Since this was the first time in Los Angeles for the other girls, they were popping in and out of the sun roof trying to shoot off as many pictures as one can take going 60+ miles per hour, James the limo driver was wonderful, he put up with the grey poupon jokes, the standing up in the limo, the sing along to James Brown "I Feel Good" blasting out loud on the stereo system, and since he wasn't able to get out luggage all in the trunk of the stretch limo he had two suitecases up front with him. He even volunteered to ditch the limo and be our Chaperone the rest of the trip! lol (I think, he thought we may have needed one!) lol We were almost sad to see the dock because we were having so much fun in the limo!
The ship, 'The Paradise' was much bigger than I thought it was going to be so I was very happy about that, James took care of the luggage as we made way to check in, which was one of the huge bubble domes that look like a massive golf ball stuck half way in the ground, we were told by the man that checked our baggage that it was once used by to store a plane and memorabilia from the estate of the late Howard Hughes. By the time we all were cleared for entry even the lady that entered all our information was cracking up with us and wanted to come along too....we laughed even harder on our way off the ship, because even though she booked thousands of other people that weekend she remembered us and stopped us to make sure we had a good time.........but of course darling! lol
I had never been on a cruise ship before and of course I still had visions of the Titanic floating through my head, the entry deck was also the same deck as our suite and the view inside the ship was breathtaking! you could look straight up (atrium like) to the top floor and it was decorated in berle type wood with Faberge jeweled type turquoise finials at the peeks of everything. The main floor had a round bar in the middle with a platform behind it with a Cellist, a violinist and a pianist playing beautifully...again I thought of the Titanic! It had a small grand stair case fanning out two sides that lead up to the glass elevators and our state room was just far enough down the main hall to keep the 'lobby' noise away from us.
We made sure our luggage was in the room before heading back to the bar for a bon voyage cocktail.......I think because there wasn't any grand send off like you see in the movies with loved ones still on the shore to see you off and you throwing streamers over the side to say good bye somehow had to be September 11th related. We didn't mind we waved good bye to the seagulls instead! lol The ship wasn't expected to set sail for a few more hours anyway! lol
We made our way to the American Bar which was one level up from us, it was the only place besides the bars and the casino (which was closed) you could smoke, I only had one other non smoker with me, but we made due. The American Bar was not open for business yet, but you could enter to smoke and in the center of this bar was a circular bar made to look like a huge round white piano...fake keys and all with a white baby grand hidden in the center....this is were our first act of notoriety took place.....we all climbed up and began dancing and I did my best Michelle Pfeiffer impersonation in the "Fabulous Baker Boys" movie! Either little did we know or little did we care plenty of people had seen us and we were asked the rest of the long weekend, "Weren't you the girls dancing on the piano bar?"........Yup that was us! Ü
To be continued......