I realized that I had made a few posts about my cruise, but I haven’t yet told my favorite story. One of our ports was in Jamaica. We went bobsledding and climbed a waterfall! But I am getting ahead of myself.
My parents have been on a number of cruises. My sister and I had only been on one, twelve years ago. Since this was possibly the last vacation as just the four of us, my sister and I were allowed to pick the itinerary of the ship. In other words, we could pick the ports and excursions that we wanted to do.
My sister and I began to look at the ships available. We found some cool ideas, like swimming with dolphins, that seemed really fun. Then, we came across one word that changed it all: bobsledding. We had the option to go bobsledding in Jamaica. Now, typically, bobsledding is done on a sled with an iced track. Jamaica is hot; it doesn’t usually snow there. So we weren’t entirely sure what to expect.
Originally, the excursion we booked in Jamaica was bobsled, chairlift, and zipline. I was really looking forward to it. However, on the day before we landed in Jamaica, we got a notice in our room that the excursion had been cancelled. I was devastated. That was literally the entire point of the ship we had selected. We talked about it at dinner to try to find something else that we could do.
After dinner that night, my mom and I went to the Excursion desk to try to book a new one. However, the desk was already closed for the night. We went to the Guest Relations desk across the lobby. Fortunately, there was another bobsledding excursion and we were able to purchase tickets for that.
I could talk about Jamaica for like an hour, but I’ll skip to the important parts. When we arrived to the bobsledding place, we had to take a chairlift up to the bobsled. This chairlift went through the trees and rose above the water. It was absolutely gorgeous scenery! When we got to the top, there was a whole exhibit about Jamaican athletics, specifically Olympian athletes.
Then we came to the bobsledding. They looked like bobsleds fused with go-karts. They were on a track low to the ground and with levers to control the speed. So it was basically a roller coaster, except you controlled the speed as you traveled through the jungle. It was exhilarating and incredible!
After everyone in the group went bobsledding (we only got to do it once unfortunately), we had an included lunch. They served us jerk chicken in a served buffet-style, but the chafing dishes were in converted bobsleds, which was really cool!
We went back down the chairlift to go to the next thing. This was the unexpected part. The new excursion we were on said we were climbing a waterfall, but offered no description. We were told to bring swimsuit and water shoes, but otherwise, we had no details. We were not sure what to expect.
Well, we got to the waterfall. Our guide told us that we would be climbing through the waterfall. It wasn’t steep enough to be “rock climbing”, but we were still climbing over rocks.
I was completely unprepared. I enjoy creek stomping, but it had been a while since I had done it. We plunged and waded upstream and began the climb. The guide helped us, and I was often helping others once I was up and secured. I won’t lie to you, climbing a waterfall was hard. I’ve never done anything like it, and I wasn’t the only one to slip and fall in the group.
We eventually all made it to the top and were all completely exhausted. I could tell you about all of the things that happened in Jamaica, including the drive back to the ship. But I need to come to my point.
Although I didn’t know it at the time, climbing that waterfall would have a huge impact on me. But since then, I have used that as a measuring stick. I often think to myself, “I climbed a waterfall. I can do this.” Climbing a waterfall was so unexpected. That was not what we were planning to do on the trip. But honestly, for me, Jamaica was my favorite port on the trip. What we did in Jamaica was so unexpected. But that unexpected thing led to such a great story.
I don’t know why our original excursion got cancelled. I can’t tell you what my trip to Jamaica would have been like if we had gone on a zipline instead of climbing a waterfall. But I know this: the unexpected time we encountered in Jamaica brought a lot of great stories and incredible memories. That was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us, and I am so glad I was able to do it. If you were to ask my mom, she would say she’s glad she did it but she wouldn’t do it again. I would definitely do it again. Another thing that was unexpected about it was how much I enjoyed it. Obviously, bobsledding was super awesome! But I loved climbing the waterfall too. Sometimes the unexpected works out better than the expected.