Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Carnival Magic Cruise - DAY 2 - Saturday, Nov 29th, 2014 - Travel Day 2

You can find the beginning of this review here, DAY 1


We had set the alarm for 8:00AM. I would have liked to get an earlier start, but I needed more than 3 or 4 hours of sleep to finish the drive to Galveston. 

We got ready as fast as we could and loaded our suitcases back into the truck.

We drove our last 100 miles in Oklahoma, it mostly looked like this:
(Pic taken from Google Earth)

In Texas we stopped for gas and got lunch at McDonalds. My roommate noticed a Walmart and wanted to stop in and get a few last minute things for the cruise. We were back on the road in about an hour and heading south again.

Downtown Dallas was full of traffic and very confusing for this Kansas girl. We missed one of our highway change exits, but we were able to correct it without losing much time. Lots of road construction, lots of traffic, and very small lanes. We finally made it to the other side of Dallas and we were still in good shape.

Houston was bad too. Although not confusing like Dallas, it took forever to get through Houston even though we were going 85 miles an hour to keep up with the traffic. A few times in Houston we came to a dead stop, and then back to 85 MPH again.

I was so glad when we put Dallas and Houston behind us.

Soon we saw water off the side of the highway and we realized we were driving across the big bridge that goes over to Galveston Island!!!
(Pic taken from Google Earth)

We made it to our hotel around 4:30 PM. 
We stayed at the Comfort Inn and Suites - Beachfront in Galveston.
(web image)

 The hotel was very nice and worked perfectly for us.
(Pic taken from Google Earth)

(web image)

We got checked in, parked the truck, carried all of our bags to our room and got settled.

I didn't take any pics of the room, I'm not sure how I forgot to do that.

The hotel website has some pics:

Front Desk/Check in:
(web image)

This wasn't our exact room, but our room was identical to this one:
(web image)

All of the rooms had private balconies. I asked for a high floor with a water view
(web image)

This wasn't our balcony, but our view was exactly the same as this:
(web image)

After we were settled, we went across the street so we could be near the water. It was a little windy out but wasn't cold like it had been in Kansas.

I called Timmy from the waterfront and gave him an update. I had talked to him a few times throughout the roadtrip so far, but now I finally had a chance to talk to him for a few minutes. 

We stayed down by the water until the sun went down.

We decided we were hungry so I suggested Bubba Gump Shrimp Company which was on Paradise Pier. Neither of us had ever been to a Bubba Gump so we decided to try it.

There was a reason I wanted to eat at Bubba Gump. I read blogs and one blog I read is about a family that lives in Galveston. The wife (Chelsea) writes about their kids and their travels and it's one of my favorite blogs. From reading about this family, I knew they lived on Galveston Island and the husband (Jarrett) works as a manager at Bubba Gump. I told my roommate this story and I told her I hoped he would be there, because I would love to see him. I would actually rather see Chelsea, his wife, but I didn't think there was much chance of seeing her. I figured seeing the husband would be good though. 
Since it was a Saturday night, I honestly didn't think he would be working anyway. 

The outside of Bubba Gump Shrimp Company on Paradise Pier in Galveston:

Here is a picture of the restaurant in the daylight.
(Pic taken from Google Earth street view)

The cool thing was, Jarrett was there and I recognized him right away. I went up to him and asked if he was Jarrett (of course he was!). I told him I read his wife's blog and I recognized him. He was very nice and he shook our hands and asked our names and talked to us for a few minutes about our cruise, etc....
I asked him if very many blog readers come up to meet him, and he said there have been a few. (Good to know I'm not the only weirdo that likes to meet the people I read about in blogs!)

In a few minutes we were seated and our server came up and told us the manager was going to treat us to a free appetizer! Well, that was nice!!! Thanks Jarrett!!

Our food and our complimentary appetizer were very good. The service was excellent. We both enjoyed our meal and the atmosphere was great. It was a very nice way to start our cruise vacation.

The kind people at Bubba Gump also stamped my parking ticket, so I didn't end up having to pay $10.00 to park in the Paradise Pier lot while we ate.

In case you are curious and want to take a look at Chelsea's blog, its at

After dinner, my roommate and I decided to walk down the block to a large gift shop so we could look for Galveston Souvenirs.

As we walked down the street, we looked behind us and we could see the rides on Paradise Pier. It was really pretty with the lights from the pier against the water and the dark sky. 

The gift shop was called Murdocks and it was HUGE. We spent about an hour walking around and looking at everything
Here is a picture of Murdocks in the daylight, although it was very dark when we were there:
(Pic taken from Google Earth street view)

We had been in touch with the neighbors throughout the day. They had left Kansas City early in the morning and had driven the entire drive in 1 day.

As we were leaving Murdocks, the neighbors were just coming across the bridge into Galveston. We headed back to the hotel to meet them.

When my roommate and I got back to the hotel, the neighbors were at the front desk checking in. It was abut 8:30PM. They were tired from their long drive, so we decided on a time to meet up in the morning and we went back to our rooms.

My roommate and I spent some time out on our balcony in the hotel that evening. The weather was warmish with a slight breeze. We were so glad it wasn't freezing like it was back home.

We had each brought gifts for each other, so we sat on our balcony and exchanged gifts.

We had a good time that night, we were both happy with our little gift exchange, and we were both excited we were going on a cruise in the morning. We spent about an hour going through our suitcases and repacking and showing each other our new cruise clothes we had brought.

We went to bed around midnight, with the door to the balcony open so we could hear the waves crashing against the shore all night.

DAY 3 is HERE!

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