aboard Norwegian Epic on our cruise from Tortola back to Port Canaveral

Clutter Update

Nickel & Nickel Winery in Rutherford, near Napa, California

Back in February 2016 I wrote this post titled Storage and Clutter, about my quest to delete files and free up space on my hard drives.  At that point I was through 2008 and had deleted 23,000 files worth 236GB.  I’ve working slowly but steadily on that project and today I finished 2012.  At this point I have jettisoned 56,000 files and reclaimed about 478 GB.  Not a bad effort so far, and the farther I go the more confident I become in my previous editing.  I’ll need to go a little further with my more recent years because I’m not sure I’ve been doing as good a job lately.  We’ll see!

Fisher Vineyards near Santa Rosa, California

These photos are from our 2012 cruise to Alaska from San Francisco, hence the diverse geography. 🙂  They are previously unprocessed files that I discovered while I was reviewing photos, but are not ones that had been scheduled for deletion. 😉

The Golden Gate Bridge viewed from our harbor tour aboard Blue & Gold Fleet
A visit to the town of Napa, California
Ketchikan, Alaska
Aboard the White Pass & Yukon Railway in Skagway, Alaska
Whale watching cruise in Auke Bay near Juneau Alaska with Harv & Marv’s Outback Alaska aboard the M/V “Alaskan” with Captain Shawn
Whale watching cruise in Auke Bay near Juneau Alaska with Harv & Marv’s Outback Alaska aboard the M/V “Alaskan” with Captain Shawn

Mary From Minnie

Mary Tyler Moore statue on Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota

Kathy travels to Minneapolis regularly for work – her company is headquartered there.  A few weeks ago she went and allowed me to tag along.  A group of folks that I support at work are located there, so it gave me an opportunity to meet people that otherwise I would only know by phone and email.

Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota

While we were there we took some time to get out and explore.  It was my first time there, and my first time to see the Mississippi River from somewhere other than an airplane.  Here is a baker’s dozen of my photos from that adventure.

Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota
Former Pillsbury mill building in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Hennepin Avenue Bridge over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis Minnesota
Hennepin Avenue Bridge over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis Minnesota
Random street scene in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota

More from Around Edinburgh

Scene from around Edinburgh

I’ve finally finished processing my photos from Scotland and am going back through them for posting.  Here are a few from Edinburgh that I don’t think I’ve shared.  My apologies for any duplicates!

Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Scene from around Edinburgh
Street performers at the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh
Guitarist “Adam Kadabra” performs during the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh
Guitarist “Adam Kadabra” performs during the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh
Bagpiper on The Royal Mile in Edinburgh

Fuzzy Reflections

Our cruise on Loch Ness about the Jacobite Queen

“There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept.” – Ansel Adams.

Our cruise on Loch Ness about the Jacobite Queen

Uncle Ansel didn’t make a lot of fuzzy photographs in his day, but I do.  Sometimes on purpose!

People wonder what I’m seeing when they try to figure out where my camera is aimed.  If they only knew. 🙂

Our cruise on Loch Ness about the Jacobite Queen
Our cruise on Loch Ness about the Jacobite Queen
Our cruise on Loch Ness about the Jacobite Queen