Posted in Family, Travel

7 Things I Learned on my 7 Day Cruise

1. Your family can be frustrating

There were times that I began getting so frustrated with my mom and grandma.There were many times I decided to venture out on my own because they just wanted to sleep. But, then I started putting myself in their shoes and realizing that we have fun in our own respective ways. My kind of fun is venturing out and exploring new things. Their kind of fun is napping by the pool and listening to the soothing sounds of the ocean.

2. You’ll learn a lot about a person, even your mom, when you’re with them for 24 hours straight

If you really think about it, we don’t spend much time with out parents. If you’re like me, school takes up a chunk of your time, then there’s work, and going out with friends. Imagine having none of that, for seven days straight. The only people you actually know are your mom and grandma and that’s who you have to talk to.

I learned so much about habits I hadn’t noticed before with the two of them. They also took their time to learn more about me while we were stuck together. We left the cruise even closer than we were before and that’s something I’m super thankful for.

3. The ocean is so beautiful

For someone who can barely doggy paddle, I was absolutely drawn to the water during this cruise. The ocean is absolutely beautiful. The water was so clear in St. Maarten and Labadee. Living in Florida, I often take the beach for granted. It’s right down the road so it’s lost that air of specialness. This cruise helped me appreciate the beauty of nature all the more. The ocean was absolutely gorgeous. Our room had a balcony and I loved every minute of it.

4. Now every tourist destination is as beautiful as the brochures

When you hear about “tourist destinations” you’ll often think of rich culture and beautiful sand beaches. The images on the cruise websites can be absolutely enticing. Of the three places we visited, I can say that one did not live up to the hype.

St. Maarten was way dustier than it looked on the brochure. I don’t know if it’s because we were on the Dutch side instead of the French, but once we really entered the island, it wasn’t all that pretty. The only really nice part was the beach, but the sand was quite rough.

There’s a high chance that Hurricane Maria is to blame for what St. Maarten was lacking. It was definitely my least favorite visit.

5. There are so many places with such rich history

During our tour of San Juan, Puerto Rico, we learned so much about the islands rich history and how it’s keeping up with that legacy today. Our tour guide was so funny and he made the experience all the more enjoyable. Puerto Rico was one of my favorites, even though I didn’t get a chance to practice my Spanish.

6. Some places are even better in person

I don’t think any pictures could have really prepared me for the beauty of Labadee, but here are a few of ours.

7. The days move quick so enjoy each one fully

The seven days were up in a flash. I’m thankful that we made it a mission to go to every show and special dinner during our cruise. We saw Mamma Mia! live and acrobats soaring through the skies. There was so much to see and do and I loved every minute of it.

What’s your ideal family vacation?

Where was the last place you ventured to?

What have you learned on your travels?

Let me know in the comments, let’s chat!


Rachelle Saint Louis is a Haitian-American writer, born and raised in South Florida. She received a 2018 Silver Medal in the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition for her poem “Red Blood Cell.” She is currently a Psychology and English double major at Florida Atlantic University. Her poetry has been published in Rigorous Magazine. Rachelle has been writing poetry since the 7th grade and you can often find her performing Spoken Word at local open mics.

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