I couldn't figure out what was bothering the monster-in-law. She was being short with me and downright mean to her son, and was even testy with the kids. But she didn't say why. We didn't ask, either - just let the beast lie.The ship docked in Nassau, but we didn't get off. I wouldn't have minded seeing the town, but while we were planning the trip, the MIL had several shit-fits that she wasn't paying for any shore trips, despite how many times we assured her we'd pay for excursions. I wanted to snorkel or go diving. I didn't care about anything else on the cruise. The luxury, the plays, the fancy food; I really didn't care about any of it. I'm a low-maintenance girl. But swimming with wild creatures, the freedom, the beauty? Aaah, I really wanted to do that.
But that day, there was tons to do on the boat, and we had a really cool day. The girls met every single Disney princess in the history of ever-after, and the boys met Captain Hook, Mr. Smee, and Peter Pan. We went to the pool, which was maybe 30 feet in diameter (shaped like Mickey's head) but there were at least 100 kids in it. Some boys were playing rough and jumped on my 7 year old's head. She fussed at them and told them to stop it or she was telling their mom. He apologized and said he was trying to jump on someone else's head. And there was a splash pad. And a big ole slide. And too many people packed in close to be able to see all three areas. Me = anxious. Kids = best day ever.
Hours of fun later, we went up to shower and dress for dinner, but the 14 year old thought the good day needed to be topped off with a belligerent meltdown. Just for kicks, I guess. So I stayed behind with him while everyone else headed down to the restaurant. When the voices in his head calmed down enough that he could put on clothes (much easier when there were no other kids to antagonize or adults who will argue with you. I just sat and played on the computer and said, "Cool it. Get dressed." Over. And. Over. Until he got bored with me and got dressed.), we headed down, too. We weren't that far behind them, but they hadn't been seated yet. I figured they stopped to browse in a shop. After fifteen minutes, I went looking for them.
And, oh, crap, this restaurant had two entrances. They'd been waiting for us at the other one. They were pissed.
Apparently, while they were waiting for us, the MIL decided to finally let loose with why she was so mad. In front of a huge crowd. She went to the bar earlier in the day and asked if refills on drinks were free. He said no. Despite all the literature that said sodas, juices, milk, tea, coffee, etc. were free; that alcoholic drinks and fancy espressos were the only drinks you had to pay for; she went to the bar to ask about free refills.
So, she decided that the kids' Sprite refills at dinner the night before had cost her seven whole dollars extra each! And she was "not going to pay extra for those kids Sprites - they can drink water if it kills them! Y'all are not spending all of my damn money!" She was loud, and she was in front of lots of people. Fun times. (She spent $14,000ish on this trip, by the way.)
I asked Palmer the superwaiter to let her know that Sprite refills were free (he assured me they were), but he was apparently to dang smart to even speak to my MIL. He didn't say another word to her the entire trip that wasn't job-required. He looked afraid.
Which, she was cool with that since she's a bigot. She didn't speak to us for the rest of dinner, and she didn't sit with us at the play afterward.
The play, though, was fun... except that it creeped me out. Hades was down because Hercules defeated him, so he quit trying to be evil. Then the three scary-as-Hell witchy women told him he'd lose his job as god of the underworld if he didn't evil the place up a bit. So he rounded up all the Disney villains from Cruella DeVille to Scar to Ursula, and they had all the kids cheer and clap for the god of the underworld and all the evil people he was friends with. "Let them know how much you love them, even though they're evil!"
Um, not, cool, Disney. Not cool.
But it was well performed, and we talked about good vs. evil afterward.
My mother-in-law could have been in that play. Just sayin'.
And yet... you don't get the full ridiculousness of her misinformed Sprite tirade until you know what she did the next morning.
This, she didn't do as an apology - she never for a second believed she was wrong. In fact, she still believes they hid the cost of those Sprites in her bill. This she did to regain her position of Lord of All Her Family Does.
She bought into the Disney Vacation Club. She bought .01% of a room in a Disney World Orlando hotel, and got in return discounts and free stays at hundreds of hotels worldwide. The down payment was $22,000.00. Plus $100 per month dues. For the next forty-five fricking years. And she wrote a dadgum check for it!
I came in the room, and she was all smiles, saying, "We've got to go spend some money!" Apparently, she got a $500 credit to her on-ship account for being such a sucker, so she was acting like she just won Powerball.
What. The. Crap?
But she was still irritated about the imaginary $7 Sprites?
Her reason for this purchase she'll never use?
"So all my grandkids will have a place to stay on their honeymoons. They could go to Venice!"
I'm pretty sure the two boys won't be spending 22K on honeymoon hotels... and if they do, then they must end up riding some gravy train I'm sure to be tagging along behind. I do frequently say that my 5 year old little man is a little Rick Castle, so, it could happen.
Then she let me know that she wrote down that I would be paying the $100 monthly dues along with my sister-in-law. (My SIL's vacations extend only as far as her husband's gun show hobby takes them. They only go places with shootin' and fishin'.)
So I went about my day as if I wasn't living in Crazytown. I mean, come on, how was I supposed to react to that?
She didn't want to go to the pool, so we spent another day without her. She went to the spa and got lost & had to find a staff member ("one of those for'ner's") to bring her back to the room.
I know I mentioned how awesome the staff was, but they really went above and beyond. On the second day, we saw housekeeping outside a room far away from ours. The young lady stopped, said, "Oh, you're the Turners in room 7144, right? I'm Maria, and I'll be taking care of your stateroom this week." There were incredible towel-origami animals every day along with the perfect work Maria did. Dang, I hope they're paid well. Amazing staff. Truly.
Dinner, ventriloquist show (cool!), and bed. But I couldn't sleep. So I walked around, prayed for the employees, their home countries, and the families they left behind, then I went to the adults-only pool and hot tub. Niiiiiiice. I need me one of those.
Five days down, two to go. The next day would be at Castaway Cay - Disney's private island. They have snorkeling with manta rays around a reef. The one thing this whole trip I really wanted to do.