We left Houston on Wednesday morning for IAH, flew American Airlines to Charlotte, close connection for our American flight to Madrid.   I was hoping to be able to sleep some of the 8 hr flight.  Wrong. MA had no problems sleeping and I had a really good book with me,  Not Between Brothers, by David Marion Wilkinson.  It is a novel about early Texas. Great read.


Walk around the hotel

We arrived in Madrid as the sun was coming up and after clearing customs and finding our luggage (that’s always a good start) we quickly found the Viking Representative who drove us to our hotel.    Viking has put us up in the Intercontinental Hotel near the old part of Madrid. This is a modern elegant hotel with a very hospitable staff. We got into our room around 11am, then walked around a little, had a coffee and ending up taking a nice long nap.  We were up four hours later in time to meet some of the people we would spend the next two weeks with in Lisbon and on the Viking river cruise.


Lobby Meeting of the Viking guests

  Mary Alice and I found a restaurant near the hotel, enjoyed some tapas and and called it a day! Friday we take a bus tour of the city with our fellow Viking passengers and Friday evening we have a Tapa’s tour of three restaurants where we will sample various Tapa’s and a class of wine or two.  Stay tuned!


Catamaran Tour on St. Lucia


We docked in St. Lucia which is a gem of an island.  It is by far the most beautiful of the islands in the Caribbean.  We had originally planned not to do any shore excursions but decided to go on a catamaran with the Clarks, Dick and Mary.  Our boarding time for the catamaran was 1:00pm which gave us time to have a leisurely morning and get ready.

We met our host and our group at the gangway and our hosts for the day.  We had a short walk to the catamaran where it was being tied to the dock.  All aboard and we were off.  Right out of the bay was anchored a large 3-mast sailing boat.  As we sailed south to Marigot Bay there was a huge 5-mast sailing ship anchored off the coast.  I had never seen one so large.


5-Mast Huge Sailing Ship

The catamaran tour took us down the coast to Marigot Bay where the film Dr. Doolittle was shot.  We arrived at another inlet shore where other catamarans were anchored.  Most of our fellow tourists got in the water as did Mary Alice.  The crew was charming and attentive to their guests.  I think Mary Alice had a great time from the smiles I kept seeing.  We stayed at the swimming hole for 40 minutes and everyone got on board and we were once again headed back to the Regal Princess.


MA’s Swimming Buddy


Regal Princess Docked in St. Lucia




St. Lucia’s Twin Peaks


See you later.


Photography Tour in Barbados, where Camouflage is Illegal

12242017_Barbados_Camo_Illegal_750_0078_resizeWe were notified by the ship’s billboards that it was illegal to wear any kind of camouflage.  It seems that the military’s drug interdiction units wear cameo and they don’t want the public confused with non-military civilians, aka: tourists.

We were up and going at 6:30 with a quick breakfast and long walk to the port entrance. We met our tour guide and small bus and began a photography tour of Barbados.  Our drive took us across the island to the Atlantic coast.  After three stops for photos and one for rum punch we headed back to the ship just in time for lunch.  I’ll attach an array of photos for you to look at.  It is what today was all about.  First photo is a silhouette of another couple on the tour with us.12242017_Barbados_Silhouettes_on_The_Beach_Cropped_750_0036_resize


“A Patch of Green”


I am not a fan of seaweed, but I liked the colors here.


That’s one big rock.

Our guide:  Ron Carrington fixing “rum punch”



“Don’t Worry, Be Happy” in St. Kitts



That’s what our tour guide, Junie, would keep saying throughout our 4-hour tour of St. Kitts today. Before boarding the open-air bus with 10 other passengers this morning we did wonder what we were in store for! But the price was $25 ea. and to get to see the entire 68 mile island I thought it was a decent deal. We left the port area and immediately ran into a traffic jam. “Don’t worry, be happy” as Junie would say!

He drove us on a bus tour of downtown and the government buildings. We learned that Africans were brought to the island in the 1600’s to work the sugar cane fields.  The British controlled the island until recently when St. Kitts was given its independence.

