Tuesday, January 06, 2015


Girls That Roam has come through for me again, publishing a marathon article I wrote about a rum-themed cruise that Pipi and I took in November.

I’ve had a lot of fun writing articles for Girls That Roam, because they’ve all been based on really great trips. But this was the most fun of all to research. For this article, I spent a week in the tropics, drinking rum with my wife, which is pretty much the definition of living the dream, as far as I’m concerned.

This trip was significant for me for two reasons. First and foremost, it represented my honeymoon. Pipi and I have been together for many, many years, and legally married more than a year ago. But we’d never taken an official honeymoon, so we decided that this would be it.

The trip was also significant because it is the first cruise I took without trepidation. I’ve cruised before, and haven’t always enjoyed it. The Transatlantic cruise I took as a teenager was too adult for me, and the booze cruises I took in my early 30s were, by then, a little juvenile.

On the precipice of middle-age, I was talked into taking a Caribbean cruise with a group of rum aficionados, and it was a ton of fun. I realized that cruising can be enjoyable for independent travelers; it’s just really important to pick one that goes to places you’d actually like to explore. That sounds obvious, but it’s very easy to pick the wrong cruise, because so often they are marketed based on either price or the reputation of the cruise line, and often are picked based on which departure ports are the easiest to get to, and whether or not they happen during a particular convenient week.

Pipi and I got this cruise, our second Caribbean sailing, just right. The departure and return ports (leaving from San Juan, returning to Miami) were not all that convenient, and Carnival wouldn’t have been my first choice of cruise line. But none of that mattered much. We went with a group of friends and saw a bunch of islands that really interested us. It was a fun, relaxing vacation where we felt we saw a little bit of the world, not just beaches. And we got to visit several distilleries and drink a little rum, which makes any trip better.

Even a cruise.