This morning we got to sleep in!! We obviously like to keep busy and active on vacations, and this is no exception (especially since it’s a working vacation). The only thing on the docket today before we pulled into Curacao was a vendor trade show. We spent about an hour or so walking around the vendor trade show, then started to get ready to head out to Curacao. We were scheduled to dock at 1 PM, and not leave until 10 PM – so we were looking forward to a long period of time in port.
We had booked an excursion called “Eat, Drink, Dance Curacao”. It was a walking tour of downtown, with drinks & tapas, finishing up with dancing lessons. We met up with our tour guide as soon as we got off the ship, and walked for quite a bit. There’s a lot of interesting things to see, and lots of history in Curacao. We walked across the “Swinging Old Lady” which is the Queen Emma Bridge. It is a walking bridge across the harbor, that swings out of the way when ships have to pass. It’s more of a boat than a bridge, it’s floating on pontoons and there is an engine and props that move it into and out of position. Our tour guide told us that it opens on average of 35 times a day. That’s crazy!
After that, we walked past the floating market. It’s not floating as much as you would think. Apparently, it used to be a market of nothing by boats from Venezuela selling produce, seafood, etc. The government in Curacao built stalls for their marketplace. There are still boats floating behind, but most of their food for sale is on display in the stalls. They also do a form of drive through. I saw several cars slowly drive through, and produce thrown through the windows. Our tour guide told us that it’s not legal, and that’s why the cars don’t stop and the vendors don’t walk up. It was pretty interesting to see.
After that, we moved on to the tapas. We got four pieces: crab salad, turkey salad, chicken satay, and fried polenta with grilled shark meat. It was all pretty good, and we enjoyed the break from walking to socialize and experience the local food. We were offered lemonade as part of the tour, and there was the opportunity to purchase alcoholic beverages. There was a group of women that definitely decided to take that opportunity. So much so that towards the end of the tour they were very intoxicated and most of the people on the tour, as well as the tour guide were frustrated. Oh well, at least they were having fun!
We finished up with Salsa dancing lessons. I have two left feet, and no rhythm. But I’m that guy, who will volunteer to be the first to try. That’s because I also have no shame. I didn’t do horribly, and had a really good time. The life of the party was Linda. We met her (and her family) as we were meeting with our tour guide at the beginning. Linda was on a cruise to celebrate her 70th birthday. Her family was awesome, and the restaurant brought her a special desert with a sparkler after our dance lessons. Linda – if you’re reading this, happy birthday!
After our tour finished up, we walked around Curacao doing a little Christmas shopping and headed back to the ship for dinner in the buffet. All in all a great day. Tomorrow – on to Aruba!