Our tour also included a drive-by visit to an old sugar plantation where the sugar cane was boiled and sugar extracted. The sugar cane industry here is now a thing of the past. We then headed to the island’s rain forest.  Junie served rum punches but we stuck with our bottled water.  The noise and singing of the rest of the group got considerably louder on the bus after the rum punches!


A 102 year old Dallas Cowboy fan?

One stop we made was in front of an old house where we wished the oldest man on St. Kitts a happy birthday. He will be 102 tomorrow.  Our last stop was on the east end of the island at an overlook where you could see the Atlantic Ocean on the left and the Caribbean Sea on the right. 750_2215ac_resize

The bus ride to say the least was an experience, somewhat jolting, sometimes careening around mountain roads, and did I mention they drive on the left side of the road.  The island had two sides, the poorer neighbors were prevalent, the richer side much smaller but quite beautiful including the 600 room Marriott Hotel.  They have several medical schools here and one veterinarian university. I couldn’t help wishing they would work on their trash services  and help the people with decent housing, although we did see one neighborhood of small government homes, beautifully painted in island colors.

We were happy to get back to the ship, and had quick sandwiches for lunch.  Staying away from the buffet once in a while is sometimes a good idea.  So many choices:  Oriental, Mexican, roast beef, seafood, chicken, ribs, salads, and way too many desserts.  The problem with all that is that dinner is just another few hours away!!

All in all, a pretty interesting day.  I hope you had one too.  Wayne and Mary Alice


St. Thomas, U. S. Virgin Islands


Photo of yesterday’s sunset


This morning’s rainbow welcoming us into the St. Thomas harbor

As we entered St. Thomas a rainbow appeared over the harbor.  A good sign? Well it was good enough for the Lord! We went to breakfast and met two couples from Canada. One couple delivers sailboats from the manufacturer to the customer by sailing it to them, in one case from Eastern Canada to Australia! Nice work if you can get it!

We decided to go ashore to look for some new sandals for Mary Alice.  As we exited the gangway there were local dancers entertaining the passengers.  This one guy looked great on 8 ft. stilts and wearing a mask.

We went in and out various shops looking for the right sandal and finally going back to the first one and getting some she first liked. It was back on board for lunch and a nap.  Tonight we are going to a show called “Fiero.” She doesn’t remember but we’ve seen it before.  Here are some more photos from today.  See you later.


Kinda Tall!


Harbor Life!



Princess Cays Beach Resort

The first stop of our cruise was Princess Cays in the Bahamas.  It is owned and operated by Princess Cruises so your cruise card would get you lunch, drinks and whatever amenities you wanted.  We caught one of the first shuttle boats ashore. I wanted to see if I could find some beach photos.  Some of the better ones are pictured.  We returned back to the Regal Princess and had lunch with our friends from Colorado.  I ran into an old Vidor High graduate, Jean Barry, in the Piazza.  I agreed to photographer hee and Becky on Christmas eve, dress us night. FB_750_0002a_resizeFB_750_0006a_resizeFB_750_0008a_resize



Christmas in the Caribbean


Last year we went on a Christmas cruise and it was so much fun we decided to do it again. We made our way to Houston Intercontinental Airport and Terminal C gate 7.  I looked over and there sat my old partner, Waymon Allen with his wife Corrie.  Needless to say we had a warm reunion. As it turns out they were going on a cruise also, but on another ship.  We talked and talked before boarding the ship.  I also want to mention we also ran into Jean Barry and her friend Becky. They were also going on a cruise and on the same ship as us, the Regal Princess.  So all of us traveled to Ft Lauderdale and now we are on the ship waiting to sail-away to the Caribbean. 

We boarded our ship around 11am and got settled into our room on the 12th deck. We have a patio.  We have 12 days to relax and enjoy the cruise.  I’ll try and write if I don’t get too lazy.

What’s in my camera bag?  Nikon D750, Nikkor 24-85mm f/3.5, Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 lens, Nikkor 50mm f/2.8E lens (very sharp very cheap), Tamron 100mm f/2.8 Macro.