To the Hike

To the Hike

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sorry...really long post

Day One

Sunday September 4th, 2011:

Fuck. My alarm went off at 3a and I rolled out of bed after it went off 10 minutes later. Not that I really needed the 10 extra minutes, I hadn’t slept that much anyway the night before. Gee… wonder why. ;)

Mom, Dad and I had gone through all my stuff and downsized before everything was packed up again. I was going to be taking with me:

1 large duffel

1 over shoulder duffel

1 tool box with tools

1 orange rolling backpack (my carryon)

We were thinking that I’d be able to check both duffels and the tool kit, but when we go to the airport it was going to cost an outrageous amount to check all three…so I grabbed my over shoulder bag to instead go with me.

Mom, Dad and I took some quick pictures and then I queued up to go into the Gates. Went through security fine…but when they were x-raying my bags…I’d forgotten that I’d packed by shampoo, conditioner and body wash in the bag…so those had to be pulled and sent back to mom and pop. Shit. Oh well. I grabbed my bags, put my flip flops back on and then walked to my gate.


My flights were very standard, slept and listened to my music from OKC to DFW. And then from DFW to Tampa, I slept and listened to more music, woke up for the last hour or so and worked on my knitting, (which, Megan, it’s looking really good!)

The …”fun” part was getting off the plane and going through the Tampa Airport…which is COMPLETELY disorganized; their baggage claim is not only in another building…it’s in another building down a floor and has a color association as well…Blue 6?! WTF MATE!! Got my bags and then had to find Super Shuttle for Tampa so I could get a ride to the ship.

I got my ride, and it dropped me off at the ship…but at the wrong location; he’d dropped me off with the passengers and then left before I could ask him to take me to the other side. So I had to haul all my bags and tool kit to the other side of the building…which was long and arduous. I have bruises on my shoulders from carrying the bags.

Finally got on the ship and met with my manager, George and the man I’ll be replacing, Marco “The Battleship”. No joke, that’s what my fellow crew members call him, “The Battleship”. And as we could probably guess, I’m the only girl on the crew! My other crew members are Dan (Automation), Jim (Sound) and Devon (Lights).

There’s 2 full shows that I facilitate and 2 “mini” shows, one is a “Welcome Aboard” 15 minute song and dance routine. My 2 full shows are called “Jazz Hot” and “The Big Easy”. From watching Marco work, what I do is just kind of…keep order back stage…basically I’m my own ASM. I don’t call anything; just go from one side to the other helping dancers quick change, running down stairs to get dancers into position on the automated orchestra pit.

But sadly…day one on board I got sea sick…I was ok when I busy and talking with people, but as soon as I was sitting there and watching I could feel EVERY bump and rock…and I was not a happy camper. By the end of the night I was sick as a dog. Tossed my cookies! The guys, wanting to make me better invited me to join them at the crew bar for some drinks, I said no drinks for me tonight but they insisted, so I joined them and they bought me a ginger ale which helped. I drank that and then went to bed.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Continuing my process...

I won't's an incredible feeling being able to say "I'm leaving in 2 weeks to go spend 6 months living on a ship in the Caribbean working for Carnival, actually using my degree."

But I'm trying not to brag...seriously.

But it's kinda hard not to when I have to explain things. For example, I went to Chase bank last week to make sure that my card won't be "killed" while I'm gone. When I explained, the guy looked at me like I was crazy and wanted to know how I got that. I told him "I applied online and had an interview".

It was even better listening to his side of the conversation to someone on the other line while getting things squared away. He at one point looked at me and said "She says congrats, and sounds like a tough job."

It's kind of difficult to walk around these days and see friends and they ask me if they'll see me at another show, and I tell them why...they "flip" out of sorts, which causes a ruckus and...well...there's a reason I'm backstage. Being the center of attention wierds me out!

My parents are ridiculously proud. Dad has been crazy boasting about this thing to everyone at work (now, my former place of employment) and my mother is beaming. My closest friends are constantly bragging to others and I stand near them blushing with embarrassment from the attention.

I'm incredibly happy about this new adventure...I'm also CRAZY nervous. I'm undertaking an entirely new set of challenges...and I'm not sure how things are going to go. I'm most definitely going, I'm not turning back, it's time I "flew the coop", but that doesn't mean that I'm terrified by what's to come.

Anyway. This week starts out pretty busy. This weekend was kind of busy as well. I'll start with the weekend.

So with the territory of new clothing that is required of me for my new job (new black work pants, jeans not accepted and that's all I have) and work boots ( sneakers not accepted, also the only thing I have) but I also had to get a cocktail dress.

Here's the funny thing: one assumes that when it comes to shopping, you go with your dad for work boots and your mother for cocktail dresses...WRONG!! Not in my family. Mom and I got the work pants and and I spent FOUR HOURS shopping for a cocktail dress and we walked away with 2 winners...only after going to ...about 5 different stores and neither of us agreeing to anything! Finally found several we both agreed with, and narrowed it down to 2 with the help of the Dillard's assistant and a couple of customers. I'll post pictures later on of the winners.

This week:

I have several doctors appointments this week, tomorrow I have a dentist appointment and I'm getting fitted for contacts. Tuesday I have my physical, gotta do a drug test (neither of which am I worried about since I don't do drugs and I'm as healthy as a horse). The physical and the drug test are the last things (major at least) that I have to do and send off to Carnival before I'm officially an technically...I'm unemployed. :(

Well...More later!

Kelsie R. Morris
Bust it!...and I am.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Best birthday EVER!

Some of you know, and some of you know some details, but here's the long and short of it:

On July 26, 2011, I was offered a position to Stage Manage with Carnival Cruise Line on their ship Carnival Conquest. And I said YES!

Jeez...sounds like a marriage proposal, but with the amount of planning I've had to do it's very accurate.

So far, I've put my 2 weeks notice to my job of 3 years (my last day is this friday), I've given my apartment complex my 30 day notice (no charges, I went month to month on my birthday, that was on Sunday, and have already paid for the month of August), and I've scheduled my doctor's appointments.

In order for the job to become truly official, I have to pass a physical, a drug test and a background check. I have 1 of 3 done, my physical and drug test are next week after I leave work.

I'll start packing next week as well, I didn't want to try and do that now while I'm still working, too much stress.

Details about my contract:

-6 months long, I'll be back in February
-My ship goes to Jamaica, Mexico, Belize, Cayman Islands and the Bahamas!
-I have 3 shows that I'll be managing: 2 musical reviews and a magic show...Oh! Did I mention, they'll all be performed on 1 stage!!! Shit! AHHH!!!
-I'll be living on board the ENTIRE TIME. Awesome.
-I'm going to bank money. Lots of money...well...after I pay off some bills and make a HUGE dent in my student loans

I can't even begin to explain how excited I am. I keep having to remind myself to keep my feet on the ground before I float away!! LOL!

I turned 25 on Sunday...25...crazy. I never thought I'd get to start my career so close to my birthday. Actually, I think it's perfect I got the job offer for my new gig a year TO THE DAY of my official graduation.

Kelsie R. Morris
I'm BUSTING out of Oklahoma!